LPGA player Cheyenne Knight on working with SuperSpeed Golf to increase swing speeds
Aug 21, 2023
SuperSpeed Golf's focused speed training regimen works to reprogram the neuromuscular reaction time.
LPGA player Cheyenne Knight sits No. 44 in the Rolex World Rankings and 19th in the 2023 LPGA Race to the CME Globe. Last month, she notched her second career tour victory – and first since 2019 – at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational alongside partner Elizabeth Szokol.
En route to that win, Knight noticed tangible improvements in her swing speed and drive distance thanks to her work with SuperSpeed Golf, a company that utilizes data and targeted speed training to increase swing speeds. SuperSpeed’s core offering is a three-piece set of weighted clubs designed to reprogram a players’ neuromuscular reaction time by training from both their dominant and non-dominant side.
“My partner (for the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational) Elizabeth hits it pretty far, she's probably one of the longest on tour,” Knight said. “We were kind of joking around, she's like, 'Man, Cheyenne! You're hitting it out here kind of close to what I do.'”
Knight first purchased a SuperSpeed set in college, and officially signed on as a partner in 2023. The company, which started signing player ambassadors earlier this year, had between 700 and 1,000 player clients as of late June.
As for Knight, SuperSpeed reports that her ball speed increased by nearly 10 miles per hour – from 128 to 136-137 – within two months of adopting her focused speed training regimen.
Here, Knight discusses her work with SuperSpeed and using technology as a tool in her training.
On the motivation to first purchase a SuperSpeed set . . .
Growing up [as a golfer], it was kind of different as to what kids are taught now. I think now kids are just taught to swing as hard as they can and then figure out where it goes later. But when I was growing up, and I feel like for my generation, it was more, 'You need to hit it straight.' And then you saw the shift, I think starting with Bryson [DeChambeau], that really made people think about speed. With SuperSpeed there was a market for that, to help you hit it further. I bought the set and watched the instructional videos on their website. That's how it got started.
On using the program . . .
I was lucky enough to do it with the SuperSpeed team and they showed me everything. You make it your own. There's different things. You have the speed sticks – there's light, medium, heavy, and then a counterbalance stick. There's different series of swings that you do on your dominant and non-dominant side.
It doesn't take that long – you do a few swings with each, like a step-and-swing, and there's a radar that tells you how fast you're swinging it. And the goal is to swing the heavy one close or the same as you do the light one. There's other equipment that they also offer that helps you with your grip strength and these little discs that help you use the ground better. I think with that you're just really trying to learn how you need to incorporate speed, because using the ground, pushing off the ground is a really big leap in power.
On the specific improvements with SuperSpeed . . .
I hit the ball pretty straight, but I'm not one of the longest hitters on the LPGA. I feel like you can only benefit from [SuperSpeed]. It doesn't change the mechanics of your swing, it just teaches you how you can hit the ball further and gain some speed. I just used it as a tool.
I just wanted to see some gains in my swing speed and my club head speed. And if I could gain a few miles per hour, I would hit it further off the tee and kind of just have some different clubs into the greens. When you increase your club head speed and your swing speed, you generate more spin, so that would help my irons too, just being able to generate more spin and hold some of the greens more – because I'm usually coming in sometimes as a longer club than the other girls.
On feedback from SuperSpeed . . .
When I spent the day with them, I saw some gains in my club head speed and ball speed. I think, for me, swinging on my non-dominant side was really good. Just learning how my body works, and you're on the force plates and seeing where I lose some of my power. The kind of stuff I already knew – I don't load that well into my right side in my backswing. But seeing it from a different perspective and technology definitely helped. Me swinging lefthanded, it really gets my muscles engaged and learning how to load a little bit better by swinging on my non-dominant side.
On the length of time it took to see results on the course . . .
It's a little tricky, because when I'm playing in a tournament I'm so in-tuned to what's going on. When you hit it off a tee, I didn't know if I was hitting it further because at that point I'm just trying to hit the fairway when I'm in competition.
But I would say I really noticed it with my irons, because with my irons you're being more specific of how far you need to carry it onto the green. I could tell I was picking up three or four yards in carry with my irons. And that was probably two months into it that I saw that.
On being technologically inclined in training . . .
I'm not going to go online and buy a bunch of stuff to just see if it works. I'm more of a word-of-mouth person. So when SuperSpeed first launched on the market, I heard a lot about it from people in my industry. The guy who fits me, Art Sellinger, in Dallas, my club-fitter, he had talked about SuperSpeed and how that could help me.
The golf community is quite small, and if there's a good product out there, people will talk about it and rave about it. That's how I heard about SuperSpeed. Technology-wise, I'll get a TrackMan or a GCQuad. I'm a TrackMan person. I use SuperSpeed and AimPoint.
Article written by Rob Shaefer for Sports Business Journal