Below are five training aids golfers often ask about in my golf lessons. Designed to improve your swing or a phase of your swing, these products help correct faults, groove mechanics, and/or ingrain the feel of swing. The key, as always, is finding a training aid that works for you before investing your hard-earned money.
(And incidentally, I am in no way affiliated with these companies nor do I make money from these reviews.)
Amazing Assist Swing Trainer (www.matzie.com)
Available from Gibas & Matzie Golf Products, the Amazing ASSIST training club improves your swing and increases strength. Its like getting a golf lesson free of charge. Its weighted head and bent shaft teaches the correct hand action. The ASSIST improves muscle memory, extension, and weight transfer as well as tempo and timing.
As the club is swung, the proper release action is exaggerated to eliminate slicing, increase clubhead speed, and produce straight shots. In addition, the training grip places the thumbs and index fingers Vs of your hands in the traditional 11 oclock and 12 oclock positions. You can use it at home, on the range, or before your golf lessons.
The Amazing ASSIST is ideal for pre-game or pre-practice warm-ups or for everyday use to improve your swing. The ASSIST is available for men, women, and juniors, and for right-handers and left-handers. An instructional video comes with the product. The cost is $70.
The Elbow Tac-Tic (www.4golftraining.com)
Maintaining ones left elbow (for right-handers) as straight as comfortably possible determines the width of your swing arc, as Ive explained in my golf tips. The wider the swing arc, the greater the power. The Elbow Tac-Tic sleeve clicks when the elbow breaks down, providing the instant feedback needed to correct the swing and keep the left elbow extended. The Tac-tic also works on the right arm, clicking when the elbow bends at the proper point in the backswing. Cost: 39.95.
The Speed Stik (www.speedstik.com)
Most golf instruction will tell you that clubhead speed determines the distance a ball is hit. The faster the clubhead speed, the farther the ball goes. Working out with the Speed Stik increases a golfers clubhead speed and trains proper balance and on-plane swing. Swing the Speed Stick in a continuous motion back and forth, keeping it about 18 inches off the ground. Start slowly at first, and then build momentum. Check the speed gauge for your MPHs. Every increase of 1 MPH equals three more yards of distance. Repeat a few days a week and chart your distance. Cost: $99.99
The Impact Ball (www.theimpactball.com)
The Impact Ball develops the feel of hitting a ball properly. Available from To-M-Pact Golf, Inc., its easy to use and understand. Its based on the idea that many recreational players have certain swing faults (chicken wing, flying elbows, etc.) or that they try to scoop the ball off the ground when hitting. Sometimes, even the best golf instruction cant rid a player of certain faults.
The Impact Ball works. Its placed between the forearms and held there through your swing. The ball is bi-colored, and the only thought to focus on is to getting the ball to change colors as the club moves through the impact area. The product trains golfers to strike the ball solidly with a square clubface, eliminating any attempts to flip or scoop the ball during the shot.
The Impact Ball addresses every phase of the gamechipping, pitching, putting, driving, and bunker play. You can hit balls on the range with the Impact Ball or practice swinging the club with it at home. The cost: $39.95 + shipping and handling.
The Swing Magic Driver (www.swingmagic.com)
Training with Kallassys Swing Magic Driver ingrains the proper motion into your swing. Designed to improve timing, tempo, and rhythm, the Swing Magic synchronizes the movement of your arms, hands, and body. A sliding training clip enables you to separate your right hand (for right handers) during the backswing. By separating the right hand on the backswing and reconnecting it on the downswing imprints an on-plane golf swing, essential for consistent ball striking. It prevents you from coming over the top as well. Cost: $89.95.
Remember, a training aid is not a panacea, as I often mention in my golf tips. It wont dramatically improve your game overnight. It wont make up for good course management. And it wont take the place of a one-on-one golf lesson. But it will ingrain the fundamentals of a good swing, cut strokes off your scores, and lower your golf handicap, if you practice with it faithfully. Just make sure the training aid is right for you before buying.