How To Tee The Ball - Driver

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Published: 04th July 2009
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Today's oversized drivers offer a great chance to make a serious dent in your golf handicap. They provide advantages that normal sized drivers don't-advantages that mean longer drives, more fairways hit, and better scores. Better scores, in turn, mean a lower golf handicap.

But oversized drivers have their challenges. Like any new club, they take getting used. They also require making changes to the way you usually play. Failing to make these changes, like adjusting your tee height, eliminates the advantages oversized drivers provide, leaving your golf handicap untouched.

Bigger Is Better

Oversized drivers perform better thanks to several things, like a better understanding of key impact factors or a higher coefficient of restitution (COR)-the spring-like effect of the clubface when it makes contact with the ball. Key among these performance enhancers is an increase in the size of the clubface. Equipment manufacturers have learned how to expand the area on the clubface that yields not just distance, but quality distance.

Simply put, a bigger clubface produces a larger "distance zone"- the area on the clubface that generates a carry distance of about 200 yards or more on a 93 mile per hour swing. That's a recreational golfer's average swing speed. If you've been reading my golf tips, you know that that's significantly less than a tour player's speed. Less swing speed means shorter drives.

Better Clubface Designs

The increase in distance you get from oversized drivers isn't attributable just to an increase in the distance zone, however. New drivers aren't just bigger. They're also better designed. A larger clubhead has an enhanced moment of inertia (stability on off-center hits) thanks to these improved designs. So these clubs have less falloff in ball velocity on off-center hits.

The decrease in velocity on off-center hits is due to two things: a better understanding of the spring-like effect of clubfaces and the factors impacting maximize velocity Technological improvements like variable-face thickness and the addition of cross section shapes also contribute to the better performance of oversized drivers. In short, oversized drivers propel the ball farther and straighter.

Changing Tee Height A Must

It doesn't take a genius to figure out that today's oversized drivers are also getting taller. That means you must adjust the tee height of your ball to get the correct launch angle. If you taken a golf lesson on driving or read the golf tips in my newsletter, you know just how important launch angle is to good driving. Unfortunately, many recreational golfers fail to change their tee height with oversized drivers. That reduces the advantages of using the club.

Why? Because the key to a longer straighter drive is hitting the ball in the middle of the clubface. It makes sense, then, that with the taller clubheads, you must raise the height of your ball on the tee. But just how high should you raise it?

Raising Your Tee Height

To get the most distance from oversized drivers, you must raise the ball above the middle of the clubface-for two reasons. First you're hitting the ball on the upswing, which means the club will be coming off the ground, not skimming it. Second, you want to hit the ball along the true middle of the clubface to launch it high and with as little backspin as possible, producing more distance.

The minimum you should raise the ball for an oversized driver is two-thirds above the top of the clubface. That's the minimum. You can even raise it above the top of the clubface, if you're comfortable doing that. Just make sure you're using regulation tees. The USGA limits maximum tee height to four inches.

Changing tee height helps squeeze the most out of today's oversized drivers. That means you'll get longer, straighter drives and you'll increase the number of fairways hit per round. Playing the ball from the fairway more often also means better approach shots, less time in the rough, and fewer strokes. With all that going for you, you'll make a real dent in your golf handicap.

Jack Moorehouse is the author of the best-selling book How To Break 80 And Shoot Like The Pros. He is NOT a golf pro, rather a working man that has helped thousands of golfers from all seven continents lower their handicap immediately. Free weekly newsletter available with the latest golf tips, lessons and instructions.

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