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How to increase club head speed what is the most fundamental thing?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

What is the most fundamental thing to faster clubhead speed, what is the main source of this fast swing speed, what to do all of the top tour pros have in common?

 

I am fine with my game the biggest let down I have atm is my driving distance and I want to improve it to 300 yards ideally.  I would only hit it 250 on average on nice days which is ok I guess but my fairways are wet and you rarely get roll meaning 230 -240 yards average.  

 

 My swing speed is 100mph average and my clubs are all custom fit. I shoot mid 70s so my technique is ok nothing seriously wrong with it.

 

Is it down to actual strength?(not being ripped), I know technique and all comes into it but what is the big factor?Any drills?

post #2 of 11

Timing, IMO. You don't need much physical strength to get to around 100mph in my opinion, but it does undoubtedly require some strength and athleticism to get to pro levels. It takes a lot of strength and athleticism to get into elite pro levels, over 120s. And in order to get to long drive caliber speeds, you need to have physical assets well above the norm, especially flexibility, on top of good mechanics.

 

I think the biggest single fundamental for getting good clubhead speed is timing. If you're well coordinated and sequence your swing in the right manner, you'll see good results. If you are a physical specimen, you can get some more yards over average, and if you build a swing around power, you'll generally get better potential compared to a control swing. But a gorilla with poor timing will get beat by an old man with great timing every time.

 

Look at Steve Stricker. He's not exactly a great athlete, has a short swing that makes him look like an old man. He averages like 112 miles an hour, completely average for a tour player despite looking half asleep. Look at Tommy Gainey; pretty muscular with a swing that looks like an explosion, but he has the same average speed as Stricks. I'm not talking about tempo; that can be fast or slow without affecting clubhead speed. Gainey basically was a baseball player and swings like he's swinging a bat. Stricker has far superior timing and mechanics, so his swing is really efficient. Gainey is a better athlete, but has a totally inefficient swing. This is not to mention the difference in consistency between the two.

 

I don't know exactly what drills to suggest, but rhythm and tempo will never hurt. You'll have to cut out the unnecessary moves in your swing, not be out of position from setup to finish, and stay balanced and focused throughout. Those things will make timing your swing easier due to fewer moving parts.

 

The more mechanically unsound your swing, the better your timing needs to be to keep it together (think Gainey, Bubba, Furyk, Westwood to some extent). Those sort of players are generally more streaky and need a lot of natural talent to get by.

post #3 of 11

The pros all have very smooth swings, which backs up what lucius said about timing. i agree that timing and tempo are vital to a great powerful swing, but I think flexibility and length of swing do more. the first thing we do to cut distance off our clubs is to shorten the swing, so the simplest solution to more distance is lengthening the swing. Flexibility allows you to lengthen the swing while keeping your angle (like your back straight) from getting askew. Professionals also consistently start the hips/shoulder turn just the instant before finishing the backswing. 

 

I assume shooting in the 70s consistently means you lag the club pretty well, but you could always work on more clubhead lag. Bill Haas talks about his extra distance coming from lagging the clubhead forever before he releases, because he doesn't swing particularly hard. 

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by broombroom View Post

What is the most fundamental thing to faster clubhead speed, what is the main source of this fast swing speed, what to do all of the top tour pros have in common?

 

I am fine with my game the biggest let down I have atm is my driving distance and I want to improve it to 300 yards ideally.  I would only hit it 250 on average on nice days which is ok I guess but my fairways are wet and you rarely get roll meaning 230 -240 yards average.  

 

 My swing speed is 100mph average and my clubs are all custom fit. I shoot mid 70s so my technique is ok nothing seriously wrong with it.

 

Is it down to actual strength?(not being ripped), I know technique and all comes into it but what is the big factor?Any drills?


if your hitting mid 70's, your "problem" is not distance...its your short game.

300 yards on the internet is like the lochness monster a1_smile.gif

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by notsohard View Post


if your hitting mid 70's, your "problem" is not distance...its your short game.

