Find Your ZERO Path Baseline for Straighter Golf Shots

Scott Sackett
Director of Instruction
McCormick Ranch Golf Club
Scottsdale, AZ

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A lot of playing great golf is about how you manage your game when you aren’t at your best. You can do this by finding your zero path baseline while you’re playing. First, what is path? 

Club Path is defined in Trackman terms as the movement of the golf club the last few inches before impact and the first few inches following impact. Club path is responsible for curving the golf ball in the air. 

Your zero path baseline is found using ball position. In order to understand where your zero path is, it’s important to grasp how club path is affected when you move the ball position around in your stance. 

As the ball moves forward, the club path will tend to want to move to the left and as the ball moves back the club path will want to move more to the right. Next, let’s look at your current ball flight. 

If your ball is curving too much left to right, your path is more than likely too far to the left.  Moving the ball back will help your path move more down the target line. 

If your ball is curving too much right to left, your path is more than likely too far to the right.  Moving the ball forward will help your path move more down the target line. 

It’s simple:  whatever the ball position is where you see the least amount of curvature in the golf ball is your zero path baseline. (This is assuming a face angle of zero and center contact for a right handed player). 

This is something you’ll have to experiment with on the range in practice. Start with a 6 iron in the middle of your stance and find out which way your ball is curving. Curving too much left to right, move the ball back. Curving too much right to left, move the ball forward. It is important to understand this isn’t a permanent fix to faulty swing mechanics and your zero path baseline will more than likely not be the same with each club. This is meant as a quick way to straighten your ball flight mid round, instead of trying to make swing changes. 

Scott Sackett, GOLF Magazine Top 100 Teacher since 1999, just voted as one of Golf Digest’s Best Teacher in the State for the fifth year in a row. Also, Director of Instruction at Park Meadows CC in Park City, Utah and while in Scottsdale he teaches at McCormick Ranch Golf Club. If you would like reach Scott, contact him through his website at