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Foley says hit down on driver

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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

My current setup is:

Callaway 5* XR16 set to 5*

Tensei Orange V2 Proto X Flex tipped 1.5" playing at 46". I have not hit this setup on Trackman yet.

The numbers posted were with a Tensei White proto at 45.5 inches that I will throw in my unweighted Cally XR 16 back up head in the 7 degree setting and see how it goes. I also have an unused Cobra F6+ that I can test with as it can go from 8 to 12 degrees. I can basically test from 3 to 12 degrees so my fit has to be in there somewhere!

30 grams of hotmelt in the toe of the driver that helps me to hold the face open to avoid the right miss and that is why I think I hit it mid-high as my stock shot with such a low lofted driver.

I think I have enough gear to do some testing so I will rent out a Trackman and get to work and report back.


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So to launch a 5* driver at ~14* hitting 5up with ~2500 rpm and hitting high on the face you’re probably delivering 18-20* of loft at impact that’s where all of your spin is coming from. If you’re still delivering 15*+ with a level aoa you’re going to increase spin even more with a lower launch... I’d say those impact conditions are pretty extreme. It may not be worth trying to change your whole swing for another 5 yards but that’s up to you

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My best drives are when I setup to "feel" like I'm hitting down on the ball … when I set up to feel like I am hitting even slightly up on the ball - I have no control of it, and I cannot align at all.

Applies to all of my clubs.

Wilson Deep Red II Tour (9.0)
King Cobra SZ (15.5), G10 HY (18, 21, 24)
MP-32 5i - 9i, Vokey SM5 50, 54 (F), 58 (M)
Rife Aussie

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Some stuff from a Clay Ballard video (summarised), I think the stats are from 2018?:

....Launch angle: PGA tour player example Justin Thomas 14.2 deg w 2100 spin for a 117mph swing speed. He’s not the fastest ss on tour (plenty in the 120+mph) or the biggest body (only 5ft 9 in) but he creates the optimal conditions for him to be one of the longest drivers. His angle of attack is +4.8 deg!

Average angle of attack for the PGA tour is -1.3 degree (so negative AoA) but that is because of the 110mph+ driver swing speeds of tour pros, they have enough to hit slightly down (for control) and still get enough distance if you choose to favour control over distance. We also know that AoA contributes only 15 percent of your ball’s launch angle.

However, many hit slightly up on the ball eg Rory who is statistically the best driver hits up by +2.5 degrees.

What helps promote this is teeing the ball higher so it is easier to hit with the top of the driver clubface.....

So some PGA tour players do it but not all.

YMMV and build a swing that works for you.

Cobra F8+ 9° XCaliber 6+ S 45” or XCaliber Tour SL TS 45.5” //  Cobra Fly-Z 14.5° XCaliber FW S 43.25” //  Srixon F45 18° XCaliber FW S 42” //  Srixon Z565 3-PW Nippon N.S. Pro 980GH DST S

Cleveland CBX 50.11 //  Cleveland RTX3 56.14 bent 55.13 //  Nike VR X3X Toe Sweep 58.10  //  Wilson Infinite Windy City //  Titleist Pro V1 

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Checking my notes, the stats appear to be 2014/2015 timeframe and included a study done on Thomas:


Cobra F8+ 9° XCaliber 6+ S 45” or XCaliber Tour SL TS 45.5” //  Cobra Fly-Z 14.5° XCaliber FW S 43.25” //  Srixon F45 18° XCaliber FW S 42” //  Srixon Z565 3-PW Nippon N.S. Pro 980GH DST S

Cleveland CBX 50.11 //  Cleveland RTX3 56.14 bent 55.13 //  Nike VR X3X Toe Sweep 58.10  //  Wilson Infinite Windy City //  Titleist Pro V1 

