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Foley says hit down on driver


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I understand, one extreme for another extreme. However, to think of taking a slight divot could cause a lot of other problems like getting way too steep, even more over the top etc. Anyway, that's the last I will say about it. Trackman says that it is optimal for players to hit up on the ball in a lot of situations and a whole army of instructors over the last few years tried to implement this with their students, apparently with little success?

Now we are saying that we should think about taking a divot with the driver to make sure we hit down on it. Will drive a lot of people insane.

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Let's say I want 14 launch and 2500 spin for optimal distance and playability. What would it matter if I hit down or up a little if a fitter could get me those numbers?   Vanilla impact conditions an

Some people just like to argue, its a pretty easy subject. ?‍♂️ Positive angle of attack gives you an opportunity to maximize distance in two ways: reducing spin loft and higher launch and height. Mos

All things being equal max distance should come down to a simple equation with parameters including ball speed spin rate etc. I don’t think AoA is one of the variables. Launch angle will be. So how

This thread has got me thinking about busting my 13.5 degree Callaway Big Bertha Fusion driver head out again. I played some great golf with that thing. Tee it low and let it fly.

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I think you underestimate how edited those articles are and how much is an editors words. I’m not saying I agree with Foley, but I understand where he’s coming from as a downward AOA shifts the path right of the swing direction. If I want to go through Flightscope reports I can show you above 12* launch angles and sub 2500 spin numbers with -2 to -4 AOA numbers. It’s all about optimal launch conditions. Trackman makes innaccurate assumptions, those charts they have with AOA comparisons are laughable and they should be ashamed of how bad they are

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theyve long stated and it’s accurate that a steeper AOA doesn’t increase spin rate. Then in their chart for the negative AOA they show lower ballspeeds and significantly higher spin rate which of course will go shorter. But it’s BS because a steeper AOA doesn’t automatically increase spin rate or decrease ballspeed and it ignores the ability to change the clubfitting to alter the numbers.

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I can see this being one of those feel vs real swing thoughts to prevent what Foley talks about when many attempt to hit up on it, I don't think anyone will actually take a divot with a driver once you factor in ball position and it being up on the tee. My personal intent with driver is to get left shoulder down and through the ball since I tend to excessively tilt away otherwise

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For me just depends on the shot, standard tee height with half the ball above the face, having that tee height with the ball slightly inside your front foot should set you up to just swing. I'm probably 0-2 degrees up just doing that without trying. When I really want to throw one up really high I tee it higher, tilt more and can really throw it up. I rarely do this though because I don't get much benefit out of it, if I hit it lower it tends to go farther I've found.

Regarding working on preventing excessive tilt, there is a reason you are doing that and just working on keeping the tilt out is going to have you putting many hours into it and always working on it.

 

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They hit up on it because they are trying to hit it higher. Look at their peak height, it’s significantly lower even with the higher launch. They aren’t spinning less than PGA Tour players. They also play fairways that average wider than the PGA Tour, and because average carry is only 225ish yard which is about average 3 iron on PGA Tour, they are effectively even wider comparatively.

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If you aren't willing to learn how to hit up on the ball, which is simply a matter of teeing the ball high and orienting your low point of your swing arc a certain amount behind the ball, then why even buy new equipment looking for an extra 5 yards when you are giving up 30 yards of carry by hitting down on driver. PGA pros giving up yardage is even crazier because driving distance directly correlates to their paycheck. The LPGA females are so much better at maximizing their ball speed that if they were men on the PGA tour they would hit it 20-30 yards past the men on average and that should be eye opening and give insight as to who is correct in this debate. That and they hit up AND are more accurate.

What is crazy to me is that it is dead simple to practice hitting up on the ball:

Tee it up as high a possible (4 inch tees)Experiment with where your low point needs to be to strike the ball at your given target. This is done by predicting where you will be dynamically at impact and this will help you align the face to get the ball started on target. Once you know how to hit a ball off of the highest possible tee then all you do is manipulate tee height to lower trajectory because you can only hit up on the ball in relation to how high you tee it up. This will give you the ability to adjust depending on the hole. Your stock shot should not be hit down on with driver....it should be hit LESS UP on than the amount that you hit up using a 4 inch tee. I will post a video of me going through these protocols and mind you I used to play right handed and now play left handed for the past 5 years and haven't been playing golf all my life like a Pro has. In the video I am not even looking at the ball because my low point is more important and if I get the club to low point properly then the rest of it is taken care off. The lower you tee the ball the closer the low point will be to the ball and of course when the ball is on the ground the low point of the swing arc will be in front of the ball.

Foley is incorrect in suggesting that golfers hit down on driver. It is a way to play the game ...yes...but LPGA golfers prove that it is not only more efficient but more accurate to hit up. Soon PGA pros will get the memo and change their AoA once they realize that they are giving up free distance. I swing at 120-125 mph and there is no way I'm going to give up one of my advantages or lessen it by hitting it in a less efficient way. If I want to hit less up on a club then I hit mini driver or or fairway wood off a low tee or tee it up lower with the driver and hit up on it less. Hitting down on driver also is not more accurate than hitting up...club face discipline is the governor of how accurate you are.

