By Paul Liberatore, Golfers Authority
Players of all abilities and driver club head speeds can maximize their performance off the tee box. Amateur golfers often struggle with power leaks both in their technique and equipment that hold them back from shooting their best scores. This how-to article helps you get the most from your swing no matter your physical abilities or experience in golf.
It is important to know exactly how far you should be hitting the golf ball with your driver. Each driver that is used in competitive golf events much be conforming according to the standards set forth by the United States Golf Association or USGA. The USGA has strict limits on how much ball speed and distance can be produced by each level of driver club head speed. This ensures that the performance of each player is directly related to their ability to deliver the golf club in an efficient manner.
Golfer of every club head speed can achieve up to 1.5 miles of ball speed per 1 mile per hour club head speed they can generate. That means that golfers swinging between 90 and 100 miles per hour should be seeing ball speeds between 135 and 150 miles per hour. Driver club head speeds should be translating to roughly 2.7 yards of total distance. If you believe you are swinging between beyond 90 miles per hour with your driver and you are not consistently seeing your drives finishing beyond 245 yards, you are leaking power from the tee box.
These tips can help remove power leaks and get you hitting longer, more consistent drives:
Top 5 Tips:
- Setting up to hit high launching, low spinning drives
- Creating an upward angle of attack
- Eliminate your slice and create better impact conditions
- Impact the golf ball in parts of the club face that produce the most distance
- Make sure that your equipment is built for your swing
Step 1: Setting up to the ball
Many of the characteristics at impact are influenced by the way we stand over the golf ball before we start our swing. Beginning golfers are encouraged to obtain natural, neutral positions that help the hit solid golf shots. For the driver, getting a better set up can mean more fairways and much longer drives. To maximize distance, drivers should be played with the golf ball resting on a tee near your lead foot, the left foot for a right-handed golfer. As players grip the club, they should feel their trail shoulder, right shoulder for the right-handed golfer, tilt below their lead shoulder creating a backward tilt in their spine angle. This setup and spinal tilt will set the stage for the following steps.
Step 2: Hit up on the golf ball
With the golf ball near your front foot, it will be easier for you to strike the golf ball with an ascending blow. The angle of attack of each golf swing can heavily influence the launch and spin conditions of the golf balls flight. Upward angles of attack with a driver help create higher launching, lower spinning golf shots that fly further in the air and roll out more once they land.
Step 3: Eliminating slices and sidespin
While it is not inevitable that a drawing golf shot will fly further than a fade, golf shots hit with too much backspin or sidespin are robbed of distance and accuracy. The club delivery conditions that help players hit a draw often lead to a more penetrating ball flight with more total distance. To hit a draw, a right-handed golfer must hit the golf ball with a club face that is more left, or closed, to their club path. A functional draw is hit when the club path is traveling in-to-out with a club face that is closed to that path but to the right of the target line. Left-handed players, they should see a club face that is right of a leftward moving golf club path. Club faces that are termed “closed” to club paths often result in golf shots hit with less dynamic loft, less spin, and more distance.
Step 4: Hit the golf ball in or above the sweet spot
The best place to hit the golf club for your maximum ball speeds is directly in the sweet spot. Your driver, however, may produce higher launching, lower spinning golf shots by striking the golf ball slightly above this area. Golf shots struck in the upper part of the golf club face often launch higher and spin less than golf shots struck directly in the middle. This effect, called gear effect, helps players to get even more distance without increase club head speed or ball speeds.
Step 5: Using golf clubs that were made for you
Each golfer must be playing the right equipment for your game. Buying golf clubs off the shelf simply will not perform as well as golf clubs that have been meticulously crafted for your swing style and type. Being custom fit by a professional club fitter and club builder can guarantee that you are swinging each club with the greatest amount of power and efficiency. Delivering the sweet spot of the golf club back to the golf ball more often can improve your confidence, shed excess spin rates, and optimize launch conditions to build your ultimate long distance drive.
Although not everyone can swing the golf club at the same speeds as PGA Tour players, everyone can get the most from their swing. Amateur golfers simply lose power due to technique and equipment. Getting a better setup and understanding the most efficient way to deliver your golf club can lead to instant performance benefits and lower scores. Making sure that you are playing a driver that is built for you with a shaft and grip that helps you build confidence and swing freely can unlock more potential in your game. Installing these tips into your tee shots can lead to shorter irons and wedges into greens and more chances for birdie. Thanks for reading and come back soon for more tips and tricks to help you play better golf faster.
Paul Liberatore was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. He has been an avid and passionate golfer for over 30 years, and loves learning and increasing his knowledge on the game. While still in college, Paul co-founded the AccuHit Company with his father and helped it to become one of the most recognized golf training aids in the world. A lawyer by day, his true passion is his website Golfers Authority which delivers the very latest in golf equipment reviews, buyer guides, tips, and advice that helps players take their golf game to the next level.