One of the most essential factors when picking the best golf drivers for any player, is the loft. Basically, the loft is the angle of the clubface from where it’s positioned on the shaft. These determine on how high the golf ball is launched when the clubhead strikes it.
Compared to other types of golf clubs, golf drivers have the lowest loft, usually ranging from 7 to 20 degrees. How much loft you need for a driver depends overall on the golfer’s swing speed, as well as their handicap.
• Low Loft – A driver with at least 8 degrees of loft is considered to be low. These are recommended for golfers whose swing speeds reach around 110 to 120 mph. A low-lofted driver means that the ball’s trajectory when launched will also be low. Lower-lofted drivers are also perfect for golfers whose angle on the downswing is particularly steep, thereby preventing the ball from launching too high. A few pros, like Davis Love III, use these kinds of golf drivers, usually around 8.5 degrees of loft.
• Middle Loft – Golfers who has a swing speed of around 90 to 110 mph will benefit from drivers who have a loft of 9 to 10 degrees. Usually, golfers with a low handicap and fast-swinging recreational players fall into this category. Records also show that the average swing speed of a PGA Tour player is around 108 mph, and for LPGA players, around 96 mph. Thus, these golfers seldom carry a driver that has a loft of around 9.5 to 10.5 degrees.
A prominent pro who’s a user of a middle-lofted driver is Tiger Woods, whose known for having the fastest swing speed in the PGA. To compensate for this, he uses a driver with a 10-degree loft.
• High Loft – High-lofted golf drivers are those whose loft falls into the 11-degree range. The average, recreational golfer will find these lofts more comfortable, as it’ll give them a more accurate shot off the tee, at the expense of a few meters of distance. Recreational golfers who have a higher swing speed, however, may benefit more from the lower-lofted drivers. This type of loft is suitable for golfers whose swing speeds average around 80 to 90 mph, and records show that an average male golfer of this type is around 84 mph, making these types of lofts perfect for him.
• Specialized Lofts – Most brands of golf drivers now make specialized ones for ladies and older people who wish to engage into the sport. An average, recreational female golfer has a swing speed of around 64 mph, and some older people may have swing speeds that are equal, or even lower, than that. Because of this, the lofts on their drivers are usually around 12 to 15 degrees, and some drivers may also have higher lofts than this.
The easiest method to assess your own swing speed, and hence, the type of loft suitable for your driver, is to simply go to a pro shop and ask about it. Most pro shops come with a local speed-measuring device which checks your average speed, so you’ll be able to know yours before you can choose a driver for you.
As a general rule of thumb, don’t just purchase a golf driver if you’re basing your decision on the fact that a professional golfer uses it, as this might lead to an incompatible driver which you may not be able to handle, and thus reduce your game. Different golfers, whether amateurs or pros, have different golf stats, thus, drivers come in all shapes, lofts, and sizes to bring out the full potential of any level of golfer around.
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