Increase Club Head Speed With The Driver 1

So you want to create more club head speed with the driver? Creating more speed comes from using your body as the engine to maximizing club head speed through the ball. You can use your body easier if you coil the body up in the backswing and uncoil the body on the way down to make sure the club reaches maximum speed. A common mistake many golfers adopt is to create power with just the arms as opposed to the big muscle groups such as your core, legs, back and torso. If you watch long hitters of the golf ball, they often look effortless when creating this power. If you watch young golfers or professional lady golfers who hit the ball far, they seem to coil up their elasticised bodies into a spring like position and then unwind and create ample amounts of power and club head speed.

Problem - Incorrect coil and resistance in the backswing leads to lack of power and club head speed, therefore reducing the overall distance that can be achieved with the driver. This leads to using smaller muscle groups such as the arms to create power.

Fix - If you coil your body up correctly on the backswing, you will be able to unwind the power built up in the backswing. Without holding a golf club, place an alignment stick or a bamboo stick through your belt loops on your trousers - this will indicate the angle and tilt of your hips. Then hold in place an alignment stick, bamboo stick or golf club across your shoulder blades around your back to indicate the angle of your shoulder turn and tilt.

Key point - Continue to adopt your normal golf posture as if you were hitting a driver. Start your backswing keeping the club across your shoulder blades and the stick across your hips. Now it is important to keep the hip stick still for the first quarter of your swing (takeaway), your shoulder stick will start to turn backwards. The hip turn starts to happen half way back in the golf swing. At the top of the backswing the shoulder angle should be 90 degrees and the hip angle 45 degrees. This creates coil and resistance at the top of the backswing. From that point, start to turn the hips first and hold the shoulder angle for as long as possible. Once the hips and the shoulders speed up on the way down, the hip angle (stick) should be ahead of the shoulder angle. Once you swing past where the golf ball would be, the hips should be open to the target, and the shoulders square to the target. This again maximizes the resistance and creates power and club head speed.

Top tip - Once you have practiced this drill without hitting a golf ball, take the sticks away and practice when swinging a golf club to create the same amount of coil and resistance.

How To Increase Club Head Speed with the Driver?

How To Increase Club Head Speed with the Driver?

If you are anything like every other golfer in the world, you want to hit your driver farther from the tee. It is something that ties together all golfers – the desire to hit the ball as far as possible. Even though you know that control is just as important as distance, it is still tempting to reach back for as much power as possible when you are standing on the tee. After all, who doesn't love seeing their drive carry well beyond the tee shots of the other players in their group? That is a feeling that simply doesn't get old.

In this article, we are going to address the topic of increasing your club head speed with the driver. If you can add speed to your driver swing, you are naturally going to hit the ball farther from the tee. Even a minor increase of just a few miles per hour can have a noticeable impact on how far your ball travels down the fairway. No matter what your swing speed currently look like, you should be able to squeeze out at least a little more speed by fine tuning your mechanics. Also, the way your mind works before and during the swing impacts your swing speed, so we will be addressing the mental side of this equation as well.

When you think about increasing your club head speed with the driver, you might first picture yourself spending long hours in a gym, building muscle and increasing your flexibility in order to swing harder. That isn't the way we are going to approach the topic in this article. Sure, you can improve on your swing speed by improving your fitness level, but that is a topic for another article. Here, we are going to stick to things you can do with your current body to hit the ball farther. Through a combination of mental and mechanical adjustments, you should be able to find more speed without lifting a single weight.

Of course, as a nice side benefit, the improvements you make in club head speed with the driver should spill over to your irons as well. Once you start swinging faster with the longest club in your bag, it is almost certain that you will swing faster throughout your set. This means more distance all the way from tee to green, and it means you will be better equipped to handle long golf courses. While the driver might be your favorite club in the bag, you have to play well with all 14 clubs in your set if you are going to post low scores round after round. Since the mechanics of your driver swing are not significantly different from the swings you make with other clubs, the advice contained throughout this article should help you no matter where on the course you happen to find your ball.

All of the content below is based on a right-handed golfer. If you happen to play left-handed, please take a moment to reverse the directions as necessary.

Laying the Groundwork for Speed

Laying the Groundwork for Speed

Before the club ever goes in motion, there are a few things you can do which will increase your chances of making a fast swing. The setup position in golf is extremely important, yet it is something which is ignored by the average golfer. Sure, it might not be very much fun to work on your stance at the driving range, but such work will pay off in the long run. If you dedicate yourself to learning the pre-swing fundamentals, your game will head in the right direction.

