Beginner Golf Driving: Driving Basics (Video)
Beginner Golf Driving: Driving Basics (Video)

Teeing off on the golf course or driving the ball on the golf course is often one of the skills that most people want to develop first because they want that glamour shot; the one that goes a long way. It’s a bit of a macho thing to try and out-drive your mates on the golf course. It’s actually one of the hardest skills to get right and one of the skills that will encourage your scores to increase if you not very good at it.

You don’t have to drive the ball off every hole, you could take an iron or a hybrid or even a fairway wood to keep the golf ball in play, but if it’s really the drive that’s your focus and you want to hit ball as far as possible with the driver, here’s a few tips will hopefully help you out.

To start with when you’re driving, you need to have the ball teed up at the right height. So, I’ve got quite a big tee-peg in the mat here and it’s the tee-peg that produces a ball position where round about half of the ball is above the top of my club. So if I can lay the red line half way bring the club in, about a half of that ball sits above the top of my driver and that would help me to hit the ball up into the air and sweep the ball without digging the club down too much into the turf. So, I have a nice high tee-peg. I would then position that goal ball right opposite to my left foot for the right handed golfer so a long way forwards in my stance. I then double check that I’m standing the right distance away from the golf ball so the club is positioned just two inches or an inch above my left knee cap about three fingers, I then go ahead and make my normal grip and my normal comfortable address position.

I am going to tempted just lean to back a little bit into right leg now, my rear leg, so I get a little bit more body weight onto my back foot and as I turn back from the golf ball it’s important here that I am not trying to stay over the top of the golf ball too much. I see a lot of people because they have learned with irons, they’re used to having their chin pretty much over the ball when they get to the driver, they want to lean forwards over the golf ball. Try and avoid that, try and feel like you move back nicely with your shoulder rotation, so you got a little bit body weight onto your right side, that creates a bit more power you can now drive forwards hitting the golf ball very quickly and aggressively stretching your arms out into the distance.

Remember you driver will always give the golf ball more curvature and if it starts to curve in the air and it goes further which is another trait for the driver it will go further off line. So just be really careful as and when you use your driver, use it on the wide open holes, don’t use it when there is danger and out of bounds, and water hazards, just play a little bit safe from those holes. But if you’ve got the driver, you’ve got the ball nicely forwards in your stance, you’re leaning back a little bit, it’s on a nice high tee-peg go ahead give it a nice swing and see how far you can hit it.

2012-08-02

As a beginning golfer, one of the most valuable things you can learn to do is hit quality drives.

Beginner Golf Tip Driving

Unfortunately, this is often the part of the game that is the most intimidating for the average player. It is quite difficult to hit a driver properly, especially at first, and your poor shots may be a little embarrassing. If you hope to get to a higher level in golf and enjoy this game for years to come, getting over the tee shot hurdle should be one of your main objectives.

In this article, we are going to offer an assortment of golf tips, all of which are related to the task of driving the golf ball. By a ‘drive’, we mean a tee shot that is played with a driver. As a beginner, you are going to use your driver from the tee on most of the par four and par five holes on your local course. Rather than seeing your driver as an enemy – which is the case for many beginners – make it a goal to turn this club into one of your favorites. Having a positive attitude and some confidence when you take your driver out of the bag will go a long way toward helping you make progress.

Something you are sure to learn as a beginner in this game is that improving your golf skills takes time. Don’t give up on these tips if they don’t seem to pay immediate dividends. Most of the things you learn in golf will take time to pay off, so be patient and keep practicing. As long as you stick with it, you should start to see progress as the weeks and months go by.

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.

Basic Mechanical Tips

Basic Mechanical Tips

Let’s be honest – learning the mechanics of the golf swing is difficult. When you watch an experienced golfer hit a driver, it looks so simple. They seem to just turn to the right while lifting the club, turn back to the left, and send the ball on its way. Of course, you learn just how difficult it really is when you try it out for yourself. Striking good shots with any club is difficult, and many players find the driver to be the most challenging of all.

In this section, we are going to list a few basic mechanical tips that you should keep in mind while practicing with your driver. The emphasis here is on ‘simple’ – these are not complicated tips, and you should be able to easily understand them as a beginner. There are plenty of more advanced methods to learn as you gain experience in this game, but don’t worry about that for now. At this point, you need to keep things simple and look for signs of progress. Let’s get started!

