How to Get More Swing Speed in Your Golf Game
Much has been made about the importance of clubhead speed and trying to improve your driving distance off the tee. The fact is that increased clubhead speed really does lead to greater distance on your drives, so you really will get a bigger bang for your buck by trying to improve clubhead speed. This article will discuss how you can calculate your current swing speed, and provide you with some tips on how to improve that swing speed right at home.
What is a Good Swing Speed?
The reason that swing speed is so important in the game of golf is that there's a direct correlation between swing speed and the distance traveled by a golf ball. If you can build up really good swing speed, you can count on hitting the ball further on a consistent basis, and when you can consistently hit the ball further, it will give you a much easier approach shot, which means your scores should reflect your improved distance.
It's a huge advantage to be able to take a short iron into the green, as opposed to being far back in the fairway and having to hit a hybrid to the green. You'll be much more accurate with a short iron than you could possibly be with a hybrid, and that means you'll hit more greens in regulation, and you'll probably have shorter putts as well.
All this adds up to a much improved golf game, with lower scores and a great deal more self-satisfaction. So what is considered good swing speed for an amateur golfer? The answer to this will depend on several factors, one of which is your age. A 12-year-old golfer will not have the same swing speed that a 65-year-old golfer does, nor will a 30-year-old golfer have the same swing speed as someone who is much younger or much older.
In other words, age does play a major role in developing optimal swing speed. Swing speed charts which have been developed by industry experts show that average golfers tend to develop swing speed which usually does not reach 100 mph, and that will generally result in an optimal carry distance of somewhere around 210 yards. Once you do get to a swing speed of 100 mph or even slightly above that, your drive distance can reach 250 yards and more, so from this, it's easy to see the direct relationship between swing speed and driving distance.
How Can I Measure My Speed at Home?
Not everyone has access to the sophisticated equipment used by professionals to determine the swing speed of a golf club. However, there is a way you can estimate swing speed right at home, so that you can have a pretty good idea of what kind of clubhead speed you build up during your swing. You'll need to go to your local driving range, or if you have your own golf club mat, you can do it at your residence.
For the first step, you'll need to hit 20 golf balls with your driver, and record how far each one of them goes. You can disqualify any of those drives which you hit poorly and don't really go anywhere. Then add the total distance of all those drives together, and divide by the number of drives you hit, leaving you with an average drive distance for the whole group.
Now you need to subtract the amount of roll from your average drive, so that you'll know how far your ball traveled on the fly, without roll being added in. As a ballpark figure, subtract 5% of the drive average from the average itself, and that will eliminate the roll factor. Now you can divide the average drive distance by 1.75, and that will give you the ball speed at the moment of impact.
For example, if your average carry distance is 230 yards, the ball speed would be slightly over 130 mph. Lastly, divide the ball speed by 1.5, so as to get an estimate for your swing speed. Another method you could use is to divide the carry distance by 2.3, so as to have an approximation of your swing speed at impact time, although this method is not generally as accurate.
What Exercises Can I Use to Increase My Swing Speed?
Since increasing clubhead speed is the fastest and most reliable way to achieve greater distance with your driver, this is probably where you should focus most of your attention in order to get more distance from your tee shots. However, you need to avoid the popular misconception that swinging harder will generate more clubhead speed and give you the distance you want.
The reason for this is that swinging harder will almost always cause your swing to be degraded, and it will lose its purity and simplicity. The net effect of swinging harder will generally be an overall decrease in swing speed, because the breakdown in mechanics will cause you to slow down. One of the best ways of practicing at home is to use a weighted club, so that you will feel naturally freer and lighter when you use your normal club.
Another contributor to clubhead speed is the total absence of tension, and there's a good drill you can use to relieve tension in your swing. Without using a ball, just swing your club on a horizontal level, which enables you to control the club simply by using your hands and arms in a very relaxed manner. This is the same kind of feeling you should have during your actual golf swing, completely free of all tension.
A third way of practicing at home is to widen your stance slightly and make a relaxed but aggressive swing, while avoiding any kind of swaying in your stance. That swaying will not only take you off-line, but it will also operate against getting longer distance. If you can perform this exercise correctly, your clubhead will automatically pick up speed as it passes the core of your body, and it will generate greater clubhead speed.
Increasing Your Speed
The main takeaway from this article should be that you can get much better distance with your tee shots by increasing your clubhead speed. You can check your progress by estimating your clubhead speed using the formula given above, before you begin your exercises, and then after you have been working on it for a while.
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