Not too long ago we posted a review of a golf swing tempo device, SwingTempo. Today we’ll have a look at another device aimed at improving your swing tempo, the Tour Tempo Player by Tour Tempo. If you have ever struggled with your tempo…my swing feels so slow today…why is my swing so jerky today…be sure to read the rest of this review, this device could really help you out.
So what is Tour Tempo? This video below does a better job of explaining it than I ever could…
As always, let’s start with some information about the product straight from the manufacturer.
Tour Tempo Player Package Includes:
- Tour Tempo Player
- Tour Tempo Book
- Player Instructional DVD
- Tour Tempo Tracks CD
- Custom Earbud
- Carry Bag
Tour Tempo Book
In this breakthrough book, John Novosel and Sports Illustrated writer John Garrity explain exactly how to achieve TOUR TEMPO. Through clear, step-by-step instruction, golfers are taught how to master two basic drills to synchronize their swings. Included with the book is a revolutionary instructional CD-ROM, featuring videos that illustrate exactly how to learn the tempo secrets of the tour pros, and a calibrated soundtrack that you can use while practicing at a driving range or in your living room. TOUR TEMPO is a remarkable breakthrough â€“ truly GOLF’S LAST SECRET FINALLY REVEALED!
Tour Tempo Player
Contains the famous Tour Tempo Swing Tones of 21/7Â®, 24/8Â®, 27/9Â®, and the new Tone of 18/6â„¢. Also contains the new, never before revealed Tour Tempo Short Game Tones. You’ll learn how to improve every facet of your game. The Player is the most convenient way to use the Tour Tempo Tones. No computer necessary. Entirely self contained and ready to use!
Player Instructional DVD
Explains exactly how to use the player to take your game to the next level. This DVD is the first of its kind – it allows the golfer to view the DVD and its instruction either Righthanded or Lefthanded!
Tour Tempo Tracks CD
A special edition of the highly popular Tour Tempo Music Tracks. Contains six songs for each Tempo. Now you can work on your golf game anywhere you can play a music CD – in your car, at home or in the office.
Look and Feel
As we saw earlier, the Tour Tempo Player device is quite small. It can fit in the palm of your hand, not too much bigger than a golf ball. The buttons on the front of the player are a nice size, and have some tactile feedback on them so it is quite easy to find the right button to push when you are not looking at the device. Generally I would wear the player on my belt toward my back. So I would just reach back there and feel for the play/pause button when I wanted to ‘stop the music’. The only negative here, the buttons were a little loose/giggly. So the device seemed to rattle a lot. The buttons always worked, so not really a concern there, it just made you wonder about the longevity of the device.
The headphone included with the player (seen below) is quite comfortable to wear. It is similar in style to a lot of bluetooth/hands free headphones for cell phones. Part of the headphone wraps above your ear, then the ear bud part sits just outside your ear canal. My only gripe with this was that the headphone jack (which is a standard headphone jack) seemed a little loose. So, sometimes the connection would jiggle or come loose and the tour tempo tones would have a lot of static or cut out, especially while swinging.
The concept behind Tour Tempo is brilliant. All the book asks you to do is try to synchronize your swing to the tones. No other thoughts should be creeping into your head. No worries about your wrist position at the top, how much your knee flexes, are you turning enough. As the book points out, it is near impossible for your conscious mind to try and control all of those variables in your swing. Tour Tempo takes that out of the equation and just asks you to just try and swing in time with the beat. The Tour Tempo Player plays three beats: one to start your swing, one to mark the top of your back swing, one to mark impact. With a little practice, I think just about anyone can do that. The video below speaks to this. They have put together some before/after swing videos of various level players. Check it out, it’s pretty neat.
So, how did I test this myself? Well I started by reading the Tour Tempo Book. I then spent a little time working on some of the simple drills explained on the DVD that came along with the Tour Tempo Player package. Then went onto swinging with the Tour Tempo Player, trying to first simply match my back swing to the first two tones, then trying to match my entire swing to the three tones. I had been playing pretty poorly down the stretch last year. My first round out with the Tour Tempo information fresh in my head, I ended up carding a 79. Not a revolutionary score, but I was striking the ball so much better than I had been, and really felt like my swing was very smooth.
I chose the 24/8 tempo for my swing, as my swing (pre Tour Tempo) was very quick, herky jerky if you will. At first, 24/8 felt very slow to me. Gradually, as is the case with most changes, 24/8 began to feel very natural to me. I measured my swing speed prior to using the Tour Tempo Player, with the Swing Speed Radar with Tempo Timer device (pictured above) and found my swing speed to be a little inconsistent. I would have swings in the 95-105 mph range generally. The ones that felt smooth were around 105, for the most part. Since switching to the 24/8 tempo, and this is no joke, I have seen my swing speed increase to the 110-115 range. I have been able to get a few swings up to the 125 mph range, if I really go after it with everything I have got…but still within tempo, unfortunately, those swings result in a ball that goes god knows where. The amusing thing is, if I try to ‘kill it’…you know, I am going to murder this ball, and not thing about the tempo…just try to swing as hard as possible….my swing speed is generally more like 95mph! We all know that though, we’ve seen it on the course. Long par 5, wind behind you, you think you are going to hit that 325 yard drive, so you put everything you have into it…only to be disappointed with a shorter than usual drive. The important thing to learn here is…smooth and in tempo = more distance.
The Tour Tempo Player package came with an audio cd with some music that is set to the Tour Tempo tones. I popped the 24/8 tracks into my cd player in my car, and have been listening to them on my commute quite often. I also try and practice with the player at least 15-20 minutes a few times a week. I hope to keep doing this throughout the off-season so that this coming season the tour tempo is just second nature to me. It definitely is work, but I do find my tempo, when not listening to the device, has improved tremendously. Beep…….beep beep…it’s catchy!
Off the Tour Tempo website, John Novosel Jr posted up his Tour Tempo Speed Workout which he has used to get his swing speed up to 150mph. 150mph…that’s insane. We did see a few 165mph readings on the Swing Speed Radar device…however, I think those were situations where the device caught the ball speed rather than club head speed!
The Tour Tempo Player package puts together a lot of great tools for you to use to help improve your swing tempo. If price isn’t a concern, I would say go ahead and pickup the entire package. While I was a little concerned about the quality of the buttons and the headphone jack, for under $100, you get a convenient package put together to help you improve your tempo. If the price is too rich for your blood, and you are comfortable with technology, I would make another suggestion. The Tour Tempo book itself comes with a CD that contains audio files of the tour tempo sounds at all the different ratios. The cd also includes some video files of the training sessions that you can play on your computer.
If you already have an mp3 player (ipod, ipod shuffle, your cell phone) you could simply copy those files over to the device, and play them off there. The book will cost you $17 on Amazon (link below), so you would be saving yourself $80. If you do not have an mp3 player, you could always put that extra $80 toward something like an iPod shuffle ($79 from apple — or on sale now for $67 from buy.com), which you could use to play other music. Of course, you would, lose out on the additional music cd, the instructional dvd and the player itself.
Either way, I would definitely suggest picking up at least the book, if not the entire package. It really is a revolutionary way to look at and work on your golf swing. If you have struggled with swing thoughts, getting too quick to the ball, or are just plain inconsistent with your swing…you need to at least read the Tour Tempo book.