Are you in the market for a new driver? If so, then we are here to give you a crash course on driver technology, so when you upgrade the longest club in your bag, you’ll be able to make an informed decision to help lower your scores.
Most people look at golfers on tour and see them hitting a 7, 8’ or 9’ lofted driver and believe that’s what they should be trying to emulate. Let’s ignore what the tour players are doing and try improve your own game. Loft is important in a driver to help provide the best launch angle to get the most carry and distance possible. If your club speed in on the lower side or hit the ball lower, you can opt for a higher lofted driver such as a 10.5 or 12 degree. If you swing the club faster or hit the ball too high, you can look at opting for a lower lofted driver such as a 9 or 10.5 degree.
Shaft flex is extremely important in the selection process of a driver. Don’t be stuck in the frame of mind that you NEED a stiff or regular flex shaft. A stiff flex shaft in one model can be a regular flex shaft in another, due to the fact that there is no standard across the board. Be open to experimentation and find out what shaft works for you. In general, the shaft flex with influence launch angle, spin rate and help improve dispersion. Below is a general table of what flex you should be using relative to your swing speed.
70-80mph – Senior / Ladies Flex
80-90mph – Regular Flex
90-100mph – Stiff Flex
100+ mph – Stiff / X Stiff
We have Trackman 4 Technology to assist with this process to find out your swing speed, spin rates and launch angle to assist in finding the best shaft for you.
Shaft Kick Points
Kick points is a subject that gets thrown around a lot when people are buying a driver. The simplest way to describe kick points, is the area of the shaft that bows the most during the downswing and through impact. A shaft with a lower kick point will help generate a higher ball flight and a higher kick point will produce a lower ball flight. If you’re trying to achieve a certain ball flight then this does come into play when selecting your driver shaft.
This is another interesting piece of the driver selection puzzle. Torque is the amount a shaft is able to twist during the swing and is measured in degrees. A shaft with a higher torque, say around 5.0’, will twist more than a shaft with 2.0’ of torque. In general, a player with a faster swing speed should have a shaft with less torque – to control the club head – and a player with a slower swing speed should have more torque to help the clubface square up at impact.
Almost every driver that’s now on the market will have the added advantage of adjustability. One example of this is adjustable weight systems. These adjustable weight systems are designed to help change your ball flight, trajectory and curvature.
Below are some of the benefits and options available –
Heel / Toe Weighting – If you move more weight nearer to the toe of the club it will help to keep the face open through impact and potentially create a fade based flight, and if you put more weight nearer the heel then you will have more chance at closing the clubface, assisting in drawing the ball.
Front / Back Weighting – This is designed primarily to affect ball flight. Move the weight closer to the club face it will produce a lower spinning and more penetrating ball flight and have the weight further back, it will produce a higher ball flight. The weight further back will help the majority of golfers out there as it’s more forgiving, which is what most people want!
This is another excellent piece of technology that helps to change the ball flight and shot shape to suit your current needs. Adjustable hosels can change the loft and lie angle of the clubface within certain ranges. Some can change up to 3 degrees! In layman’s terms, your 9’ driver then can become a 12’ driver! It also allows for the clubface to be set square, open or closed. Once again this is designed to change the ball flight and curvature of the ball. For example if you wanted a draw then you would set the clubface to closed (or draw setting) with the adjustable hosel. It’s that easy!
We hope that we haven’t overloaded you with information. We just want to make sure that you can make an informed decision the next time you’re in the market to purchase your new driver. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask us.