Driver

Golf drivers, often referred to simply as “drivers,” are a vital component of any golfer’s arsenal. These clubs are designed specifically for the longest shots off the tee, making them crucial for achieving optimal distance and accuracy on the golf course.

Understanding the various types of golf drivers available can greatly enhance a golfer’s performance and overall enjoyment of the game. An important aspect of drivers to note, they are highly customisable for playing style, height, gender and age so we will highlight some of the most common drivers but the one you use for golfing may require elements of different drivers to suit you.

In this article, we’ll explore the different types of golf drivers in detail, examining their unique characteristics, advantages, and considerations for choosing the right one for your game.

What is the Composition of a Golf Driver?

The driver, often termed the 1-Wood, falls within the woods category of golf clubs. Known for:

  • Its extended length
  • Being the largest club head among other woods

The golf driver’s primary purpose is to propel the ball towards the green with maximum distance. Typically used for the initial stroke on par-4s, par-5s, and occasionally on lengthy par-3s, its face angle, or loft, ranges between 8.5° to 13°. Lower angles facilitate a lower trajectory, while higher angles promote a loftier flight.

Ideal for use with a tee, positioning the ball atop the tee ensures optimal contact with the club’s sizeable sweet spot, situated higher above the ground compared to irons and wedges.

Tee height is a matter of personal preference, influenced by the golfer’s style and prevailing conditions. A higher tee promotes a higher trajectory, beneficial in tailwinds, while a lower tee combats headwinds by keeping the ball’s flight lower.

We have broken down each type of driver into:

  • Specialist
  • Attributes
  • Materials

Specialist

Adjustable Drivers

Adjustable drivers have gained popularity in recent years due to their versatility and ability to be customised to suit individual preferences and playing styles. These drivers feature various adjustable components, such as hosel, weight, and loft settings, allowing golfers to fine-tune their club for optimal performance.

The primary benefit of adjustable drivers is their ability to accommodate changes in swing mechanics, course conditions, and personal preferences. Golfers can experiment with different settings to find the ideal combination of launch angle, spin rate, and ball flight characteristics for their game. However, the complexity of adjustable drivers can be overwhelming for some players, and improper adjustments may lead to unintended consequences such as decreased distance or accuracy.

Offset Drivers

Offset drivers are designed to help golfers who struggle with slicing the ball off the tee. They feature a clubhead where the leading edge of the clubface is set back (or “offset”) from the hosel, which promotes a closed clubface at impact and reduces the likelihood of a slice.

For golfers who struggle with a slice, offset drivers can be a game-changer, providing a more forgiving and consistent ball flight. However, some golfers may find the offset design to be visually distracting or uncomfortable at address, so it’s essential to test different models to find the right fit.

Draw Bias Drivers

Draw bias drivers are engineered to promote a right-to-left ball flight for golfers who struggle with a fade or slice. They achieve this by shifting the centre of gravity towards the heel of the club, encouraging a more closed clubface at impact and reducing the tendency to slice the ball.

The primary advantage of draw bias drivers is their ability to help golfers correct swing flaws and achieve a more desirable ball flight. However, golfers who already have a natural draw or hook may find draw bias drivers exacerbate this tendency, leading to inconsistent shot patterns.

Low Spin Drivers

Low spin drivers are designed to minimise spin on the golf ball, promoting a more penetrating ball flight that maximises distance and roll. These drivers typically feature advanced aerodynamic design elements, as well as specialised clubface technologies that reduce spin rates for faster ball speeds and greater carry distance.

Golfers with high swing speeds or who generate excessive spin may benefit from using a low spin driver, as it can help optimise their launch conditions for maximum distance. However, golfers with slower swing speeds may struggle to generate enough spin to keep the ball airborne with a low spin driver, leading to decreased carry distance and control.

High MOI Drivers

High MOI (Moment of Inertia) drivers are engineered to minimise the loss of ball speed and accuracy on off-centre hits. They achieve this by redistributing weight around the perimeter of the clubhead, increasing its resistance to twisting on mishits and maintaining ball speed across a larger area of the clubface.

The primary benefit of high MOI drivers is their forgiveness on off-centre hits, helping golfers maintain distance and accuracy even when they don’t make perfect contact. However, high MOI drivers may sacrifice some workability and feel compared to lower MOI models, so it’s essential to consider personal preferences and playing style when choosing a driver.

