Title:
Golf ball marking system and method
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A system and method for analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball to assess a golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment. A pattern is marked on an impact side of a golf ball with transferable ink. A face of a golf club is then aligned with the impact side of the golf ball wherein the pattern is square with the face of the golf club. Subsequently, the golf club is swung, impacting the impact side of the golf ball with the face of the golf club. Upon impact, the pattern marked on the impact side of the golf ball is transferred to the face of the golf club. The transferred pattern on the face of the golf club is then analyzed to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.



Inventors:
Murray, Jeffrey C. (Duluth, MN, US)
Application Number:
10/966635
Publication Date:
04/21/2005
Filing Date:
10/15/2004
Assignee:
MURRAY JEFFREY C.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
473/351, 473/278
International Classes:
A63B69/36; (IPC1-7): A63B69/36
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
LEGESSE, NINI F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KINNEY & LANGE, P.A. (MINNEAPOLIS, MN, US)
Claims:
1. A method for analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball to assess a golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment, the method comprising: marking a pattern on an impact side of a golf ball with transferable ink; aligning a face of a golf club with the impact side of the golf ball wherein the pattern is square with the face of the golf club; swinging the golf club; impacting the impact side of the golf ball with the face of the golf club wherein the pattern marked on the impact side of the golf ball is transferred to the face of the golf club; and analyzing a transferred pattern on the face of the golf club to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

2. The method of claim 1 wherein marking the pattern on the golf ball further comprises aligning a pattern guide on the golf ball to mark the pattern on the impact side of the golf ball.

3. The method of claim 1, and further comprising placing the golf ball on a tee to elevate the golf ball and square the marked pattern on the golf ball with the face of the golf club.

4. The method of claim 1 wherein analyzing the transferred pattern further comprises using a comparison guide to analyze the transferred pattern with known results to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

5. The method of claim 1 wherein the marked pattern is a filled circle.

6. The method of claim 1 wherein the marked pattern is at least one vertical line.

7. The method of claim 1 wherein the marked pattern is at least one horizontal line.

8. The method of claim 7 wherein the marked pattern includes at least one vertical line.

9. The method of claim 1 wherein the marked pattern is at least two concentric circles.

10. The method of claim 1 wherein the marked pattern is a geometric pattern.

11. The method of claim 1 wherein the transferable ink is permanent.

12. The method of claim 1 wherein the transferable ink is non-permanent.

13. A method for assessing a golfer's golf club swing, golf equipment and/or alignment by analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball, the method comprising: marking an impact side of a golf ball with a first mark using transferable ink; aligning a face of a golf club with the impact side of the golf ball; swinging the golf club; hitting the impact side of the golf ball with the golf club face wherein the first mark on the golf ball is transferred to the golf club face to create a second mark on the golf club face; and analyzing the second mark with respect to an instruction guide including known transferred marks to assess the golfer's golf club swing, golf equipment and/or alignment.

14. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark is a filled circle for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

15. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark is a plurality of horizontal lines for assessing an angle of hitting the impact side of the golf ball with the golf club face.

16. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark is a plurality of vertical lines for assessing a swing path of the golf club.

17. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark is a line for assessing a lie angle for a head of the golf club and for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

18. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark includes a vertical line and a horizontal line intersecting at their respective center points, the first mark for assessing a lie angle for a head of the golf club and for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

19. The method of claim 13 wherein the first mark is a plurality of concentric circles for assessing an angle of hitting the impact side of the golf ball with the golf club face and for assessing compression of the golf ball.

20. The method of claim 13 wherein marking the impact side of the golf ball further comprises aligning a pattern on the golf ball for defining the first mark.

21. The method of claim 13, and further comprising placing the golf ball on a tee to elevate the golf ball and square the first mark on the golf ball with the golf club face.

22. A method for analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball to assess a golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment, the method comprising: marking an impact side of a golf ball with transferable ink to define a first mark; swinging a golf club wherein a face of the golf club is aligned with the impact side of the golf ball such that the face of the golf club contacts the impact side of the golf ball and the first mark on the golf ball is transferred to the face of the golf club to create a second mark on the face of the golf club; and analyzing the second mark to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

23. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark is a filled circle for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

24. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark is a plurality of horizontal lines for assessing an angle of hitting the impact side of the golf ball with the golf club face.

25. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark is a plurality of vertical lines for assessing the golfer's swing path of the golf club.

26. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark is a line for assessing a lie angle for a head of the golf club and for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

27. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark includes a vertical line and a horizontal line intersecting at their respective center points, the first mark for assessing a lie angle for a head of the golf club and for assessing alignment of the golf club face with the golf ball.

28. The method of claim 22 wherein the first mark is a plurality of concentric circles for assessing an angle of hitting the impact side of the golf ball with the golf club face and for assessing compression of the golf ball.

29. The method of claim 22 wherein marking the impact side of the golf ball further comprises aligning a pattern for defining the first mark on the golf ball.

30. An impact analyzer system for golfers, the system comprising: a marker of transferable ink for marking a golf ball with a first mark; and a guide detailing selectable configurations of the first mark.

31. The system of claim 30, and further comprising at least one tee for holding the golf ball such that the first mark is aligned with a golf club face.

32. The system of claim 30, and further comprising a template for aligning with the golf ball, the template defining a pattern for at least the first mark.

33. The system of claim 30, wherein the guide provides interpretation of a second mark on a golf club face produced by transfer of the ink from the golf ball to the golf club face upon impact.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION(S)

This application claims priority from Provisional Application No. 60/511,819, filed Oct. 16, 2003 for “Golf Ball Marking System and Method” by Jeffrey C. Murray.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a golf ball marking system and method of use thereof. In particular, the invention relates to a system and method for analyzing the impact between a golf ball and a golf club to assess a user's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

Golf is a unique sport that requires both power and precision, and includes many levels of instruction with strict attention to detail. Indeed, no other recreational sport is dominated by professional teachers and instructors the way that golf is. Golf requires accurate feedback to assess a player's game, and while it is possible to practice various techniques, it is impossible to see if those techniques are being performed properly. Thus, the majority of golfers tend to practice their mistakes. Many training aids and swing aids have been introduced to reinforce golf fundamentals and refinements that will hopefully lead to better play.

A major breakthrough for all golfers is achieving consistent center-face contact between the club head and the ball. A club struck solidly near its center of gravity (CG) generally results in longer and straighter hits. The ball goes farther because the club's moment of inertia (MI), or resistance to twisting, is greatest and delivers more energy to the ball. In addition, a center-struck club generally hits the ball straighter because the middle of the face is more square at impact than the toe or heel area of the club face. Enterprising golfers have long known this and have used different methods and impact marking devices for determining the ideal contact point on the golf club's face.

The ability to determine impact location between the golf ball and the golf club as precisely as possible is becoming more important as the average head size of golf clubs increases. Improved driver technology has allowed designers to create larger models with larger hitting surfaces and “hot spots”. For example, in the 1970s, drivers were constructed out of laminated wood or persimmon, and head size was approximately 150 cubic centimeters (cc). However, today's drivers have become increasingly larger and have an average head size beginning at approximately 300 cc and increasing up to a maximum of 460 cc. Further, today's drivers are constructed of metal such as titanium rather than wood. In general, a driver having a larger face results in a more “forgiving” club, particularly with off-center hits.

With the increased head size of drivers, it has been determined that the geographic center of the driver face may not be the most desirable place to make contact with the golf ball. The center of gravity for large model drivers varies from model to model thereby resulting in different “hot spot” locations for the driver depending upon the model. The “hot spot” location of a driver is the area of impact on the driver face providing maximum driving distance, which may be the geographic center of the face, high and toward the heel of the face, high and toward the toe of the face, high and midway up, at the extreme toe of the face, midway up and toward the toe of the face, high and toward the heel, or toeward. Thus, the location of the center of gravity for drivers has a wide distribution between models. Therefore, the larger the club face, the more critical it is to know the location of its center gravity and “hot spot,” and the more beneficial it is to know where a golfer's impact tendency is in relation to these areas.

Further, modern shafts for golf clubs are made from graphite, which is lighter than steel, and helps the player to generate more club head speed. However, graphite shafts tend to posses a spine where a portion of the shaft, longitudinally, is stiffer along one plane, which results in inconsistencies from shaft to shaft. One concern with shaft inconsistencies is “droop,” which is the amount the shaft flexes at impact along a vertical plane measured in degrees. A player should be fitted to a shaft flex that matches his or her swing speed and tempo, but droop must also be considered. Too much (or not enough) droop at impact effects a golfer's ability to make center-face contact. Thus, the ability to measure and quantify club shaft droop benefits golfers seeking more consistent solid contact with the golf ball.

