Clubhead Line of Flight

Homer Kelley author The Golfing Machine

The following article is taken from an audio conversation with Homer Kelley at an Authorized Instructors Course in The Golfing Machine in 1982.

It was conducted by Homer Kelley at his private residence.

As you read through this article please remember that as questions were being asked to Homer he was both responding and demonstrating to the class at the same time. You may therefore find at times a little difficult to following just what may have been happening at the time while Homer was demonstrating his point of view.

Alas we are very fortunate indeed to have this written account taken from an audio tape as we can and will learn so much about the True Plane Line, Angle of Attack, Angle of Approach, Arc of Approach, and so much more.

The Angle of Attack is the arbitrary straight line drawn Down Plane between Impact Point and Low Point. The Arc of Attack is the actual curved path the Clubhead Covers as it orbits Down Plane through the same two points, for example, the curved Clubhead blur through Impact.

The Angle of Approach and the Arc of Approach are those same two lines as seen by the player on the ground from his Above Plane view. These are illusions because they are actually inscribed on the face of the Plane

The following article is taken from an audio conversation with Homer Kelley at an Authorized Instructors Course in The Golfing Machine in 1982

The Homer Kelley Conversationas Follows;

Clubhead Line of Flight (2-N-0) - That was one short paragraph in the First Edition (1969); it has grown and takes up a couple of pages now.

One of the things I point out is that the Clubhead Path is an optical illusion when you look down on it. When you look down you see it across the Plane Line and see a curve when actually you are dealing with a Plane Line and what you see is a Clubshaft Plane and what you are interested in is the Sweet Spot Plane.

Is there any question about that optical illusion?

The "Facts" and the "Illusions" - It is what the eyes see that has been the problem in Golf

Ben doyles Fact and Illusion mat

Question

What should you see when I look down? What should I see, looking right down? What lines should I visually see when I look down?

Answer

You should see the Clubhead Arc; you see the Plane Line and the Angle of Approach. You see we have here, “The Line of Flight of the Clubhead and the Line of Flight of the ball are not the same but touch momentarily during Impact.

The one has a Vertical Plane of Action and the other an Inclined Plane. This involves the Angle of Approach established by the left Shoulder to Ball relationship and the Lever Assembly, the Lever Assemblies, per 1-L #11 (The Golfing Machine Book 7th Edition page 11).

These line cuts diagonally, the Angle of Approach cuts diagonally the face of the Inclined Plane and passes through both the Impact point and Low Point. These points are also located parallel to the Plane Line passing through them that is the Impact Plane Line and the Low Point Plane Line each of which must use a Sweet Spot Plane. Here-in Plane Line means the Impact Plane Line and Low Point means the Low Point Plane Line.

The Angle of Approach, Delivery Paths Plane Lines and their visual equivalents are all inscribed on the face of the Inclined Plane, but appear to the player as if inscribed on a horizontal surface that is the ground, and so, the Arc of Approach of the Clubhead appears to be on the ground, laying right on the ground. But you have to remember that it is an Inclined Plane.

Question

Where do the Angles appear to be, also on the ground?

Answer

The Angle of Attack is on the Plane, it appears on the Plane, and should be on the plane, that is where it belongs. The Angle of Approach appears on the ground and doesn’t appear to be on the Inclined Plane.

The Angle of Attack seems to be accepted because it is going down you can see it going down the Plane, going down, but the idea of the Angle of Approach seems to be different and the Angle of Attack goes through both points to.

So the Angle Attack you see, the Angle of Approach, the Angle of Attack is on the Plane, the Angle of Approach is on the ground the Clubhead blur and the two Plane Lines you see inscribed across there.

Have you checked 2-C-1 against this second paragraph, bottom, the sketches 2-B. Study 2-C-1 in sketch No #1. The Impact Points are on the same Sweet Spot Plane.

Question

I don’t understand. If I draw an angle between Low Point and the Ball passing through the two points located on the Arc of Approach, after a while as the club moves inside the Angle of Attack is going to be able to go this way and the club this way. Now how does that relate to the wheel track procedure?

Answer

If you took the wheel up here and rolled it down the Inclined Plane across the Angle of Approach and out into right field it leaves a track and this is the Delivery Line that you want to use.

Question

Say again?

Answer

As if you had a wheel that would roll, if you could make it roll down the Inclined Plane so it would pass allowing the Angle of Approach out into right field. The wheel track procedure.

Question

That would be way outside the Arc of Approach, wouldn’t it?

