5 Things You Need To Know About Driving In Golf

By Steve Silverman

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The driver is not the most important club in your golf bag. While you may decide to use it on 14 out of the 18 holes on the golf course, you can recover with other clubs if you made a poor shot and it's your short game that usually determines your scoring. However, your driver helps you start your round of golf and most holes in it. It helps set the tone for your round, and you need to understand that it is vital.

The Setup

Set your golf ball about an inch high on the tee. Take a stance that leaves your feet about shoulder-width apart and one that puts the ball slightly closer to your front foot than your back foot.

The Swing

Start your swing by rotating your hips as you bring the club back. When you reach the apex of your backswing, bring your hips through and let your hands follow. Do this with a smooth and even swing. Try not to accelerate the speed of your swing or "go for the distance" unless it is absolutely necessary. Trying to get extra distance with your driver by swinging harder may seem logical, but it is not realistic. Increasing the speed and pace of your swing will increase the likelihood that you will make a mistake.

Head Position

Keep your head as still as possible during your swing. You should be looking at the back of the ball and you should keep your eye on that spot as long as possible until you have finished your follow through and your head comes up naturally. This will ensure that you don't take your eye off your target and will help you make solid contact.

Follow Through

Bring the club through the ball and finish with your hands high, to get maximum distance. Some golfers want to admire a drive before they have completed the swing. This prevents them from following through fully. In addition to losing distance, the golfer will likely lose accuracy as well.

Swinging Hard

Swing harder when you need extra distance on one of the final holes in the match. As mentioned, trying to overpower the ball is usually a bad gamble. However, if you are trailing late in a match and need to do something to try to get ahead, you may try to get extra distance with a big swing. The way to accomplish this is to slightly increase the pace of the backswing without going into overdrive. When you reach the top of your swing, rotate your hips with as much force as you can muster and bring your hands through as fast as they can go. If you have timed it right and your hips and hands come through at the same time, you will accomplish your goal.

About the Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.