The Need for Speed

Ve­loc­ity-based train­ing can help you hit the long­est drives of your life

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - The Golf Life -

f you’ve ever won­dered how some­one short and slightly built, like Rickie Fowler or Rory McIl­roy, can con­sis­tently drive the ball past golfers who look like Su­per Rugby play­ers, it’s cer­tainly not be­cause they’re stronger. And it’s not nec­es­sar­ily be­cause they have bet­ter tech­nique.

A key in­gre­di­ent in their dis­tance prow­ess is the amount of power they can gen­er­ate. It’s one thing to be strong. And it’s an­other to be fast. But when you’re strong and fast, you have the in­gre­di­ents to re­ally bomb it. That’s the con­cept be­hind a type of train­ing rapidly gain-

Iing pop­u­lar­ity with ath­letes in all sports – even golf. It’s called ve­loc­ity-based train­ing, or VBT. In­stead of fo­cus­ing on how much weight is moved, VBT fo­cuses on the rate of speed for each rep­e­ti­tion of any mo­bile ex­er­cise.

VBT im­proves mus­cle co­or­di­na­tion, tim­ing and, most im­por­tant, swing speed, says Golf Di­gest tness ad­vi­sor Ben Shear, who works with PGA Tour pros Webb Simp­son, Luke Don­ald and Rus­sell Hen­ley. Ac­cord­ing to Fore­sight Sports ball- ight­sim­u­la­tion mod­els, in­creas­ing the av­er­age am­a­teur’s swing speed from 144 kilo­me­tres per hour to 160 kph o ers the po­ten­tial of 30 more me­tres ( see

on cen­tre-face strikes. “I’ve in­tro­duced it to many golfers,” Shear says, “and I think it will one day be­come a train­ing norm for most ath­letes.”

Tech­no­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ments al­low gym-go­ers and train­ers to mon­i­tor power out­put. In­no­va­tions in­clude the Push Band ($289, train­with­push.com) and Beast Sen­sor ($199, thi­sis­beast. com). These prod­ucts are com­put­erised arm bands that sync to a smart­phone wire­lessly. They

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