Spinning the Wedges - Smash Factor

Smash factor is a measurement of the ball speed relative to the club speed. I have learned that with wedges, when smash factor is 1.0 spin rates have the potential to be maximized. This video discusses the value in having the ball and the clubhead travel at the same speed and gives you a few ideas on how to make that happen...

Things to remember:

  • Avoid too much shaft lean and feel the hands and the shaft lining up at impact
  • This should give you a sense of using the bounce or sole of the club more through impact
  • Don't be afraid to allow the lead wrist to unhinge/extend as soon as possible through impact

Keep in mind that while very high spin rates are sexy, your final objective should be control. Better control and predictability means better results. Don't allow a quest for more spin erode your ability to get the ball close to the hole!

Thanks for watching and check in soon for my next in the Spinning the Wedges series on Spin Loft.

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Chicken Wing at Impact?

Lee Westwood is an exceptional ball striker and a contender in almost every major championship.

The interesting part about Lee's swing, which I regard as somewhat unique, is his impact position. Is that a chicken wing? Surely that cannot be good? Remember that the only factor that matters is the physics (forces and angles) that the golf club imparts on the ball.

Retief Goosen is the another premier golfer who gets into this impact position, although to a much lesser degree. In looking at the top picture notice that the handle of the club is positioned in line with the lead thigh.  This is the key element. With the driver, the shaft should be vertical or leaning slightly forward, as in the Westwood image, but with irons there should be a few degrees of shaft lean. As a result the hands should once again be aligned with the lead thigh.

The moral of the story - get the club in a great position, relative to the ball, at impact and good things will happen - chicken wing and all.

Should your chicken wing not be quite as functional as the two players above here is a little help: