A launch­pad for your game

If you haven’t been on a launch mon­i­tor yet, here’s why you re­ally should

Today's Golfer (UK) - - Best Golf Tech -

Launch mon­i­tors are every­where in golf nowa­days. Tour ranges are packed with them; every brand uses nu­mer­ous ver­sions to test clubs; most high street shops and club pros use them to fit equip­ment and give lessons and demo days. Yet we know there’s an aw­ful lot of golfers who have never been near one. If that’s you, make this the year to have a go. Launch mon­i­tor tech has taken a mas­sive stride for­ward this year, so much so that even putts can now be an­a­lysed. The new Fore­sight Sports GC Quad – which we now use for much of TG’S test­ing – mea­sures club and ball data from a sin­gle unit not much big­ger than your copy of this mag­a­zine. The five pa­ram­e­ters we’ve picked be­low are a good start­ing point if you’re a launch mon­i­tor vir­gin; this box of tricks of­fers hun­dreds more stats, in­clud­ing the path of the club­face and its face an­gle at im­pact.

BALL SPEED

This issue is all about in­creas­ing it, and this is the only way to find out what yours is. Rory Mcil­roy gen­er­ates 181mph with his Tay­lor­made M2 driver; club golfers with a 90mph driver swing speed should ex­pect to be closer to 130mph.

LAUNCH AN­GLE

Higher with lower spin is gen­er­ally good, but whether you at­tack down on the back of the ball or up on it makes a mas­sive dif­fer­ence to the tra­jec­tory your shots start on. Slower swing speed play­ers gen­er­ally need more launch an­gle to keep the ball in the air for longer and max­imise carry; higher swing speeds can get away with less.

SPIN

Back­spin is a huge de­trac­tor to max­imis­ing carry dis­tance; too lit­tle and shots nose-dive; too much can rob you of 30+ yards. The only way to know for sure and op­ti­mise spin is on a launch mon­i­tor, plus you get to see how much bad swings cost in terms of raw power.

HEIGHT

Gone are the days of try­ing to keep shots as close as pos­si­ble to the deck – be­lieve us, higher is longer. It’s re­ally sat­is­fy­ing to try a new set of irons on a launch mon­i­tor and see how you hit the 7-iron as far as your old six, yet shots fly higher, which means they will stop faster on the green.

CARRY DIS­TANCE

It’s an all-im­por­tant num­ber and for most of us it’s a bit of a shock when we don’t hit shots quite as far as we think we do! If you’re on good terms with your pro or fit­ter get him to let you come back with your full set so you can work out how far you hit each iron, and work out what hy­brids/woods and wedges would best fit your game.

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