When a golf club strikes a ball, is the ball carried along with the club face for part of the circular arc of motion (after impact)? If so, how does this occur? For instance, I am assuming that the impact takes place at the instant that the club is exactly vertical. I am also assuming that the club face moves at a constant velocity, at least until impact. I am assuming that the force that the club face exerts on the ball is in a direction normal to the club face. This suggests that if you want to get any loft, the club face should be angled. If the club face is angled, then a component of the normal force is vertical, and a component of it is horizontal. However, I'm still not clear on how exactly the ball remains in contact with the club face, moving in a circular arc. Its weight can be balanced by the upward component of the normal force, but what is keeping it from moving off in a straight line? Is friction involved? Is momentum conserved in this collision? (The momentum of the club face is continuously changing anyway). Is the collision inelastic, because the two objects "stick"? Also, what, eventually, is responsible for the ball being released and moving (presumably) tangent to the circle? I can't seem to think clearly about this problem.