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Showing content with the highest reputation on 05/04/2014 in all areas

  1. Here are three graphs of putting strokes. The s axis is "speed" and the "t" axis is time. We'll take a look at each of these in a moment, but consider first how putting can behave like a pendulum. In virtually all good putting strokes, the ball is hit with a slight positive angle of attack (AoA) - about 2-3° or so. This positive AoA helps minimize backspin, produce no spin, or even to produce a tiny bit of forward spin if the dynamic loft is 1-2°. But the point is: the ball is struck while the putter head is ascending, or after low point . If you were to swing a pendulum back and through, maximum speed would be where? At the bottom. At low point. At every point after that, the speed would be lower. Even one tenth of one degree after low point, the pendulum is slowing down (negative acceleration, or deceleration). The best putters almost all tend to have a decelerating putter head at or even slightly before impact. Their putting stroke resembles a pendulum, reaching maximum speed at or slightly before impact. Consider also the length of a pendulum's swing. A theoretical pendulum (no loss of energy to friction) swings as far past center in one direction as it does in the other direction. Whether you measure it in degrees or a linear measurement, the pendulum swings 22.7° left and 22.7° right, or 13.1 inches left and 13.1 inches right. The best putters almost all tend to have similar length backswings and through-swings in their putting strokes. Their putting strokes continue to resemble a pendulum in this sense. Now let's take a look at each of these putting strokes. Here's a putting stroke typical of a golfer who has a terrible time controlling their distances. This golfer may have a great sense of touch from 5-10 feet, maybe even out to 15', but when you ask them to hit a 30' putt, you start to see issues. They'll hit one 27', the next 34', the one after that 25', and then maybe 33'. These golfers often make a backswing that's - let's just say - eight inches for a six-foot putt, nine inches for a 12-foot putt, and ten inches for a 30-foot putt. They're almost the same length. Then they have to accelerate their putters various amounts to reach various speeds at impact to send the ball various distances. If you wanted to make a pendulum swing faster at the bottom of the arc, given the same pendulum length and weight (we aren't changing putters or our setup appreciably), how would you accomplish this? Why… you'd simply pull the pendulum back farther before letting it go. So look at the speed and time plot of the poor putter above. I've marked the instantaneous speed at two points: just prior to impact and just after impact. Note that impact - even on a putting stroke - severely slows the putter head down. I've exaggerated it quite a bit in these graphs, but that's something I can do given that I haven't added any scale to these charts. :D It simply makes things clearer to see and thus easier to grasp. At any rate, note that the direction of each of the arrows - both the dashed (pre-impact) and dotted (post-impact) lines is pointing upwards. This means the putter head has positive acceleration. It's speeding up. Note the pronounced "hump" after impact. Though the ball slows the putter head down temporarily, it's still speeding up, so you see a second peak speed after impact. This golfer is roughly 99% likely to have poor distance control. Let's look at the good and great putting dynamics (and by good I mean pretty darn good, because as you'll note the differences between these two are subtle): Note how in Good the putting stroke reaches maximum speed at the ball. The proof of this is that the acceleration is neither positive nor negative - the arrow is pointing horizontally, indicating that the speed is neither going up nor down. Constant speed is no acceleration (positive or negative). Notice that this condition continues immediately after impact, and the putter head continues to slow down thereafter. In the Great image, the putter head is actually slowing down slightly at impact (the arrow points downward). Then you see the BIG deceleration caused by the putter impacting the ball, and then the deceleration continues from there. Contrast those with what we often see from the golfers with the absolute worst distance control: This golfer actually manages to reach peak/maximum speed after the ball has left the putter . Note that his acceleration curve going into impact actually steepens - he is accelerating more at impact than at any other point in the downstroke. Then he accelerates MORE until he rapidly decelerates, well after impact, to bring the putter to a halt. This is more common than you might think. Golfers have been told for decades to "accelerate through the ball" and to "putt authoritatively" and so on. This advice ranks near the top of my list for counter-productive, harmful advice. By and large, the poorest putters accelerate far too much for far too long (including up to and after impact), while the best putters have roughly matching backstrokes and through-strokes that deliver the putter head to the ball while it is either not accelerating at all or is negatively accelerating (i.e. decelerating, or slowing down). If you feel you may be "accelerating" your putter into impact, put three coins on the ground, equally spaced from each other, in a line. Put the ball near the middle one, and practice making backstrokes that go to one and finish at the other. Try to feel that you're not adding anything to the downstroke or follow-through: you're not accelerating the putter much (just let gravity do it - in reality your muscles will contribute, but it's uncommon to feel much muscle contribution) and you're not forcing yourself to "brake" the putter too much at the end, either. Just make a natural, smooth stroke that matches - coin to coin. To change how far you hit the ball, move the coins farther apart or closer together, keeping the distances the same. If you still struggle with this, swing to the second or third longest coin, but still try to hit the ball a short distance and finish at the first or second coin on the follow-through. It's that simple. P.S. Note that I've made no attempt to show the scale of t and s. Specifically, I've fudged things a bit by implying that the the t is the same for all of these strokes, and that impact occurs at the same moment. This is very unlikely to be true: if you make a short backstroke and accelerate all the way up to and even after impact, you're likely to have a shorter (time) downswing and to reach impact sooner. They line up because I wanted to keep things simple, and because timing isn't really the topic here. P.P.S. A really old example of a SAM PuttLab read-out can be seen here . P.P.P.S. (2014-08-13) A great series of pictures and a simple explanation of the "why" is found in post #179:
  2. I have lost 160 pounds and it has changed my life for the better in so many ways in the last year. Tonight I realized my first drawback(obviously one I will gladly live with), I am hitting it soooo much shorter. I am 6'4" now and weigh about 185. It's crazy how nothing feels 'normal' compared to my swings last year. I start a group of three lessons starting Monday and I know in the long run the weight loss will help my game but right now I feel like I am swinging with someone else's body.
