DST Review: The Hottest Swing Trainer in Golf
Developing an effective swing training aid is a very tricky proposition. There is a graveyard of failed concepts over the years that have never made it for various reasons, which is why it continues to be one of the hardest categories to succeed in. The DST Compressor seems to be one of the lucky few to buck this trend.
The reason why it’s so difficult is because the golf swing is extremely complicated, and anyone could make a valid argument that there is no one right way to do it. To come up with a concept that can help a wide variety of golfers improve their swings is borderline impossible.
To date, the only swing trainer that has become part of my practice routine is the Orange Whip. I believe balance and tempo are the cornerstones of many great golf swings, and this is a product that can make you feel what it’s like to incorporate those two concepts into your swing.
Recently there has been another swing trainer quietly gaining steam in the golf community, and racking up an impressive list of tour players who are using it. It seeks to correct another cornerstone of a successful golf swing, which is impact position.
It’s called the DST Compressor, which stands for Delayed Strike Trainer. I’ve been testing it over the last few weeks, and I am extremely impressed by it. I think you are going to be hearing a lot more about it over the coming years, and I’m happy to share my findings with all of you.
Spreading Like Wildfire on Tour
The tried and true marketing technique of any aspiring golf company is to seek validation amongst tour players. They love to flash ads on TV saying, “X of the Top Players on Tour are using our product.” What they conveniently forget to leave out is that all of those players have paid contracts. So while the product might be good, you never truly know if the players are using it for a paycheck, or because they believe in it.
Let me throw some statistics at you about the DST Compressor:
- 240 players on the PGA/European Tour are using it
- In 15 months 40 of those players have won
- 27 Major Champions use it
- 15 of the top 25 in the world ranking use it
I confirmed with DST that not one of those players has been paid to train with it. With a lot of money at stake, and players looking to gain any edge in their training habits, you can rest assured that they are likely using this club because it is producing results for them.
That’s great and all, but does that actually translate over to the regular golfer looking to improve their game?
What does it actually do?
The concept behind the DST Compressor is fairly simple, and can be summarized by this picture from their website.
The inventor of the product, who is a former professional golfer and teacher, studied the great ball strikers of all time. What he found was that they all had a similar position at impact, and it had to do with where their hands were positioned relative to the ball, and their body.
This is coming at an interesting time in the golf teaching community because more and more teachers are realizing that what is happening at impact is “the moment of truth” for a golf swing.
The golf ball doesn’t care what your swing looks like. All it does is react to the few milliseconds of interaction with the clubface. DST Compressor seeks to make that interaction optimal by making you feel what the best ball strikers of all time do, which is keeping their hands ahead of the ball at that crucial moment.
The DST does this by using a bent shaft. You are unable to hit the ball correctly if you don’t get your hands in this position and pivot your body properly. Instead of explaining it to you, they made a product that won’t let you succeed until you actually do it.
As a consolation prize, I can guarantee if you show up to a driving range with the DST you are going to get a few, “what the heck is that?” looks.
The Million Dollar Question
As I mentioned before, we’ve all seen swing training aids come and go. I’ve hit several hundred balls with the DST (I have the 8-iron model), and I don’t think this product is going anywhere anytime soon.
When I started using it, my first 10-15 swings were quite awkward. I was either pulling the ball or making a cold hard shank. Eventually I settled on a few swings that were decent strikes, and then I said to myself, “oh, that’s what it wants me to do.” I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I know it was a feeling I have had before when I hit my best iron shots.
Going back to my normal 8-iron was even more bizarre at first. Every single shot would go directly right, and it took me a few swings to get back to normal.
After a few more sessions all of that seemed to go away. My contact became crisper with the DST Compressor, and I began to transfer the feeling over to my irons. I don’t feel like my swing has dramatically changed, but there is a small refinement I can detect, and I like it.
I’ve always been a pretty good ball striker, and I know what it feels like to really “compress” a golf ball and get the maximum potential out of a swing. The problem for me is getting back to that peak performance consistently. I’m starting to believe that this club is going to help me do that, and I’m going to commit to making this a part of my practice routine.
As someone who doesn’t typically buy into swing trainers, that is saying a lot.
Will the DST Compressor work for you?
Most recreational golfers struggle with their hands being behind the ball at impact, and it results in inconsistent strikes and an inability to maximize their distance potential. The DST can give those players a chance at fixing that. It’s one thing to explain to someone what they are doing wrong, but having them feel it is an entirely different thing.
There are hundreds, if not thousands of testimonials popping up all over the place on social media showing how golfers using the DST were able to improve their impact position within minutes. The word is certainly starting to spread.
Now I don’t want to get carried away and tell you that if you purchase this product and use it, your golf swing will magically be fixed. However, based on its explosive growth on tour, positive testimonials from tons of golfers around the world, and now my own experience, I would say it could possibly help you out if you are willing to give it a shot.
I am excited about having this become a part of my practice routine. I plan on working it into my sessions because I know the position it’s putting my hands in is going to make me successful. I’ve done it on my own before using the DST, and I’m hoping it will help me get there more consistently.
It’s golf though, and there are never any guarantees.
I don’t believe the DST is going to be a passing fad. I think you’re going to see it pick up even more momentum in the coming years, and become a mainstay in the game-improvement market. I hope it can help certain golfers unlock their potential because this game is hard enough! Alternatively, a product like Lag Shot could help your swing with a little less of a challenge.