Answer

While it is passing through the two points, these two points are common to both Arc and Angle of Approach. The Angle of Approach simply an arbitrary straight line which makes it the geometric equivalent of the Arc of Approach.

Question

But the Clubhead would not inscribe the same path, would it?

Answer

Now this we should cover in 2-J-3

Question

This here, that’s the Target Line that being the Arc of Approach and that being the Angle of Approach. First of all is that correct?

Answer

Yes, that’s correct.

Question

That’s the Low point. That’s the Ball; it couldn’t cover both the Arc of Approach and this Angle of Approach.

Answer

No, no, these visual equivalent. The Arc of Approach you actually see as a blur. The Angle of Approach is the Geometric equivalent to this visual equivalent in that it passes through the same two points, but on the basis of my contention that a straight line relationship to a straight line is the most precise way to control the Clubhead, most precise Delivery Line.

To try to and use the Arc of Approach as the Delivery Line involves crossing the Plane Line and even though it’s pointing you see that blur as it goes down there; it’s a very poor reference line to guide the club. While you are doing that the club is pointing at the Plane Line. So the club would take that Arc of Approach if you traced the plane Line.

Question

So the Plane Line is the best procedure?

Answer

Yes, have a straight line procedure. So actually the Arc of Approach is not in itself the technique for using it, the technique for using it is a Straight Line.

Question

The result is an Arc of Approach?

Answer

Yes, the result is an Arc of Approach

Question

So we visualize then this Angle of Approach cutting through the Impact and Low Point and then we see it on the ground. It is really coming up the face of the Inclined Plane.

Answer

No, you see it on the ground, you saw the Arc of Approach on the ground, and you don’t see the line. Nothing that you can see as involving the Clubhead motion, the thing is it is a geometric equivalent, what you have to do to make it a visual equivalent is to use the Angle of Approach as the Clubhead Delivery Line, so you have a Delivery Line now across there now heading to right field.

I thought that was good enough here, the club, the momentum of the club is coming down on a Straight line and so its momentum will take it out to right field instead of back up on the Plane.

So I worked with that and it really worked pretty good but then I ran into trouble with it and considerable amount of trouble of execution until I realized that it was tough doing this without a Plane for a reference, on the Angle of Approach and so you dispense with the original Plane Line all together, no longer exist, can’t consider it, it has nothing to do with the action anymore, you use that to establish the Angle of Approach and on that Angle of Approach .. very steep.

John showing Cynthia the illusions on the ground through a glass plane boardJohn is explaining the visual equivalents to Cynthia of what she can see on the Horizontal Surface (the ground).

When the "Facts" are understood the "Illusions" not only cease to mis-lead but can be utilized (Quote by Homer Kelley author of The Golfing Machine).

John has set up a Plane Board (The Boss of the golf stroke) which represents the Angle of the Clubshaft at Address position (8-1 and 8-3 of the 12 Sections of The Golf Stroke-page 116)).

As Homer said the Swing Plane is the "Heart and Sole of the Golf Stroke".

The proper application of the Angle of Approach is that the club, when you use the Arc of Approach the Clubhead covers the Clubhead leaves the Arc of Approach and what you saw was the Clubhead coming back here so if you are going to use that the Clubhead covers the Arc of Approach, so If you are going to use the Angle of Approach the Clubhead covers the Angle of Approach, it doesn’t go around there, it goes right straight back. So you take it right back up here and you have a steep Plane.

Now you trace this line and it goes off into Right Field and it comes up over this line it never comes back over here again.

Question

So then the Clubhead does not cover both the Arc of Approach and the Angle of Approach.

Answer

Oh no, and your Straight Line Delivery Line for the Arc of Approach is the Plane Line and not the Angle of Approach. You may not see any particular, why monkey with it. You can still use the Plane Line as a Delivery Line as a Delivery Line for Hitting to. As a matter of fact if you get off this Straight Line and find yourself back here the only safe thing to do is to re-align to the Target Line.

Question

So our procedure then would be to establish our Inclined Plane that being the target Line, so we initially set up Square/Square. But once we establish our correct Angle of Approach that is our new Plane and we stay on this the whole time.

Answer

That’s right. You stay on that. Remember that you don’t point at the Angle of Approach when you are using an Angle of Approach procedure, the Clubhead covers it.

Question

But I couldn’t see why it was covering both the Arc of Approach and the Angle of Approach?

Answer

That’s why two different lines are necessary.

Question

It wouldn’t cover it if it stays like this. But like this it wouldn’t cover it so you have to shift the Plane.