There is a need for golfers to have the ability to determine precise ball to club face contact such that they may determine the “hot spot” of various driver makes and models, but also determine the ideal shaft combination that consistently squares up their club face impact with the golf ball. However, current impact measuring devices are inaccurate and do not have versatile applicability.

Examples of impact marking devices currently used include masking tape applied to the club face to compare the impact contact with the center of the club, whereby the masking tape records a dimple that approximates where contact has been made. Another example includes a crack-and-peal label that attaches to the club face to record an impact mark that changes in intensity. Other impact marking devices include a removable form of stretched leather, and a reusable liquid crystal pad, that darkens for a few seconds after impact. Both of these tools include pads or patches affixed to the club face to record contact point between the club and the golf ball. Finally, spray powders and paints are used as impact marking devices that spray onto the club face and dry, whereby contact with a golf ball during a swing reveal the contact point between the golf ball and golf club.

All of the current impact marking devices are tools that are applied to the club face to determine the impact location and only give a general idea of impact location. Further, there are several disadvantages to the current impact marking devices that are applied to the club face. First, the existing products are not legal for play in sanctioned events according to the United States Golf Association (USGA). Second, current impact marking devices are messy, for example, tapes will stick to the club face and spray paints and powders will splatter on hands, fingers, and other immediate surroundings. Third, current products are bulky and inconvenient to store because weight and space preclude toting them in a golf bag. Fourth, current products are imprecise because the impact marks are roughly the size of a compressed golf ball which exceeds the center of gravity for most golf clubs. Fifth, the impact marking devices are expensive and often fail to last an extended period of time beyond a practice round. Sixth, the current impact marking devices lack versatility and are typically designed for a specific type of club such as a driver, iron, or putter. Seventh, the current products must be applied to the club face instead of the ball, which can adversely affect the ball flight by imparting inconstant ball spin at impact.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is a system and method for analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball to assess a golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment. A pattern is marked on an impact side of a golf ball with transferable ink. Then a face of a golf club is aligned with the impact side of the golf ball wherein the pattern is square with the face of the golf club. Subsequently, the golf club is swung, impacting the impact side of the golf ball with the face of the golf club. Upon impact, the pattern marked on the impact side of the golf ball is transferred to the face of the golf club. The transferred pattern on the face of the golf club is then analyzed to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a golf ball marking system for analyzing impact between a golf ball and a golf club.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a golf ball with a pattern guide partially encasing the golf ball illustrating one way for marking the golf ball.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a golf ball marked with the marking system shown in FIG. 1 and positioned on a tee.

FIG. 4 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 5A-5C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 4 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 6 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 7A-7C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 6 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 8 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 9A-9C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 8 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 10 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 11A-11C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 10 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 12 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 13A-13C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 12 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 14 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 15A-15D are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 14 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 16 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 17A-17C are side views of a head of the golf club illustrating three versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 16 transferred onto a face of the golf club.

FIG. 18 is a side view of the golf ball with one embodiment of a mark thereon.

FIGS. 19A-19E are side views of a head of a putter illustrating versions of the mark from the golf ball of FIG. 18 transferred onto a face of the putter.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a golf ball marking system 10 for analyzing impact between a golf ball and a golf club. System 10 includes pattern guide 12, markers 14 (including permanent marker 14a, warm weather non-permanent transferable markerer 14b, cool weather non-permanent transferable markerer 14c, and non-permanent transferable marker 14d), and instruction guide 16.

Pattern guide 12 is used to provide a template to assist a golfer in marking a golf ball. Pattern guide 12 is made of a solid material and includes a guide for marking various patterns on a golf ball (described in more detail herein). Pattern guide 12 is typically hemispherically shaped, but may have any shape that is conducive to marking a pattern on the golf ball. Pattern guide 12 has a size and curvature to partially encase the golf ball when placed on the golf ball. This insures that pattern guide 12 does not shift while marking the golf ball.

Markers 14 include permanent marker 14a, warm weather non-permanent marker 14b, cool weather non-permanent marker 14c, and non-permanent marker 14d. Permanent marker 14a places a permanent mark on the golf ball for identification of the golf ball and for alignment of the golf ball with a tee or a golf club. Warm weather non-permanent transferable marker 14b places a non-permanent transferable mark on the golf ball and is for use in temperatures above 55° F. Cool weather non-permanent transferable markerer 14c places a non-permanent transferable marker on the golf ball and is for use in temperatures below 55° F. Non-permanent transferable markerer 14d places a non-permanent transferable marker on the golf ball and is formulated for impact analysis with putters. Markers 14 are preferably provided in an end-to-end configuration to as shown to allow for easy transportability in a golf bag or the like.

