Practice with a Driver to Improve Your Golf Swing

By Laird Small

Why Practicing with a Driver Improves Your Golf Swing

Here is a wonderful way to fix your swing, use your driver to practice. What happens with a driver is that because of the loft of the club and the speed at which your are swinging the club puts your swing under a microscope. If you have a little bit of a action in your swing with a driver you are going to hit a huge banana ball.

Round Out Your Backswing to Straighten Golf Shots

So for those of you who slice your ball here is your information. If you slice the ball with your driver you probably pull it with your short irons. How did I know? It is the same swing shape just the orientation of the clubface is a little different. With a driver when you have a slicer and a puller, on the downswing the golf club is coming in too steep, it is coming in and cutting across the line and adding some cut-spin to it. Here is how you fix it, round out your swing on the backswing or make it shallower, or swing the club more from the inside out.

Here is what it is going to look like.

  • Make your swing start up a little bit on the backswing and then from the half way back position it has to go around. So there is a little bit of an up portion to the swing where the handle is in towards your body and the clubhead is out and then the club rounds out as you continue the backswing. I am exaggerating a little bit so that you can see it, but this is the shape that you would like to have and on the downswing you would like to repeat that same swing shape.
  • You want to feel like the distance between your arms and your shoulders on the downswing is going to widen with your shoulders staying in the same relative position.
  • You want to feel like you are going to accelerate your arms while your chest stays put to support that. Here is what it would look like with a shot. That ball had a nice little draw to it and should be easy as a slicer for you to do, you just have to practice a little bit but practice with your driver to really magnify your errors.

Experienced Golfers Learn to Shape the Ball

Now for the low handicapper what you need is to be able to shape your ball. With your driver hit some shots where you on purpose hit a hook, hit a fade, hit it a little higher, hit it a little bit lower, and you should probably practice 20 to 30 percent of your time with your driver hitting those specific type shots. Even make some swings where you can hit a soft driver because sometimes you want to launch that ball a little bit lower where a full driver is too much but a three wood is not enough. If you can work towards having some feel and control to your driver you can greatly enhance your ability to put the ball in play and take advantage of a lot of holes that are on the golf course.

Use Your Driver as the Best Teaching Tool

So the better player, you want towards shaping the ball. That means that when you are up over the ball you need to have your mind and attention focused on your target. You have to make sure that you care clear with your attention and pay attention to that in relation to your target. This one here is going to be a little bit lower with a fade. I am thinking fade and seeing the fade. That came out. The next one I would want to do is a hook and the following one a high one and the next one a low one. Practice shaping your ball to get a sense of awareness and create an awareness of your golf club and the head of your golf club when it is swinging which will lead to wonderful creativity and you will be able to transfer that to the golf course. Use your driver as your best teaching tool.

About the Instructor

Laird Small
Laird Small
Pebble Beach Golf Academy
1700 17-Mile Drive
Pebble Beach, CA 93953
Tel: 831-622-8650