Rhythm, transition and the 1-2 drill.

I have discussed the importance of rhythm and said fast or slow is OK as long as it is good.

I have said that fast backswings are not always bad (e.g. Nick Price) and really slow backswings are NEVER good. You can name some great players with fast backswings and none that have backswing speeds measured with a sun dial.

Questions arise…”what is good rhythm?” That is very different from golfer to golfer, but I just label it as how good is your transition from backswing to downswing.

If your backswing is exceptionally fast, it is hard to have a good transition. If it is exceptionally slow, it is impossible to have a good transition. Amateurs fall into that “I got quick” trap and end up with really slow backswings and terrible rhythm. I forgot the exact stats, but someone will have them I am sure. 🙂 Pros have a swing tempo just under one second and amateurs have them well over one second. It’s less about clubhead speed and more about really slow backswings to “not get quick.” The irony is those slow backswings make it almost impossible not to “get quick.” Then the backswing gets slower and it snowballs.
Just like everything in golf, there is a huge gray area where we can succeed, but people often go black and white with their golf swings.

Here comes the pearl of wisdom. All rhythm(good transition) entails is allowing the club time to set so it can be released properly at the ball.

Does this mean you have to pause at the top…NO! Does it mean you can’t have a fast transition…NO!

It just means you have to find your proper way of doing it and I have a drill for you to find it.

Again, just like most things in golf, there is not a pinhead sized success window. There is a huge area of success and you just have to be in there somewhere. I will repeat, just keep the car in the lane somewhere.

Here is the drill…and it also has the side benefit of clearing your mind of too many swing thoughts.

Go to the range and chant 1-2 out loud while you hit balls. 1 is the backswing and 2 starts the downswing. Experiment with different cadences. It might be a quick 1-2. It might be 1….2. Try many different rhythms. Just like some songs have a slow rhythms and some have fast, but they all have a rhythm. Find yours.

Find the one that FEELS the best. Are you noticing a trend around here about the importance of feel?

If how to do the 1-2 drill isn’t quite clear, I will do a video after Christmas showing exactly how to do it.




  1. S. Wood

    Here are some other rhythms, indicating a slower backswing than downswing. (But not SLOW)

    Nick Falro: Say Er-nie (back) Els (down)

    VJ Singh: Se-ven(back) teen (down)

    Just another take on it–not saying that your advice is wrong.

    • Monte Scheinblum

      I think your take falls well within what I said. Those guys are far from the “deathly slow” that I talked about.

  2. Nick

    I have been practicing the Ohm drill for the last 3 years for my rhythm. Basically you make the sound ommmmmmmm just before starting your swing (just like a meditating buddhist monk) and continue to do it in the backswing and follow thru. If you hear your ohmmmmmmmm speeed up (like a racecar), your rythym probably got too fast. If it slows down you probably stopped accelerating. Works like a charm because it automatically tells you if you are doing it right. Even if you have a slow backswing you will notice that the ohmmmmm is not consistent.

    Give it a try monte and see if you like it.

  3. Vince Bae

    What is your opinion on Tour Tempo?

  4. Roy Gilley

    Maybe the exception that proves the rule, but Ai Miyazato sure has a slow b.s.


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