  • Make a big shoulder turn. Learning to turn your shoulders properly during the golf swing is one of the most valuable skills you can build as a golfer. One of the nice things about working on this part of your technique is that it doesn’t really need much explanation – the term ‘shoulder turn’ pretty much explains exactly what you are trying to do. You simply need to turn your shoulders away from the target, and then turn them back toward the target as the club comes down. To make a good shoulder turn, you will want to avoid rushing during your swing. It takes time for the shoulders to turn back and through properly, and you aren’t going to be able to make it happen if you feel like you need to rush through the swing to get it over with. Be patient, let the swing develop slowly, and focus on getting as much out of your turn as possible. Many beginning golfers never manage to learn a proper shoulder turn, so mastering this piece of the puzzle will be a big step in the right direction.
  • Start slow. This point plays off of what we were talking about in the previous point regarding rushing through the golf swing. To get yourself off to a good start when hitting a driver, try to make a slow move back away from the ball. This first phase of the swing is called the ‘takeaway’, and you don’t want to start off by rushing your takeaway. Basically, if you get off to a fast start with the swing, it’s going to be hard to slow things down properly later on. Instead, it is far better to start slowly and let the swing pick up speed as it goes. It is common for golfers to struggle with a slow takeaway simply because they are too excited or nervous to stick with a slow tempo. Do your best to keep your emotions in check and maintain a smooth and even tempo for your entire backswing. Move the club slowly back from the ball and you’ll be off to a good start with your driver swing.
  • Get great extension. As you may already know, the slice is the biggest problem for beginning golfers when talking about driver shots. Nearly every golfer goes through a period of hitting slices before they manage to straighten things out and put the ball in the fairway more often. If the slice seems to be a natural part of your game with the driver, it’s quite likely that you aren’t getting enough extension on the way back. In other words, the club is too close to your body during the backswing, and you are crowded when you get to the top. From there, you have to push the club away from your body just to make a downswing, and you end up swinging across the ball from outside-in. This is the motion that leads to a slice in most cases, so breaking this pattern is your main objective. By making a wider backswing – keeping the club farther away from your body – you can put yourself in a position to make a quality downswing that brings the club straight into the back of the ball. We will talk about the slice in greater detail later in the article.
  • Swing through to the finish. It is common for beginning golfers to think that the swing basically ends when the club contacts the ball. That simply isn’t the case – you need to swing all the way through to the finish in order to produce quality shots on a consistent basis. If you are trying to stop the swing shortly after impact, you’ll likely wind up slowing the club down before you even touch the ball. Obviously, that is not an ideal way to swing the club. By planning to swing all the way up to a full finish, you can remain aggressive through the hitting area and maximize your distance potential.

You don’t have to start off thinking about complicated mechanics when trying to learn how to hit a driver. The four tips listed above are good options for beginning golfers because they are simple and easy to understand. From making a good shoulder turn and starting your swing slow, to getting plenty of extension and swinging to a full finish, these should be pretty simple keys to implement. Plenty of practice will be required to make them natural parts of your swing, but you shouldn’t face any confusion as you work on the range. Consistent practice is the only way to improve in this difficult game, so get started as soon as possible!

Strategy on the Tee

Strategy on the Tee

Even as a beginner, thinking strategically off the tee is a good idea. Many new golfers make the mistake of thinking that they don’t need to worry much about strategy, since they don’t really know where the ball is going to go, anyway. This is the wrong way to approach the game. You should still plan out all of your shots carefully, even if many of them wind up going somewhere else. Eventually, you’ll improve your ability to control the ball, and the skill of planning your tee shots will already be established.

So, how do you think strategically when getting ready to hit a tee shot on a par four or par five hole? Let’s take a look at a few tips.