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Oh yes it's more than possible and I love it. I was scared to experiment with swing weight some years ago until I started testing with my Miura irons of all clubs. I just never liked stock golf clubs and just hated how I couldn't feel the club head so I started in with the hotmelt. I used it to help with two issues at the same time in that I put it in the toe of the driver to reduce face closure and for swing weight purposes. It also makes my driver very "quiet" as an unsuspected benefit also. I added the weight and then noted the result over the course of a few months and then kept adding until I found what I liked. I then bought hollow body irons and did the same thing to every club in my bag and it is worked out beautifully. 30 grams really isn't that much in static weight...what half a candy bar..but of course as it is getting force put on it throughout the swing its mass is multiplied and all my clubs feel amazing and has done wonders for my timing and tempo. I hit the ball with more leverage and pressure than I ever have in my life and I think that everyone should really give total weight and swing weight a look and I'm not just speaking about going from D4 to D8...I'm talking about D4 to E4 or C4 to really know if it will benefit them. You wouldn't believe the specs of my clubs... I was just putting them in my phone last night and laughing at them but they work beautifully for me and every club is my favorite club but I had to step outside of what was viewed as normal. Right on...thanks for the assessment. I will report back once I get on Trackman and have a good data set to analyze. I then have plenty of options available to test that my correct fit is in there somewhere !! I want to try to change one variable at a time so that I know what is creating the difference so I will first work with tee height as I can make this change the easiest using my current driver setup. I will be able to test this in 9 days when our 90 days of lock down will be finally over. I don't have a launch monitor but I can visually assess launch and carry as best I can. I will probably make some videos of the process and post them and so I will have them for future reference. I feel like I am hitting down also and technically this should be the proper feel in that you cannot accelerate the club past the low point of the swing arc. The best example is pushing a kid on a swing because this is almost the exact acceleration and deceleration curve as a golf swing. Secondary axis tilt does not affect this because gravity is still pulling in the same direction. You will notice that no matter how hard you push you can't accelerate the kid past the lowest part of the swing arc and you must time it to give them a quick acceleration prior to low point. The kid quickly becomes very heavy right after low point because the deceleration begins right after low point. It is inefficient to push them at the top of the "back" swing and after low point. You have to find that sweet spot where you can assist the building momentum of the club and then hang on after it has reached low point. Now if you have a rocket on the club head then it can be accelerated past low point but that is different!! R to L

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30 grams doesnt seem like a ton in the grand scheme of things, but it really is a ton of weight. Just me going from d3 to d8 was night and day and a TON of work to swing. Gonna put this as nicely and respectful as possible, but your approach to golf, the swing and equipment is just bonkers. To have to go to all these extremes to just be functional cant be good, rather than fixing the apparent flaws that exist in your swing.

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If he is consistent and happy with his swing is his swing “wrong”? 14* and 2200rpm is a good goal and all things said it doesn’t matter if you get there hitting 5 up or 5 down it’s still going to go the same distance.


Yes he may be adding a lot of loft to his driver but his launch and spin numbers are pretty good and he says he’s happy with the accuracy. So a 5* driver may be his best fit. Play what works right? Bubba plays just fine hitting way up on a very loft lofted driver. IMO he (bubba) would be crazy to start messing with his swing to hit 1 up instead of 5 up because it’s easier. When you’ve been grooving a 5 up swing for as long as he has I would bet his 5 up swing would be easier *FOR HIM* while maybe not being technically correct

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I look at it like this....I am a 6' 2" and 251 pound former baseball player. I was swinging what would be considered a heavy (34 inch 31 ounce) baseball bat when I was in the 7th grade and this was the biggest and heaviest aluminum bat made at the time. By the time I got to college I needed a heavier bat but none were available so my ability to drive the ball to the opposite field suffered. I then played semi pro ball that summer where there were no such restrictions on the weight and length of the wooden bats we used and was amazed how much a lil extra weight added to the barrel made the bat come alive and my ability to feel the bat head led to me being able to drive the ball to the opposite field with authority like I did when I was a teenager.

Standard specs in regards to total weight and swing weight simply don't work for me as I am much stronger than most and I needed clubs that matched my feels and strength. I was scared to ruin a club until I realized that if I hated the club that I would never play it so I started experimenting and not worrying about what was "normal" and going with what worked and felt good in my hands. OEM's all basically produce the same clubs in the same spec range and most people settle for that. Tell a major OEM that you want E4 or C4 swing weight and you will get crickets because that doesn't allow them to mass produce clubs quickly and would require adjustments to all the club head weights.

Most Pros are not playing off the rack clubs. I held Sergio's driver shaft in Doha and the club builder was wondering why the shaft was so much heavier than the 105 grams stated on the shaft. I shined the light down the shaft and I could see the top of the 30 gram tour lock weight that he had inserted down the shaft. He was playing a 138 gram driver shaft...well over what is considered "normal." He is using the weight of the club to lever against and this is so important to why a clubs will or will not work in my opinion. I held a professional tennis players racket and it felt like a baby sledge hammer...way over the weight that goes to the market.

My clubs are at the upper end of the spectrum because my strength is at the upper end of the spectrum. Yes 30 grams is magnified when you put it all in the club head but when I feel the club tracking around me I trust it and lever it so much better. If if didn't work I would change it...but it works for me and I don't even question it anymore. A buddy of mine just added 20 grams to all his irons and wedges and he was giving me crap about not telling him sooner. Find what works and fits what you want in your clubs and that is what matters most. R to L

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What's interesting is the two different ways JT and Rory achieve that. I'm not going to butcher this by trying to explain, but JT is much more pushing off the ground/on his toes, while Rory is much more hip/tilt, it appears from the untrained eye? I do know that I'd never be able to achieve what Rory does physically, but I might be able to push off the ground more like JT does?

