Do I even need this golf club to get started? From our own experience, we can say that there is hardly a golf club that is as difficult for a beginner to play as the driver. This club simply requires precise timing and an excellent rhythm to get the golf ball in the air. And timing and rhythm, in particular, are things that only develop over time and with a lot of playing practice.
Fortunately, the manufacturers have also recognized this problem and have developed some ideas to use driver golf clubs for a beginner.
How to choose a driver for beginners
On the one hand, you should make sure that the driver has a very large clubhead, a large clubface, and a low center of gravity. All these factors ensure that the golf club remains stable and forgiving during the swing. This means that the ball will be sent on a reasonable trajectory even if you don't hit it well.
And don't worry about the weight: Thanks to modern materials such as titanium, drivers with a particularly large clubhead are still very light.
Modern drivers - golf clubs with many possibilities
The new drivers from well-known manufacturers such as TaylorMade, Cobra, or Callaway also offer many setting options that can be very helpful. For example, if you keep unintentionally playing a fade - the golf ball always makes a curve from left to right.
Then you can set the clubface to "Draw" on some drivers. This counteracts the fade, and the ball flies straight. The loft, i.e., the angle of inclination of the clubface, is significant for the driver. The loft is crucial for the ball's launch angle and is related to your swing speed.
Roughly speaking, the faster you swing, the less loft you need. However, with modern drivers, you can usually adjust the loft anyway and adapt it to your swing.
The correct driver: A question of flexibility
What you should also note: The differences between women's drivers and men's drivers are significant. The version for women golfers is significantly lighter and 1" shorter than the corresponding golf clubs for men. Women's drivers are substantially lighter, have different grips, and have a softer shaft, the so-called L-Flex (ladies).
However, if you swing particularly fast as a lady, you can also use a men's golf club with a shaft for seniors. You can recognize these drivers by labeling M-Flex, A-Flex, Senior, Lite, or Light Flex.
Of course, men should also pay attention to the flex information on the golf club because a club shaft that is too hard can spoil the precision and length of the flight. For most men, an R-Flex (Regular) shaft works best. Men who swing particularly fast, on the other hand, are best off with an S-Flex (stiff=stiff) or even an XS-Flex (extra stiff).
Which driver head size is right for me?
Clubheads are measured by volume in cubic centimeters, with a maximum of 460cc. Almost all drivers on the market today are between 440 and 460cc. Typically, 440cc drivers cater to players with more touch and precision, while 460cc drivers are more forgiving. The shape of the clubhead varies vertically or horizontally according to the level of forgiveness and loft desired by the manufacturer.
Make sure you have enough loft
The lower the loft of the driver, the flatter the ball launches. A flatter ball flight provides more distance - at least in theory. In practice, the clubhead speed must be high enough for this. As a beginner, you should ensure that your driver does not have too little loft.
If there is too little loft, your ball will not fly high enough and may even roll extremely far after impact. If your ball started high and kept climbing higher, that would indicate too much loft. If there is too much loft, the ball will have such a strong backspin that it would eventually crash like a rock.
You can find out which loft best suits your swing during a fitting. In our experience, most beginners should choose a driver with at least 12 degrees of loft.
Moments of Inertia - What is the driver's center of gravity and where is it located?
A driver's center of gravity is a single balance point. By moving fixed or adjustable weights in the racket head, the balance can be shifted in all directions. In general, the further under and further back the center of gravity of the driver sits, the more spin is generated.
This means that the ball automatically flies higher and the driver is more forgiving due to a larger moment of inertia. Shifting the driver's center of gravity forward increases ball speed, but reduces spin and therefore moment of inertia.
What is the best material for the driver?
Driver technology has come a long way since persimmon and even steel woods. Virtually all drivers today are made of titanium or similar lightweight materials.
The reason why titanium became so popular is simple: the material is solid, durable, and light. This allows manufacturers to increase club heads without significantly increasing the weight. As a result, players can swing faster, hit farther, and have more room for error, thanks to a more prominent sweet spot.
Mixed material drivers often include lighter materials like carbon or heavier ones like tungsten combined with titanium for better impact performance.
Using carbon on the top or back of the racquet can reduce the overall weight. This allows manufacturers to vary the driver's weight and center of gravity and create optimal ball speeds with a titanium face. Heavier materials like tungsten can help improve the perimeter weight of clubs for moments of inertia. To find out what the proper setup is and which driver suits a player, you should do a fitting to choose the best driver for beginners.
Test your driver on the pitch too!
Looking for the correct driver in a fitting studio is never wrong. In addition, I would always recommend testing and comparing the identified favorites on the course: which driver do you hit more fairways with, which driver do you achieve more distance with? A good fitter will always make such a test possible for you.
Your best driver for the proper swing
As you can see, there are several things to consider when looking for the right driver. However, even as a beginner, you don't have to shy away from this type of golf club because the manufacturers have developed a few great drivers for golf beginners.
Mike is a weekend golfer from Connecticut and a devoted fan of the game who turned his passion into the writing experience. Any day he keeps it under 80 is a cool day. When he's not writing about golf his is playing it.