Down at the golf club there is a lot of talk about which driver you have in your bag. It’s the sexiest club and creates a lot of driver envy. There are long discussions about length and accuracy of the hit much more so than the type of irons you use or the bag you carry. I think it’s a macho thing as the driver is the longest hitting club.
It’s akin to who has the nicest car or the most expensive house and is seen as a status symbol as it is also, most probably, the most expensive club as well. Although it’s only one club and isn’t even used on every hole it gets a lot of extra attention. However for most club golfers the driver can be the most difficult clubs to master so choosing the right one for your swing and skill is all important. So what should you look for when you need to choose a golf driver?
Well most importantly the driver should fit with your swing and your skill level as a driver that works well for a talented low handicapper with a fast swing speed is unlikely to work as well for a high handicapper with a slower swing. The main components that make up the driver are shaft, head and loft so we will consider these individually.
The driver shaft needs to be linked to your swing; if you are relatively new to golf or slightly older you may not have a powerful swing and could benefit from a more flexible shaft. On the other hand if you are a good golfer with a faster swing speed you will need a stiffer shaft providing better control over the golf ball. Generally there are two choices for the material used for the shafts; either graphite or iron with the graphite option costing somewhat more. Actually for most golfers steel is fine but graphite shafts can help when you have a slow swing speed and may gain you a few yards.
Driver heads vary considerably but for higher handicap players it is probably best to look at golf clubs with a large sweet spot so you get benefit from off center hits. Manufacturers can make the sweet spot bigger by using very light materials such as titanium. The down side is these newer materials cost more and drivers are therefore very expensive these days. Steel is still used for club heads and is available at a much lower cost however they are harder to control as their size has to be smaller.
Once you have chosen your head shape you need to consider the required loft. Generally higher handicappers should go for a higher loft which imparts more back spin and therefore reduces side spin leading to straighter shots. Those who are better able to shape the ball can do so easier with a club with less loft. I would recommend higher handicappers looking at Golf drivers with 11or 12 degrees of loft with better golfers looking at 10 degrees of left and less.
When you understand your own swing and which driver suits you it is then time to go and find a driver that suits. Have a look around and find a good deal for your chosen driver and don’t go crazy and spend more than you can afford on a club that won’t give you much added benefit.