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Master the elements to make your next shot 


Regardless of your ability, its good to know you have the right club in your hand, especially when the conditions are tough. Is there a waterhole in front of the green?  An elevated green? Playing at high altitude? Windy day? elementalGolf will not only suggest the best club, but also how far it is likely to be short by, empowering you to manage risk best. You can go up or down a club depending on your own judgement. 


The most important shot in golf is the one you are about to make. By setting your target by tapping on its map and satellite interface, elementalGolf determines the distance of that next shot, and suggests a club for you, even without its shot correction features.  If you are between distances with the club, it will tell you by how much. Relaxed confidence is key to that next shot. 


Trying to get below 90, 80 or 70? While swinging consistently is key to a good game, all things being equal, feeling confident you have the right club and you are aiming at the right spot will reduce error and improve your score. Shot execution is 70% of success; the other 30% is playing the course conditions, including weather, elevation and altitude. Do you know how far a 160 yard shot will be pushed left in a crosswind on a hot day? Now you do, and on the next hole, it's no longer a crosswind, but at a 32 degree what club? Let elementalGolf give you the confidence.


Is there a strong head and cross wind at 35 degrees to your target? You need to pick the right aim point. It is almost impossible for the human mind to calculate consistently how wind affects a golf ball especially when temperature, humidity, elevation and altitude also affect the ball. elementalGolf uses prevailing conditions to tell how left or right you need to hit the ball. Why shape your shot when the conditions can do it for you? Just swing the same way every shot to ensure consistent results. 


Spending too much time looking for golf balls? By ensuring you have the right club, and by being informed about distance, you are more likely to carry that water hole, avoid that creek,  or prevent rolling into the long grass or brush.  You will save at least one golf ball when your use elementalGolf - that alone justifies getting the app. 



Whether its windy or cold, humid or dry, and whether your target is at high altitude or low elevation, elementalGolf can integrate all available information to calculate the effective distance to your target, suggest what club to use, and provide you the information you need to make your club choice. 



At elementalGolf, we are focused on improving your game. Use of our app is prohibited during competitive tournament play, but it is a great tool to help teach you what club to use under varied and changing weather and local conditions. We are working on other apps to support improvement in your game, and to learn more, please subscribe below.  
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Training and Shot Making Using Golf Science: An Interview

What are the five elements  that impact a golf shot, and can you describe them briefly?

The five elements that impact your shot are: Elevation, Wind, Temperature, Humidity and Altitude. Note, the key to success in shot making is integrating these five elements into your shot, which is very difficult to do in your head - it requires experience and learned intuition, and takes a long time to learn without help. Why is that? As a golfer, you have trouble controlling the conditions, and accessing information, to practice effectively. How many times have you experienced a 18 mph partial headwind at 64 degrees to your target, with a relative humidity of 87% uphill on a 82 degree day? You need to consider all five elements to maximize your odds of making the right shot, as for example, knowing slope impacts on distance without wind or altitude impacts means your shot is not based on all the information you need.  



Elevation is the slope either up or down between your ball and the target you’re aiming at, say it’s a pin. It makes a big difference to your yardage.  The actual distance is maybe 150 yards, but if you’re hitting a ball uphill at a 10 degree angle, it can substantially increase the distance to the pin by five to eight yards. How much impact depends on the distance you are trying to reach, as for example, a Gap Wedge is coming more steeply than 5 iron. 



Altitude is another core element. If you’re playing at sea level, and a lot of courses are at sea level because people are playing near water, versus playing at, say, in Phoenix, Arizona which has an altitude of around 4,000 feet, the ball’s going to fly a different distance. Altitude generally, about every 5,000 feet is the rule of thumb, affects your carry by about ten yards over 150 yard shot, depending on temperature and humidity. So, if you’re hitting 150 yard club at sea level and you get to 5,000 feet and you hit the same club, all other factors being average and equal, you should hit it roughly ten yards further.



The third is temperature. At cold temperatures, the air gets denser hindering ball travel. Even at the higher relative humidity, air gets denser at colder temperatures. That means the ball’s got a little more resistance to travel through to get to your target and on a 150 yard shot, depending on the temperature, it can affect again your ball flight by between 3 and 15 yards either way, if its cooler or hotter. On an approach shot, that’s a lot of yardage to be off the green at the back if you pick the wrong club.



Humidity is also has an impact though less than temperature; impact grows as your distance to target increases. You can have places, such as desert climates, where you have very warm temperatures but very low relative humidity, and then you can have places that are the same temperature but high relative humidity like near the ocean or in a tropical climate. A high relative humidity has the impact of decreasing air density, making air thinner, increasing shot distance. For example, if you had the same temperature in a desert and then in a tropical climate, that relative humidity in the desert is at 15 percent and in the tropical climate it’s at 90 percent, your ball is going to travel further in a situation where the relative humidity is high.


Then there’s wind, and wind impacts are difficult to calculate in your head. WInd's impact is not directly proportional to the speed of the wind, even if you are playing directly into it. All other factors being equal, you can’t just assume that wind at 20 miles per hour will affect your shot twice as much as it does at 10 miles per hour. It’s not quite that straight forward and it’s even more complicated because wind’s blowing at a 360 degree set of angles to your angle to target. Wind affects both the linear and the lateral carrier of your ball and you have to kind of break that down, so that’s pretty tricky.

Can you determine how all elements affect your shot? 

Now when making your shot, you must consider all of these different variables and there’s no easy way to integrate them all at that moment, to apply your experiences at that moment with that shot at that physical distance. What you want to know what is the effective distance that my ball has to carry to reach my target? And that’s why we’ve come up with elementalGolf. It integrates data about all five elements, and calculates the effective yardage or distance for you based on all of those variables, including lateral carries based on crosswind; and it even gives you a club suggestion based on what is in your bag. For less than the cost of a golf ball, it's worth trying out. 

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