  • Club selection first. As soon as you get on the tee, your first objective should be to decide which club you are going to use for the shot. It is important that you don’t just default to using the driver without first thinking things through. Is the driver actually the right club for the job? Could you set up a nice approach shot by using a shorter (and safer) club? You always need to think carefully about club selection in this game (except when on the greens), and tee shots are no different.
  • Think about your next shot. Golf is a sequential game, meaning that one shot leads into the next. Therefore, when planning your tee shot, you should really be thinking about where you want your ball to be positioned for the next shot. Where can you place the ball that will give you a good chance to hit a quality approach? This doesn’t always mean pushing the ball as far up toward the green as possible, since sometimes the best thing you can do is set up a good angle from the right or left side of the fairway. Do your best to analyze the entire hole from the tee and identify the path of least resistance.
  • Give hazards extra attention. As a beginning golfer, one of the fastest ways you can lower your scores is simply to respect the hazards on the course and stay away from them as successfully as possible. Adding penalty strokes to your score is a big problem, especially when you don’t yet have the skills to make a few birdies as a way to recover. When planning tee shots, identify any hazards that are in play for the shot and give them the respect they deserve.

As you gain experience on the course, you will get more and more comfortable with the task of making a game plan – both for your tee shots and for any other shots you need to hit. Golf is a game that is all about strategy, yet most players focus only on the physical side of the equation. Do your best to think your way around the golf course and you may be surprised to find just how much better you can perform.

Getting Away from the Slice

Getting Away from the Slice

In this section, we are going to tackle a bit topic – the slice. Countless golfers struggle with the slice, and this group is certainly not restricted to beginners. Plenty of experienced players never manage to get rid of the slice, and they find golf to be a rather frustrating game as a result. It’s always going to be hard to play the game when your tee shots consistently miss way to the right of the fairway. To take the next step forward as a golfer, you need to find a way to eliminate the slice once and for all.

Earlier in the article, we talked about how a lack of extension can lead to a slice. That is certainly true, but there are other issues which may lead to the slice, as well. The list below is going to touch on three of those points.

  • Avoiding a rushed backswing. Earlier in the article, we discussed how it is important to get off to a slow start in your golf swing. If you rush through the early stages of the swing, you are going to struggle to hit solid shots for a number of reasons. One of the problems with rushing your swing is that you tend to cut the backswing short, and that is going to put the club in an awkward position. Most likely, the club will be to the outside of the proper plane, and you’ll have to swing down from the outside. If you swing down from outside-in, the slice is always going to be a likely outcome. By slowing down your backswing, it’s more likely that you will make it all the way up to the top successfully – and if you do, it’s going to be easier to stay away from the slice. Improving the pace of your backswing might not be the only thing necessary to break the slice pattern, but it will be a move in the right direction.
  • Proper setup. Sometimes, a slice is the likely outcome of a swing before the club even goes in motion. This is due to a poor setup position, which is rather common among beginners. You want to line up over the ball in such a way that your feet are parallel with the target line you have picked out for the shot. Also, you want to do your best to match up the position of your shoulders, hips, and knees with the position of your feet. If you can do this successfully, it’s going to be easier to swing directly down the target line, rather than swinging from outside-in. The common mistake here is aiming out to the right of the intended target. When that happens, the player subconsciously forces the swing to come back to the left, in an effort to pull the ball back toward the target. That’s a problem, of course, because it causes the club to move across the line from right to left – which is exactly what you are trying to avoid. During a practice session, take some time to work on your stance and make sure you are placing your feet, and the rest of your body, in a good position to be successful.
  • Finishing the swing. Again, we see another tip that is repeated from earlier in the article, and for good reason. If you are going to stay away from the slice, you need to make sure to swing through to a full finish time after time. Getting into the habit of cutting off your swing prematurely is a problem for many reasons, including the fact that it may promote a slice. You shouldn’t think of the golf ball as the finish line for your swing, but rather as a checkpoint along the way. You need to swing aggressively through the ball on and all the way into the finish. The swing isn’t done until you have rotated toward the target and you are watching the ball sail through the air.

It’s hard to fall in love with the game of golf while fighting a nasty slice. Sure, you may enjoy parts of the game while still dealing with a slice, but the fun of golf will never be truly enjoyed until you can at least get off the tee in good shape. If you can hit reasonably straight shots off most of the tees, it’s far more likely that you’ll come to enjoy your time on the links.