Instruction guide 16 instructs the golfer how to use golf ball marking system 10. In particular, instruction guide 16 includes instructions on how to mark a golf ball using system 10, what types of marks may be made on the golf ball for swing, equipment, and ball striking alignment analysis, and how to interpret the mark that is transferred from the golf ball to the golf club. Further detail of the process of analyzing the mark that is transferred from the golf ball to the golf club is provided herein.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of golf ball 20 with pattern guide 12 partially encasing golf ball 20 illustrating one way for marking golf ball 20. To mark the ball, pattern guide 12 to is placed over golf ball 20 such that pattern guide 12 at least partially encases golf ball 20, as shown. As stated above, pattern guide 12 is typically hemispherical in shape to encase about half of golf ball 20. In FIG. 2, mark 22 (which in this case is a dot) is shown being drawn on golf ball 20 by filling dot template 24 of pattern guide 12 using marker 14. Pattern guide 12 is typically held in place on golf ball 20 by the golfer's thumb or finger. Also provided on pattern guide 12 is line template 26 to permit the golfer to draw lines or other geometric configurations on golf ball 20. The template used to mark golf ball 20 is selected based upon the desired swing, equipment, and/or alignment analysis provided in instruction guide 16. Preferably, golf ball 20 is marked along the seam of golf ball 20 and in between the dimples of golf ball 20. While pattern guide 12 insures that straight lines. Of course, golf ball 20 may also be marked without the use of a guide.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of golf ball 20 marked with mark 22 positioned on tee 30. Mark 22 is provided on the “impact side” of golf ball 20 and is positioned so as to be centered above tee 30 and substantially centered in a plane parallel to the ground. Alignment line 32 is also shown in FIG. 3. Alignment line 32 is provided along an equator of golf ball 20 and is preferably drawn on golf ball 20 using permanent ink (such as with permanent marker 14a). Alignment line 32 aids the golfer in centering mark 22 over tee 30 and in drawing mark 22 on golf ball 20.

After appropriately positioning golf ball 20 on tee 30, the golfer selects a club for swing, equipment, and/or alignment analysis. The golfer then swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club. The pattern marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 (mark 22 in FIG. 3) is transferred to the face of the golf club. The golfer subsequently analyzes the transferred pattern on the face of the golf club to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment.

The following figures show and describe various marks that may be made on golf ball 20 to assess different aspects of the golfer's game. Further, the following figures show the impact mark as transferred to a golf club at various locations and in various configurations. The golf club is shown in the following figures is a right-handed club, but it will be appreciated that the marks have the same applicability with a left-handed club. It will also be appreciated that the marks shown and described herein are merely exemplary, and any mark which may be used to analyze the golfer's swing, equipment, and/or alignment is contemplated by the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 40 thereon. Mark 40 comprises a dot or a small filled circle. Mark 40 is used to determine the point of impact of the center of golf ball 20 on the club face. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 40 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 5A-5C are side views of mark 40 transferred onto face 42 of golf club head 44. Golf club head 44 is shown as a driver or wood club head, but mark 40 may be used for analysis in conjunction with any type of golf club, including irons, wedges, and putters. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 5A, 5B, and 5C as transferred marks 45a, 45b, and 45c, respectively. Transferred mark 45a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 near toe 46 of golf club head 44. Transferred mark 45b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 at an ideal location, near a center of face 42 of golf club head 44. Transferred mark 45c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 near heel 48 of golf club head 44. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 as near to the center of face 42 as possible (which is typically where the “hot spot” of the golf club is located).

FIG. 6 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 50 thereon. Mark 50 comprises three parallel horizontal lines. Mark 50 is used to determine the angle of impact of the club face when the club face strikes golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 50 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 7A-7C are side views of mark 50 transferred onto face 42 of golf club head 44. Golf club head 44 is shown as a driver or wood club head, but mark 50 may be used for analysis in conjunction with other types of golf clubs, including irons and wedges. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 7A, 7B, and 7C as transferred marks 55a, 55b, and 55c, respectively. Transferred mark 55a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 at too steep of an angle, with face 42 angled toward the ground. This results in transferred mark 55a wherein the top line transfers completely while the other two lines transfer less completely, indicating that the top of club face 42 struck golf ball 20 more solidly than the bottom of club face 42. Transferred mark 55b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 at an ideal angle, wherein the club face was angled properly relative to golf ball 20 (i.e., substantially parallel to the ground). Thus, all three lines transfer completely to face 42. Transferred mark 55c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 at too shallow of an angle, with face 42 angled away from the ground. This results in transferred mark 55c wherein the bottom line transfers completely while the other two lines transfer less completely, indicating that the bottom of club face 42 struck golf ball 20 more solidly than the top of club face 42. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 with face 42 at as an ideal of an angle of impact as possible.

