Distance, we are taught, is the key to building a great game of golf. Every golfer wants to know how to drive a golf ball farther and reduce the distance of the approach shot.
Although accuracy will make your life simpler by playing off the fairway, many younger golfers have adopted the bomb-and-gouge approach. They are hitting their drives as far as possible and then use a short iron to hit the green. Many can even hit the green from the rough.
A good example of golfers adopting the bomb-and-gouge style is Bryson DeChambeau, who underwent a total physical transformation to help him drive the ball further than most other professionals. He’s not the only professional golfer that has successfully adopted this approach.
Do you want to know how to drive the golf ball farther? This post will teach you how to adjust your golf swing, what equipment to look for, and what mistakes to avoid.
Read on to learn everything you need to know.
How to Hit a Golf Ball Farther
Swing speed alone is not going to give you more distance. If you want to know how to drive a golf ball, hitting the golf ball in the sweet spot consistently ensures that you are up there with your playing partners if they spread the ball all over.
It is a common belief that an increase of one mile per hour will add up to three yards of extra distance.
A relaxed swing enables you to create more consistency, as tension is one of the biggest factors robbing you of distance and consistency. A constant pre-swing routine, including breathing exercises, enable you to focus and relax when you stand over the ball. Minimizing the time standing over the ball is advisable as it could initiate negative thoughts that impact your accuracy.
Waggling your hands will free up the tension.
The larger the arc created during the swing; the more speed you can generate that will provide extra distance. Building torque in your lower body on the backswing will also add to the club head speed that you can generate.
To build torque, you must build resistance on your trailing leg by rotating around the leg without swaying your body from the target. This is the time to start transferring your weight to your back leg and pushing your back foot down into the turf.
Creating a wide arc requires pushing the golf club back as far as possible without losing balance and control. Keeping your arms straight will make it easier to create a large arc. Cocking your wrists will ensure that you optimize the distance the club must travel during the downswing.
To generate maximum speed, you must start the downswing with your lower body using the torque in the backswing.
The weight transfer process started during the backswing will be reversed as you reach the top of the swing. This will maximize the rotation of your body and move the bottom of the arc forward, allowing you to exercise maximum compression of the golf ball at impact.
Generating maximumclub head speed at the time of impact, you must keep your hands cocked to create lag until your hands are below hip height. Releasing your hands too early will create maximum speed midway through the swing causing a. casting action.
Maximum speed can be identified by the swooshing sound made by the clubhead. Ideally, you want to hear this sound directly after impact.
Pushing your feet into the ground during the swing and correcting weight transfer will offer you the most stability and maximize speed.
How To Improve Your Strength and Flexibility
To increase your ability to maximize swing speed, you must look after your physical fitness and flexibility. Increased flexibility will give you a longer backswing and increase the distance of the downswing.
Good physical conditioning will enable you to maximize your swing speed and reduce the possibility of injuries. Stretching before starting your round will increase your flexibility and has been proven to increase your swing speed.
Because the golf swing revolves mainly around your core, it is important to identify the specific areas that need strengthening and develop your training schedule accordingly. A strong core will increase your ability to stay stable during the swing sequence and generate maximum torque.
The main muscle groups to strengthen are:
Recommended exercises and muscle groups strengthened:
- Squats are aimed at strengthening your upper legs, glutes, and lower back
- Single leg squat with arm reach has a high degree of difficulty that requires ample strength and control over body movements
- Back extensions to improve flexibility and strength in your back
- Hip loader for strong posture and enhanced lateral movement
- 90/90s to strengthen glutes
- Forearm pronation strengthens your outer forearms
- Forearm supination to strengthen your inner forearms
- Wrist extension to strengthen your wrist
- Rotational lunges increase strength in your lower back, glutes, and enable you to fire your hips
Related Article: How to Stop Topping a Driver
The Right Equipment for Driving
The right equipment suited to your swing and physical attributes will ensure you get the best results. If possible, you should have a golf club fitting with your local professional club fitter.
Your swing speed will determine the most suitable loft for your driver. A slower swing speed requires more loft to attain more height as it generates less spin.
Shaft characteristics are of major significance as a soft flex will generate too much spin and a loss of distance. The weight, torque, and kick point are other characteristics to consider in selecting the right shaft.
Monitoring progress through a launch monitor will highlight swing dynamics that need improvement to increase swing speed and allow you to hit the golf ball farther.
In addition to having the right equipment, you should focus on physical conditioning and swing mechanics that use training aids to monitor and improve weight transfer and swing tempo.
Read more: The best cameras to record your golf swing
How to Drive a Golf Ball: 10 Steps
The following steps will help you drive your golf balls farther to improve your golf game on the course. With continued practice, you will see your golf score improve.
Step #1: Choose the Proper Loft
You need to choose a driver with the proper loft. We recommend a 9 or 10-degree loft, rather than in the past when golfers would use a 7 or 8-degree loft. Higher loft matters especially for beginners, because it will give you golf shots with greater consistency.
Step #2: Pick the Right Club
Your choice depends on the hole, and you won’t always use a driver. A 3, 5, or 7 wood will do the trick if on par 3. You can use your swing speed to determine which club you should choose. Irons will give you a higher loft than woods. For closer shots, an iron will often do the trick.
