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  In the rough > Tip of the day


Tip of the Day

Lie Angle: The Most Crucial Spec

When you are fit for a set of clubs, loft, length, shaft type, grip size, style and swingweight are just a few of the variables that the pro or qualified fitting expert will customize for your body type, address position and swing dynamics. But when you?re being fit for a set of irons, perhaps the most crucial variable is lie angle. Here?s why.

Lie angle is the angle of the clubhead at impact. Ideally, the club?s leading edge should be parallel to the ground. If your irons are too flat for you, the toe of the club will be lower than the heel and you?ll take a toe-deep divot. Conversely, if your irons are too upright, the heel will be lower than the toe and the divot will be heel-deep.

Here?s why this specification is so crucial. If you are using clubs with the wrong lie angle, your clubface will point left or right of your target at impact every time, unless you make some sort of compensating move in your swing (To see this for yourself, take out a credit card to simulate your clubface. Make sure that you tilt it upward, simulating the loft of, say, a 7-iron. Now hold a pen flush against the card in the ?sweetspot? area. Making sure the ?heel? and ?toe? are square?-parallel to the ground. Note where the pen is pointing. Now, maintaining the loft angle, lower the toe end of the card and raise the heel. See how the pen is now pointing to the right of where it was in the square position. If you raise the toe and lower the heel, the pen will point to the left.) So, if your irons are too flat, your clubface will point to the right of your target at impact and your shots will fly high, weak and right. Or, perhaps you?ve taught yourself to compensate for your ill-fit clubs by subconsciously closing and de-lofting the clubface at impact. Maybe this compensation move will work for awhile, but it?s difficult to play consistent golf this way: with one swi ng, you?ll compensate too much and hit a low, hot hook; with the next, you?ll fail to make the move and you hit a high, weak fade. When you have no clue which direction your misses will fly, you?re not going to have much fun on the golf course.

When you are fit with a set of irons with the correct loft angle for you, you?ll be amazed at the difference. It?ll probably take you a few swings to adjust, but soon you?ll learn to abandon all of the little band-aid compensating moves in your swing, leaving yourself with a more fundamentally sound motion that you?ll be able to repeat consistently?and shots that fly true to their intended line.

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