Just finished Mark Broadie’s new book “Every Shot Counts”.
I’m an avid reader and a chronic golf over-analyzer, so this was the book for me. Not sure everyone will enjoy the “technical” details as much as I did, but there are some truly eye-popping revelations when you compare the hard data versus the long held conventional wisdom. What’s the most important club in the bag? What is the value of the short game? How should you practice?
The group here at ABS will be happy to learn what Broadie thinks is the most important skill that separates every level of golfer: Ballstriking!
I have read a few articles on advanced ball-striking metrics that are starting to be developed that show the same thing. I read that a great putter on tour will gain up to 1.5 strokes per round over the average player, but that a great ball-striker can pick up almost twice that much per round on the average tour player.
“Riccio’s years of studying golf have shown him that golf’s conventional wisdom underemphasizes approach shots’ impact on scoring, while putting too much value on putting. In the 26 shots that separate a score of 95 from 69, approximately 18 of those shots will come tee-to-green, while eight will be putts, Riccio found.”
I took that from this article: http://www.pgatour.com/news/2014/03/01/riccio-shotlink-intelligence.html
BTW which club did Mark say is the most important? Driver? Not sure I will pick up the book but I am curious
Hogan said the most important clubs in order were “the driver, the putter and the wedge.” The punch line is that, statistically speaking, none of those are! The ability to hit irons 150-200 yards is the most critical skill (Broadie mentions that it goes without saying that if you can hit those clubs well, then you will likely also hit the short irons skillfully too).
I did not need the book to confirm this, my experience has proven to me the 150-200 clubs adds more strokes to my round than any other part of the game. Unfortunately, these are the worst clubs in my bag . It makes par 4s difficult, long par 5s impossible, and some par 3s embarrassing. I’m hoping to finally change this part of my game now that I am a student of Lags.
3Sons, keep drilling mod 1 and 2 and get strong. Then when you get to Mod 3 your patience will begin to be rewarded. I have just started Mod 3 and am beginning to see some consistency in my shots. Nothing great mind you, but more than a handful of shots per round are really starting to go nice. And I am starting to hit my woods (real persommon woods) finally.
FWIW, I just finished reading this book too. It is refreshing look at how to play and practice even if you have been playing the game a long time as I have. I have always thought that the game could be subdivided into partial gains/losses of a stroke but didn’t have the off-green data to apply this dynamic approach. Now we do. To me it is very similar to chess algorithms when you see how bad your chess move is.
Thanks LesMurray. I’m only on Mod 1 and have been drilling for three weeks at about 500-600 reps a day. I definitely have seen improvement in ball striking and type of ball flight but distance has suffered. I’m looking forward to incorporating additional modules to see where that takes me.
Dr. Sasho MacKenzie is a Sports Biomechanicist at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia.
He has published numerous papers on golf.
Here are some interesting titles for papers listed at the link; links to the papers (pdf) are on the site…
Club position relative to the golfer’s swing plane meaningfully affects swing dynamics.
How does shaft flexibility affect the delivery of the clubhead to the ball.
Validity and reliability of a new method for measuring putting stroke kinematics using the TOMI system.
Understanding the mechanisms of shaft deflection in the golf swing.
Understanding the role of shaft stiffness in the golf swing.
A three-dimensional forward dynamics model of the golf swing.
Three Dimensional Dynamics of the Golf Swing: A forward dynamics approach with a focus on optimizing shaft stiffness.
And, there are others, including a study of the plumb-bob method of reading putts.
Golf can be an intellectual gold mind, even for some scientists.