Jump to content

Play the "right" way—or ditch the driver?


Recommended Posts

I have driver problems to match anyone, but I also have some spectacularly wide open holes where I can swing away.

Then I'm content to slap driving-iron into play everywhere else.  I don't play the longest course in the world, so I'm fine.

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Take

it from someone that did just that, for a very long time I got three wood off the tee box. Even today I am asked at times why I hit driver because that three wood does so well for me. With that I didn’t drop driver I just ranged it. It took me some time to finally get it dialed in on the range and even now there are times I’ll take three wood in tight fairways, or hard dog legs that I know I can’t draw around. So I am a odd player that actually uses both off the tee box, but again the driver was range only for a long while

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 8/17/2021 at 7:36 PM, hckymeyer said:

, have you tried teeing it lower?

Or moving the ball back. 

  • Like 1

Left Hand orientation

:ping-small: G410 SFT driver 

Cobra King F-9  5 wood
:ping-small:  410  Hybrids 22*, 26*

Cobra Speed Zone 6-GP/Recoil ESX 460 F3 Shafts 

:titelist-small: SM7 54* Wedge

:ping-small: Glide 3.0  60* Wedge

:odyssey-small: O Works putter
:918457628_PrecisionPro:NX9-HD

:CaddyTek: - 4 Wheel 
:footjoy-small: - too many shoes to list and so many to buy

:1590477705_SunMountain: And  BAG Boy

Golf Balls: Snell MTB-X 

2020 Official Tester :SuperSpeed: Beginning Driver Speed  - 78

2019 Official Tester :ping-small:  410 Driver

2018 Official Tester :wilson-small: C300

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, tony@CIC said:

Or moving the ball back. 

or swinging with the opposite hand driver?

  • Haha 1

Driver: :callaway-small:   Epic Max LS with RDX Blue 70g S (Testing Ventus Velocore Blue 6s 45")

2H: :callaway-small: Super Hybrid with Tensei Orange Pro Hyb 80 Stiff (Testing Ventus Velocore Blue 8s Hyb)

3H: :Sub70: 939X UST proforce V2 black F5 hybrid soft stepped

4-AW: th.jpg.d6e2abdaeb04f007fd259c979f389de6.jpg  0211  with KBS Tour Stiff 2.5* up 1/4" long Unofficial Review

Wedges     :cleveland-small: Zipcore Tour Rack 54/full and 58/mid (review here)  (Backup 54*,60*: :ping-small:  S Tour KBS Tour Stiff 3* up)

Putter: TAII #2  Review here: TAIII Impact #2 Putter 

Ball: :Snell:MTB-X and :OnCore: vero X1 (Winter ball :titelist-small: proV1 )

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 8/17/2021 at 4:43 PM, GolfSpy MPR said:

I don't know how to hit driver. My driving fails the eye test. And even more, it fails the Arccos data test (Driving is almost always my worst SG category for every round, and I'd contend that a good chunk of my negative numbers in SG:Approach are from recovery shots from bad drives).

At the end of my last 18 yesterday, I decided I was done fighting it. The last three holes, I hit my Mavrik SZ off the tee. On each hole, I was either on the fairway or just right, with a tight draw, about 240–250 yards. The first two holes, my positioning was not ideal; slightly obstructed by trees down the right. The final hole, I couldn't have placed my tee shot any better (though I proceeded to blade a SW 130 over the green, missing a seven-foot putt that would have been for an up-and-down).

I was 1-over for the three holes.

3ws.jpg

Contrast this with my driver performance during this round before I switched to 3w:

  • 184: snap hook into trees
  • 249: in the fairway
  • 268: best strike of the day, but failed to note the shortness of the dogleg; ran through the fairway into major tree trouble
  • 183: high on the face
  • 125: full skyball
  • 223: high toe, through the trees
  • 219: thin but safe
  • 236: fine
  • 241: way right in the trees
  • 172: even way righter over the woods

I really, really struggle to hit the ball off a tee.

With so many other aspects of the game, playing the "right" way is something of a fool's errand. Whether it's hitting a specific shape shot or having your swing look a certain way, chasing method over results normally indicates odd priorities in golf.

But here, I'm torn. If I could just keep hitting 245-yard tight draws into the fairway with my 3w, my driving stats (and my scoring) would likely improve by 3-4 strokes per 18. But this decision isn't one of aesthetics: if I could figure out how to hit a driver, I don't think it's crazy to think it would be worth an extra 15-25 yards over my 3w on each hole. I'm objectively giving something up by not hitting driver.

So what would you do: keep grinding on the driver, or switch to making the 3w your main tee club?

@GolfSpy MPR looking at your performance, I can relate as I was across the board with my driver (although not as long as you). Skyball - yup, high on the face - yup, everything but spot on. It seems like when it came to the driver everything fell apart. Woods/Hybrids/Irons, were spot on for distance and dispersion.  

I had a similar thread here a few weeks ago and @chisaggave me a thought to consider; am I releasing the driver too early? Spending a bit of time on youtube and the range, I figured out the problems and the solutions. Yes I was releasing the club too early (interestingly I don't release my other clubs early), I further aggravated the problem by moving the ball position slightly forward over time - solution; ended up moving it back a couple of inches. And the third issue and resolution was shoulder tilt (optimum is 38*). I'm not suggesting that any or all of these are your issues or resolutions - but just an FYI. 

