Ian Poulter Weighs In On Golf's Perceived Distance Problem

Poults puts increased driving distance down to factors such as youth, gym work and launch monitors

Ian Poulter Weighs In On Golf's Perceived Distance Problem
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Englishman puts increased distance on Tour down to factors like fitness, youth and custom fitting, as opposed to equipment

Ian Poulter Weighs In On Golf's Perceived Distance Problem

Golf's latest Distance Report was released by the R&A and USGA, revealing that there had been a 3 yard increase across seven Tours in 2017.

Now that might not sound like much, but since 2003 there had only been a rise of 0.2 yards per year.

Golf's governing bodies called the increase in yardage "unusual and concerning".

Related: Has driving distance on Tour actually increased?

It also blamed increased driving distances on golf course length and difficulty, and said how longer hitting puts courses under more financial pressures.

We've heard numerous thoughts from players such as Gary Player, Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus on the distance debate, and lots of it comes down to modern equipment.

Related: Gary Player "sad Old Course brought to her knees by equipment"

But 12-time European Tour winner Ian Poulter has had his say on golf's increased distance, and he says it's nothing to do with equipment.

Instead, Poults puts the increase in driving distance on Tour down to other factors like youth, height, launch monitors and gym work.

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"The facts are 2003-2016 club head speed has increased by 1.5 MPH which is about 5 yards of distance and distance has jumped 6.6 Yards," he wrote on his Instagram page.

"So that tells you why... 2016-2017 an increase of 2.5 yards now that is a gain but remember the average age on your is younger than it was in 2003.

"Players are taller than 2003, We are being fitted for the perfect launch conditions to maximize our potential."

"Guys are more athletic than 2003 which means guys are in better physical shape and able to hit the ball harder that’s why the distance’s has gone up... Most players on tour are working to increase club head speed to hit it further."

Read what Poulter had to say in full here:

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Elliott Heath
Senior Staff Writer

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-6. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Mizuno MP5 4-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x