Long Drive Drivers

Long drive drivers are designed specifically for maximising distance off the tee, often featuring oversized clubheads, longer shafts, and lightweight construction. These drivers prioritise ball speed and launch conditions, allowing golfers to achieve prodigious distances under optimal conditions.

While long drive drivers can be exciting to use and may produce impressive results in long drive competitions or on wide-open fairways, they may not be suitable for all golfers or playing conditions. Their extreme design characteristics can make them challenging to control, especially for golfers with slower swing speeds or those who prioritise accuracy over distance.

Personal Attributes

Senior/Junior Drivers

Senior and junior drivers are tailored specifically for golfers in these age groups, taking into account factors such as swing speed, strength, and physical limitations. These drivers typically feature lighter shafts, higher lofts, and other design elements that make them easier to swing and control for older or younger players.

The primary benefit of senior and junior drivers is their ability to accommodate the unique needs and abilities of golfers in these age groups, allowing them to enjoy the game to the fullest without being hindered by equipment limitations. However, it’s essential for golfers to choose the right driver for their specific age and skill level to maximise performance and enjoyment on the course.

Women’s Drivers

Women’s drivers are designed specifically for female golfers, taking into account factors such as swing speed, height, and strength. These drivers often feature lighter shafts, higher lofts, and more flexible clubheads than their men’s counterparts, allowing women to generate optimal distance and control their swings.

 

The primary benefit of women’s drivers is their ability to address the unique biomechanical differences between male and female golfers, providing a more comfortable and effective club for women to use. However, female golfers need to test different models and configurations to find the right driver that suits their individual needs and preferences.

Our Women’s Golf Academy is designed to allow female players to discover their passion for golf. It provides a space for women to learn about the sport, basic techniques and the etiquette of a golf course.

Material

Composite Drivers

Composite drivers utilise advanced materials such as carbon fibre, titanium, and other composites to optimise performance and durability. These drivers offer a unique combination of strength, lightweight, and flexibility, allowing golfers to achieve maximum distance and control with their swings.

The primary advantage of composite drivers is their ability to fine-tune weight distribution and stiffness properties for optimal performance in specific areas of the clubhead. However, composite drivers may be more expensive than traditional models, so golfers need to consider their budget and performance requirements when choosing a driver.

Titanium Drivers

Titanium drivers are renowned for their strength-to-weight ratio, making them an ideal choice for golfers seeking maximum distance and forgiveness. Titanium clubheads are lightweight yet durable, allowing golfers to generate faster clubhead speeds and more consistent ball speeds for greater distance and accuracy.

The primary benefit of titanium drivers is their exceptional performance characteristics, including high levels of forgiveness on off-centre hits and optimal energy transfer at impact. However, titanium drivers may be more expensive than other materials, so golfers need to weigh the performance benefits against their budgetary considerations.

Carbon Fibre Drivers

Carbon fibre drivers utilise advanced composite materials to optimise performance and weight distribution for maximum distance and control. Carbon fibre clubheads are lightweight yet strong, allowing golfers to generate faster clubhead speeds and more consistent ball speeds for greater distance and accuracy.

The primary advantage of carbon fibre drivers is their ability to fine-tune weight distribution and stiffness properties for optimal performance in specific areas of the clubhead. However, carbon fibre drivers may be more expensive than traditional models, so it’s essential for golfers to consider their budget and performance requirements when choosing a driver.

Are There Such Clubs as Pro Drivers?

Not really. You might come across the term ‘tour drivers’. These are drivers used by professionals on tour, yet due to the aforementioned variety of playstyles and golfer attributes they vary between pro golfers.

These drivers are often highly customisable, allowing professional golfers to fine-tune every aspect of their equipment to suit their unique swing characteristics and playing conditions.

The primary advantage of tour drivers is their performance consistency and precision, as they are meticulously crafted to deliver optimal results under the most demanding circumstances. However, tour drivers may be less forgiving or user-friendly than mass-market models, requiring a high level of skill and expertise to unlock their full potential.

Discover the Right Driver For You and Come Play at West Essex Golf Club

The world of golf drivers is diverse and multifaceted, with a wide range of options available to suit every golfer’s needs and preferences. Choosing the right driver is essential for maximising your performance and enjoyment on the course.

At West Essex Golf Club our golf course near London is the perfect opportunity to fine-tune your tee technique. Our driving range will help improve your long game and our Trackman technology will identify your swing style to help you find the ideal driver for your playstyle.

Becoming a member of our golf club has some other incredible benefits, so get in touch with our friendly team for a chat!