When talking about the driver swing, there are a few key pre-swing points to keep in mind. Those points are as follows –

  • Use a wide stance. The driver swing is the longest swing you are going to make on the course. Most drivers are 45'' long, meaning you will need to trace a long, wide arc from start to finish in the swing. To make sure you maintain your balance while making such a long swing, it is a good idea to position your feet rather widely at address. Make sure each foot is slightly outside of shoulder width when you stand over the ball. This type of stance will make it easy for you to make a full rotation without having to worry about losing your balance in one direction or the other. Your stance is naturally going to narrow as the clubs get shorter on other shots, but you should always make sure you have a solid base.
  • Flex your knees. Your lower body is going to play a big role in your ability to produce speed in the swing. Without great support from your lower half, it will be basically impossible to produce a powerful move through the ball. At address, be sure to flex your knees in order to engage your legs right from the start. Although your legs aren't going to do anything actively in the backswing, starting with your knees flexed will put you in a position to use your lower body properly when the downswing begins. Too many amateur golfers stand with their legs straight at address, which is why so many players lack speed through the ball. Also, standing with your legs straight is one of the leading causes of a slice. Whether hitting a driver or a pitching wedge, flexing your knees at address is a key component to a quality swing.
  • Play the ball forward in your stance. In order to give yourself as much time as possible to accelerate the club into the ball, try playing the ball up near the front of your stance with the driver. As a good rule of thumb, you should line the ball up roughly with the inside of your left foot. It is okay to move the ball forward or back slightly from this point based on personal preference, but you shouldn't go too far away from this guideline. Not only will a forward ball position help you to accelerate the club, but it will also help you make contact on the upswing – and important piece of the puzzle when trying to launch long drives.
  • Keep your hands relaxed. This is an often-overlooked point when it comes to the driver, but it is important nonetheless. At address, make sure your hands are relatively relaxed around the grip of the club. You should not be squeezing tightly before starting the swing. A relaxed grip is going to help the club to move more freely through the hitting area, which should help you to produce more speed in the end. Of course, you have to hold on tight enough to avoid having the club slip out of your hands, so work on striking a perfect balance on this point. The end goal here is to hold on just tight enough to control the club, and no tighter.

As you can see, there is a lot to get straight in your swing before you can even put the club in motion. The nice thing about working on the points above is the fact that you don't even have to be at the range to make progress on these tips. Feel free to practice them at home, as long as you have a space to take a stance and hold your driver. Without even making a swing, you can get better at golf by taking your address position over and over again. If you are able to get that prep work done at home, you will be able to work on other parts of your technique when you do get out to the driving range.

In-Swing Speed Tips

In-Swing Speed Tips

If you are able to follow along with the tips from the previous section, you should be in great shape when taking your stance over the ball. Of course, the job is far from done at this point, as you will still need to make the actual swing. The swing only takes a couple of seconds to complete, but there is a lot that needs to happen from start to finish. If you are going to send the ball traveling a great distance down the fairway, you need to not only use the right mechanics – but you also need to use them in the right order.

To focus on adding speed to the bottom of your driver swing, keep the following tips in mind.

  • Maintain your width. Making a narrow swing is one of the quickest ways to rob yourself of power. You need to keep the swing wide throughout – both on the way back and on the way through. In the backswing, this means resisting the temptation to use your hands too actively in the takeaway. Use your shoulders to turn away from the target while only involving your hands and wrists once the takeaway is complete. By making a wide backswing, you will have plenty of room on the way down to accelerate the club aggressively into the ball. Most amateur golfers have a narrow backswing, which is why so many struggle to hit the ball any significant distance from the tee.
  • Take your time. This is where the golf swing will seem like a bit of a contradiction. If you want to hit the ball hard, shouldn't you make a fast swing? Well – yes and no. You do need to swing fast through the ball, of course, but the club does not need to move fast the rest of the time. In fact, you would be better served to make a relatively slow swing overall, only picking up the speed on your way into the ball. Many golfers rush through the backswing, thinking that they will be able to carry their backswing speed into the downswing. Sadly, that isn't possible. Since the club has to stop at the top to change directions, none of the speed you have in your backswing is going to have anything to do with your downswing. Therefore, instead of rushing through the early stages of your move, take your time and stay on balance. Once you have completed a smooth, relaxed transition at the top, you can then turn on the speed as you accelerate hard through impact.
  • Pull from the top. The first move you make from the top of the swing is often the most important in terms of creating speed throughout the downswing. When the backswing has been completed and your lower body has started to turn toward the target, pull down with your left hand to move the club into position properly. By pulling the club down with your left hand, you should get into a great spot to 'lag' the club nicely into the ball. This is where most golfers go wrong. Instead of pulling down with the left, they push the club toward the ball with the right hand, and lagging the club becomes an impossibility. Don't let yourself make this mistake. Commit to lagging the club by using your left hand to pull the club into the slot. Once you have started down in this manner, all you have to do is keep turning through the shot aggressively. In the end, you will be left with a swing which builds speed nicely from the top all the way through the ball.
  • Get to your left side. The last speed tip we will provide in this section is to make sure you get onto your left side by the time you swing through impact and into the finish. There should be no 'hanging back' through impact – you should be moving left with everything you've got. It is important to note, however, that you should be moving left as a result of your rotation. Some golfers try to slide to the left in the downswing, which is never a good idea. Sliding left will not allow you to create and speed, and you will struggle to keep the ball on line as well. Use your lower body to rotate hard toward the target and your body should naturally move to the left as a result. When the swing is over, you should be nicely balanced on your left foot while watching the ball sail through the sky.

