The drive is one of the most important shots in golf. A strong, far-reaching drive can set you up for success at the hole and give you a confidence boost to help you stay focused during your mid and short games. On the other hand, a short drive can be difficult to recover from and leave you feeling rattled.
Due to the importance of the shot, improving your drive can have a dramatic impact on your game. Many beginners wonder how to hit longer drives on the course, and it can be difficult to know where to start with practice and training. That's why we put together this guide on how to hit a driver longer. Read on for tips on how to drive longer in golf.
Technique Tips for Hitting a Longer Drive
Mastering the proper technique is an important component of how to hit long drives. Here are some points to pay attention to as you set up for your drive:
- Aim for the center: To get the furthest distance possible, the center of the club face must be the part of the driver that makes contact with the ball. Consider marking the ball with tape, so you can easily see the midpoint as you practice.
- Place the ball in the right spot: When setting up a drive, put the ball far forward, so it's in line with the instep of your lead foot. This allows you to tilt your shoulders back to generate more power.
- Check your grip: A consistent grip is vital to hitting long drives, and it can take time to master. Get used to how your hand should look when gripping the club by allowing your lead hand to hang down naturally and then slipping the club into your fingers. Turn your gaze down and make note of how many knuckles you can see, striving to recreate this when you grip for your drive.
Fitness and Conditioning for Hitting a Longer Drive
Your form can take you a long way when you're learning how to hit a long drive, but how much power you generate and how great your range of motion is will also have a big impact. Working out regularly to develop your strength and flexibility can lead to longer drives. If you don't like the idea of lifting weights at the gym, try pushups or chin-ups, starting with just a few reps and then gradually increasing the number that you perform.
To promote flexibility, do a few simple stretches every day. Repeat them at the course before you begin to play to warm up and loosen your muscles.
Equipment Considerations for Hitting a Longer Drive
The equipment that you use on the course will also help determine how long your drive is. After all, club head speed and the launch angle ultimately set the flight of the ball.
When it comes to drivers, it's vital that your club is ideal for your height and swing style. If you haven't already, see a pro to get fitted for a driver. A professional fitting will ensure that your club's length, loft and shaft flex are a good match for you to set you up for success.
Golf balls also make a difference when it comes to drive length. Most golf balls designed for distance feature two-piece construction and specially designed cores and covers that make them more aerodynamic. Deciding which one to choose may be a challenge for beginners, but there are experts available to help you. Talk to the associates at your favorite golf shop and read online reviews for guidance.
Practice Drills and Strategies for Hitting a Longer Drive
For hitting longer drives, the saying practice makes perfect is true. The more that you work on your drive, the easier it will become for you to maintain the proper form needed for long drives. Repetition builds muscle memory and makes your form second nature, so even when you're feeling pressure during the game, you can get into and hold onto the correct alignment.
Some ways that you can practice:
- Do speed drills: Turn your driver upside down and grip the shaft just below the head. Make your normal swing while trying to produce the loudest swooshing sound possible when your club is in the position where the ball would be.
- Use a simulator: Simulators can be great training aids for driving skills because they let you see how changes that you make to your form affect ball flight.
- Head to the driving range: Simply hitting a couple buckets of balls at the driving range each week can be beneficial.
- Play the same course: Consistently playing on the same course can make it easier for you to see how your skills evolve over time.
Prepare Mentally for a Longer Drive
Golf is as much a sport of the mind as it is the body. Feeling prepared for the course can help to keep nerves at bay, so you can focus on maintaining the form needed for long drives. Check out the website for the course where you scheduled your tee time.
Get to know the holes and develop a strategy ahead of time. To quiet your mind, take slow, deep breaths as you prepare for your drive. Visualize the drive you want to make and keep your body loose and relaxed as you set up for the shot.
Dress for Comfort and Performance
Following the above tips will help you learn how to hit a long drive in golf. Be patient as you put them to use, as it will take time for you to begin to see benefits. However, with regular practice and training, you will begin to see a payoff.
Whether you're working on drills or headed to the course for a round, what you wear will impact your performance. Devereux designs golf apparel and accessories with technical features to keep you cooler, drier and freer to move with every drive. Not only can our golf clothing help you stay more comfortable and focused—our streetwear-inspired styles will have you looking your best, so you feel more confident.
Read our blog for more tips and tricks, and check out our selection of golf headcovers to keep your driver in good condition between rounds.