By - Introspectivemeowl
That's an awesome story. Your hard work certainly paid off and good luck in your next tournament!
Hitting 240 is like throwing high 70s as a pitcher. To the overwhelming majority of people out there you are a fire baller on the mound but once you're throwing to decent high school age and college level players it becomes much more difficult to compete and you have to be perfect at everything else to avoid getting crushed.
That is sweet. And honestly, many more amateurs should be encouraged to focus on their driver and long game relative to their short game and putting. Getting off the tee, and getting closer to the hole, is almost assuredly the number one way to massively cut your scores other than getting really good at approach shots. I'm not discounting that putting and short game are important too (particularly between two otherwise low handicap golfers playing competitively), but if you cannot get off the tee without going OB or losing balls, it will be tough to break bogey golf.
[Strokes gained data backs this up](https://practical-golf.com/pros-vs-joes/), with almost 2/3 of any scoring differential between players attributable to the long game (driving + approach shots) and far less importance placed on putting and short game, which are relatively difficult for all golfers, not just bad ones.
Yeah, good to hear from a good golfer. I get it that high handicappers may be taking loads of penalty strokes and it's a good idea to bin the driver for a bit. But if you want to play at a high level, you absolutely need to get off the tee. Otherwise your chances at putting are quite a bit lower. In order to putt for dough, you're going to have to get off the tee well in order to hit the green.
Agreed. Playing any course that is 7000yds or more, who cares if you can make a 10ft putt when you have >200yds left on every approach shot. I loved in my amateur tournament how they converted a few shorter par 5s (480-520Yds) to just calling them par 4s and total par of 70. The guys I played with still made or had decent birdie tries while I was hitting 3-wood in and scrambling for my par.
If you have 200 yards left on every approach shot you have no business playing from 7000 yards. That's why they have multiple tee boxes.
It’s basically never a good idea to bin the driver unless there is major trouble in play and/or you literally can’t hit it at all.
This is awesome. I literally cannot get my ball speed past 140 and my club speed over 100 with my driver no matter what I do with my swing. On top of the launch monitor, did you do any workouts or use something like Speed Sticks? I'm with you on the scoring, I'm a 5.5 right now, and know I won't be able to make any significant gains if I can't hit my driver further (averaging 230 carry). I play a messy game with lots of up/downs because I'm never in scoring position, so if my short game is off that day, my score balloons.
I think I read Phil say something like he'd always rather hit an "8 iron from the rough than a 5 iron from the fairway." It's tough when you have a 3 hybrid in from 200 to rely on that shot on longer par 4s.
How did you land on Mevo? I was looking at Rapsodo or even going just straight radar gun + Speed Sticks.
Happy for you, dude. Would love to see some similar results.
That 3h from 200 really hits home for me. Brutal
Dude me too. So many in this boat huh?
Get an old one or two iron. Hit tons of balls with it, hard. Start with 40 balls and work up to 200 balls per session. After a while the distance gains will come.
Unknown what this isn’t actually a stupid idea.
Plus if you can hit that properly and 200+ yards you can hit anything.
Would a ping i3 “blade” 1/2 iron count?
Any long iron, so yes. Only requirement is to hit it hard.
But be cool and get a vintage Hogan blade.
Hey, that was me last year! I haven't used anything other than the Mevo. But now that I can actually see what I'm doing, I'm starting to contemplate working out this next year to further increase my distance.
One aspect I didn't anticipate is understanding where my "speed" came from. I used to think swinging hard increased my speed. But I found it was more being able to throw my arms out and up at the ball rather than powering down into the ball. When I figured that out, I was able to further increase my speed to points I never imagined. I told my wife at the beginning of the journey I was hoping to get my average club head speed to 108 which would have been a vast improvement. Now 108 is disappointing to me.
I like the Mevo+ for the compactness and price and it gives estimated AOA. But it isn't great for an indoor simulator. Now that I have experience with a launch monitor, my next will likely be a high end one like the GCQuad. The better monitor will have increased accuracy indoors for short game (Mevo+ is horrible for putting and chipping indoors) and show me where the ball made contact with the club.
The YouTube video that finally made me believe I could do this too was Shawn Clement's video of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTBlSAE0tOQ
Good luck and know that it is possible to gain the distance. I was hoping for 280 yards total off the tee and I've exceeded my expectations.
So you’re a better golfer than I am as a 5.5, but I have some distance insight that can hopefully help—I won a local long drive qualifier and I have a regional coming up in a month.
You’ll know a lot of this already I’m sure, but here comes.
1. Whatever scope or something you use, pick one and be consistent. They all measure slightly differently.
2. The most important things to look for are: ball speed, spin rate, and attack angle. The rule of thumb is that you maximum carry + roll distance is double your ball speed. (At 140 mph it may be slightly less, but for the time being let’s just assume that it’s double). You want high launch low spin.
3. Maximum “smash factor” I.e- ball speed divided by club speed- is 1.5. A 1.4 is a bit low—that would be an easy way to gain 10-15 yards.