 

Here are a few videos of me and one that helped me understand the process to hit up on driver:

Low point control driver work from last year (No I'm not in prison...I'm in Iraq...so sort of prison!! I am not looking at the ball and am hovering the club over my low point of my swing arc some 18 to 20 inches behind the ball and that is where I am looking. Everyone should try this by the way as it is very effective. You also will not miss the ball by the way but if you roof one then it is part of the learning process! :

 

Down the line slow motion view a few week later in Dubai doing the same thing. I am not looking at the ball...I am looking at and hovering the club over my low point.

The momentum of the swing is NOT sent down the target line, it is sent down the plane angle line. More simply put it is sent down the line of the shoulders at address with all clubs and this is important to understand. The reason why most people tee the drive low and are scared to hit up on it is because the plane of the swing for a right handed golfer to hit up on a ball on a 4 inch tee will be oriented well right of target. You have to become comfortable sending your momentum down along the line of the shoulder line because swinging along the target line is death. The plane line is not your feet..it is your shoulder line because the club is being held in the hands and that is also important to note.

 

This simple video helped me understand why driver is do different than all the other clubs and sped up my learning curve to trusting the math of the golf swing:

this helps Righty to Lefty
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For most of us mortals golf is a compromise of distance and accuracy in search of consistency.

There is a reason the tour guys are not teeing it 6-inches high and playing the ball a foot past their pinkie toe.

 

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You just have to be careful with overdoing a good thing.

I used to hit down on it and now I hit up on it 4 degrees without thinking about it and can actually get it to like 8 degrees up. If you aren't careful it can ruin your swing as it did mine for awhile. I actually had issues with getting sub 900 spin numbers with some drivers and if I hit one on the toe it would literally drop out of the sky.

I have to continually resist the urge to smash one crazy high on a down wind day because I get huge block cuts and hooks.

I actually spent about 30 minutes on the phone yesterday talking to a local fitter and golf coach who told me leave it alone if I can do it just be smart about it. Also find its a huge benefit to learn to play a power fade because timing the hands for the draw when you go super up on it is tough.

The holy grail is swinging 4 degrees or more up on a driver with a fade IMO you don't have to time the face and can still get crazy distance.

 

I personally think pros don't do it because they don't need to. I had a lot less issues with it when I would swing a driver 103ish now that I swing it 112ish I lose a lot more balls. The more speed you have the more time that ball has to fly offline. That is why the LPGA ladies are more likely to chase distance and the guys aren't IMO.

 

Lets be honest PGA tour guys can do whatever they want, they are gifted. I've watched a buddy of mine who played Korn Ferry tee a 2 hybrid up 4 inches and smash shot after shot because he was giving me a hard time about how high I tee my driver. There are videos circulating of them guys smashing putters off the box,

 

They choose not to because having to re-tee because you hit a ball or two out of bounds per tournament means you will never ever win. Its not worth the extra 30 yards. Certain guys like Dechambeau disagree but most are going to hit down to flat.

I do find it makes me struggle with fairway woods a lot because it seems to transfer to fairway woods but not to irons. I rarely hit a fairway wood off the tee I hit a 3 iron or 2 iron.

I'm at the crossroads now, my stock shot is a push draw which is scary when you swing up at it. If I keep that push draw with the driver I'm going to try to swing less up for control. I'd rather be manageable 300 than re-teeing 330.

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Ask me tomorrow. 

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Nice! In my case I am swinging my driver around 95 mph so I am a perfect candidate for swinging up on it. LOL I tried it for a year or so and did not have much success. I play a short tight course and there are a few holes where some extra yards would be helpful but if I am in the creek or the cabbage the extra yards don't help much. I need to keep everything as simple as possible and closing my stance to move the ball forward and tee it high is an adjustment that is simply an overload for me. If I don't adjust my stance and just move the ball forward and up I have very little chance of success. I can hit it pretty well once in a while but that sort of accuracy is not conducive to scoring well.
Your point about PGA pros not needing the extra distance is spot on I believe. The LPGA players who hit up on it do so because they have to in order to be competitive. Unless as @iteachgolf seems to indicate it is possible to get the same distance with an equipment tweak... My own spin numbers with my current driver setup are not too bad with my fairly level angle of attack and actually a bit better then those indicated in the chart on this article: How to create an upward angle of attack for more driver distanceI would love to have your clubhead speed!

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No circles. You’re just not understanding. Again you should make your best swing and whatever AOA is it is. No I don’t think hitting up is giving them any distance advantage. But if a players best swing results in AOA of 3 up that’s fine. But to try and force that will cause issues.

 

 

Julian used to hit up on it 5* and now hits it considerably further, and exponentially straighter, right around 0 to -1 or 2

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I am not talking about my swing! I am actually quite happy with my flat angle of attack.

I understand the basics of this subject fairly well and you have clarified your views to some extent in this post. So, lets put it this way if you were working with Na Choi Yuen would it be possible for you to have her change her swing from her current +3 angle of attack to zero or minus and give her equipment to match the change that would produce the same distance as she is getting now? Possibly this would increase her accuracy...

Here again is a look at one of her drives from the TXG fitting session:

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I wasn’t talking about your swing either. Look at the numbers I posted earlier. They are more efficient than hers with steeper AOA. You absolutely can get just as good or better launch conditions than she has with a steeper AOA. She also hit it high toe to get those numbers. She’d launch it lower with more spin if hit out of the middle

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