300 yards on the internet is like the lochness monster a1_smile.gif

no my short game is a much better standard than my driving, my driving is my worst part of my game and I want to improve it.  My course is relatively long so I need to have a good short game to play well.  Hitting 8 irons and 6 irons to greens and getting close is much easier than hitting 3 irons and 4 irons on some holes.   Obviously my hole game could be improved but my driving is the worst part of my game

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by broombroom View Post

no my short game is a much better standard than my driving, my driving is my worst part of my game and I want to improve it.  My course is relatively long so I need to have a good short game to play well.  Hitting 8 irons and 6 irons to greens and getting close is much easier than hitting 3 irons and 4 irons on some holes.   Obviously my hole game could be improved but my driving is the worst part of my game

 

@notsohard: 300 yards is a number that's thrown around a lot, but it's really not such an unattainable number to reach occasionally. However, 270 on good drives is a respectable number to shoot for as a single digit golfer. We all see guys that score decently but drive poorly. Those guys score in spite of their driving, not because of it. They would all be hitting it 270 if they could. There are guys who claim to hit it 300 that are liars or are exaggerating, but there are plenty who can do it and sometimes post proof. 270 will put you on the level of the shortest pros, which means it's the lowest number that can score at an elite level on tournament courses. Anyone shorter that claims they wouldn't want more distance is a bigger liar than Mr 300. No matter how accurate you are, you're losing strokes. You could put an elite ball striker at 4i distance from every green and not require him to hit drives, and he'd still have a hell of a time breaking par; they shoot better scores hitting 60% at 290.

 

The short game is great for separating the best players on brutal courses, and really important to minimize bogeys which is essential to scoring. But it's defensive golf. You don't make enough birdies chipping in to make up for missing lots of greens, and the TS can already break 80. To score lower than that you realistically need to make some birdies. And you need a pretty good short game to get to single digits. The iron game and putting can never be too good for improvement; when players shoot really good scores it's usually good approaches followed by a made putt, not 6 chip ins or a flock of eagles.

 

Remember distance gains from technique (vs getting a new driver or jut adding 10 yards to that club) are essentially doubled when it comes to the approach. That new driver that gives you +10 yards might knock off a club from your approach. The 10 yards from lessons would knock a club off the approach, and also require one less club to hit THAT yardage because you're swinging faster. The 400 yard par 4 would be say a 230 drive and a 170 4i. It would become a 240 drive and a 160 6i. That same hole for an amateur who hits 270 would be driver and a controlled 9 iron. Or a 3 wood and a 7i. If you're hitting a 4i it's one of the hardest par 4s on the course, but with a 9i in your hand it's a birdie hole. If you're hitting the 4i more than once or twice a round you should probably move up a set of tees, but still.

 

I'd say go to your course and try playing from a shorter set of tees once or twice, don't submit the scores if you don't want to, but just see if better positioning would help your scores. It could make them a lot better, or it might not make any difference. You'd at least know what to really work on.

post #7 of 11

Distance and handicap have nothing to do with each other. My dad routinely out drives his good friend by at least 30-40 yards, there handicaps are nearly identical. I've played against single handicap players who i out drive by 40-50 yards. 

 

There are a few things, but i think what seperates the long drivers from the short drivers are a few things,

 

overall height, 4 out of the top 5 in driving distance last year were above 6'3, that's not saying a short person can't hit the long ball, look at the long drive champion Sadlowski, and Rory, there both less than 5'10" and bomb the ball, but they do some key things.

 

1) they get amazing seperation between there hips and there shoudlers

2) they have really good mobility in all there joints, especially shoulders and wrist

3) they have incredible hip rotation speed, rory being one of the fastest hip rotations on tour

 

Some people claim the X-factor is the key to distance, its important, the hips drive the power. the rest of the body just transfer's that energy to the ball. You can create a higher x-factor by having your hips fire first while your shoulders are still rotating back, or stopped rotating. This is why getting the correct start of the downswing is important. A lot of people start there downswing with there hands, this is a huge power loss. 

 

If you want to increase distance, 

 

1) workout, build up mobility and strength around your joints (especially hips, shoulders, wrists). Focus on getting powerful strength in your lower body (hamstrings, quads, gluts). TPI has some great material on mobility and strength. But if you want some information on Gluts, youtube Bret Contreras, he has done tone of research on glut activation. Key areas for those of use who have been sitting in seats or on the couch most of our lives, any muscle around the hips, especially hip flexors, which help bring the knees toward the chest, these muscles will help you keep in your swing posture better. I started adding P90x abb ripper program to my workouts. After my first time through, my abs were fine, my hip flexors were gone, i couldn't stand up straight for 4-5 days, i looked like an old man walking. Now, i have no problem with my hip flexors. 

2) work on sequencing your swing correctly, there was a thread on which we talked about the kinetic chain, if you look at Rory's, his hips rotate at about 700 degrees per second, his clubhead is moving 3x that amount at impact. 

