Capto Putting Sensor - Impact Sweet Spot Case Study
In this case study, let's take a look at the influence that the impact sweet spot has on the energy data tile within the Capto putting software.
A player came to me a couple days ago complaining about struggling with distance control, primarily on long lag putts. She said that there would be times where she'd hit her first long putt in a round and it would be really short, so for the next lag putt she had, she'd try to hit a little bit harder and all of a sudden it would go way long. Ultimately she didn't know what to work on. She was lost. She didn't know if there was an issue with acceleration and how much speed she was trying to hit the ball with, or if it was an issue with her green reading process.
Watch the video below to learn more about this Capto case study:
The first thing I wanted to do was to use Capto, and this is one of my favorite pieces to the Capto software because it measures how much torque is being applied to the putter head at the moment of impact. What we saw very quickly was that the first putt she hit had an energy loss of 22% out of the toe, meaning the face was opening, or twisting at about 450 degrees per second (see image below).
So what does that mean? Well, this was about a 40-foot putt, so this ball could have gone 20% further than it did. That's about 8 feet further than it actually went. After this putt came up short, she hit another one a little bit harder than the first one. A perfectly natural adjustment to try to make, however, this putt only had an energy loss of 6% out of a heel, meaning this putt was struck closer to the true sweet spot of the putter and as a result the ball went way long.
"I don't know why that's happening!" She said. "That's exactly what's happening when I play."
The nice thing about Capto is we are able to measure this and answer this question! We're able to see that where she thought the sweet spot of the putter was versus where the sweet spot of the putter actually is were totally different places.
We had put some face tape on the putter to analyze her impact point on these putts, and we saw that the first one wasn't hit that far out of the toe in actuality, but rather a little closer to what would be considered the middle of the putter. It was maybe about a centimeter or two towards the toe.
Just as a side note, the sweet spot of a putter is almost never on the sight line, and that's because of a lot of different factors. The type of hossil or shaft, the length of the shaft, and the size of the grip can all affect this. One of the biggest influences on the location of the sweet spot is how much pressure the player is using or how tightly the player is holding the putter.
So for this player, we found that when she tried to hit it closer to the heel (about half an inch or less closer) was when she actually started to get less energy loss. We got her down to 1.7% heel and a total energy loss of 1.3%, so we drew a dot on the putter as a reference to where she needed to be trying to hit the ball.
She started to line it up more out of the heel, and as a result, she started to gain more control over the distance that her ball was rolling because we eliminated one of the variables. Originally, she was considering that her distance control issues had to do with how hard she was hitting it. She never actually considered impact location. Now that she knew where she needed to hit it on the putter face, it was much easier for her to gauge speed. She gained the ability to dial in how hard she needed to hit the ball to get it to go a certain distance whereas before she was basically making a blind guess. She'd hit it and it might have been the perfect speed for the right distance, but when you're hitting it and losing 22% power out of the toe and having your ball stop 20% shorter than it should, you're going to end up hitting the next one harder. If you hit it towards the heel like she did, it will go way too long.
Being able to look at this impact sweet spot is one of the many added benefits of the Capto Putting software. If a player is struggling with distance control, make sure you're using this feature in Capto. It's really going to make a big difference in a player's ability to control distances. If someone is inconsistent in where they hit the ball on the face of the putter, they will also be inconsistent in their roll distance, and they'll find themselves three- or four-putting far too frequently. This is a great tool within the Capto software that I highly recommend utilizing.