  3. Holmes is just very deliberate. Didn't get put on the clock, but warned. Not jumping around like he has icy hot in his shorts like Bradley, but I think he takes longer. They were teeing off on 17 when Phil was already on the green on 18. Would be cool to see Holmes and Bubba playing together. If Phil had made his putts today like he did yesterday, he could have been 20 under. Sad to watch after the great round he had yesterday. . Am I the only one that thinks the camera work was terrible on golf channel today? And I think someone was trying to see how many times they could cover the cup with the golf channel logo when someone was putting. Out of the way when they put it in the top corner of the screen. I don't know why they ever put it at the bottom.
  4. Kudos to team @mvmac , but the ending of the streak was no fault of @tristanhilton85 . Dude shot an 81 and didn't miss a single fairway that I can remember. Hard to see how you're not in the single digits with a game like that. If I had played even poorly (let alone decently) we would have won going away. As I said on the 17th tee, there are no words for how I played today. Guess I gotta blame it on the baby! Good seeing you all today - look forward to doing it again soon.
  5. Depends on the number really. Do you see any significant difference. Does it feel better for you? Really determining between two shaft models is just basing it on what your willing to pay. For me I went up to the TP because that clubhead and shaft combination just worked great for me. I love how the club feels. So for me it was worth it. I will say this, that Fujikura Shaft is awesome!!! in my opinion.
  6. become a superintendent since you think you know so much
  7. Well said dbrock504. As a course marshal, I agree that there is a marked decline in etiquette particularly in regards to treatment of the course. There seems to be an ethic developing that says, "I paid my green fee and I will treat the course as I see fit." That means no fixing divots, no raking of bunkers, and no fixing ball marks for the following players. To me, this is totally against the traditions and etiquette of the game, and frankly, I find it to be totally inconsiderate. As to behaviour on the course…I am now of an age (grumpy enough) to tell any player I am partnered with who throws a club that "That is the last club you will throw today…are we clear!?" If people are not told what is and what isn't acceptable behaviour then how are they to learn? I am not going to have my day spoiled because of other people's bad behaviour. The game is hard enough without that crap. Thanks for the comment.
  8. Not at all. You can count a ball hit into the middle of the lake as a fairway hit too. Equally weird that anyone would want to, but to each his own.
  9. It is humbling and embarrassing that I was so big but I feel like a new person. I went from getting tired after riding 18 holes to feeling good after walking them.
  10. Mostly gonna be a "city" car. You know, the thriving metropolis of Erie, PA. :) Driving mostly from my home to the mall, the movies, shopping, or downtown to Golf Evolution. I guess technically that requires about 3 miles on I-79, but… that's hardly a "freeway."
  11. I would just play scramble format with them. It seems to help them relax when they are part of the "team" instead of trying to compete with you.
  12. So last year we had a really bad storm that knocked down a 75' Black Walnut tree in my back yard. I've spent the entire summer contemplating what to do with the hole that was left after the stump grinder did it's job; I've decided it's going to be a sand trap that will eventually have a packyard putting green right next to it. My questions are: A) Are there more afforable synthetic options to the midwestputtinggreen.com 4000.00 scenario? Has anyone put one in themselves? B) Does anyone have any suggestions on how to start preparing the area to grow bent grass, when I can buy the seed, etc? Would it be a bad idea to start now? Any input would great Thanks! -Mike
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