Top 3 Golf Swing Tempo Tips
What is the correct tempo to have in a golf swing? That is the million dollar question, and I have some strong tips that can put you on the path to success. During this section, I will cover a few of the main causes of bad tempo, and how you can correct them. I know there are dozens of sites and articles out there that claim to be the cure all for tempo, but I will give you tips based on what I have been taught in my golfing career… that have actually worked for me as well. If you can devote the time and the focus to the following tips and drills, you will see an improvement in your golf game.
The biggest question mark surrounding swing tempo, is actually the easiest to adjust to. Everyone wonders if they are swinging too fast, or if they are actually swinging too slow… when in reality, you just need to find the happy medium that works for you. Although the “experts” do say that a 3:1 ratio is where you want to be to have the perfect tempo, there truly is not a perfect tempo that exists from one golfer to the next. For example, Kevin Kisner has an amazingly fast swing from start to finish, with a tempo of about 6.3:1. This means he takes the club back very fast, in comparison to his downswing. While the majority of professional golfers do stay close to the 3:1 ratio, there are exceptions out there and Kisner is not the only tour play that has an extremely fast tempo. With all of that said, you still want to stay as close to 3:1 as you can, which will result in higher quality shots and more consistent ball striking.
A faulty swing tempo can cause many issues with all aspects of the golf game. If you are fighting off a slice, then a lot of it has to do with a faulty tempo beginning with the takeaway. The slice is caused by a poor back swing, coupled with a tempo that is too fast. When you take the club back too quickly, it causes the rest of your body to fall behind, resulting in the good old fashioned slice that everyone is too familiar with. The best cure to battle this problem, is to focus on your takeaway. Remember the 3:1 ratio I mentioned earlier? It comes into play here, and will help you overcome the slice. When you are on the range, focus on swing tempo. The best way I have found to practice this is to start slow and work my way up in my back swing. I only focus on the takeaway speed, slowly progressing as I go. During this drill, I want you to begin as slow as you can. As you become more comfortable with your swing, begin to progress to a faster takeaway… until you reach the desired 3:1 ratio that we are looking for. Don’t get frustrated with your distance during this time, because you will lack heavily in yardage. As you continue to perfect this motion, you will gain your distance back and actually gain more distance as time goes on.
Another issue that a faulty swing temp can cause is the flip of the slice, it is actually the snap hook. When your tempo is too slow on the back swing, and too quick on the follow through… you will be battling off a hook, and at times a pure snap. When your swing tempo flips and you move to something like a 1:3 ratio (which is not where you want to be), your upper body will get well ahead of your lower body, and the result, well you guessed it – a strong hook. This can be corrected quite simply as well, you just need to take the time on the range to do so. I want you to take a bag of balls and keep all of your focus on your upper body, and the tempo throughout the swing. Take the same approach as the previous drill, and start with a very slow tempo, and work your way up. During this time, I want you to slowly increase your takeaway speed, but keep your follow through the same. As you become more comfortable with this, you should be seeing a swing tempo that is much closer to the 3:1 ratio that everyone is shooting for.
In all, there is no perfect tempo that works for every single golfer in the world. The first thing you need to figure out what kind of ball flight you want to incorporate into your game, whether it be a draw or a slice, and then proceed from there. Regardless of what you are looking to move forward with, I highly suggest that you focus heavily on your tempo and push for the 3:1 ratio.