In The Market for a New Driver?

Why so many options?

Generally, each manufacturer will have 3 to 4 drivers every year. Each is tailored to certain categories of golfers. They’ll have a driver that is made for the professionals, these generally offer the most distance, but the least forgiveness. Professionals hit the ball more consistently, so they don’t need as much forgiveness. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll have drivers that are made for higher handicappers. These generally maximize forgiveness, but sacrifice some distance. In this category, many of the manufacturers will offer a club that is designed specifically to draw the ball, this helps to correct those slices. Then you have the “in-between” drivers, these offer some forgiveness, and still have good distance, but not as much distance as the clubs made for the Pro’s, or as much forgiveness as those made for higher handicappers. If you would like some help determining which clubs are best suited for your game, check out our Driver Selector Tool.

How much distance will I have to give up for that added forgiveness?

The simple answer is – not much at all! You are probably looking at about 5 yards stepping down from a pro club, then another 7-10 for maximum forgiveness. Drive for Show, Putt for Dough!!! Giving up 5-15 yards of distance on your drive to have a much better chance of hitting the fairway seems like a no-brainer for the majority of golfers out there.

What are all of these adjustments and different options?

Loft adjustable clubs almost always have the ability to adjust the loft ± 1.5°. Meaning, your 10.5 degree lofted club can actually turn into a 9 degree or a 12 degree lofted club with a quick adjustment. Historically, 10° has been about the average loft on a driver, so if you are unsure what loft you should get, keep it simple and go with a 10.5°.

Lie Angle adjustments aren’t as straight forward as loft. Each driver will be sold with a particular lie angle, usually somewhere between 56 – 60 degrees. Adjustments are typically with “N” and “D”, for Neutral and Draw. The Lie Angle is the angle measured from the center of the hosel to the ground.

Flex is all about swing speed. The faster you swing the club, the more stiffness you should have. If you are swinging over 105mph with your driver, you will need an X stiff shaft. Someone with a swing speed of 85mph would want a regular flex shaft. No need to go get your swing speed measured, check out our shaft flex selection tool to determine what you need (coming soon).

Length is generally at 45inches for driver, but some manufacturers are starting to increase that a bit. The longer the club the more swing speed that is generated, which translates into longer distance. The problem however is that accuracy will start to become more difficult with a longer club. The potential for a few yards of extra distance will likely not be worth the loss in accuracy and inconsistency introduced by a longer club – for most golfers. Aside from getting a custom club fitting, or having the luxury of trying multiple length shafts, your best bet is to simply choose the standard length.

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