What Does Trackman Do?
If you’re reading this, you’re probably aware that we now have TrackMan at Hart Ranch. This week, we’re going to give you some insight into what exactly TrackMan is, what it’s capable of and how it can help improve your game.
TrackMan is a radar system that reads club and ball data by the changing frequency of microwaves reflected off the club and ball (much like a doppler weather system). This allows TrackMan to record critical data, including Club Path and Speed, Attack Angle, etc. In essence, it shows exactly why a golf ball behaves the way it does. TrackMan has redefined golf instruction, as old ball-flight “laws” were shown to be false when TrackMan was introduced to the industry. For example, for years people thought that club path was the main indicator of where the golf ball started relative to the target line. TrackMan showed that Face Angle was actually the main indicator (~80%). This along with other new data has changed golf instruction significantly.
Here are some of the many parameters TrackMan records:
Ball Speed: The speed of the ball immediately after impact. The biggest factor for distance. Center contact creates the most ball speed (relates directly to Smash Factor).
Club Speed: The speed of the clubhead at impact. More Club Speed equals more potential distance (relates directly to Smash Factor).
Smash Factor (Club Speed divided by Ball Speed): The amount of energy transferred from the club to the ball. The higher the number, the better. Max of 1.5(1) due to USGA club regulations.
Spin Rate: The amount of spin on the ball immediately after impact. Extremely important for distance and height of golf shots.
Club Path: The direction the club is moving (right or left) at impact.
Face Angle: The direction the face is pointing (right or left) at impact. This is the main factor in determining the starting line of the shot.
Face to Path: The direction the face is pointing relative to the path of the club. This is different than Face Angle, as it relates directly to where the face is pointing compared to the path of the club rather than the target line. Assuming centered contact, this is the main factor for Spin Axis (a fancy word for how the ball curves in the air).
Attack Angle: The direction the clubhead is moving (up or down) at impact. Shots hit directly off the ground should have a negative Attack Angle in order to create ball-first contact (this isn’t to say you should try to smash down on the ball like chopping wood folks).
Carry: What we all want more of. Carry is how far the ball is hit in the air before landing. Carry is mainly determined by Ball Speed, Club Speed, Smash Factor, Launch Angle and Spin Rate.
These are just a few of the numbers you’ll get when hitting golf shots on TrackMan. This data is why the best instructors and players in the world rely on it to get better, and so can you. Whenever we as instructors ask what our students struggle with, the overwhelming answer is “consistency.” The truth is, your swing is probably much more consistent than you think, just not necessarily in the correct way. TrackMan gives us reliable data to show you why you hit the ball the way you do, and ultimately give you the tools and drills to help you improve.
Be sure to stay tuned as we post updates on our new simulator room (it’s going to be awesome) and other TrackMan events. We’re ready to help you unleash your potential. Happy golfing!