Wanted to go over why I am not a fan of horizontal hinging (for brevity purposes, we'll call it 'HH') And why I think Angled Hinging (we'll call 'AH' for short) is better for most golfers. Don't get me wrong, I think if you hit the ball great with HH then I would stick with it, but I think HH has much more obvious flaws to it.
I'll try to present this post sort of like an attorney presenting his case, of course in a much more casual way.
First, let's look at what HH and AH are, so everybody is at least on the same page as to my interpretation of the hinge actions are (we won't include vertical hinging because it rarely should be used on the full swing).
HORIZONTAL HINGING (HH)
Post impact, the golfer hinges the club as such so the toe is pointng straight up in the air. This is also called a 'CF (Centrifugal Force) release' by the MORAD people. This is also in accordance to TGM as Homer Kelley basically says this hinge action and the toe pointing the sky is a result of centrifugal force.
HH is typically used by golfers using the 'swinging' procedure because typically the 'swinger' utilizes CF in order get the clubhead to hit the ball.
NOTE: According to Homer Kelley in TGM, a 'swinger' and a 'hitter' is NOT defined by hinge action. Instead, they are ultimately designated by what lag loading procedure they use (do they 'push' or do they 'pull?')
Moe Norman is a good example of a golfer using HH or a CF release.
ANGLED HINGING (AH)
Angled hinging is the result of centripetal force (CP) and 'radial acceleration.'
In layman's terms, the clubhead stays in more towards the body as it hinges whereas HH the club 'flees the body' as it hinges (Centrifugal force is often referred to as 'center fleeing' force). However, the big thing is that the clubface is at about a 45* angle to the target instead of the toe pointing directly at the target like it does with HH.
Here's a Ben Hogan picture showing an excellent angled hinge action.
The hitter should almost always use AH. Why? Because the 'hitter' is not supposed to use CF in their swing.
With that, here's my main arguments against HH.
1. Centrifugal Force does not actually exist
It's not saying that 'because CF doesn't exist that HH doesn't exist.' The Moe pic shows a HH action right in work.
But when you ask physicists why CF doesn't actually exist and what really is happening their answer is along the lines that all the perception of CF is that in reality it's just a case of a lack of CP.
Repeat that again, the idea of CF in reality is when there is a lack of CP.
So, in the case of HH action being a product of CF, I think it could be better said that HH action is a product of a lack of CP.
Why is that important?
Because I think it tells me that when there's a lack of CP, there's a lack of radial acceleration and that's a result of either a stopped pivot or a very slow pivot thru the impact interval.
I believe that on the PGA Tour, most of the Tour pros have a goal in mind with their swing that they basically want to rely as little as they can on hand-eye coordination and timing and more or less hit great shots consistently without relying on that.
I believe in order to do that, the swing has to become oriented around the pivot. If you have a 'lack of CP' and therefore your pivot is either stalled or slowing down post impact, you are now relying more on your timing and hand-eye coordination.
2. We actually 'swing then hit.'
According to biomechanical study and research provided from 6-degree 3D machines, nobody is a 'pure hitter' or a 'pure swinger.'
Instead, we actually do a little of both hitting and swinging. But, not in that order. We actually pull down first, then push in the impact interval.
That doesn't mean I would exactly eschew the notion of 'hitting' and 'swinging.' I think that is a good *mentality* to have when swinging the club and from there you have to figure out what works for you best. BUT, the reality is that pretty much all of us 'swing, then hit.'
But since we are hitting in the impact interval, shouldn't we angle hinge' in accordance to TGM?
I think Homer Kelley was on the right track as far as these hinge actions and what more or less powers them, I just don't think he had everything completely accurate (can you blame him?). So, if we 'hit' thru impact, shouldn't we also angle hinge?
3. CF vs. CP release
As I talked earlier, in MORAD terms CF release, which comes with a HH action, has the golfer swinging out to the right.
We've talked about the hazards on not 'swinging left' on the message board. More or less the golfer gets off plane after impact if they don't properly 'swing left.'
Thats what the CP release with AH promotes. Staying on plane post impact.
You can certainly swing to the right and be a great ballstriker, but now the Angle of Attack will have to be shallower and this could mean a more difficult time compressing the ball with irons and often means a harder time having a FLW at impact.
4. I think that HH is basically the golfer closing the clubface inadvertently past impact.
That's not a problem if the face is square at impact because post-impact the ball is already gone. But if you wind up closing the face early, all sorts of inaccurate shots an happen.
Basically I believe that AH keeps the clubface square past impact and thus if you are a little off the missed shots will not be as inaccurate.
SO WHAT DID MOE AND OTHER LIKE HIM DO?
Moe is an interesting case because he had a clear HH aka CF release, yet could hit it dead straight at the target on command as good as anybody that has ever played the game.
My belief is that if he were hooked up to a Trackman he would:
- Have an extremely square clubface angle at impact.
- His Horizontal Swing Plane would go to the right, but no more than 1*
- His attack angle, to set off the rightward HSP, would be very shallow. In fact, he told Lag Erickson that he wanted his divots to be 'bacon strips, not pork chops).
This probably produced a very square 'true path.'
If you look at his swing here, his clubface is about as square of a clubface as you will ever see, I believe he just had that face so square throughout his swing that he really didn't have to worry about closing the clubface too early and hitting a low hook.
I think the other golfer's using HH well are probably very good at not closing the clubface early and probably tend to struggle more with irons than their driver since it helps to have a shallower attack angle with the driver and swing out to the right. And I believe the HH golfers usually hit a draw.
I think it's much better to keep pivoting to 'automate the swing' and rely less on hand-eye coordination and timing and not have to worry about when the clubface closes.
But while this is 'my case against horizontal hinging', I just hope that readers understand what you need to do to use either hing action and what the pro's and cons are.