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Backswing Swing Speed of the Pros

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So I started to pay attention to the pros' back swing swing speeds and I realized they are probably very fast, I'm not sure if there's a way to measure it, but if it looks fast on camera then it's probably is. From what I'm seeing I'm guessing they reach at least 50 mph on the back swing. If anyone has any data please share them, and is there a way to know if my back swing is on the slow side and need to speed it up? 

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When I focus and slow down my back swing, it usually results in a better shot

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5 hours ago, mighty said:

So I started to pay attention to the pros' back swing swing speeds and I realized they are probably very fast, I'm not sure if there's a way to measure it, but if it looks fast on camera then it's probably is. From what I'm seeing I'm guessing they reach at least 50 mph on the back swing. If anyone has any data please share them, and is there a way to know if my back swing is on the slow side and need to speed it up? 

I think they vary a lot. Matsuyama is fairly slow. Graham McDowell is very fast. Tiger, Koepka, Woodland, Rory are in between.

For us, we need to work on the backswing that keeps us centered and allows for a good transition. If I go too fast, rushing the swing, I lose a bit of balance and my arms outrace my torso. Their transitions are perfect unless they rush their swings. If you watch them enough, you can see that happen. Yesterday, JT seemed to be rushing his swing and was all over the place on shots.

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I don't think it is the speed of the backswing that matters one bit.  What I have seen is that a large of number of them take the club back on or around the elbow plane and return the club back on the elbow plane.  Kinda like tracing a track going back for which to retrace coming back down.  You'll have some players like Furyk, Moore, and Woolf who will take it back above the elbow plane, and others still like Jimenez who will take it back under the elbow plane, but most appear to enter the ball on that plane.  Still others, like Hoffman, Tiger, e.g., will take it back right on the elbow plane and return it on it.

In other words, I don't think they think about the speed of the plane one bit.  They may feel the tracking of the correct plane though.  

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Consistent tempo and consistent shaft loading is much more important.

I'd suggest/estimate max. backswing speed at 25-30 mph since 3:1 tempo and then some calculus applied

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14 minutes ago, Rippy_72 said:

Consistent tempo and consistent shaft loading is much more important.

I'd suggest/estimate max. backswing speed at 25-30 mph since 3:1 tempo and then some calculus applied

You can have good tempo/shaft loading and still poorly deliver the golf club to the ball, i.e., bad planing of the club, poor face to path control, poor striking, etc.  However, having good delivery, whilst having perhaps slightly inconsistent tempo, can still result in good golf.  The ball doesn't care about your tempo; it only cares how it is struck.  That would necessarily include planing of the club as it relates to face, path, angle of attack, and more.  "Consistent tempo" is less important, but is a good feeling to have as it can lead to good things, but it can also "mask" otherwise faulty movements.  In other words, a person can gracefully swing a club, shoot a basketball, or even fall down the stairs, but that doesn't make the movement better if technique is not proper.

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Good players all have consistent tempo and consistent shaft loading.  Like buttery.  Although some a quicker (Price) and others a syrupy (Freddy), they are consistent.

One can have both tempo and consistent shaft loading and still be a hacker.  

However, it is extremely rare to see a touring professional or top amateur with inconsistent tempo or inconsistent shaft loading.   The shaft deflection for a fast tempo player can be 10 inches toe to heel at maximum load whereas an other player might only load the shaft 3 inches.  The toe will droop at impact varying amounts, too.  Changing tempo from swing to swing would result in off center strikes simply because the club is in a different position due to different loading.  Sure, one can play good golf with slightly inconsistent strikes as long as the angles are also decent.  I don't know what good golf is, it all seems like a walk spoiled.

 

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5 hours ago, SteveH said:

When I focus and slow down my back swing, it usually results in a better shot

It's pretty safe to say that most pros are fast, I think it makes less room for error

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2 hours ago, ncates00 said:

I don't think it is the speed of the backswing that matters one bit.  What I have seen is that a large of number of them take the club back on or around the elbow plane and return the club back on the elbow plane.  Kinda like tracing a track going back for which to retrace coming back down.  You'll have some players like Furyk, Moore, and Woolf who will take it back above the elbow plane, and others still like Jimenez who will take it back under the elbow plane, but most appear to enter the ball on that plane.  Still others, like Hoffman, Tiger, e.g., will take it back right on the elbow plane and return it on it.

