Golfers of all abilities struggle with their drives. Driving from the tee has perhaps the biggest influence on whether you score par or a bogey. In fact, this is one of the primary skills that separates golf pros from amateurs. For example, only 31% of amateur golfers drive the ball over 250 yards. In comparison, pro golfers on the PGA Tour have an average driving distance of 294 yards. Golf pros are also able to hit straighter drives which helps their drives reach greater distances.
Figuring out how to drive a golf ball correctly can transform your game. Even marginal gains can dramatically lower your final score.
Steps for Hitting a Driver
There are several aspects to driver technique. Mastering each stage of the driver swing is vital not only for generating power but for preventing the dreaded slice. A slice on the drive could see your ball land 60 yards or more from your intended target.
Step One – Approach Your Shot the Right Way
Every driver swing begins with how you position the ball. Begin the drive by positioning your ball on the inside of your front foot. Shift your weight to your back foot, so your spine is tilted slightly away from the ball.
Step Two – Create a Wide Takeaway
The hardest aspect of how to hit driver shots is managing the simultaneous rotations of club and body. For a great drive, turn your body and move the head of your club away from the target. This move engages your hip and core muscles while also shifting weight to your back foot. Most beginners make the mistake of shifting their weight to their back foot at the top of their swing.
Step Three – Perform a Mighty Backswing
The top of the backswing is a huge issue for most beginners. At the top of your swing, your wrists should be hinged, and your body should continue to rotate to complete the swing. The pros already have their wrists fully set as they pass the 45-degree angle on their backswing. Finally, the angle of your clubface should be square at the top of your swing. Beginners often need to fight with the weight of the driver to square up the face of their club.
Step Four – Strike Your Downswing
Assuming you followed the golf driving tips above, the move you’re looking to hit is where the shaft angle shallows as the hands and arms fall. Most beginners make the mistake of using their arms and shoulders first to be too far above or below the swing plane line to develop more inconsistency in their ball flight pattern.
Step Five – Rotate Wrist & Follow Through
The moment the club makes center contact with the ball, make sure you continue to follow through impact. Most players often naturally rotate their hands through impact which often can lead to a push-slice, pull-draw, or a straight shot.
Step Six – The Finishing Position for a Driver
The finishing position for a driver should be with the golf club over the lead shoulder with a straight leg, and a nice little tippie toe finish with the back foot completely off the ground.
Body Positioning for Driver Technique
Do you want to know how to hit a driver successfully? High-performance drives are all in the body positioning. It’s why PGA golfers tend to look so elegant from backswing to follow-through. Here are some additional driver swing tips for managing your body’s positioning on the drive.
Place Lead Shoulder Behind the Ball
Beginners often get nervous when approaching the tee box. Nervous golfers tend to initiate fast and short backswings. These snatchy moves make it near impossible to hit a good drive. If you’re feeling tense, turn your lead shoulder behind the ball. This helps to make a full rotation rather than stopping short.
Avoid the Dreaded Death Grip
Death gripping the handle of the club is a huge problem for beginners, and it happens due to nerves. Keep motion in your fingers and feet. Waggle the club like the pros and stay loose to avoid locking up.
Keep Your Back to the Target
Tee slicing is another common problem that can be solved with this useful golf tip. Driving with your right shoulder towards the ball will keep the swing path steep. It also allows the club to drop off to the inside as you make your downward swing. Keep your back facing the target for longer during the downswing and turn behind the ball after your club makes impact. The right shoulder should remain passive at all times.
Move Your Ball Position Backwards
One of the biggest errors made by beginners is being too far away from the ball. This limits the eventual back turn, which leads to slicing. As part of the setup, an easy fix is to make sure the ball lines up with the logo on your golf shirt. By positioning the ball closer to your body, you can more easily square your shoulders and manage a full shoulder turn.
Tips for Hitting a Longer Driver
Everyone wants to hit longer drives, which is why we’ve listed the following golf swing tips. Drive your ball harder with these simple fixes, and start carding lower from your very next visit.
- Adjust Tee Height – The right tee height is the one where the clubface hits directly above the center. This achieves a low spin and a high launch.
- Avoid Moving Off the Ball – Load up your weight 60/40 from the back to avoid moving off the ball as you swing. You should remain strong and stable at all times.
- Maintain Clubface Stability – Keep your clubhead moving in a controlled manner. To do this, you need to keep up your rotation speed as the club’s toe is moving faster than your heel.
- Record Your Swing – Practice makes perfect, so set up a video camera to record, then review the footage to analyze your swing. This will allow you to spot the flaws in your game.
- Try Different Drivers – Not all drivers were created equal. If a club doesn’t feel right, test out some other drivers.
Figuring out how to hit a driver is a major challenge for any golfer, even professionals. Master your drive by approaching it with the scientific method. At Uneekor, we see a story in every swing. Using our smart golf solutions, you can make better drives every time. Contact Uneekor to learn more about technology-driven golf solutions like a home golf simulator to start carding lower.