Golf to Your Song

By Bill Herrfeldt

golfer hitting from bunker
No question about it. The difference between achievement and failure on the golf course is developing tempo in your golf swing. Much has been written about the importance of tempo, but many pros say that it is a personal trait and that no one tempo fits every golfer. And most of them fail to provide golfers with a way to perfect it. Until now. Here's a way for you to develop a tempo, or rhythm, by golfing to your own song.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging
  1. Make a CD or a tape of a favorite song. While a rap or skat song will work, choose one like a waltz or a song like "Mack The Knife" that has a melody and a beat. Then take a tape recorder or a CD player to the driving range, and set it up across from where you will hit balls.
  2. Take out a lofted iron and turn on the machine. Begin swinging the golf club as rhythmically as you can without a golf ball. Do this about 50 times until you feel the beat, and the mechanics that you have been taught are brought into play in the correct sequence.
  3. Take your stance, then line up about five or six balls perpendicular to just inside your heel closest to the target. Again with a lofted iron, and with the memory of your tempo when you were hitting without the ball, begin to hum the song and hit the balls, one after the other, with the same rhythm. Repeat this drill several times with less lofted clubs, ending up with your hybrids and metal woods. Always use the same tempo, regardless of the length of club you are hitting.
  4. Take your newfound tempo to the golf course for a test run. As you approach your ball on the first tee, begin humming that song as you approach the ball, and continue doing so as you hit your first drive.
  5. Make a point of doing the same thing on every shot you hit, including your putts. Many people who have adopted this method of developing a tempo notice a real difference the first time they play. For you, it may take a while to make a difference, but you'll know when it happens because you will begin swinging more rhythmically, the fundamentals you have been taught will come easier and they will be executed in the right order.