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Article 4 of the Bomb Your Driver Series
by Chuck Quinton
Watch Launch Angle Video
Macromedia Flash Player Required (Free Download)


Launch Angle - What is it?

When it comes to the science of longer drives, few things have as dramatic an impact on overall distance as launch angle. Simply put, the launch angle (LA) is the angle at which the ball sets flight in relation to the ground or level surface. It is NOT simply the loft angle stamped on the bottom of your clubface! While loft has the biggest impact on LA, Angle of Attack (AoA), the shaft and head design and weighting are also determinants in LA.


What is the Optimum Launch Angle?

This is a great question with no one answer. However, some generalizations can be made. If your swing speed is between 85 mph and 105 mph, you need to launch the ball as HIGH AS POSSIBLE! That's a broad statement, but it covers most golfers. Until you get to the 110 mph and above range, you need to focus on launching the ball as high as possible with the optimum spin rate. As you have likely seen in some of my recent posts in the forum on driver fitting, with 105 mph of clubhead speed, you are looking for about 14.5 degrees of launch with around 2,700 to 2,800 rpms of backspin. This modest clubhead speed is good for 275 yards of carry and 24 yards of roll on a PGA Tour cut fairway - in other words, a 300 yard drive! When you realize that you don't need 120 mph of clubhead speed to hit the ball 300 yards, you begin to realize how important it is to optimize your swing, setup and equipment to acheive the proper numbers.


Rotary Golf Swing Setup Changes

The first thing I discuss in this video are the setup changes that need to be made for maximum driver distance and clubhead speed. From ball position, to axis tilt to tee height, it's all covered in this golf instruction video. It is absolutely critical you learn the proper setup and reasons why in order to start hitting the longest drives of your life! Once you have made the proper setup and swing changes, it's time to talk equipment. Even the best swing in the world can't achieve maximum distance without the proper head and shaft combination. If you would like to learn more about Rotary Swing Driver Fittings, click here. Enough talk, let's watch the video!


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Note the 20+ degrees of axis tilt at impact. This position allows me to catch the ball on the upswing to achieve the optimum launch angle for maximum distance with the driver.


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