Angle of Attack Study
THE SECRET SAUCE
Now I don’t much believe in secrets to something, because I think they are intended to lead us to believe we can get something quickly with little or no effort. And I don’t think this is possible. In addition, I believe the “secret” to something is often very simple. For example, the “secret” to accululating wealth is to spend less than you make. The “secret” to success in your career is to work hard, continue to learn, and be prepared to take advantage of a lucky break when it comes you way. The “secret” to getting along with others is to treat them as you would like to be treated. So you see, in my opinion, typical “secrets” are not that complicated.
But then we come to golf and the Holy Grail that all golfers seek…. MORE DRIVER DISTANCE. This quest was a great mystery until the TrackMan Launch Monitor was invented. And now we know from experience that it is possible to get MORE DRIVER DISTANCE and that it comes from understanding the affect of ANGLE OF ATTACK (A.K.A. – THE SECRET SAUCE.)
Let me explain. The technical term that is used by TrackMan is ANGLE OF ATTACK which is the direction the club head is moving relative to the ground at impact.
A NEGATIVE ANGLE OF ATTACK means that the club head is moving DOWNWARD relative to the ground at impact. Think of a plane landing.
A NEUTRAL ANGLE OF ATTACK means that the club head is moving PARALLEL to the ground at impact. Think of a plane taxiing down the runway.
A POSITIVE ANGLE OF ATTACK means that the club head is moving UPWARD relative to the ground at impact. Think of a plane taking off.
I have read in various sources and heard from many experts that by improving your ANGLE OF ATTACK with your DRIVER SWING, that you could increase your total DRIVER DISTANCE. Now being the type of person who questions nearly everything, I decided that testing this theory for myself was the only way I would believe it. And I wanted to test this theory over a wide range of swing speeds, not just Tour Level swing speeds.
So here is what I did. I gathered all of the Driver Stats from TrackMan from every student who has visited Mark Polich Golf over the past two years. THAT MEANT A WHOPPING TOTAL OF 14,305 Driver Shots from 184 different golfers. And these golfers swung their drivers from 40 to 123 miles per hour. Quite a range. I then eliminated 6,250 shots due to incomplete data, poor contact, or more than 20 yards off line. That left 8,055 TOTAL DRIVER SHOTS. It is important to keep in mind that these shots were hit in Tucson, Arizona at an Altitude of 2.500 feet. Those folks playing in Denver should see their shots fly farther while those in San Diego should see their shots fly shorter. The results from this giant study are shown in the table below.
What I did next was to look closer at the data. For each club head speed. I compared the 10% of the shots that had the most NEGATIVE ANGLE OF ATTACK with the 10% of the shots that had the most POSITIVE ANGLE OF ATTACK. The results were ASTOUNDING.
IMPROVING YOUR ANGLE OF ATTACK
- Play the ball more forward in your stance
- Tilt your spine away from the target
- Maintain your spine tilt away from the target at impact
- Picture in your mind’s eye hitting up on the ball
- Make sure your hand trajectory is up, not down, into the ball
- Work with your coach to implement these changes
- And of course, monitor your progress with TrackMan 4
Regardless of your driver swing speed, improving your
Angle of Attack can have a significant impact on your
TOTAL DRIVER DISTANCE.