FIG. 8 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 60 thereon. Mark 60 comprises three parallel vertical lines. Mark 60 is used to determine the swing path of the golf club when the club face strikes golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 60 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 9A-9C are side views of mark 60 transferred onto face 42 of golf club head 44. Golf club head 44 is shown as a driver or wood club head, but mark 60 may be used for analysis in conjunction with other types of golf clubs, including irons and wedges. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 9A, 9B, and 9C as transferred marks 65a, 65b, and 65c, respectively. Transferred mark 65a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 open, with face 42 impacting golf ball 20 left of center and/or with golf club head 44 turned to the right. For a right-handed golfer, golf ball 20 will either start to the left and veer right, or start to the right and veer further right. This type of impact results in transferred mark 65a wherein the line nearest the heel of golf club head 44 transfers completely while the other two lines transfer less completely. Transferred mark 65b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with an ideal swing path, wherein club face 42 impacts golf ball 20 correctly. Thus, all three lines transfer completely to face 42. Transferred mark 65c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 42 closed, impacting golf ball 20 right of center and/or with golf club head 44 turned to the left. For a right-handed golfer, golf ball 20 will either start to the left and veer further left, or start to the right and veer to the left. This type of impact results in transferred mark 65c wherein the line nearest the toe of golf club head 44 transfers completely while the other two lines transfer less completely. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 along an ideal swing path.

FIG. 10 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 70 thereon. Mark 70 comprises a single horizontal line. Mark 70 is used to determine the lie angle of the golf club when the club face strikes golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 70 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 11A-11C are side views of mark 70 transferred onto face 72 of golf club head 74. Golf club head 74 is shown as an iron or wedge club head, but mark 70 may be used for analysis in conjunction with other types of golf clubs. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 11A, 11B, and 11C as transferred marks 75a, 75b, and 75c, respectively. Transferred mark 75a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with the toe of golf club head 74 down. This type of impact results in transferred mark 75a wherein the line slopes down from the toe to the heel of golf club head 74. Transferred mark 75b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with an ideal lie angle, which results in a line parallel with the bottom of golf club head 74. Transferred mark 75c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with the toe of golf club head 74 up. This type of impact results in transferred mark 75c wherein the line slopes up from the toe to the heel of golf club head 74. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 along an ideal lie angle.

FIG. 12 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 80 thereon. Mark 80 comprises a plurality of concentric circles. Mark 80 is used to determine the angle of impact of the golf club when the club face strikes golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 80 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 13A-13C are side views of mark 80 transferred onto face 72 of golf club head 74. Golf club head 74 is shown as an iron or wedge club head, but mark 80 may be used for analysis in conjunction with other types of golf clubs. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 13A, 13B, and 13C as transferred marks 85a, 85b, and 85c, respectively. Transferred mark 85a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72 at too steep of an angle, with face 72 angled toward the ground. This results in transferred mark 85a wherein the top of the concentric circles transfers completely while the bottom of the concentric circles transfers less completely, indicating that the top of club face 72 struck golf ball 20 more solidly than the bottom of club face 72. Transferred mark 85b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 at an ideal angle, wherein the club face was angled properly relative to golf ball 20 (i.e., substantially parallel to the ground). Thus, the concentric circles transfer completely to face 72. Transferred mark 85c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72 at too shallow of an angle, with face 72 angled away from the ground. This results in transferred mark 85c wherein the bottom of the concentric circles transfers completely while the top of the concentric circles transfers less completely, indicating that the bottom of club face 72 struck golf ball 20 more solidly than the top of club face 72. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 with face 72 at as an ideal of an angle of impact as possible.

