David and Goliath
THE MAGIC WITHIN THE CIRCLE
HAND ACCELERATION FOLLOWED BY CLUBHEAD ACCELERATION
“…He (David) picked up five smooth stones from a stream and put them into his shepherd's bag. Then, armed only with his shepherd's staff and sling, he started across the valley to fight the Philistine (GoIiath)…”
Why David? After all, the Bible tells us that many slingers could, “…Sling at a hair and not miss…”
Many didn’t want the job, some begged off, some ran off. Not David!
Why a sling, and why not a spear or a sword? David was more than courageous, he was also wise.
Knowingly or not, David used the physics of swinging an object in a circle to create not only great force, (slinging the stone an estimated 300 feet), but with great accuracy.
Did David overachieve? I don’t think so. Goliath didn’t have a chance! Even the size, strength, and reputation of the giant were no match for David’s efficient application of rotational force.
Rotational force, acceleration, and release—David was certainly on to something.
So are we!
Unknowingly, most players—even some considered to be good—ignore the rewards available for swinging the clubhead in a circle.
A golf club is not designed like a sword or a spear—to be used in a linear fashion. It’s not a stab or a slash. It’s not an up and down motion. You can’t “hit down” or “swing up” and be swinging in a circular motion!
Forget the grooves issue, the requisite in performance is ball compression. With grooves or without you must smash the ball, paste it onto the clubface.
The only control we can exercise on the ball in distance and direction is that sliver of time in which the ball is compressed on the face of the clubhead. It’s brief, but it’s finite. It’s real.
You either compress it or you don’t, and if you don’t the result is at the very best some form of a glancing blow. Glancing blows equal high scores.
The dynamics of ball compression shouldn’t be a hard sell to players striving for improvement, but it is. Taking advantage of today’s equipment should be a slam dunk, but even “top” instruction leaves that to chance.
Compression requires force—the ball doesn’t move itself regardless of the players “correct” mechanics.
Force equals Mass X Acceleration, and that law isn’t going to be repealed. If it had merit in Old Testament days, it has merit now. The mass (M) within a given swing is constant. The only variable is acceleration (A).
Acceleration is not something that just happens. In fact acceleration only happens in response to applied force. A circular motion is exponentially the best weay to create acceleration by applying force.
Discus throwers, hammer throwers, and shot putters take advantage of the force generated by creating a circular motion.
Far too many hopeful golfers are allowed to believe that force is the result of correct mechanics—hold the club right, stand to the ball right, then let the club do the work.
See above: Acceleration only happens in response to applied force. The implement, golf club in our case, doesn’t create the force, the player swinging the club in a circle does.
Research proves that the best players generate great hand acceleration very early in the forward swing—not late as is widely believed.
In fact, the better the player, the greater the early hand acceleration, the earlier the hand deceleration, as energy is transferred to the clubhead. The clubhead accelerates as the hands decelerate.
An effective swing is one of kinetic sequence—transfer of energy from one link to another—one link decelerating, the next link accelerating.
The "kinetic link" refers to the process by which speed or power is created in the golf swing.
One of golf’s greatest misconceptions is that of holding the angle.
Looking at the motion of efficient golfers on videotape and still photos it appears that they are “holding” the club shaft in a cocked position deep into the downswing. Many amateurs in an attempt to create more power try to emulate this action.
What you have to understand is that efficient golfers do not manufacture or try to hold this cocked position. The arms accelerating around the axis of the trunk on the downswing create this club lag or cocked position. When the arms decelerate before impact speed is transferred to the club.
The club accelerates and the angle between the arms and club shaft increases rapidly into impact.
We have to believe that David was concerned with accelerating the stone and not with holding the angle.