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I'm thinking this way, too, which is why I am personally more interested in what JT does as something that I can model me being 5 10 tall with similar build.

Cobra F8+ 9° XCaliber 6+ S 45” or XCaliber Tour SL TS 45.5” //  Cobra Fly-Z 14.5° XCaliber FW S 43.25” //  Srixon F45 18° XCaliber FW S 42” //  Srixon Z565 3-PW Nippon N.S. Pro 980GH DST S

Cleveland CBX 50.11 //  Cleveland RTX3 56.14 bent 55.13 //  Nike VR X3X Toe Sweep 58.10  //  Wilson Infinite Windy City //  Titleist Pro V1 

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I'm almost positive that in one of Mark Crossfield's Titleist tour van tours, the tour guy mentions that JT only hits up that much when he's trying to really let one fly, and that his typical stock driver swing is just a couple degrees up. I'll try to find it if I can.

edit: yeah, discussed here:

Standard, stock driver swing is up 1-2 degrees. When he needs to let one fly, he goes up to 4-5 degrees up. For a fairway finder, -1 to 0.

Callaway Epic Flash Sub Zero 10.5 deg.

Callaway Big Bertha Fusion 3 wood

Cobra F9 5 Wood

Srixon H45 4 hybrid

Srixon 565 5-AW

Ping Glide 3.0 54 deg.

Callaway PM Grind 60 deg.

Bettinardi Studio Stock 17

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Well im 6’5 260, i must be a weakling for playing D-3 ?. I played baseball too and all that jazz.

with regards to sergio, 30 grams in the butt vs the head is TOTALLY different, and you know this... if you understand physics.

please name one prominent golfer that plays his driver in the E range. Its not even about the weight your adding either... you said you put that in there to mainly to slow the toe closure rate down... maybe its cause your so up on the AOA the toe aint got no where to go but to close?? Its your game play what you want, but Id love to see you go to a really good fitter and instructor and see how they could get more out of your potential.


side note-it is a great comment about jt and rory “pushing up” off the ground. This is the right way to increase AoA, and thats how the Lpga pros seem to do it as well. Tilting the spine is just going to add loft, and thats whee people get into trouble.

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So here's some more info from one of Clay Ballard's videos (BTW, I have no connection with Clay, just watched a few of his videos and like his approach and use of data); Clay is referring to one of his drives here:

image.pngAnyone seen the Trackman research?

Cobra F8+ 9° XCaliber 6+ S 45” or XCaliber Tour SL TS 45.5” //  Cobra Fly-Z 14.5° XCaliber FW S 43.25” //  Srixon F45 18° XCaliber FW S 42” //  Srixon Z565 3-PW Nippon N.S. Pro 980GH DST S

Cleveland CBX 50.11 //  Cleveland RTX3 56.14 bent 55.13 //  Nike VR X3X Toe Sweep 58.10  //  Wilson Infinite Windy City //  Titleist Pro V1 

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Im just curious how someone gets 14.8 degrees of launch when delivering 19.6 degrees of loft while being +4.8 on AOA. Using the 85/15 calculation it should be close to 17 degree launch. Trackmans research is part if the dispute here, and while launch monitors have really helped the game, they also do their part in damaging it too. (17/1700 anyone?)

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The weight in Sergio's driver was not at the butt end...it was about 12 inches inside the shaft near the fulcrum for it to add swig weight points to depending on how much of it was pushed past 14 inches. The swing weight of the club might have been unaffected but the total weight was increased. Tour Lock weights are on the butt end of the club but opti vibe weights insert inside the shaft and are a completely different ball game as they are really useful. I used to be a fitter for Tour Lock and the weights do work...it's just that the owner is a jerk! Oh please believe I understand some physics ...just turned in a lab a few moments ago as I plot through this Electrical Engineering degree!

Frankly I don't care what other golfer's play...as they shouldn't care about what I play! It took me about 3 years worth of testing to build up my clubs to where I am happy with them. I added weight and then played with the clubs for a few months without adjusting them to allow for any honeymoon phase or such to past. They had to stand up over time and work for me and that is what I am concerned about. I don't view them as "heavy" either because I don't tussle with the weight of them and work with it to create leverage. The "greatest ball striker of all time" played clubs in the E swing weight range and that would be one Moe Norman but that had no bearing on what I play in anyway but it is just a fun fact! My clubs are an asset to my game now and I don't question them and trust them fully. I will post some pics of my wedges for comic relief tomorrow and also the sole of my 3 wood that have the "R to L visible weighting system" on them !! R to L.


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@Righty to Lefty, I have enjoyed your posts on this thread, interesting stuff! LOL I have experimented quite a lot also and I have played with various clubs in the E range through the C at different times so I respect your willingness to experiment and find what works for you. Seems like you are on the right track!
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