  • Like 3

Left Hand orientation

:ping-small: G410 SFT driver 

Cobra King F-9  5 wood
:ping-small:  410  Hybrids 22*, 26*

Cobra Speed Zone 6-GP/Recoil ESX 460 F3 Shafts 

:titelist-small: SM7 54* Wedge

:ping-small: Glide 3.0  60* Wedge

:odyssey-small: O Works putter
:918457628_PrecisionPro:NX9-HD

:CaddyTek: - 4 Wheel 
:footjoy-small: - too many shoes to list and so many to buy

:1590477705_SunMountain: And  BAG Boy

Golf Balls: Snell MTB-X 

2020 Official Tester :SuperSpeed: Beginning Driver Speed  - 78

2019 Official Tester :ping-small:  410 Driver

2018 Official Tester :wilson-small: C300

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, rbsiedsc said:

or swinging with the opposite hand driver?

So that's been my problem all along? 😄

  • Haha 2

Left Hand orientation

:ping-small: G410 SFT driver 

Cobra King F-9  5 wood
:ping-small:  410  Hybrids 22*, 26*

Cobra Speed Zone 6-GP/Recoil ESX 460 F3 Shafts 

:titelist-small: SM7 54* Wedge

:ping-small: Glide 3.0  60* Wedge

:odyssey-small: O Works putter
:918457628_PrecisionPro:NX9-HD

:CaddyTek: - 4 Wheel 
:footjoy-small: - too many shoes to list and so many to buy

:1590477705_SunMountain: And  BAG Boy

Golf Balls: Snell MTB-X 

2020 Official Tester :SuperSpeed: Beginning Driver Speed  - 78

2019 Official Tester :ping-small:  410 Driver

2018 Official Tester :wilson-small: C300

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I Think it is fine to ditch the driver. If you can hit a 3 wood or something else straight use it! You can still practice the driver and learn to hit it off the course.

Cleveland Launcher HB Driver,Launcher Turbo 3wood, Launcher HB 5 wood Launcher HB Turbo Irons, CG16 50* Wedge, 588 56* Sandwedge

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll parrot a lot of things that have already been said, but I think they are worth saying again. 

What are your goals in golf?  Are you happy with your scores hitting 3wood off the tee, and just want to have fun?  Then ditch driver.  If your goal is to shoot the lowest score you possibly can, The driver will be helpful. 

I know it's easier said than done given your space limitations, but if you could find a way to hit a bunch of drives I think it would be a huge help.  Even if its just whacking birdie balls.  I know you mentioned moving the net outside.  

Its also possible to kinda straddle here,  hit 3wood off the tee for now, but don't quit on the driver.  

Eventually you'll have to take that range swing to the course, but there is no rule that says you can't hit 3w and still practice driver.

It may help to decide before a round what your goals are as well.  Are we trying to shoot a personal best today?  Or do we want to work on taking our range work to the course?  I don't know about you, but it took a couple months for the results I saw on the range to bleed to the course.

Keep your spirits up, I feel for ya,  and I'll leave you with the advice some one gave me with the driver.

"Your so bad with the driver, when you practice only hit driver.  Don't work on anything else but that."

 

 

Lefty

Epic flash 9*+2* HZRDS smoke stiff 60g

T100s/200 combo project x LZ 6.5  125g std length 2* upright 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Late to the show i see. @GolfSpy MPR I still struggle with driver. Trying to get over 50% fairways. Close, but my misses are a lot better. Im 5’6” playing standard length. What helped me was along the lines of what @RI_Redneck said. Why was i hitting driver different than my other clubs that werent an issue. Lowered my tee height to 1/2 the ball over the club head or a little lower. Backed it up in my stance and think 3w swing. Also 12° lofted driver. Can still get it out to 280 on a good swing. And get this, before i started messing with the big “Deschambeau” grips on my driver, i was sorta controlling shot shape. Not saying its the “right” way to hit driver, but its longer than my fairway and more consistent. Just food for thought.

Mavrik Max Driver

M2 5W

818 hybrids

Steelhead XR Irons

ZipCore wedges

SeeMore PR M7X

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The right way is whatever keeps the ball in play!! So ditch the driver until you find one that works. I personally took an inch off my driver shaft playing 44” and consistently in fairway or first cut and went from high 90s low hundreds to consistently playing 83-88 all season. If 3w keeps you in play you will be playing the “right way”!!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I’m there with you on this I’m a 20 handicap and at least 8 comes from my driver if I’m not teeing up with a three then something is wrong lol. Some day I will grow up and put my driver up.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@GolfSpy MPR if I was longer and more accurate with my 3 wood, I wouldn’t even carry a driver! I’ve come to accept that my length with the driver, comes with at the expense of my accuracy. I’m 10% more accurate with a 3 wood, but 25 yards shorter. You? You’re LONGER AND MORE ACCURATE with your 3 wood. Save the driver for the off-season and the driving range. Late summer/fall golf is about translating the lessons you’ve learned about your game into lower  scores.

