Club Head Speed And How It Is Generated | Swing Surgeon - Don Trahan Peak Performance Golf Swing

Club Head Speed And How It Is Generated

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 22:52 -- Don Trahan

I have yet another article from a golf publication talking about driving distance and club head speed.  Their answer is rotation, wrong. Rotation does not produce club head speed and we (PPGS players) are living proof that it does not come from body rotation.

How do you produce club head speed? Swing your arms faster and use a vertical golf swing. Do not expend energy pulling the golf club vertical then yanking it down to meet the golf ball.

Comments's picture

Submitted by dgundling@veriz... on

In my experience some body rotation is required to get maximum distance. Try a PPGS swing with the usual set up but do not rotate. You can take the club back and up the tree per PPGS but keep your body facing forward. Than make your swing and finish with the arms in front of your body. Zero body rotation. I expect you will find your driving distance greatly reduced. Note Don's swing in the video. How do you think he got from a position where his body is turned 70 degrees back of center on the back swing to facing the target at the end of his swing. I strongly suspect that he rotated his body.

Jurassical1's picture

Submitted by Jurassical1 on

True, but the rotation is primarily to allow the arms to obtain as much height and swing arc and to allow them to swing freely through to the finish. The idea is reducing the backswing thus lessening the low back involvement which leads to long layoffs or worse. Surge never said not to rotate at all nor that rotation plays no part in the speed of the arms. Arm rotation alone accounts for the major portion of speed and the freedom of that movement is key to maximizing it.'s picture

Submitted by on

You can disprove this idiocy very simply with a small experiment. From address position with any club, rotate as far back and through as you can, but do not use your arms. Just keep them in the same relation to your upper body as they are at address. No matter how hard you rotate back and through, the best you can do is the equivalent of a short chip. The ball doesn't travel at all. Then, without using any rotation at all, use an "arm's only" swing and you will find you can hit the ball quite far.

The same thing goes for the weight shift, aka the bump. Start at address and without moving your arms, execute a weight shift. The ball will dribble a few yards away. Definately not a source of power. It seems clear to me now, that the weight shift is not about using ground force as much as it is a way to move the swing arc's bottom toward the target a few inches. When we set up, we are setting up for the swing to bottom out at the back edge of the ball. We rather want the bottom to be 1-2 inches ahead of the ball, so we just shift the center of rotation forward that little bit and voila. Again, not a source of power. If ground forces are so important why do Bubba Watson and Justin Thomas swing so hard that both of their feet are off of the ground at impact?

I also suspect that the turn through to face the target after impact is completely wasted motion (the ball is gone). What we do after impact puts limits on what we can do before, but the balletic finish recommended for most recreational golf swings is beyond most golfers (just watch them), so why not let them swing through (with both feet on the ground) with the club wrapping around the body target side as it does in the back swing. This eliminates difficult moves and allows golfers to just swing and not worry about whether their weight is on their back toe and outside of their front foot (which is ridiculous).

Keep giving them hell, Surge, the power of the golf swing is in the arms. Always has been always will be.'s picture

Submitted by dgundling@veriz... on

I suspect, and in my experience, that maximum swing speed is obtained when you use everything that contributes to swing speed. To me, that means you use arms, body rotation, the bump, and, perhaps, a bit of wrist snap. The Momentus swing speed device that attaches to the club shaft is very useful for experimentation. Consciously adding body rotation to my arm swing is worth about 5 mph for me. I also suspect that the bump which gives a bit of forward motion adds a bit of added acceleration to the club head prior to impact.'s picture

Submitted by on

Well, of course it is ... but the fact that only professionals can pull this off because they practice and compete seven days a week, 11 months per year. This alone makes doing this a fool's errand.'s picture

Submitted by dgundling@veriz... on

I must be an exception. I play once a week and practice once a week 12 months of the year (Southern CA) and I can, every now and then get a bit of everything in my swing. (Believe me I need all the help I can get (Grin).'s picture

Submitted by on

Love all your instructional videos and the PPGS swing has helped me immensely. Can you please address maintaining posture during the swing and it's importance. Thank you.

douggolf's picture

Submitted by douggolf on

Hi Surge,
Reviewing your video and just wanted to ask you a question about square to square golf instruction. It appears to be simular to yours. Do you agree?
My background is a senior golfer 83 years young in reasonable good health and flexability. I have been using your instructions for the past ten years and could not use rotational type swing and found your way more senior freindly to the body. I have lost club head speed over the years but, found that with 3/4 swing and a solid contact that adjust my clubs to the required distance was adequate for me. The pro's deloft their iron and due to excessive body movement strike the ball distances most of us will never match.(will their bodies stand up to this type of swing for the rest of their careers?) time will tell! Thanks for letting me rant on current golf instructions. Yours for enjoyable golf....cheers :-)