Tempo is a ‘CLICK’ Away

The Swing Click training aid works well as a tempo trainer.

As an attendee to the recent PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, FL, one gets overloaded with methods, systems, gadgets and gizmos that are all intended to improve our golf performance. Deciding which booth to step into is not easy, but the easy manner of Liesel Niehaus of Swingclick Distributors, Ltd. (http://www.swingclickgolf.com) removed some of that ‘what will this one be?’ anxiety. The simple design and concept of the Swing Click training aid then made it comfortable enough to give it a try.

The Swing Click training aid is designed to improve the consistency, timing, rhythm and tempo of a golf swing. It attaches to the golfer’s lead forearm using a simple, Velcro band. The working part of the device is a small, cylindrical metal weight that slides along a ~5 inch metal rod as the golfer moves through a swing. At address, the weight is pointing down – position 1. As the backswing completes, the weight moves to the other end of the rod – position 2. At impact, the weight returns to position 1 and at complete follow through, back to position 2. Each of these swing movements creates a ‘CLICK’. The objective is to create these clicks at the right positions and with the proper tempo in your swing.

It seemed logical enough when demonstrated at the PGA show, but the real test would come at my local range. By way of calibration for the readers, I am an 18 handicap as a 59 year old male getting back into the game after a career and family interruption for some 30 years.  As such, I represent a fair amount of the weekend golfers out there and will always try to give you the average golfer’s perspective.

The instructions on the box were simple to follow and I was quickly hitting shots – or I should say, I was hitting shots too quickly. I recalled Liesel reminding me that nearly everyone goes to fast when first using the Swing Click, so patience was added to my persistence. After about 30 shots, it became apparent that the key was a slow and steady backswing to create a smooth backswing ‘click’ and transition as opposed to my initial, and more typical, fast movement and pause for the click.  My ball striking improved with the slower, more deliberate backswing.  For the cost of about 2-3 buckets of balls (~$35 USD), I now have an effective tool to periodically calibrate my tempo.

The Swing Click promises other advantages, such as adjusting the orientation of the moving weight to create ‘clicks’ at intermediate positions in your swing. This can be used for training wedges to cover specific distances or to create better tempo for bunker shots. I have not tested these features as yet. It can also be used on the course during practice rounds or in between holes for practice swings to remind you of that targeted tempo.

The website includes links to “how-to” videos and offers personalized feedback of submitted videos for a fee. It would be nice to see these videos be more professionally produced and I’m not convinced that paying for an analysis of one’s use of this tool is useful.  Lastly, the advantages of the device at impact and follow through were not immediately evident during my initial trails. Once the swing gets more ‘dynamic’ on the downswing, it was hard to discern the timing of the impact ‘click’ or the importance of the follow through click.

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