Key Metrics That Allow Your Drive to Fly Farther?
June 7, 2021
According to Golf Academy, six-time world long drive champion Jason Zuback hit his longest drive in competition of 463 yards with a clubhead speed of 163 mph and golf ball speed of 223 mph. An awesome achievement for the Canadian long driver who devoted a lifetime to maximizing his swing mechanics. Although there are many lessons to be learned from long hitters regarding their dedication and discipline, today’s amateur golfers can play at a higher level off the tee box relying on their normal swing. If your clubhead speed is 100 mph, your distance potential could be 270 yards (or more). That’s right. For amateur men, women, and younger golfers, there are proven ways to maximize ball speed and distance without needing to swing a driver uncomfortably fast.
How to Recover Lost Yardage Off the Tee
Without doubt, amateur golfers can benefit from understanding what makes their drive fly farther off the tee as well as taking full advantage of today’s driver technology. Listed below are critical metrics learned from PGA Tour launch monitors like TrackMan, one of the first product manufacturers to explain how amateur golfers with swing speeds below 100 mph could gain 30 yards with the right technology and a proper club fitting:
- Club Head Speed – For an amateur golfer, it is difficult to increase club head speed and maintain control of their driver. However, if they make better contact, it will optimize how fast the ball leaves the clubface. Contacting the center of the face also allows an amateur to hit the ball farther without sacrificing accuracy.
- Ball Speed – A 10 mph difference in how fast the ball leaves the clubface equates to approximately 20 yards in distance between golfers with the same swing speed. It is the accuracy of contact with the face that often determines how well their swing speed converted into ball speed. A solid strike always increases their "smash factor".
- Smash Factor – Also known as ratio efficiency, smash factor is a measure of the swing speed related to a golf ball's velocity. To calculate smash factor, divide the ball speed by the clubhead speed. The higher the smash factor, the more efficient the transfer of energy, but a lower smash factor should be expected if you are hitting a more lofted club.
- Angle of Attack – The attack angle, or how steep or shallow the clubhead is moving relative to the ground through impact, plays a vital role in how much distance is generated off the tee. The PGA Tour average attack angle with a driver is -1.3 degrees (down). Most amateurs fall somewhere between a (-4 and -6 degrees), which is too steep. The closer you can get to 0 degrees, the more true loft the clubface presents to the ball. A good launch angle and spin rate (even a degree or two up) could help to maximize your distance.
- Launch Angle – The average PGA TOUR player has a vertical launch angle of 11.2 degrees, and a spin rate of 2,685 rpm. But that's with a driver clubhead speed of 112 mph. Amateurs should aim for a 14.5-degree launch angle. This is where an expert club fitting could help to ensure you get the distance you deserve off every tee box by taking full advantage of today's technology.
- Spin Rate – A lower spin rate will reduce the landing angle, which will maximize rollout distance off the tee. In general, the lower your RPMs the less ball spin and the farther it will travel. Unfortunately, low-spin drivers are built for golfers with higher swing speeds. Moreover, unless you naturally hit the ball high, a loss of spin could affect how long your ball stays in the air. Nonetheless, spin rates on some amateur drives exceed 5000 rpm, which can reduce driving distance by 20 yards.
- Angle of Descent –This is the angle at which a ball falls to the ground. The steeper the landing angle and the flatter the angle of descent, the more rollout and distance you create. A landing angle of less than 40 degrees increases rollout distance. More solid contact increases ball speed, improves launch angle, and reduces spin rate to optimize a golfer’s potential distance.
- Carry and Rollout – Carry is the straight-line distance between where the ball started and where the trajectory crosses a point that is the same height as where the ball was hit. PGA Tour pros hit their drives anywhere from 280 yards to 320 yards on average and LPGA Tour pros drive the ball from 230 to 270 yards on average. According to Golf Digest, most recreational golfers hit a driver somewhere between 195 to 205 yards.
Regardless of where a golfer falls in regard to their golfing lifecycle, consistently hitting drives with increased distance and accuracy can be a huge benefit for anyone looking to shave shots off their game. Unfortunately, many of today’s amateur golfers are not focused on recovering lost yardage off the tee box and do not fully understand how to take advantage of low hanging fruit like applying the latest club technology.
How to Take Full Advantage of Today’s Driver Technology
Tired of losing 30 yards off the tee box? It’s time to take full advantage of improving the technical proficiency of your drive. Krank Golf has addressed the most misunderstood issue in the game of golf today. Since virtually every driver manufactured for the masses has a clubface spring effect rated for 115 to 120 mph swing speed, Krank Golf focused their product development on manufacturing drivers for the 99% of golfers with a slower clubhead speed. According to president and founder, Lance Reeder, “Every golfer should be able to choose the face spring effect that matches their swing speed to maximize their fun and enjoyment.”
Krank is the only golf club manufacturer that meticulously mills the face thickness of their forged drivers to ensure optimal distance for each golfer’s swing speed. “It isn’t fair,” Reeder added. “Recreational golfers, regardless of sex or age, should not have to sacrifice driving distance just because his or her swing speed is less than 115 mph. It is ridiculous that golfers with a slower swing speed or a super slow swing speed is not allowed to enjoy the game and experience the same face spring effect of today’s professional golfer.” Check out the benefits and discounts offered by Krank Golf’s Preferred Customer Program and start hitting a driver with exact lofting, precise lie angles, and a clubface that has been micro milled to maximize its spring effect.