Establishing Consistent Golf Swing Tempo

Golf is a fun game when we are playing well. I know that as my round continues and my score is in excellent zone, I have a tendency to change my tempo and focus. Mostly it is because my emotions are ramping up and I get a head of myself. When I can control myself, I find that my tempo stays in check and I am able to finish strong. I have a few techniques and found a video by David Leadbetter that shows two things I do that helps. The other two might be a benefit for you, but only you can decide.

I will let you watch the video first and then we can discuss things further:

Of the two tips offered by Leadbetter, I take a deep breath and try to finish my backswing. The latter is critical to my tempo because it is the basis for my consistent swing. I focus on my backswing by telling my mind to take a full backswing. Having said that, we all know that to vary yardage I will adjust my back swing. The trick is to now rush my backswing, but to stay within myself and complete it without exception.

The deep breath happens all the time when I am to calm emotions or to regain control of the moment. It is a common technique and I expect that everyone uses deep breathing. I also use this method to control my anxiety and nervousness. Deep breathing by athletes is universal and is a proven technique in many different sporting scenarios.

Gripping the club hard and releasing a few times before hitting never worked for me. I found that all it did was shift my focus solely on my grip. This is never a good thing and as such I discarded it very quickly. Additionally, I dislike wagging my club. I have not found a use for it and find it distracting. Because I do not like these two tempo techniques does not mean they will not work for you. If you decide to try them (or use them already) let me know how it is working for you.

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!


12 thoughts on “Establishing Consistent Golf Swing Tempo

  1. Is there any of us that can honesty say we dont think of our score as our round gets better?? Or more to the point we tee off 15 at 3 over which for me is great and then the tension happens. DAM MY BRAIN!! LOL. Some days I can survive and finsh with a great round and some days I finish poorly and finish with a good round for me but not what it could have been.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can 2nd Lorne’s comments on hickory clubs training a good tempo. My most reliable hickory (2 iron) should be the hardest to hit but I know that only the very best tempo will work. Now to carry that thought over to my modern clubs………..

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Maintaining a consistent, smooth swing tempo is in my opinion critical to playing well on a consistent basis. For me, the video was not very helpful. Generally, the biggest challenges to my tempo are usually precipitated by fatigue or trying to swing too hard. As such, finding a sustainable tempo and getting it back when I get off the rails is key.

    Playing my historic clubs a lot has made me appreciate smooth tempo and made me better at playing various shots with two thirds to three quarter swings. The greater use of these shots makes it easier to return to my normal swing.

    I find that my Driver swing is what gets my tempo out of whack the most. It is so easy to succumb to the temptation to go for a few extra yards and it sometimes works. Unfortunately, the swing harder tendency can transfer to other parts of my game that are not as forgiving. Hence, resisting the temptation is key. It is even more important late in a round when we are not as fresh as at the start.

    Again, I have found that since I have better control of my partial shots, it is easier to rebound and return to a consistent, sustainable tempo. It is like a reset button for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lorne,

      Sounds about right. My driver gets my tempo in trouble from time to time as well. My tempo is something that I am constantly working on and feel most of the time I am in control. Not always, but usually. Regardless, it is a topic that remain in my game for some time to come.

      Cheers Jim


  4. Hard to argue with Ledbetter but like you, I’m not much of a waggler. I do take the club back once or twice, looking to insure I will start off on the right plane, but the back and forth with the wrist is something I just never felt helped me any. And I’ve never been one to grip too hard so I’ve never even tried that one. But they must be useful to many I’m sure or Ledbetter wouldn’t have included them. I would add though that if you keep your arms and chest in sync, it’s hard to have a bad tempo.

    If you haven’t seen this video with Bryson teaching some youtube golfers to gain ball speed, it’s worth the look. It’s also interesting to note the individual tempo’s of the golfers and how much or little it changes to gain faster ball speed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kevin,

      I watched the video and their grip and rip it approach was fun to watch. I am confident that I am not physically capable of doing that without hurting something. I did enjoy Bryson’s comments on intent to hit the ball farther. Additionally, the layers that hit the ball the farthest loaded up at the top of their swing and increased speeds on descent. Thanks for sharing the link.

      Cheers Jim


      • Oh you’re capable though like me, we aren’t going to reach the heights Bryson or those kids will. But the technique is still valid for us. I know I’ve mentioned that when I can’t warm up first, I like to take 20 swings before teeing off. 20 progressively faster swings. If you try that, you’ll find that what Bryson is saying is correct and that, it doesn’t have to be as hard on the body as you think. I know I’ve understood it at a somewhat fundamental level from that practice for quite a long time now.

        Well, on a darker note the old driver, the one the pro just last week told me to keep, broke today. The shaft snapped at the hosel on my 2nd drive of the day.
        It didn’t matter much for my round. I can play the home course with my 4 wood off the tee about as well as I can with the driver, but I gotta admit it was depressing. But I guess I can look at the bright side and hope that putting a new shaft in it will solve the too tall ball flight for good. I will certainly be asking for a different spec this time. But I question how far I should take that. My first thought is only change the kick point. The broken shaft had a low kick which is meant to get the ball in the air, so if I match everything but move the kick point to mid, then I should be a lower trajectory flight with the same swing. Should. Wish me luck.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Kevin,

        It is a sad day whenever any of our clubs break. You driver is definitely one. Replacing the shaft with a medium kick point (in theory) should produce a lower ball flight. However, I am not confident it is a simple as we think. Changing the kick point also produces different club head speeds and our spin rates. I would be interested to see what the actual changes will be. Keep us informed if you can.

        Cheers Jim


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s