In other words, I don't think they think about the speed of the plane one bit.  They may feel the tracking of the correct plane though.  

I think the back swing plane matters less than the speed, some guys are upright and some guys are flat, they can all play well and hit it long, but when it comes to speed, the majority of pros are not slow and I think there must be a reason. Look at the best guys right now, Rory and Brooks, they are all fast, I believe they are at least 50 mph on the back swing, and Tiger, he went from a slow back swing to fast back swing after 2000. 

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19 minutes ago, mighty said:

It's pretty safe to say that most pros are fast, I think it makes less room for error

Fast makes more room for error. A clubface that is 2 degrees open on a 300 yd carry shot will go much further offline than a 2 degrees open face on a drive that only carries 200 yds (all else equal of course)

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10 minutes ago, klineka said:

Fast makes more room for error. A clubface that is 2 degrees open on a 300 yd carry shot will go much further offline than a 2 degrees open face on a drive that only carries 200 yds (all else equal of course)

This is absolutely accurate.  But a fast backswing (the topic of this thread, and of @mighty post), really doesn't specifically impact where the ball goes, unless the backswing speed causes an issue in the forward swing.

But I have a hard time believing that anyone achieves 50 mph on the backswing, I'd like to see the OP validate his contention in some way.  I think speed of backswing is an individual thing, there's a pretty wide range between Hidecki Matsuyama and Nick Price.  In my experience playing with people of all abilities, I'd guess I see more players who are in too much of a hurry going back.

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42 minutes ago, mighty said:

some guys are upright and some guys are flat, they can all play well and hit it long

I said as much above.  You're missing the point on the backswing--it's to set up the proper entry into the ball on the way back down.  That is more important than thinking about how fast you take it back.  Planing the club allows you to have correct alignments through the ball on the way back down.  It also helps alleviate corrections you must make on the way down.  

How does thinking about how fast you take the club back do any of that?

 

44 minutes ago, mighty said:

I believe they are at least 50 mph on the back swing

Show us some data to support your belief.

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3 hours ago, Rippy_72 said:

Consistent tempo and consistent shaft loading is much more important.

I'd suggest/estimate max. backswing speed at 25-30 mph since 3:1 tempo and then some calculus applied

That looks pretty good to me. Nuff' said? I have also always applied the "low and slow" method when it comes to the back swing. 

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There is a lot of high speed video online, one could calculate the peak back swing speed by looking at it frame by frame.  I have a high speed Casio camera, I suppose I could do it.

I did find an interesting paper showing how consistent touring pros are with swing consistency.

https://arxiv.org/ftp/physics/papers/0611/0611291.pdf

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Found this article on how to measure the timing using video...

1062p_screen%20shot%202012-12-07%20at%20

In this article Phil Cheetham will show you how to measure the timing of the backswing, downswing and follow through all with a video camera...

 

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7 hours ago, Rippy_72 said:

Consistent tempo and consistent shaft loading is much more important.

I'd suggest/estimate max. backswing speed at 25-30 mph since 3:1 tempo and then some calculus applied

Please share that math, because of course the backswing has to both accelerate and decelerate from and to zero, while the downswing only has to accelerate. The downswing also tends to cover less distance.

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35 minutes ago, iacas said:

Please share that math, because of course the backswing has to both accelerate and decelerate from and to zero, while the downswing only has to accelerate. The downswing also tends to cover less distance.

I think my responses were sufficiently thoughtful and more than sufficiently accurate for such a naive question.  Like speed of what?  Club?  Hands?  Hips?  Hand speed nearly stops at impact.  Posting math here is too tedious.  Sorry.

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I didn’t ask a question. I simply requested the math you said you did that led to to believe the club head speed was 25-30 MPH.

Speed of what? The clubhead.

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