APPLICATION OF SPORT AND SCIENCE: CLUB AND BALL TRACKING
Jacques Nortje explains launch monitors.
Through information gained via
modern analysis tools it becomes possible to determine precisely where skill improvements can be made. This month we look at launch monitors and how they can be used to assist you in improving your ball striking performance.
WHAT IS A LAUNCH MONITOR?
A launch monitor is a portable unit which measures and tracks the entire flight of the ball and the delivery of the club at impact. It is a tool used by coaches and club fitters to better understand and
quantify the science of ball flight. I use FlightScope which uses 3D Doppler Radar with the patented phased array tracking technology being the most advanced in the industry today. The golf swing and resultant ball flight are 3 dimensional movements, so it is vital that we assess it with 3 dimensional analysis tools.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The unit is placed behind the golfer as they hit shots. It is connected to a PC or wireless device where all of your shot data and measured parameters are stored. After a very quick calibration process of less than a minute the golfer can begin hitting shots with all information being captured virtually instantaneously. Ball flight data measured includes flight time, ball speed, apex height, spin rate, carry/total/ roll distance and more. Club parameters measured include club head speed, club face angle, club path, swing plane (vertical and horizontal), angle of attack and more. It can be used indoors or outdoors and is world renowned for its accuracy and precision.
BENEFITS FOR GOLFERS
This technology has many advantages to golfers wanting to improve their game including but not limited too • Gaining a better understanding of the cause and effect relationships of your own swing; knowing why you hit the ball how you hit it is very liberating! • Practice games. The system software has all kinds of options available to make practice more fun and randomised for players of all levels • Integration with other game improvement technology. FlightScope integrates fully with the BodiTrak pressure mat and Focus Band systems • Skills testing. You can assess your ability to hit certain shot shapes, control your shot distances and essentially identify your strengths and weaknesses • Make better on course decisions. Understanding your ball flight tendencies should help you on the course in selecting more appropriate targets off tees and into greens • Performance benchmarking/ tracking. You can be tracked over time to gauge your improvement or you can compare yourself with
the world's best elite players • Club fitting. Having a custom fitted set of clubs is a nonnegotiable nowadays for serious golfers and this tool can validate fitting options and choices • Knowing your yardages. By identifying how far you can hit each club on average you are giving yourself a realistic chance to best control distance
Launch monitors are now a widely used and accepted game improvement tool. It is vital that you work with a suitably accredited coach who has experience using one. It is a refined skill to be able to correctly interpret and apply the relevant data versus ‘chasing numbers'.
If you are interested in how this can help you, then please email me for a reader only special offer.