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TitleOn the efficiency of the golf swing
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsWhite, R.
JournalAmerican Journal of Physics
Pagination1088 - 1094
Date Published2006
ISSN00029505 (ISSN)
AbstractA non-driven double pendulum model is used to explain the principle underlying the surprising efficiency of the golf swing. The principle can be described as a parametric energy transfer between the arms and the club head due to the changing moment of inertia of the club. The transfer is a consequence of conservation of energy and angular momentum. Because the pendulum is not driven by an external force, it shows that the golfer need do little more than accelerate the arms with the wrists cocked and let the double pendulum transfer kinetic energy to the club head. A driven double pendulum model is used to study factors affecting the efficiency of a real golf swing. It is concluded that the wrist-cock angle is the most significant efficiency-determining parameter under the golfer's control and that improvements in golf technology have had a significant impact on driving distance. © 2006 American Association of Physics Teachers.

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