Myths about Golf Swing Speed | Swing Man Golf

By Jaacob Bowden

Today let’s talk again a little bit about golf swing speed.

These days golfers are fascinated with hitting the ball farther and farther, and many of them are willing to do anything under the sun to eek out a few extra yards. People search for answers by getting things like more golf lessons with top instructors, or by buying the latest equipment that manufacturers promise is their longest yet.

What many people fail to consider is that they can hit the ball much farther simply by increasing their usable golf swing speed. Remember that in theory, for every 1 mph that you increase your swing speed you will carry the ball about 2.5 yards farther. Increase your speed by 10 mph and you will hit 25 yards farther. It’s actually much easier than you think to do this, however, the problem is that there are a number of myths floating around out there about swing speed.

Here are a few of those:

1) You Can’t Train Golf Swing Speed

For whatever reason, it seems to be a popular belief that people that are fast are just born that way, and that you’ve got what you’ve got. Recently on pgatour.com, there was a quote from Tiger when he was playing with the PGA Tour leader in driving distance, Bubba Watson. He said, “Either you have speed or you don’t.” Yes, some people may be naturally faster than others, but that doesn’t mean that if you’re fast, slow, or losing yards with age that you can’t either significantly improve on what you’ve got or get the yards back that you’ve lost.

2) Training Slow Makes You Fast

Saying this in and of itself doesn’t really sound logical, but the exercises that some golf fitness trainers giving their students implies otherwise. For example, take this exercise quoted from a popular golf trainer’s column:

“Hold a single dumbbell straight out from chest with arms fully extended. Rotate your arms to the right, then to the left as far as you can go both ways. Go slowly and do 20 repetitions.”

Will this improve your strength? Yes, possibly, but doing it this manner may even make your swing slower. In regards to speed training, it’s important to build fast-twitch muscle fibers, not slow ones.

3) Speed Kills Your Golf Swing

A better way of saying this would be that TENSION kills your golf swing.

If the average distance an amateur who swings 90 mph is 220 yards and the average distance a professional who swings 113 mph is 290 yards, speed is obviously an important factor when it comes to distance.

A mistake many golfers make in an effort to hit the ball farther is to swing harder. There’s a difference between swinging hard and swinging fast. Swinging hard with tension and rigidity makes it more difficult to make good contact because measurements to the ball are changed and one’s balance is more easily thrown off. Missing the sweet spot on your driver by as little as an inch can cost you 20 yards on your drive. Swinging fast is supple and fluid and it’s easier to be consistent with this type of bodily motion. You don’t get in your own way and speed is allowed to happen freely.

The next time someone tells you to slow your swing down to hit it farther, try freeing up the tension in your swing first before you decide to slow it down.

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