 

24CC2B3B-0E46-4165-97D1-F1CA4C5041C8.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I struggled with the driver for years, literally years until I did two things:

Get custom fit for a driver and take lessons from a very knowledgeable pro. Afterwards, I realized that the driver is the biggest club in the bag and if you have the proper room to hit the best weapon you can have for distance. 

I also realized that shorter clubs dispersion almost always mirrors your drivers. So you’re not gaining anything unless you have significantly narrower fairways. There is nothing more frustrating than clubbing down and blowing the 3w into the same OB or hazard your driver would have gone in.  

I’ve done a little research on decade golf and Scott Fawcett. Really good course management stuff and I believe his rule of thumb is driver every hole that you have 65 yards between hazards. Seems like solid advice to me. 

  • Like 2

Location: Golf Capital of Tennessee

 :callaway-small: Epic Max LS 9° Driver, X stiff MMT 60 shaft (MGS Tester)
:ping-small: G410 17° hybrid, X stiff
:taylormade-small:  M1 20.5°  hybrid, X stiff
:mizuno-small:  JPX-921 Tours 4 iron thru PW, Modus 105 X stiff
:mizuno-small:  S18 50°, 56° & 60°
 :bettinardi-1: Single Stock #3 34.5" putter

2019 MSG Forum Tester- Bridgestone e12

2021 Callaway Epic Max LS Driver Test

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 8/18/2021 at 1:39 PM, BMart519 said:

240-250 average off the tee would get you around a HCP of 0 according to Shot Scope data, seems like a reasonable compromise until you figure out driver. Honestly, anything 220+ and straight will allow you to play good golf on a course up to 6300-6500 yards. 

On the flip side, you only hit 1 drive past 250 and it wasn't even in a position to play to the green and you averaged around 220 ignoring the skyball. So I wouldn't focus on giving up 15-25 because it wasn't there this round or with your current swing.

If you are on the tee box concerned about where driver is going, it's not going to end well very often. You need to commit and let it fly or shelf it. I was in a similar position and then saw that I had 2x the number of penalties off the tee with my 2H than driver from "playing safe". 

The last paragraph is what I have been doing - being certain of where I am planning for the ball to go.  I pick the smallest target point in the distance, when on the tee, and plan the shot path from there.  Quietly confident in where the shot is going, knowing I am not going to land in the bird box 600yds away, but will be somewhere along the line of flight I envision.  Once read “see it, feel it, trust it” and it has been a life changer.  Work on the driver on the range, picking specific targets for each drive….then after each shot take a moment to assess what went right, what did not.  Also powder foot spray on the driver face will give great feedback as you begin to correlate the shot observed with the impact seen.  Of course a Trackman or related device will give you all that and much more.

WITB? :taylormade-small:10.5deg SLDR (R flex),  :taylormade-small:3HL/17 SLDR Series (R flex),:taylormade-small: 5/19 SLDR Series (R flex), :taylormade-small: 4h/22 SLDR Series (R flex), :callaway-small: DIablo graphite shaft irons (5 (R flex), 6-PW (A flex)), :cleveland-small: CBX 50, 54,& 58 wedges - graphite, :odyssey-small: White Iron 5 putter.   

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I struggle with this to the point I will just replace the driver with my trusty Titleist 2 iron once in a while but it only goes 250 and puts a lot of stress on the rest of my game on long par 4s and makes par 5s more stressful. 

More often than not I just manage it by using the driver on the long and wide landing area holes and pull out a rescue on the tighter ones.

Good days and bad days, just try to see where I am at and adjust accordingly. It also depends on the course and tees. Short course less need for a driver.

Cobra F9 with Atmos tour spec

Cobra F9 3wood Atmos Tour spec

Titleist AP2 3-Gap X100

Titleist BV SM 54/58

Spider Tour Black putter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/2/2021 at 1:06 PM, 675Terry said:

I struggle with this to the point I will just replace the driver with my trusty Titleist 2 iron once in a while but it only goes 250 and puts a lot of stress on the rest of my game on long par 4s and makes par 5s more stressful. 

How long are the courses you are playing where 250 off the tee is putting stress on the rest of the game? Of course you have to be able to smash driver to play 7,000+ yds. but that is beyond obvious.

:cobra-small:  SpeedZone 9* (HZDRUS Smoke Black 60g 6.0)

:callaway-small: Epic Flash 3w+ 12.5* (HZDRUS Smoke Black 70g 6.0)

:callaway-small: Epic Flash 5w 17* (HZDRUS Smoke Black 70g 6.0)

:adams-small:  Pro mini 20* (Aldila Tour ATX85H-2.8-S)

:srixon-small: U85 4i 23* (Project X 6.0 Rifle)

:ping-small: I3+ Blades (5-PW)

:callaway-small: JAWS MD5 (52/10S, 56/8C, 60/12W)

:odyssey-small: White Hot XG Rossie

:srixon-small: Z-Star:Snell: MTB-X

:1590477705_SunMountain: C130

 :918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro Nx7 Pro Slope

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...