Golf Fitness Best Practice: Implement a Speed Training Program

Justin Kraft is a PGA Player Development Professional at Medina (Minnesota) Golf & Country Club, Minnesota.

Justin Kraft on the importance of implementing a speed training program:

I came to Medina Golf & Country Club a year ago, and quickly implemented a speed training program that utilizes much of the information I learned during the TPI-certification process. Through that education, I developed an understanding of the body-swing connection, and can work around certain physical limitations and use golfers’ physical strengths to improve their golf swing. Our club recently opened a new fitness center that will highlight golf fitness across the facility, and I look forward to the collaborative efforts of our golf and fitness teams to maximize the performance of our members. Earlier this year, I started a six-week speed training program that hosted almost a dozen participants for 90 minutes. This was a chance for me to get to know some of our members after a long winter, and discuss topics that some of them hadn’t considered before. We took everyone’s baseline clubhead and ball speed with a driver and explained how the speed training would work. I emphasized the importance of going through the exercises three times per week during the program, and even demonstrated how to perform the actions. I gave them a handout that explained what to do so they had something to reference. During the initial session, we had them go through the routine themselves after my demonstration, and then measured their clubhead and ball speeds again. Even though they were tired by the second measurement, speed numbers increased almost across the board. For the next five weeks, our PGA First Assistant Professional Lance West and I welcomed each participant individually into our Golf Lounge simulator room, and we spent a half hour with each of them to measure their swing and ball speeds.

Justin Kraft on the business impact of implementing a speed training program:

We saw dramatic progress among those who were doing the work between sessions. In fact, by the time we were four weeks into the program, one 60-year-old member had increased his clubhead speed by 12 mph. With each measurement, we were able to provide technical instruction, in addition to the physical guidance that the program was created for. The six-week program ended just as members were gearing up for another great golf season at Medina. Now that this group is hitting the ball farther, they couldn’t wait to get out there and see it on the course. We have plans for a Level II program to further expose our members to the benefits of swing speed training. This has been an effective fitness program, and will lead to added fitness engagement, as we help our members play their best golf.

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