Don't try to implement all of these swing tips at the same time. Instead, work through them one at a time on the range, giving each one the time and attention that it deserves. In fact, you might need to spend several practice sessions on just one point – but that's okay. Improving your swing takes time, and you are going to need patience if you want to come out on the other side as a better player.

The Mental Side of Speed

The Mental Side of Speed

You certainly need to have the physical mechanics of your swing in good condition if you are going to create speed through the bottom of your swing. However, physical mechanics are only part of the equation. You also need to have your mind in a 'good place', as thinking properly on the golf course is a big part of playing well. Even when it comes to something like adding miles per hour to your driver swing, your mind just might be the most powerful tool you have available.

To give yourself a great chance to maximize your swing speed out on the course, trust the following mental game tips.

  • Have a specific target in mind. Believe it or not, you can actually improve your club head speed simply by knowing where you are trying to hit the ball before you take your swing. This might seem like a simple point, but many golfers get over the ball without first thinking about where they would like it to go. Just aiming 'for the fairway' isn't good enough – you need to pick out a specific point and then do your best to hit that point. With a precise target in mind, you will make a swing which is focused and determined to succeed. In the end, there will be more speed in your swing, and you will hit the ball farther time after time.
  • Trust your preparation. You aren't going to find your swing out on the golf course. You are going to have to get through the round with the swing you have in place – so accept it and trust it to the greatest degree possible. The driving range is where you work out any problems you have in your mechanics, so leave that work for a later date. Once you are on the course, put away technical thoughts and trust in the preparation that you have done. It isn't always going to be easy to trust your swing, but doing so will help you to unlock power you may not have known you have.
  • Find a way to use your favorite ball flight. If you decide to play a shot shape which is outside of your comfort zone, you will almost certainly lose swing speed as a result. To avoid that outcome, look for a way to use your favorite ball flight on as many drives as possible. It won't always be possible to hit your favorite type of shot, but you should be able to do so more often than not. If you can't hit your preferred ball flight with the driver, you may be better off going down to a shorter club to give yourself more room to work.

It is always important to have your mind in a good place when on the course. Golf is a significant mental challenge, as there is a lot of time to think between holes. By thinking properly before hitting any tee shot with your driver, you can improve your swing speed and your results at the same time.

The Role of Equipment

The Role of Equipment

It would be a mistake to end this article without some mention of the importance of equipment in golf. Specifically, since we are talking about the driver in this article, it needs to be said that you should be using a driver which suits your swing. There is no such thing as the 'best' driver on the market – it is just a matter of finding the best driver for your game.

To increase your swing speed, you will want to consider using a shaft which is slightly lighter than what you have used previously. Also, you will want to make sure the shaft in your driver is not too stiff for your swing. If you are using a shaft which is too stiff, it will be difficult to make a proper swing and still send the ball toward your target. Forcing yourself to work harder by using a shaft which is too heavy, too stiff, or both, is only going to lead to bad results.

If you suspect that you are using a driver which is limiting your ability to create speed, it would be a good idea to go through a club fitting session with your local pro. Club fitting sessions are relatively inexpensive, they don't take very much time, and they can lead to some interesting discoveries about your swing and your gear. By trusting the local pro to help you find the right club, you can come away with a driver which helps you maximize your performance on the course. Golf is hard enough as it is – you don't need to make it harder by using the wrong driver.

The idea of adding speed to your swing is an exciting one, to be sure. By picking up even just a few miles per hour on your driver swing, you can tack extra yards onto your drives and you can set yourself up with shorter approach shots. You should never sacrifice control for distance, but if you can add distance without giving up control, you will be on the fast-track to a better overall game. We hope the tips included in this article help you to unlock that extra swing speed you have been looking for – good luck!