For golfers of any age, club head speed (CHS) is one of the most important and sought after attributes. CHS impacts distance and distance is a major component of the Strokes Gained Method. Strokes Gained breaks down performance shot by shot and shows an advantage for those who hit the ball further.
A recent study published in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research demonstrated the relationship between CHS and handicap. The study specifically focused on youth golfers. A total of 36 male and 33 female golfers aged 13-17 participated. Golfers with lower handicaps had greater club head speeds. Additionally, the athletes with greater club head speed scored better on various explosive power based tests such as seated and rotational medicine ball throws as well as countermovement vertical jumps.
This study highlights the importance of power development in youth golfers. However, power cannot be achieved without a solid foundation. Program design should lead athletes towards developing power by developing their mobility, stability, and strength. Once a foundation is laid, power can be achieved.
The article, Physical Characteristics Of Youth Elite Golfers And Their Relationship With Driver Clubhead Speed, can be found in the October 23, 2017 issue of The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.