Previous studies on the kinematics of the golf swing have mainly focused on group analysis of male golfers of a wide ability range. In the present study, we investigated gross body kinematics using a novel method of analysis for golf research for a group of low handicap female golfers to provide an understanding of their swing mechanics in relation to performance. Data were collected for the drive swings of 16 golfers using a 12-camera three-dimensional motion capture system and a stereoscopic launch monitor. Analysis of covariance identified three covariates (increased pelvis–thorax differential at the top of the backswing, increased pelvis translation during the backswing, and a decrease in absolute backswing time) as determinants of the variance in clubhead speed (adjusted r2¼0.965, P50.05). A significant correlation was found between left-hand grip strength and clubhead speed (r¼0.54, P50.05) and between handicap and clubhead speed (r¼70.612, P50.05). Flexibility measures showed some correlation with clubhead speed; both sitting flexibility tests gave positive correlations (clockwise: r¼0.522, P50.05; counterclockwise: r¼0.711, P50.01). The results suggest that there is no common driver swing technique for optimal performance in low handicap female golfers, and therefore consideration should be given to individual swing characteristics in future studies.
- female players
- clubhead speed