Will I Hit the Ball Further with an Oversized Golf Driver?
An oversized golf driver is the first choice of the majority of golfers. A driver with a bigger head will supposedly enable you to drive the ball much further than a smaller headed club. But in reality is this necessarily the case.
There are a number of things to consider when looking for a new golf driver. The most important thing is to choose one that is right for your game.
The needs of a high handicap player with a slow swing speed is going to be different from the needs of a tour professional.
If you are a beginner simply owning an oversized golf driver will not automatically make you hit the ball better or further. In fact it could have the reverse effect.
Is an Oversized Golf Driver Easy to Use?
In theory, at least, an oversized golf driver is easier to use than its smaller headed counterpart. The reality is that the size of the 'sweet spot' on any driver will probably be about the same. Therefore there is unlikely to be any great benefit from using an oversize driver if you consistently hit the centre of the sweet spot. Oversized golf drivers will however be more forgiving on those shots where the contact with the ball is not perfect. Failing to hit the sweet spot will however have a major impact on the distance that the ball travels.
Because of this 'increased margin for error' that the oversized golf drivers offer a high handicap golfer is often unaware that he is not hitting the ball perfectly. He (or she) simply accepts the results they are getting. If they were using a smaller headed club they would be penalised much more severely for their bad shots. This being the case the golfer using the small headed driver is probably more inclined to try to correct their swing than someone using a big headed driver.
Oversized Golf Drivers have Longer Shafts
One other thing to consider is the fact that an oversized golf driver is likely to have a longer shaft fitted than a small headed driver.
The maximum length of shaft that you are allowed to use in competition, according to the rules of golf, is forty eight inches.
Oversized golf drivers offered for sale in stores are often fitted with shafts that are 45.5” in length. The average golfer can be drawn to these 'large headed long shafted clubs' in the belief that they provide a fool proof way of adding distance to their drives.
A longer shaft will increase the club head speed, and increased club head speed equates to more distance! Unfortunately this is only true when the ball is struck on the centre of the sweet spot. The reality is that a longer shafted driver is likely to increase the number of mis-hits for the average golfer.
A longer shaft means that you are standing further away from the ball at address. The further away you are from the ball the more difficult it becomes to hit it cleanly.
It is also worth noting that the average driver shaft length used on the pro tour is just 44.5 inches. In fact for many years Tiger Woods used a driver with a shaft length of only 43.5 inches. This is largely because a pro golfer, with a high swing speed, prefers to have the control and accuracy that the slightly shorter shaft length provides.
Choose the Right Driver for Your Game
An oversized golf driver might be the right choice for you or it might not. If you want to hit the ball well of the tee then the most important thing is to feel comfortable and confident with the equipment you are using.
If possible try out the driver you like before you commit to buying it. Once you have decided which type of driver you prefer consider having the club custom made for you. This way you know the length of shaft, shaft type and grip are correct for your build and swing speed. Having clubs (drivers and irons) fitted in this way is a proven way of knocking shots off your round.
If you are buying a new driver from your local pro shop they will most likely be able to measure you for the club. If you are buying clubs online many of the manufacturers offer what they refer to as an 'e-fitting service'.