With hundreds of new golf gadgets coming onto the scene every year, it’s hard to figure out what products are useful, and which are simply gimmicks. I am generally a traditionalist who likes to keep things simple, so I am often skeptical, if not critical, of any new products on the market.
When the opportunity presented itself to receive a SwingTalk Swing Analyzer in exchange for honest and thorough feedback on the product, I was intrigued. A small, simple to use, sophisticated looking product that fits into the end of your grip and feeds swing data to your smart phone — it was definitely worth a try.
All you need to do is download and open the free SwingTalk app for your smart phone, then connect the device to your phone via Bluetooth and you’re ready to go. The swing sensor fits easily and securely into the butt of your grip and is virtually weightless, so it doesn’t throw off the feel or balance of the club.
Once your phone is connected, you can set it on the ground next to you and start hitting balls. After you hit a ball, the app will provide voice feedback of your basic swing statistics – club head speed and tempo. This is great to give you a general idea of how you did on each swing, without having to pause your practice to look at your phone. No need to worry about disturbing people around you as you still have the option of turning the volume off on your phone and viewing your swing statistics the “old fashioned” way.
I don’t like being bogged down with too much when I practice, so I was pleased that SwingTalk wasn’t cumbersome to use. Once it’s on, you can just go ahead and practice and listen to the feedback. If I’m working on something particular, I may pause and study a more in-depth swing statistic. I even tested it out by leaving my phone in my pocket, and that worked fine too.
In addition to club head speed and tempo, the SwingTalk analyzer provides a slew of other sophisticated swing metrics such as attack angle, swing path, face angle, and many others. Each swing metric has an information icon next to it, so if you’re not sure exactly what it is, you can click the icon for an explanation. All of the data from each individual swing is saved in the app for easy viewing later.
As a 4-handicap working to become a scratch golfer, the margin of improvement becomes smaller and smaller. Having quick and easy swing feedback at my disposal when I’m practicing is a valuable tool. Tempo is something I’ve worked hard on this year, and is often an overlooked aspect of the swing, so I love the feature of tempo feedback. One of my swing tendencies is to get a bit too steep with my angle of attack, so when I’m working on this, I can check precisely how I’m doing in a matter of minutes with the SwingTalk analyzer.
Another cool feature of the SwingTalk app is the swing path tracer which traces the path of your club head. You can watch an animation of your swing path, and compare things such as shaft angles at address versus impact.
What really impresses me, is that the SwingTalk swing analyzer provides much of the same swing statistics as other swing analyzers which cost thousands of dollars, and SwingTalk retails for only $150. I can’t tell you exactly how it does all of this, since somebody much smarter than me came up with it. What I can tell you, is that it does work. I’ve tried the analyzers that cost thousands of dollars, and my statistics with the SwingTalk seemed to be consistent with what I’ve seen before. In the first few dozen swings using the SwingTalk analyzer, it only missed picking up data on a couple of my swings.
Check out the video of me testing the product to see how easy it is to use:
I rarely use golf gadgets, but when I do, I like to keep them easy and simple. The SwingTalk swing analyzer fits my criteria, and will be a handy tool to have in my bag without weighing it down. It provides me with more information than I’ll typically need at one time, but it’s good to know that the info is always with me if I need it.