How Can You Increase Your Swing Speed? [Research For Elderly Golfers]

Why is it that the majority of golfers lose their club head speed as they get older but a few others maintain or even increase their club head speed as they age? As a senior golfer, one of the things you’ll struggle with is distance.

As you age, you lose the flexibility and power you once wielded, two metrics important for hitting the ball far. If your clubhead speed has decreased with age, your ability to hit the ball farther is negatively impacted.

Fortunately, you can get back to speed by matching the proper equipment with efficient techniques and strength training.

The research team here at Tell Me More Golf has spent hours going through studies, articles, and resources, to save you the time of doing it. The result is a great list of ways, drills, and techniques that help you increase your club head speed and hit the ball farther just like those few senior golfers whose game isn’t affected by age.

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Table of Contents

Senior Golf Swing Speed

Improving Club Head Speed for Seniors and What Can They Do at Tell Me More Golf for Short Game

Amateur golfers, beginners, and seniors are regarded as average golfers. That’s why understanding their golf swing speed can help them improve their playing skill. The reason is clear. The higher your driver swing speed, the further you can hit the ball. Even on the PGA Tours and LPGA, most top earners are long hitters.

The longer a golfer can hit, the easier it is to score well. Fortunately, as a senior, you don’t have to be a long hitter before you can play at a higher level. First, let’s look at average speed of older golfers so you can see where you fall:

Average Senior Golf Swing Speeds

50-60 years old

If you’re 50-60 years old, your club head speed will likely be around 90 mph, which is a good range. If your speed is in this range, you’re doing well. Most golfers around this age have lower golf swing speed or find it difficult to go above 90 mph. Generally, you’ll lose around 5 mph every time you add 10 more years. That’s why maintaining the right equipment, physical/strength training will help as you get older.

60+ years old

If you’re above 60 years of age, you’ll have less than 80 mph. And that means you still have some work to do. Anything above 70mph is good though and with a little more practice and following the tips in this article, you should be able to add more speed.

Average Swing Speed on the PGA Tours

For motivation, consider that players like Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson on the PGA Tours have a faster swing speed around 110 to 125 mph. While you may not be able to reach that level, working against that should motivate you to put in more effort.

Improving Club Head Speed

The next question you probably want to ask is how can you add more club head speed? You need to improve technical efficiency and match your golfing equipment with your speed needs.

Then work on your power. The more force you can generate towards the ball and the faster you can generate that force, the better. The more you increase the power, the better your speed and strength. And ultimately better swing speed.

What Can the Elderly Do to Swing Faster?

average swing speed for the elderly and how to increase their club head speed in golf

As a senior golfer, you probably have slower swing speeds. As a result, you may find it difficult to hit the ball well or find your ball flight fading, lack distance, or a combination of all. These senior golf tips will help you get out of your current situation. 

  1. Turn forward in your swing. Turning or flexing creates leverage that helps you draw up more speed. As you get older, you lose flexibility, so it might be difficult to exert the same level of force as when you’re younger. But if you make it a priority, it becomes easier as you practice further. 
  2. Use right-fitting grips. Generally, older golfers have problems making a proper grip, which can affect their swing. Many older golfers develop arthritis, which complicates the issue further. A proper-fitted grip that matches your hand size will help secure the club closely and makes mobility easier. 
  3. Use more loft. If you can’t get the ball high enough into the air, it can affect your distance. This is where more loft comes in as they help improve launch angle, especially for slower swing speeds. 
  4. Use lighter clubs. As for that when getting your club fitting from a club fitter. A lighter clubhead will come with a more flexible shaft allowing you to swing faster. 
  5. Manage lighter clubs in the backswing. If you want to create more speed in the clubhead, hold your club in your lead hand and swing it halfway back. This will cause your wrists to hinge earlier in the backswing, making the club feel lighter and creating more speed. This will also help with backswing too.
  6. Get the right equipment. You need to have the right equipment. Playing with ill-fitted equipment, or worse not getting the right club fitting, is going to cause a disaster to your game. Including proper nutrition and exercise in your physical fitness routine is equally important.
  7. Get your body in shape. While the importance of the right piece of equipment cannot be overstated, most people neglect their bodies, which is as important as their golf equipment. We all need to exercise, take good care of the body, get in shape and stay in shape.
  8. Just practice more. Hitting a lot of golf balls one after another can help exercise your golf muscles. Increasing strength and flexibility will help you get faster too. As you get older, flexibility and stretching are two important metrics you need to watch. Some people use speed training systems, like the SuperSpeed Golf Training System, with loads of people saying they’re seeing a 5-7% increase in clubhead speed. The basis of such a system is to work on getting your body to move faster by allowing you to swing golf clubs that are lighter than the original ones.

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Drills To Increase Club Head Speed

Why do tour players hit the ball farther than others? It’s not just because of their superior swing speeds. They have all the golf technology (such as those found on the new Callaway drivers) and are able to hit the sweet spot every single time. A result of a lifetime honing of their skill. That’s to tell you that practicing a lot can make a difference for you, more than just focusing on techniques that most golf websites are rife with.

Here are some drills to practice with to start upping your club head speed:

Speed Drill

In this drill, you want to optimize speed by creating a dynamic loft and proper attack angle. 

