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nevets88

Is there a correlation between steepness of swing plane and swing speed?

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I would imagine if Matt Kuchar's swing wasn't flat, he'd probably get more distance? Of course, he'd probably lose the accuracy that won him so much money. But from my little keyhole of experience, it seems many of the longer hitters on the tour and the long drive guys have high hands at the top.

What is the consensus among the experts on this?

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Keep in mind that steeper angles of attack impart more spin on the ball. Spin kills distance. Shallower angles impart less spin. So I would say in general shallower swings coming inside out will create greater distance. Obviously not an expert but this is a good question.
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Probably no definitive correlation here.  High hands at the top can still "drop into the slot" in the downswing.  Also, a steep swing can produce low spin if the ball is teed up high and in line with the front foot.  Bubba Watson is a tall guy who uses a short driver -- necessitating a steep swing to even hit the ball -- and he leads the tour in driving distance.  But many LD guys like Sadlowski are just the opposite, short in stature but using a longer driver requiring a shallower swing.

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i have heard that high hands equal distance, deep hands equal accuracy. there are a couple videos on youtube about it. Bubba has high hands, hits it far, not a lot of accuracy

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i have heard that high hands equal distance, deep hands equal accuracy. there are a couple videos on youtube about it. Bubba has high hands, hits it far, not a lot of accuracy


I wouldn't put any stock in that theory. If you stop the swings of different tour players at this point on Kuchar's swing there is very little difference whether they had a high hands vertical swing or low hands rotary swing. Some have the front arm more vertical and some have the front arm extended more toward the ball at that point from a DTL view but even that has little to do with the top of the back swing. JB Holmes at that point would have the front arm angled more toward the ball (and his left arm is high at the top).

Shaft in line with the back forearm at this point is what almost all pros have in common. With a vertical swing the front arm falls more straight down to that point and with a deeper swing it has to come around and down. Neither are swinging straight at the ball from the top of the swing but are getting to this position in different ways. For that reason the position at the top has little to do with the angle of attack into the ball.

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Keep in mind that steeper angles of attack impart more spin on the ball. Spin kills distance. Shallower angles impart less spin. So I would say in general shallower swings coming inside out will create greater distance. Obviously not an expert but this is a good question.

Those are gross generalizations. Steeper angles don't typically create more spin and spin doesn't neccesarily kill distance.

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Those are gross generalizations. Steeper angles don't typically create more spin and spin doesn't neccesarily kill distance.

Please ellaborate. I don't see how spin could not affect distance. Excessive spin could cause a ball to balloon, a ballooning ball is going to lose distance.

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Please ellaborate. I don't see how spin could not affect distance. Excessive spin could cause a ball to balloon, a ballooning ball is going to lose distance.

Those are gross generalizations. Steeper angles don't typically create more spin and spin doesn't neccesarily kill distance.


Just my 2 cents. I would say that steeper angles do typically create more spin with all else equal, but would also agree that more spin "doesn't necessarily kill distance." Spin isn't always the enemy of distance. It keeps the ball in the air. Excessive spin for the trajectory and ball speed is the enemy of distance.

P.S. You can also have a "steep" swing that bottoms out before the ball and catches the ball with a positive angle of attack, which changes that whole discussion.

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I'm assuming solid contact is made in my assumptions
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A steeper angle of attack most often results in less dynamic loft as well. The result of that is less spin as compared to a shallow angle of attack with more dynamic loft.

Spin is determined by spin loft(the difference between AoA and dynamic loft). There's lots of reading out there about this if you Google "trackman laws", "trackman ball flight", etc.

Here's one link I found real quick. http://nccga.org/the-science-of-spin-angle-of-attack/

There's plenty of reading about it on this site as well.

I say spin doesn't "necessarily kill distance" because spin is one of those good things(all shots require backspin) but you can have too much of it, to the point where it costs you distance.

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A steeper angle of attack most often results in less dynamic loft as well. The result of that is less spin as compared to a shallow angle of attack with more dynamic loft.

Actually a steeper angle of attack will not decrease dynamic loft. Most high handicap players will flip the club at the ball, which increases angle of attack and increased dynamic lot. Tour pros have a shallower attack angle, and hands forward at impact. This will deloft (lower dynamic loft) the club.

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The Emperor has spoken lol.

:-) Was on my phone.

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Actually a steeper angle of attack will not decrease dynamic loft. Most high handicap players will flip the club at the ball, which increases angle of attack and increased dynamic lot. Tour pros have a shallower attack angle, and hands forward at impact. This will deloft (lower dynamic loft) the club.

The Trackman people themselves say that as the angle of attack gets steeper the dynamic loft tends to be reduced along with it. Granted yeah, they're measuring more tour players and decent golfers than high handicappers so you might be right about the high handicappers.

But for people who don't flip at the ball, steepening the angle of attack will in most cases reduce dynamic loft, leading to lower shots without adding spin.

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