Golf Swing Analysis

Written by Jared Vincenti
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While many types of motion analysis focus on prevention and treatment of injury, golf is a minimal injury sport that gets significant attention in the field of motion analysis. In golf, though, you are hitting a very small ball a very long distance, and the slightest waver in your swing can send your ball embarassingly off-course. For golfers, motion analysis is aimed at finding the most efficient swing, which will make the most accurate course of flight for your ball.

Elements of a Golf Swing

When making a tee shot, you generally swing your club slightly below the ball. This causes the ball to rise upward as well as fly outward, and golf shots are often a compromise between height (and accuracy) and distance. An important part of a tee shot is the backspin on the ball--the force that causes the ball to spin as it rises, which in turn warps the air around the ball and makes it rise higher.

The golf swing is a difficult motion, and has no analogue among natural human motions. A majority of golfers seek professional instruction to perfect their swing, and there is no shame for a pro golfer to have a swing coach. In fact, golf swings are considered by some to be among the most difficult sports techniques to master, rivaling many track and field events.

One way you can improve your golf swing without paying the high rates for a professional coach is to use motion analysis software. By videotaping your own swing and comparing it to an idea swing, you can see many of your own errors and fix them. It is often very economical to improve your swing as much as you can on your own before consulting a professional, since you don't have to pay to be taught the very basics.

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