If you saw Dustin Johnson and Matt Fitzpatrick walking down the first fairway at the U.S. Open toward two golf balls, not many people would blame you for assuming the longer drive belonged to DJ.
But on Friday at The Country Club, it was Fitzpatrick that was left with the shorter approach.
Matt Fitzpatrick has quietly been making big gains in speed over the last two years, and thanks to some long drives and stellar play (which has him at two under par halfway through the U.S. Open), the whispers about his training program have gotten a lot louder.
GOLF.com’s own Luke Kerr-Dineen profiled the swing work Fitzpatrick has been doing with his coach Mike Walker and biomechanist Sasho Mackenzie.
But another piece of this speed puzzle has been Fitzpatrick’s speed training system called The Stack. The system individualizes an overload and underload program for each golfer using an app integrated with artificial intelligence to adjust as the golfer moves through training sessions. The app works in tandem with the physical swing training stick to help players build a better sequence and swing faster.
The Stack system just so happens to be co-developed by the previously mentioned Mackenzie, as well as another familiar name in the golf engineering space: Marty Jertson, the VP of Fitting and Performance at Ping.
To put Fitzpatrick’s gains into perspective, his average club head speed on the PGA Tour this season has increased over 5 mph compared to 2019, and his Strokes Gained: Off the Tee ranking is 10th, compared to 59th just three years ago.
With distance becoming more necessary to compete at the highest level — and one of the key elements of scoring potential — there’s good reason to maybe try some speed training of your own.