3) hit more up on the ball, this will decrease your backspin

4) make better contact, get some impact tape or packing tape + magic marker works good to, get that ball to hit just above center of the clubface

post #8 of 11

^^what he said

 

If you want to hit it farther, I'd suggest a solid physical training regimen.  I never hit the golf ball farther than when I was training to hit a baseball. 

 

Scoring is another matter entirely.  I am currently shorter than any period of my life and scoring by far the best.  And it's not even close.

post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by broombroom View Post

What is the most fundamental thing to faster clubhead speed, what is the main source of this fast swing speed, what to do all of the top tour pros have in common?

 

I am fine with my game the biggest let down I have atm is my driving distance and I want to improve it to 300 yards ideally.  I would only hit it 250 on average on nice days which is ok I guess but my fairways are wet and you rarely get roll meaning 230 -240 yards average.  

 

 My swing speed is 100mph average and my clubs are all custom fit. I shoot mid 70s so my technique is ok nothing seriously wrong with it.

 

Is it down to actual strength?(not being ripped), I know technique and all comes into it but what is the big factor?Any drills?


Technique and club fitting certainly play a role in swing speed and hitting the ball farther, but since you said your technique is okay and you have been fit for your clubs, I would suggest doing some actual physical swing speed training...because someone with good technique and equipment who swings at 100 won't hit the ball as far as someone with identical technique and well-fit equipment who swings 110, 120, etc.  At that point, it's just about getting your body in better "speed" shape.

I started out at 105, not much faster than you...and got myself up to a peak of 139 on a Trackman before I quit competing in long drive. 

Since then, one of the things I've been doing is training people how to do this.  Depending on how much work you're willing to put in, there's a variety of things you can do to build your speed...from practicing swinging faster (simple, but hardly anyone but long drivers do it), to training aid work (typically weighted clubs, overspeed clubs, or wind resistance clubs) to one and two-arm drills, to band isometrics, to ballistic weight training and speed reps in the gym, to isokinetics, to sports supplementation, to visualization, etc.

On my site I've got a basic swing speed training program that typically will get people 12-16 mph in a month through a variety of speed drills, strength drills, etc.  If you're willing to put in a bit more work, I've also got a lot of the stuff I used to do when I trained for and competed in long drive, including more detail on the things I mentioned above.  With these things I've had numerous people go up 30 mph (not a typo) or more after several months of training.

I don't want to get in trouble for posting links, so just private message me or search for my Swing Man Golf website if you have questions or want to know more.  

Hope that helps.

post #10 of 11

I agree that extra distance can drop your scores on longer courses. Be careful what you wish for, though. Hitting the ball 285 if you're 250 now may be a much more realistic and productive goal, IMHO, and will be the difference between approaching with a 4 iron vs. a 7 iron, or whatever. That alone could drop your handicap several strokes if your short game and putting are as good as you say they are. If you're too obsessed with distance, you may start swinging out of your comfort zone and sacrifice sound, reliable technique. I'd ALWAYS rather be more accurate in golf than crazy long, unless it's a considerable margin. BTW - being ripped has nothing to do with it. I had a friend awhile back who was about 5'9, 150 with arms like string beans who had immense natural flexibility and I watched him drive the ball nearly 400 yards with a few bounces off a cart path. He could reach a 220 yardpar 3 with a 6-iron without looking like he was trying to swing out of his shoes. This was in 2000. With a Rocketballz M-16 squared superlauncher 3.6 extra pro plutonium alloy etc. driver like they make today, who knows what he's doing now. 

post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by broombroom View Post

no my short game is a much better standard than my driving, my driving is my worst part of my game and I want to improve it.  My course is relatively long so I need to have a good short game to play well.  Hitting 8 irons and 6 irons to greens and getting close is much easier than hitting 3 irons and 4 irons on some holes.   Obviously my hole game could be improved but my driving is the worst part of my game

I would first make sure you're angle of attack is positive.  If you can try to get on a Flightscope or Trackman to check.  Easiest way to gain more distance.  Unfortunately for golf your swing speed is your swing speed.  You want to increase your ball speed, that's where working on hitting the ball more solid, good impact alignments will be key.  Of course this is without seeing your swing, you may be doing something that's restricting mobility or not allowing you to access more speed.

 

Here's the thread about the driver

http://thesandtrap.com/t/44307/hitting-up-or-down-with-the-driver-in-an-inline-pattern

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