SI Vault
 
For all golfers except beginners
Ray Gafford
February 11, 1957
In the course of his rounds, every golfer is confronted with situations in which he must hit a shot on a higher or lower trajectory than he would normally achieve. He needs a higher trajectory, for instance, to get his shot up and over some towering obstacle like a tall tree. He needs a lower trajectory to keep the ball low into a head wind or under the overhanging branches of a tree.
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February 11, 1957

For All Golfers Except Beginners

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In the course of his rounds, every golfer is confronted with situations in which he must hit a shot on a higher or lower trajectory than he would normally achieve. He needs a higher trajectory, for instance, to get his shot up and over some towering obstacle like a tall tree. He needs a lower trajectory to keep the ball low into a head wind or under the overhanging branches of a tree.

The best way to alter your trajectory is to alter your stance. For example, if a golfer wants to hit his six-iron in a steeper arc than he usually manages with that club, he should address the ball so that it lies a little further forward than its standard position. In other words, if the ball lies slightly inside the left heel on a standard six-iron shot, it should be positioned an inch or so further forward to get that ball really up in the air. Similarly, the ball should be played slightly back of its customary position to keep it on a low trajectory. The angle of the shaft changes with each position. On low shots, the hands lead more and the face of the club is somewhat hooded at impact. On high shots, the hands trail the club head a fraction at impact and the loft of the face is accentuated.

If a golfer sets up his variations in trajectory by his position at address, then he can concentrate during his swing on hitting the ball cleanly. On the other hand, if he tries to vary his trajectory by varying his swing, he's heading for trouble.

from RAY GAFFORD, Ridglea Country Club, Fort Worth

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