Golf tips and expert instruction, golf club reviews and the latest golf equipment.
Thank you for signing up to Golf Monthly. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.
Over time, as golfers lose their youthful exuberance, hitting the driver can become something to fear rather than enjoy. Not only will this detract from the playing experience, but it will have a disastrous impact on your scores. So, in the video and article below, PGA pro Gareth Lewis runs through three of his favourite driver drills that’ll rekindle the joy and teach you how to increase your swing speed to hit longer and straighter drives.
It’s extremely important to control the clubface in relation to the path when hitting the driver. Far too often, golfers are worried about the outcome and try to guide it through impact. While the intentions are good, this tends to have the opposite effect and can actually cause many to hit the dreaded slice. So, you need to release the driver, but how much?
This is one of my favourite driver drills for golf. Take your driver address position and start with some half-swings, working on controlling the face in relation to the path. Slowly increase the speed as you feel comfortable until you get to the full swing. As you work through each stage of this drill, you’ll start to build much more awareness of the face-to-path relationship that is so crucial to understanding your release pattern and hitting good drives.
The second drill is going to help you hit up on the ball and create lag, which is crucial if you want to find the optimal driver launch angle. Take an empty golf ball sleeve and place it about a grip-length in front of the ball. The aim is simple: miss the sleeve. Alternatively, you can use a headcover or some tees.
If you have a descending angle of attack, you’ll hit the empty box after impact. This is a great drill as it isn’t overly technical and it provides instant feedback. It’s also one that can become a staple of your practice routine to make sure you never fall back into bad habits.
When starting out, don’t get disheartened if it takes you a while to create enough of an ascending blow to consistently miss the obstacle; making incremental gains here is absolutely fine. After all, any swing changes take a while to become ingrained.
The third tip won’t only help you shallow out your driver swing, but it will also encourage an in-to-out club path. A common fault among golfers is to get steep and cut across the ball. So, to counter that, take your set-up and then move your trail foot back until the front of it is in line with the heel of your lead foot.
It’ll feel quite severe at first but remember, it’s only a drill. Complete your driver backswing as normal and you should feel like it’s easier to rotate behind the ball with the feet set up like this.
Then, as you start the downswing, use the visual aid of the feet aiming right and follow that line so the club approaches impact from the inside. That will shallow the club out and make it far easier to hit the ball on the up for maximum power and carry distance. If you struggle with slicing the ball, you may even start to hit some draws. Give it a go and good luck!
Gareth is a well respected professional with over 20 years experience. Gareth has previously worked at various high profile and world-renowned facilities, the most recent being Royal St.David's Golf Club in Harlech, North Wales, where he held the position of Club Manager and Head Professional.
He has a passion for coaching, custom fitting and retail and also enjoys regularly competing and playing socially. Gareth has had success coaching players of all abilities from a Welsh Professional Champion and Welsh Amateur Internationals to the absolute beginner. Gareth's passion for all sports and enthusiasm to continue learning makes his coaching style very adaptable and relatable, which is why he also has a good track record of coaching elite athletes from other sports. More details can be found at www.lewygolf.co.uk