Answer

And a very important part is that the club does go out and forward this way, it never comes back up in here. That’s a different procedure, you can still hit with that procedure. It doesn’t have that beautiful element of the Angle of Approach because you are Thrusting and you are Driving Cross Line into the aft inside quadrant of the ball.

You are driving right down that line, and it wants, momentum wants to stay in that line, momentum never wants to go on a curve, unless there is a centre, unless there is a Centripetal Action to take it there.

Question

The only reason the ball goes straight at that point is – with this Cross Line procedure that the clubface is looking towards the target it is diverted by from this two way tangent path by the hooked Clubface. So even though the Thrust passes through the inside quadrant of the ball the actual Clubface Impact Point is directed at the back of the ball.

Answer

Right and the thing is that if you use the Arc of Approach instead of the Plane Line you must also pass through the Aft inside quadrant for the Arc of Approach if you are going to use that as your actual visual equivalent instead of the plane Line. The Plane line you abandon that.

Question

Based on the original Plane Line it this becomes an Inside-Out Stroke.

Answer

Yes, you use the 10-5-E Plane Line, which is (Closed/Closed- the first term refers to the Plane Line and the second term refers to the Stance Line, feet only) Plane Line. But you don’t have to as you have three variations in 10-5-E. Your feet could be Square to the Target Line while the Plane Line is closed to the Target Line.

So theoretically Closed/Closed you would have a Closed Stance (Feet) to, so you could be working down the Plane Line more consistently. It is very essential that as you slide, boy, the least turn you pull yourself off.

Question

Did Hogan actually use that procedure?

Answer

I don’t think so, I think they just drove the Clubhead into the ball, I don’t know how much they used. I don’t know if they used an Arc of Approach or not. I don’t think so; I don’t know how they did it. No explanation that I ever heard what Hogan guided the Clubhead with.

Question

Which do you think is the superior procedure would be? The Square/Square Plane Line recognized the Angle of Approach or a Closed/Closed Plane Line recognizing the Angle of Approach.

Answer

If you had a Square/Square Plane Line the only way you could utilize that is to have a Circular Motion staying on plane, on the original Plane using the original Plane Line. The advantage of this is having a Square Stance is that you have a reference to the target.

This is what bothers me when I go Closed/Closed, Closed/Square I am able to have something down here to tell me where the target is.

Question

Do your shoulders align at all square to this closed

Answer

Same old Shoulder characteristics of any other Plane, Shoulders stay on Plane as near as possible. If it is a very steep Plane then you come back here and come down very steep with your shoulder.

But the thing is in Hitting you have a Cross Line Thrust and take advantage of that, thrust right out to right filed and no matter what you do it doesn’t change the true Clubhead Angle of Approach as controlled by the Plane Line and Ball position, Plane Angle and Ball position.

Question

The Arc of Approach, the actual cross Line is the Angle of approach.

Answer

The actual Cross Line is the Angle of Approach procedure.

Question

The Inside-Out stroke will actually change the Plane coming down.

Answer

Yes, it’s a new Plane, a new Plane and a new Plane Line and an Angle of Approach. You monitor this line and see if the Clubhead covers it.

Question

So before the Clubhead leaves the back of the ball at Fix (8-2) you have established the fact that you are definitely going to change that Plane from Square/Square to Closed/Closed.

Answer

Yes, you have to have it all set. One of the things you have to watch is see that it takes a straight Line and it is so easy to drift back in there a little ways and then you have destroyed your Right Forearm Alignment and it wouldn’t be the same and your Plane Line different unless you round housed into it.

So the thing is the Clubface is all established but what’s hard to do is drive that club at an angle across there, the Angle of Approach, through the ball, you want the ball to go there. But the really tough point is that the Right Forearm goes this way.

The Angle of Approach is along here, but, Clubhead Angle of Approach, but the Right Forearm Angle of Approach is down the Delivery Path.

Question

So you actually dismiss the Delivery Line and get back onto that Delivery Path.

Answer

That assumes more importance with the Angle of Approach procedure than any others. You can get buy at least in the very beginning but have to be sure that the Right Forearm is coming in behind the club through that line of the right Forearm Angle of Approach at Impact Fix it’s got to go across here.

Now you know that if the Clubhead takes that Angle of Approach your going to be very off and it’s scary, but as you realize that it is not the Angle of Approach that this Forearm is executed it’s its own, the Angle of Approach.

If you stay on Plane, on this Plane there is nothing you can do about the Angle of Approach it’s going to come in according to this Angle and where the ball is located.

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