What is the effect of driver face angle on ball flight

What is the Effect of Driver Face Angle on Ball Flight?

When it comes to golf, the driver is often considered the most important club in a golfer's bag. It is the club that is used to hit the longest shots off the tee, and having control over the ball flight is crucial. One factor that can significantly affect the ball flight is the driver's face angle.

Understanding Face Angle:

The face angle refers to the position of the driver's face in relation to the target line. It is measured in degrees, with a square face angle being when the face points directly at the target line. A closed face angle means that the face is turned to the left of the target line, while an open face angle means the face is turned to the right.

It's important to note that face angle is not the same as clubface position at impact, where impact conditions including swing path and angle of attack also play a significant role. However, the face angle at address can have a noticeable impact on how the ball flies.

The Effect on Ball Flight:

  • Closed Face Angle: If a golfer sets up with a closed face angle, the ball is likely to start to the left of the target line. This is because the impact of a closed face angle imparts spin on the ball that causes it to hook to the left. Therefore, a closed face angle can be advantageous for right-handed golfers who want to hit a draw or fade.
  • Square Face Angle: When a golfer sets up with a square face angle, the ball is likely to go straight towards the target line. It allows the golfer to hit the ball straighter with less curve, which is useful in situations where accuracy is crucial.
  • Open Face Angle: An open face angle at address will cause the ball to start to the right of the target line. This is because the open face angle imparts spin that causes the ball to slice to the right. Open face angles can be beneficial for golfers looking to hit a fade or to correct a hook.

Adjusting Face Angle:

Golfers can adjust the face angle of their driver to suit their desired shot shape. This can be done by changing the way the club is held at address or by using adjustable drivers that allow for customization of the face angle. By experimenting with different face angles, golfers can find the setting that works best for their swing and desired ball flight.

Professional Golfers and Face Angle:

Professional golfers often have the ability to control their face angle precisely. They adjust it to achieve specific shot shapes or to counteract any swing tendencies they may have. They can use a closed face angle to hit a draw around obstacles or an open face angle to play a fade against the wind.


The driver's face angle plays a crucial role in determining the initial direction of the ball during a golf shot. Understanding and being able to manipulate the face angle can help golfers achieve their desired shot shapes and improve their overall control over the ball flight. Whether you're aiming for straight shots, fades, or draws, experimenting with different face angles can lead to more consistent and accurate drives.