Step #3: Get into Position
When you go to take the shot, align your body with a vertical marker off in the distance. You might choose a distant tree, person, or bush. Vertical markers do the best because your eyes can see an example of how hard to hit it. Don’t bend your left arm too early because this can hurt your distance.
Step #4: Proper Positioning of Feet
You need to put your feet into the right position. Position the ball inline with the left heel of the front foot. Beware of putting the ball too far forward. You want good contact between the club and the ball.
When you go to take the swing, your feet should be 1.5 feet apart. If you swing an iron, you want your feet 2 feet apart. You want to create a striking balance so that your club hits the ball just right.
Step #5: Position Your Arms
You need to position your arms correctly as well. You want your arms straight in the shape of a V. You will grip the club with the front edge flat on the ground.
Step #6: The Right Pressure
Gripping the club harder and swinging harder won’t yield the results you hope for. You will struggle to hit the ball consistently if you use too much pressure. Phil Galvano, a legendary golf instructor, introduced the idea of holding a bird gently. You don’t want to crush the bird, but you don’t want it to fall out of your hands.
Step #7: Choose the Right Swing
You can choose from two types of swings: power swings and control swings.
- The power swing was made to strike the ball as far as possible, regardless of control.
- The control swing gives you an edge with accuracy and was meant to prevent you from hitting sand traps, trees and water hazards.
Step #8: During the Swing
You want to stay calm and unhurried throughout your golf swing. You build up your speed the closer the club comes to the ball. Rushing will make it harder to hit the sweet spot.
Step #9: Favor the Angle Toward Your Leading Hand
Many beginners will move their hands forward to put the ball into the air. On the downswing, you will angle your hand down toward the ball.
Step #10: Follow through with the Swing
After you finish your swing, the club will swing over the shoulder. For a right-handed golfer, the club swings over the left shoulder, and for left-handers, the club swings over the right shoulder. You don’t need to rush to look up and see where the ball landed. When you follow all the proper steps, the ball will go where you wanted it to go.
If you’d like to see a demonstration of how to drive a golf ball, check out the video below:
Most Important Things to Know When Driving the Ball
First, the grip you put on the club will make a difference when you drive the ball. Don’t underestimate the impact that this will have. Second, pay attention to your loft because that will matter when driving a golf ball. Finally, pay special attention to your swing; don’t think you can power through it fast since this will hinder your consistency.
You start with an easy pace and increase the speed the closer you come to the golf ball. That’s how to hit a golf ball with a driver.
Related Article: How to Stop a Slice with a Driver
5 Tips to Drive a Golf Ball
Tip #1: Widen Your Stance
For the driving form golf stance, you widen your foot positioning because it allows you a more stable platform to swing from. It ensures that as you take the swing, it won’t throw you off balance.
Tip #2: Practice with a Launch Monitor
An increasing number of PGA pros bring a launch monitor with them on the golf course. Launch monitors give you the advantage of exact numbers like club speed, launch angles, spin rates, and smash factor. A launch monitor will allow you to understand your swing mechanics on the course.
Tip #3: Work on Decreasing Your Spin Rate
When beginning to learn how to drive a ball, most beginners have an excessive spin rate that kills distance. Excessive spin rates happen because of a downward strike on the ball that creates an excess backspin.
Tip #4: Begin with More Weight on the Trailing Foot
You want to create extra grip pressure toward the inside of your right thigh. Aim for about 60 percent of the weight on the right glute. The pressure toward the back right foot will deliver a more powerful punch come time for the swing.
Tip #5: Head to the Gym
That may sound hilarious for the sport of golf, but Tiger Woods was the one who inspired a new generation of golfers to go beyond the course. You want to become a strong athletic driver of power. Good fitness will let you strike the ball for greater distances. This sums up the tips for driving the golf ball.
Where Do You Stand When Driving a Golf Ball?
You stand so that your feet are shoulder-width apart, and you want the ball positioned forward enough to sit just inside of the left heel. During this positioning, you want an even distribution of your body weight.
Where Do You Look When Driving a Golf Ball?
During the golf swing, you should look toward the front edge of the golf ball. You do this to create an inside/out-swing. While it may appear as quite subtle, this slight change will put your center of gravity in the right direction for the best outcome.
Swing speed is your best friend in improving driving distance. To achieve this, it is important to maintain good physical condition if you want to remain competitive off the tee.
Understanding the swing mechanics will allow you to identify specific areas that you can work on without consulting a swing coach. That does not mean that you do not have to sign up with a swing coach to fine-tune your swing for maximum contact.
Targeted exercises to strengthen your core will reduce the risk of picking up injuries and keeping you away from your favorite sport. This combined with pre-round warm-up and stretches, can allow you to be the one that your playing partners aspire to be as you hit the golf ball straight to the hole.
If you have any feedback or advice on how to drive a golf ball, please post it in the comment section below.
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Nick Lomas is the founder of GolfSpan, an avid golfer, not quite a pro but has over 15-years of experience playing and coaching golfers from all over the world. His mission is to bring the golfing community a better experience then it comes to choosing the right golf gear, and finding the right set up for your game.