  • Start by nudging your hip forward while your spin leans back a bit so that your chest is behind the ball. 
  • Let your shoulders angle up and create support with your trail leg by placing it at a sharp angle. This will help your backswing. 
  • Now, with your hips close to the target, straighten your head so it’s upright and higher. 
  • Tilt your upper body a little and pick the club with your hands under the chin. 
  • Make your posture, ensuring the gap between your hands and thighs is small.
  • With this posture, start practicing your swing, each time watching how fast you’re going.

Turn the Club Head Down

In this drill, you will create speed in your swing –helping you learn how to increase club head speed for seniors.

  • Start by gripping the head of your driver such that the shaft is horizontally placed in front of you. 
  • Swing the club around you, starting gently at first and increasing the tempo until you can create a consistent swish. If you swing faster, your body engages too, helping to dial up the speed. 
  • Now turn the club around and do the same, watching out for the swish. Try harder for a louder swish by leading the swing with your lower body, followed by your arms. 
  • Now stand as you would normally at address and swing, looking for the swish. 
  • The louder the swish, the faster the speed.

Get Accurate Timing

This one will help you improve your swing tempo and get more weight behind your swing. You’ll need a golf towel for this. 

  • Start by tieing the middle of the towel to form a knot then grab the two ends of the towel so the knot is at the extreme end. 
  • Now take your stand and swoosh the towel back so the knot rests on your trail shoulder. Feel your weight on your front foot and lead knee. 
  • With a firm grip, create a downswing on an imaginary golf ball making sure your lower body leads your hands and arm as you make the swipe.
  • Begin gently but gradually increase the tempo. Monitor the speed and go as far as your strength/body can take you.  

Practicing these drills will instill confidence in you and get your body accustomed to swinging at a certain speed. As you increase your speed and your body engages in the drill, you’ll be ready to go on a fairway for the real shots.

Practicing Hitting the Sweet Spot

A simple experiment to figure out exactly where you’re hitting the ball on the clubface is to place a label, such as the Jumbo Label Roll (available on Amazon), on the clubface when you practice. If you’re not hitting close to the sweet spot, that’s where you need to focus on. 

Curb swing with too much force. Instead start swinging easier, even using 50% of your full speed until you start hitting the sweet spot. That’s where the right swing tempo comes in. As you practice, try and pinpoint your swing path and tempo that’ll produce sweet-spot swing. Don’t worry too much about your swing speed at this point.

Be patient and keep practicing until you start hitting the sweet spot most of the time. It is at that point you can start increasing your speed until you’re doing the same at 100% of your full swing speed. 

If you keep struggling, it might be time to see a professional to help evaluate your overall swing, determine where you need improvement, and make necessary changes.

Frequently Asked Questions: Getting Fast

What is the average swing speed for a senior golfer?

In a study by MyTPI, the average swing speed of 50-60 year old golfers is between 93 and 110 MPH. While that of 60+ year old golfers falls between 85 and 104 MPH. As you can see from this data point, older golfers have lower clubhead speed.

That’s to say, as you age, your speed decreases so you have to step up your game if you want to play at your best. Your short game will thank you!

How do I increase my swing speed?

The first step is to learn how to swing properly. You need to find your swing path (or rhythm) to harness your optimum swing speed. Swinging harder will likely not translate into higher ball speed. Rather, it can lead to hand pain or even injury. Instead, you should focus more on training your body proper swing such as starting your swing from the hips following up with your arms and shoulders. 

Another thing you can do is to try speed training, which can help you get faster. These are specific golf swing speed exercises that help you fix your swing issues so you can gain speed. You may also want to evaluate your setup. If you’re struggling with your golf equipment, you may not reach your potential.

How far should a 60 year old man hit a golf ball?

On average, a 60 year old golfer should hit the ball 204.5 yards, according to a study by GolfWRX. Your swing speed also affects your ball flight and how far you can hit the ball. If you have a swing speed of 80 mph, for example, your driving distance should be in the region of 200-210 yards.

If you can increase your swing to 100 mph, you can increase your distance to around 250 yards. Don’t chase increasing your swing speed at the expense of more important things. Increasing your fundamental knowledge of golf and getting better golf equipment should be first on your priority.

How can seniors hit the golf ball further?

If you want to hit the ball further, you need to stop trying to hit the ball further. That might sound counterintuitive but you’ll soon understand. Here is the right way to do it:

  • To get optimum distance from your clubs, you need to focus on control more than distance. If you can hit the ball more solidly at impact, you’ll be hitting closer to the sweet spot, which will result in hitting the ball farther on average.
  • You also want to pay attention to golf swing fundamentals. If you’re hitting with just sheer effort, you’re focusing on just distance. You’ll be using your arms more than your body, leading to striking inconsistently and less distance. 
  • Your swing tempo and ball striking are the two most important metrics for hitting the ball farther. Therefore, you want to do it the other way. Swing from the body leading to your arms and hands. This way, you’ll be hitting the ball with a controlled swing and closer to the sweet spot, which will translate to more distance. If you can, get a club with a larger face. This will make it easier.

Conclusion: Research by Tellmemoregolf.com

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As you age, you lose from your overall mph. Getting the right equipment and honing your speed is important to improving your overall swing, resulting in a more consistent distance. As you increase golf swing speed, you hit the ball farther. And with more distance, you’ll shorten your approach shots and you now need a shorter club to take into the green. Now that you know why your swing speed is low and the drills and techniques to increase it, all you have to do is take massive action towards increasing your club head speed and hitting the ball farther.

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