5 Keys

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This Article Features Photo Zoom

Regardless of whether Chuck is hitting a draw or a fade, knowing and employing the proper ballflight laws will allow him to start the ball to the proper side of the target and curve it toward the flagstick. Given the proper diagonal sweet spot path, the final key is controlling the clubface at impact.

Control Your Clubface
Available technology such as FlightScope and high-speed cameras have proven that the golf ball generally starts in the direction the clubface is pointing at impact and curves away from the path. In these three photos, let's assume Chuck has hit the golf ball with the same diagonal sweet spot path (traveling in to out). The swing seen above left would likely produce a shot that starts too straight and curves left of the target. The swing seen above right (with the face pointing right of the target at impact), will push the ball to the right and draw it back. The swing on the right likely produced a straight push in which the clubface and path matched.

When we teach our students, we use the terms "open" and "closed" face to refer to the clubface orientation relative to the path. If the face is open to the path, the ball will fade, and if it's closed, the ball will draw. A proper fade is hit with a clubface aiming left of the target at impact, and a proper draw with one aiming right of the target at impact.

Two shots are illustrated above. The top image shows the clubface matching the path and will result in a straight push. The lower image shows a face closed to the path, resulting in a draw.

Both of these shots can be perfectly playable, depending on the target. That's the beauty of clubface control! Knowing the true ballflight laws and how to achieve them is the last key to great scoring and incredible golf!

Chuck Evans is the Executive Director of Instruction for Medicus Golf, a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher and a Golf Digest Top Teacher, and is based at Gold Canyon Golf Resort in Gold Canyon, Ariz.

David Wedzik is the owner of Golf Evolution in Erie, Penn., and the Director of Instruction for Medicus Golf. He's also a former player on the Nationwide Tour.


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