You don’t need to be a golf savant to understand that hitting the ball farther leads to lower scores. It’s a simple reality at every level of the game.
And if you want to increase distance, you have to find a way to swing the club faster.
SuperSpeed Golf believes its OverSpeed training system has benefits for any level of golfer because it isn’t geared toward any specific demographic. The basic premise is that every player can access more speed than he/she is currently because of how our brain receives and communicates certain information.
The more scientific explanation deals with overspeed training and how this works to change the way your brain and muscles receive information. Specifically, the SuperSpeed system generates a neurological reset and trains your brain and muscles into believing you can swing the club faster. It makes the body move faster than normal during training to permanently increase the neuromuscular reaction speed of the body.
In plain English: swinging a training stick faster than normal causes your brain to remember this faster speed, and even start expecting it.
In the golf industry, training aids are more plentiful than bad lies at a US Open. And more often than not, they tend to over-promise and under-deliver.
That said, SuperSpeed is different. Over 700 Tour pros and 100,000+ weekend warriors have added SuperSpeed to our training regimen. I’m one of them. There’s a simple reason for this – it works. As always, the your mileage may vary disclaimer applies.
Part of how we evaluate equipment is by putting products in the hands of real, everyday golfers. Then, as always, we let the data speak for itself. This time around, we selected nine testers to try the SuperSpeed system, and here’s a brief update on where things stand after the first six-week session.
During the first protocol, testers showed an increase in driver swing speed of 8.2 MPH on average. The largest jump was 13 MPH while the smallest increase was 5 MPH
To a degree, this is to be expected. Not unlike losing a couple of pounds, there’s a “shock factor” when starting a new system and SuperSpeed states, “a 5% increase is common after just the first session” and with “3 workouts per week over a 6-week period, this increase becomes permanent.”
So far, the trend is holding true and every tester has seen a noticeable increase in swing speed. With that, there is the potential for unintended benefits and consequences.
One tester went in for a driver fitting during his SuperSpeed training and expected a swing speed somewhat near its historical average of 100 MPH.
Instead, it was 112 MPH and as you can imagine, this necessitated a different driver head/shaft/loft combination. How fast you swing will always be an important part of a club fitting. It’s not the only factor and sometimes it’s not the most important one either. But if forced to pick a single swing characteristic to help determine the correct equipment set up, swing speed is the most likely target.
Also, consider that SuperSpeed training doesn’t involve hitting any actual golf balls. It’s all about learning how to swing fast…and then learning how to swing faster. At the onset, there isn’t much, if any, discussion around technique, tempo, or swing positions. So, transitioning from a training swing to an on-course swing can present some challenges.
One tester noted that initially his ball-striking suffered a bit and the swing tempo that resulted in the fastest training swings wasn’t the same tempo he used on the course. Through Arccos stat-tracking platform, however, his early results showed clear improvement.
Looking at only the driver, his Arccos smart driver distance increased by 13 yards. This equates to taking one club less on approach shots. In this case, less is more – and it’s also less. More distance off the tee means fewer total strokes and possibly more money in your pocket at the end of the round. This tester also saw an increase of 50 yards from his longest drive (238 yards to 288 yards).
Though it’s not something SuperSpeed advertises, some testers have seen positive results from the dynamic warm-up routine it recommends prior to every training session. It’s just a hunch, but I’d wager that proper stretching and muscle activation is beneficial regardless of the training program.
In reviewing the progress of each tester it’s important to remember that progress isn’t linear. Not everyone will see the exact same results, nor will everyone experience gains at the same rate. Also, sometimes life gets in the way, and in spite of our best intentions, we may not get to all three workouts every week.
There are plenty of DIYers out there asserting that they can get pretty much the same results by fashioning a home-made set of sticks with variable head weights and flexes. Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for simple solutions and sometimes a pool noodle is all you need to fix a slice. That said, SuperSpeed’s system represents the best thinking of biomechanical experts that understand how specific exercises translate into better ground force mechanics, rotational sequencing, and lag creation.
Here are two short videos that explain several exercises testers performed during Phase 1 of testing.
PROS and C.R.E.A.M
Whether you’re a solid-bogey golfer, scratch amateur or touring professional, SuperSpeed works the same way for everyone. That said, the benefits are quantifiably different.
At the highest level, speed is currency and every fractional improvement matters. According to research from Mark Broadie (creator of the Strokes Gained statistic):
+4mph = 10 yards = 0.6-0.7 SGPR
+6mph = 15 yards = 0.9-1.05 SGPR
+8mph = 20 yards = 1.2-1.4 SGPR
*SGPR = Strokes Gained Per Round
To provide some additional context, the minimum benefit of increasing swing speed by 4 MPH is 2.4 strokes over a 72-hole tournament. That could be the difference in making a cut, securing a top-10 finish or qualifying for a major. If we look at the value of a single stroke/round extrapolated over the entire PGA Tour season, it’s likely the difference in millions of dollars.
In 2019, Rickie Fowler’s scoring average was 69.95 and he took home $3.95 million in prize money.
Troy Merritt, who averaged 70.95 strokes/round, made $1.53 million that same season – a difference of $2.42 million. Millions of greenbacks for measly stroke per round. Then you have to pause for a moment and consider what someone like Bryson DeChambeau is doing. Love him or hate him, his formula appears to be working. In 2020, his average drive is 20+ yards longer than it was in 2019. Coupled with hitting more than 60% of fairways, he’s gaining nearly five strokes per tournament on the field just with his tee shots. Like Al Davis loved to say, “Speed kills.”
WHO NEEDS IT?
There’s certainly plenty of ongoing debate whether certain players hit the ball too far. But, for the remaining 99.9% of us, it’s a firm “no.” Probably more like, “hell no, and that’s an egregiously moronic question.”
Regardless of which path the USGA and R&A decide to take, there are two certainties. First, nothing is going to happen quickly. The latest report was effectively a statement saying “We think there’s possibly some sort of issue and we’re going to study it a bit more. We’ll get back to you rather soonish with a list of topics we believe merit further analysis.”
And secondly, distance will always be an advantage. This was true for Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods. They were (are) exceptional golfers not exclusively because of this skill, but prodigious length is absolutely a defining characteristic of how each approached the game. Not everyone has a fastball like Nolan Ryan. But if you do, you better use it.
Distance isn’t necessarily more important in the modern game of golf. It’s more so that thanks to the work of Mark Broadie, Lou Stagner and Scott Fawcett, amongst others, we’re starting to understand why this has always been the case.
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