How Does Your Tempo Effect Your Shaft Flex?

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When checking out all the new drivers on the market (TaylorMade M1, Callaway Great Big Bertha, Mizuno JPX-EZ) you’ll notice there are plenty of shafts to choose from. Many golf companies are now offering upwards of 20 upgraded shafts at no upcharge – which can add confusion when trying to select the one you want. So, we want to offer some advice on a common question we hear all they time: “What shaft flex do I need?”

To determine your proper shaft flex, we’ll need to work look at your clubhead speed, as it’s one of many factors that determine the proper shaft. However, one factor that often get over looked when finding a good starting point is tempo

Tempo refers to the rate, speed, or pace that the golf club moves back and through the golf ball.


For instruction purposes, the tempo is a description of your golf swing and is usually described as slow, medium, or fast. When I think of slow or smooth I picture Fred Couples, and when I think of fast I picture Nick Price.

A golfer with a slow tempo needs to favor a shaft flex that’s weaker than they think. Especially if they’re in between shaft flexes.

For example, take someone who swings a driver at 94 mph, they would be on the border of a regular or stiff flex. Most in this position would immediately choose a stiff shaft. However, if they have a “smooth” or slower tempo they could benefit from a regular flex. Or, if they have a faster tempo they’d benefit more from a stiff flex.

So, next time you’re purchasing a driver, don’t forget to think about your tempo when determining the proper shaft flex. Or, if you want hands-on advice from our PGA Professionals you can email us!
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Alan Unruh

Alan Unruh is a Class “A” member of the PGA of America, and holds PGA Certifications in General Management, Golf Operations and Player Development. With these certifications, he is among the 1% of PGA members that hold multiple PGA Certifications. He has a profound passion for the game of golf along with extensive experience and knowledge regarding planning and strategy for golf operations, rules of golf, tournament operations and golf swing fundamentals. Alan has also played a crucial role helping manage multiple high profile tournaments throughout his career including the USGA Women’s U.S. Open, PGA and LPGA Tour events, and multiple NCAA and AJGA events.