An Analysis Of The Kinetics And Kinematics Of The Golf Swing

  • G. Koenig
  • M. Tamres
  • R. W. Mann
Keywords: golf


The forces, moments, center of pressures, and kinematics generated by the golfer were studied via the MIT TRACK system. This system uses a force platform in conjunction with an active marker system, based on a stereo photogrammetric technique, to measure the kinetics and kinematics of human movement. The experiment consisted of 14 subjects, which comprised of three handicap groups (low: 0-7, mid: 8-14, high: 15+). Each subject hit golf balls off an artificial turf surface into a golf cage using three different golf clubs (driver, 3iron, 7-iron). Seven trials per foot were conducted for each club, with all subjects equipped with the same type of golf shoes and all using the same three clubs. The development of an inter-subject and inter-group normalization routine, which normalized all the acquired data, resulted in the overall trends for the entire subject pool, as well as in the handicap groups. This routine was also used to present a nonnalized kinematic representation of the golf swing for the various skill ranges. In addition, an algorithm was established in order to analyze the data in the continuously moving local reference frame of the shoe, as opposed to the conventional initial stance reference frame. Aside from the expected contrasts between the left and right foot, subsequent analysis demonstrated that among the clubs, the forces, moments, and center of pressures during the swing, though similar in general pattern, varied at specific points due primarily to inertial effects. However, clear differences were discovered between the handicap groups, as well as between individuals. In addition the moving reference frame demonstrated that the center of pressure migrations of the feet were more centralized to the shoe than was apparent with an initial stance reference frame. Also, contrary to popular belief, a statistical analysis demonstrated that the lower handicap players did not prove to be any more consistent than the higher handicap players.
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