FIG. 14 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 90 thereon. Mark 90 comprises a horizontal line and a vertical line which intersect at their respective center points (i.e., a cross). Mark 90 is used to determine the point of impact of the center of golf ball 20 on the club face and to determines the lie angle of the golf club when the club face strikes golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 90 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 15A-15D are side views of mark 90 transferred onto face 72 of golf club head 74. Golf club head 74 is shown as an iron or wedge club head, but mark 90 may be used for analysis in conjunction with other types of golf clubs. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 15A, 15B, 15C, and 15D as transferred marks 95a, 95b, 95c, and 95d, respectively. Transferred mark 95a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72 near toe 76 of golf club head 74, but at an ideal lie angle (since the horizontal line of the cross is parallel with the bottom of golf club head 74). Transferred mark 95b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 at an ideal location with and ideal lie angle, near a center of face 72 of golf club head 74. Transferred mark 95c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72 near heel 78 of golf club head 74, but at an ideal lie angle. Transferred mark 95d shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72 at an ideal location (near the center) with the toe of golf club head 74 up (since the line slopes up from toe 76 to heel 78 of golf club head 74). While all combinations are not shown for conciseness, mark 90 will show the golfer both the point of impact and the lie angle simultaneously. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her swing, stance, and/or grip, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 along an ideal lie angle.

FIG. 16 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 100 thereon. Mark 100 comprises a plurality of concentric circles (preferably three). Mark 100 is used to determine the amount of compression of golf ball 20 that occurs when the club face impacts golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the golf club so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the face of the golf club head, mark 100 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the face of the golf club.

FIGS. 17A-17C are side views of mark 100 transferred onto face 102 of golf club head 104. Golf club head 104 is shown as a driver or wood club head, but mark 100 may be used for analysis in conjunction with any type of golf club. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 17A, 17B, and 17C as transferred marks 105a, 105b, and 105c, respectively. Transferred mark 105a shows that when the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72, a large amount of compression of golf ball 20 occurred, since all three concentric circles transferred from golf ball 20. This indicates that the hardness of the golf ball used by the golfer is likely insufficient for the golfer's style of play. Transferred mark 105b shows that when the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72, a preferred amount of compression occurred since two of the concentric circles transferred to face 72. This indicates that the hardness of the golf ball used by the golfer is appropriate for the golfer's style of play. Transferred mark 105c shows that when the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 72, very little compression of golf ball 20 occurred, since only one concentric circle transferred from golf ball 20. This indicates that the golf ball used by the golfer is likely too hard for the golfer's style of play. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently change the type of ball used to better suit his or her style of play.

FIG. 18 is a side view of golf ball 20 with mark 110 thereon. Mark 110 comprises a single vertical line. Mark 110 is used to determine the point of impact of golf ball 20 that occurs when a putter face impacts golf ball 20. After the golfer swings the putter so as to impact the impact side of golf ball 20 with the putter face, mark 110 marked on the impact side of golf ball 20 is transferred to the putter face.

FIGS. 19A-19E are side views of mark 1 10 transferred onto face 112 of putter 114. The transferred marks are shown in FIGS. 19A, 19B, 19C, 19D, and 19E as transferred marks 115a, 115b, 115c, 115d, and 115e, respectively. Transferred mark 115a shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 112 near toe 116 of putter 114. Transferred mark 115b shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 at an ideal location, near a center of face 112 of putter 114. Transferred mark 115c shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 112 near heel 118 of putter 114. Transferred mark 115d shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 112 at top 120 of putter 114. Transferred mark 115e shows that the golfer impacted golf ball 20 with face 112 near at bottom 122 of putter 114. Based on the transferred mark, the golfer may subsequently adjust his or her putting stroke, if necessary, to impact golf ball 20 as near to the center of face 112 as possible.

In summary, the ability to determine impact location between the golf ball and the golf club as precisely as possible is becoming more important as the average head size of golf clubs increases. Current impact measuring devices, such as masking tape applied to the club face, crack-and-peal labels, removable stretched leather, reusable liquid crystal pads, spray powders, and spray paints, are inaccurate and do not have versatile applicability. The present invention provides an impact marking device that resolves the problems associated with the current products. The present invention is a system and method for analyzing impact of a golf club with a golf ball to assess a golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment. A pattern is marked on an impact side of a golf ball with transferable ink. Then a face of a golf club is aligned with the impact side of the golf ball wherein the pattern is square with the face of the golf club. Subsequently, the golf club is swung, impacting the impact side of the golf ball with the face of the golf club. Upon impact, the pattern marked on the impact side of the golf ball is transferred to the face of the golf club. The transferred pattern on the face of the golf club is then analyzed to assess the golfer's golf club swing, equipment and/or alignment. The present invention is inexpensive, may be used multiple times over an extended period of time, is versatile for use between different types of clubs, and provides various types of information for the golfers to analyze beyond just the contact point between the golf ball and the golf club.

Although the present invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments, workers skilled in the art will recognize that changes maybe made in form and detail without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.