Equipment Concerns

Equipment Concerns

As a new golfer, you know that you have a lot to learn. That includes learning the basic technique need to play this game, the standard etiquette that should be followed, and the terminology that golfers use. In addition to all of that, you’ll also need to pick up a little bit of an education on the world of golf equipment. In this last section, we are going to touch on a few key equipment points, at least as far as the driver is concerned.

  • Watch shaft flex carefully. One easy way to get into trouble with your golf equipment is to pick out club shafts which are too stiff for your abilities at the moment. Most likely, as a beginning player, you are going to need a ‘regular’ flex shaft. It’s possible that some stronger beginners will need a ‘stiff’ flex, but those players will be the exception rather than the rule. It’s almost certain that you won’t need a club which fits into the ‘extra stiff’ classification, unless you are a tremendous athlete from another sport. Using a driver shaft which is too stiff is a problem because you won’t be able to bend the shaft properly in the downswing. That means the club won’t be able to help you much through impact, and you’ll lack power on your shots. If you aren’t sure what kind of driver shaft is right for you, ask for help at your local golf shop.
  • Plenty of loft. In addition to finding the right driver shaft, you also want to make sure you have plenty of loft on your driver. 10.5 degrees of loft is a good starting point, and you may want to go even a bit higher than that. Professional golfers and accomplished amateurs will typically use less loft, but that is due to their advanced skill. Right now, you need all the help you can get just getting the ball off the ground, which is why opting for more loft if the right decision.
  • Pick a beginner golf ball. As a new player, you should not be shelling out $40 per dozen for golf balls. There is simply no need to make such an investment, even if you don’t mind spending the money. Your skills are not yet developed to the point where you can take advantage of the features those balls have to offer. Stick with golf balls that cost around $20 or less and don’t worry so much when you lose a few of them along the way.

Getting started in golf is both exciting and intimidating. Learning how to get off the tee successfully is one of the big hurdles you need to clear before you can grow your confidence on the course. We hope the advice provided in this article will help you learn how to use your driver more effectively. Good luck and have fun!

Teeing off on the golf course or driving the ball on the golf course is often one of the skills that most people want to develop first because they want that glamour shot; the one that goes a long way. It’s a bit of a macho thing to try and out-drive your mates on the golf course. It’s actually one of the hardest skills to get right and one of the skills that will encourage your scores to increase if you not very good at it.

You don’t have to drive the ball off every hole, you could take an iron or a hybrid or even a fairway wood to keep the golf ball in play, but if it’s really the drive that’s your focus and you want to hit ball as far as possible with the driver, here’s a few tips will hopefully help you out.

To start with when you’re driving, you need to have the ball teed up at the right height. So, I’ve got quite a big tee-peg in the mat here and it’s the tee-peg that produces a ball position where round about half of the ball is above the top of my club. So if I can lay the red line half way bring the club in, about a half of that ball sits above the top of my driver and that would help me to hit the ball up into the air and sweep the ball without digging the club down too much into the turf. So, I have a nice high tee-peg. I would then position that goal ball right opposite to my left foot for the right handed golfer so a long way forwards in my stance. I then double check that I’m standing the right distance away from the golf ball so the club is positioned just two inches or an inch above my left knee cap about three fingers, I then go ahead and make my normal grip and my normal comfortable address position.

I am going to tempted just lean to back a little bit into right leg now, my rear leg, so I get a little bit more body weight onto my back foot and as I turn back from the golf ball it’s important here that I am not trying to stay over the top of the golf ball too much. I see a lot of people because they have learned with irons, they’re used to having their chin pretty much over the ball when they get to the driver, they want to lean forwards over the golf ball. Try and avoid that, try and feel like you move back nicely with your shoulder rotation, so you got a little bit body weight onto your right side, that creates a bit more power you can now drive forwards hitting the golf ball very quickly and aggressively stretching your arms out into the distance.

Remember you driver will always give the golf ball more curvature and if it starts to curve in the air and it goes further which is another trait for the driver it will go further off line. So just be really careful as and when you use your driver, use it on the wide open holes, don’t use it when there is danger and out of bounds, and water hazards, just play a little bit safe from those holes. But if you’ve got the driver, you’ve got the ball nicely forwards in your stance, you’re leaning back a little bit, it’s on a nice high tee-peg go ahead give it a nice swing and see how far you can hit it.