Kevin Hinton: Ian Poulter has been one of the most consistent players in the world over the past few seasons. Comparing these videos from late 2008 and from 2011, it is difficult to see major differences in Poulter's technique.
Poulter's swing in 2008...
Poulter's swing in 2011...
The consistency of his swing has led to consistent performance. Poulter will end 2011 as the 16th-ranked player in the Official World Golf Rankings. In 2010 he finished 11th, and in 2009 he finished 12th. Much of this is due to his reliable ball-striking. He perennially ranks high in the statistical category of Greens in Regulation on the European Tour. In 2011 Poulter ranked 11th, in 2010 first, and in 2009 sixth.
Ian does many things technically sound in his swing, but one thing that stands out to me is the upbeat tempo of his swing. There have been many great ball-strikers with a quickish, fast-paced look to their swings. Nick Price is the first player that comes to mind. Tom Watson is another. It also reminds me of Hogan.
As a teacher, I often hear my students say that their swings get too "fast," but in reality, as a teacher I speed up more backswings than I slow down. Tour players typically do not have slow backswings. The average swing on tour takes about one second from the beginning of the swing until the point of impact (typically around .75 seconds in the backswing and .25 seconds
Striving for a rhythmic, balanced golf swing is an excellent thing to work on. Just don't think slowing your backswing to snail's pace is the way to make it happen.