4. Workouts/speed sticks: I am a fan of the speed sticks. I was skeptical at first, but I ended up dropping the money for the LD sticks, and it helped me break through the 130 clubspeed plateau. You’ll definitely gain a few. But, if you pair it with some full body strength training, I think you’ll be able to put on some more speed and 25-30 yards.
Hope this is helpful!
DUDE -- Thank you, u/Doth_Thou_Even and thank you u/Introspectivemeowl!!
This whole post has been enlightening but I really appreciate you taking the time out of your day to put together this reply. I had kind of given up on ever being able to hit the ball far and now am motivated to get my shit together and get some gains. u/Doth_Thou_Even \- Have a couple questions for you based on your points:
1. So at my current stats, my max drive + roll would be 280?
2. Currently gaming an XR16. I've tried drivers every year, with, as you can imagine very little gains - at least not enough to justify spending $$$. I always felt like it was the archer and not the bow. What happens on the LD circuit - do you guys update every year?
3. If you were me and prioritizing your development to hit it further, would it be something like this? Workout + SpeedSticks + MLM first, and then new driver later? Will a new shaft help at all? Have always been told that the shaft is the Engine...
4. Any specific workout regimens you suggest I follow?
5. Most importantly - would love to see you in action. Let us know how we can all follow your LD journey! Good luck!!!
25 years of golfing and I am so pumped man. This post is everything great about r/golf.
Thanks for the kind words man :).
1. Around 280, yes. There are some assumptions built into what I said that need to be broken down a bit here. All of my numbers are going to come via trackman specifically. Different monitors and whatnot track things differently. I have chosen to base my growth and my progress off of trackman, and so those are the numbers with which I am most familiar, and will be using to explain.
1. On a perfect strike with a driver, the ratio between ballspeed and clubspeed will be 1.50/1. So, with a swing speed of 100 mph, your maximum ball speed is 150.
The rule of thumb is that a perfectly, and I mean perfectly, struck ball can go 3 yards per mph of clubspeed. I’ve only seen a picture of a 3-1 once: the guy who did it was named Jon Rahm.
To get an idea as to how much spin and attack angle affect the total distance, take a look at this fitting chart by trackman. Using 120mph clubspeed as illustrative, poor attack angle and spin can cost you 30 yards or so.
2. Your archer and bow comment is fair—but getting fitted may help. While this bleeds into one of your other questions, the reason a fitting may help is because of your low smash. You’re leaving 8-10mph of ball speed, and thus 15-20 yards of distance, on the table because of your low smash. If you’re a 5.5 hdcp, I’d imagine that you’re a good ball striker. So, your smash should be higher with the driver.
With respect to LD, there are really only a handful of companies that make a true LD shaft. They are: house of forged, paderson, and fujikura. I have a fujikura on the way—it’s lighter than the HoF and the Paderson (I have one of each) and I’m curious to see what the performance difference is.
This is year 1 for me, so I’ll let you know next year with the rotation, haha.
3. First, I’d google where a trackman is around you, and get on one for an hour. You want to look at: 1. Clubspeed, 2. Ball speed, 3. Smash factor, 4. Spin rate, and 5. Angle of attack.
Using the fitting chart, you can analyze how much of your current swing you are maximizing. With better club delivery, you can gain 15 yards or so literally overnight. The “holy grail” is a 1.50 smash, a positive AoA- (the more positive the better) and low spin (figure around 2000 rpm, give or take).
Think of the shaft as the transmission, not the engine. You are the engine, but you need to be able to “put the power down.” A new shaft may help with club delivery, but I don’t want to comment too much more on this— you would need to see a fitter and see what works. It’s a bit of a “wand chooses the wizard” sort of thing.
I’d get on a trackman before I made any purchases, however. Need to see why you’re losing distance before you start looking for solutions. Maybe you get on there and find out that you don’t swing 100, you actually swing 92. And you deliver the club well. So that means that your priority would be upping speed. Or, let’s say you swing 100, but only get 140 ball. That means you need to work on club delivery.
4. For workouts and speedsticks, I’d say it depends on your age, fitness level, etc.. Anything that makes you more explosive would help. Deadlifts, squats, sprints, weighted rotational twists with a medicine ball, etc. Power activities translate.
Speedsticks help with pushing you through plateaus and whatnot, and they help you train past your max. I find them worthwhile. Just follow the protocol the way they suggest.
5. Finally, thanks for the kind words. WLD, the long drive competition you’d see on golf channel, kinda folded during covid. Two other federations have popped up in its place. The one I’ll be competiting in is the PLDA. I’ll be doing the amateur Tour event and the open regional qualifier. :) My goal is to see 200 ballspeed before then... but I’m not there yet.
For reference, for the absolute insanity of the guys on top, Kyle Berkshire has gone 155 club 228 ball. That’s why he does it for a living, haha
Thanks dude. Gave you my free reward, but it's actually priceless - haha.
I hope to circle back with this thread by the end of the year when I get to 105mph swing speed.
Kyle Berkshire is an effing beast. I love when he visits Bryson and they nerd out together.
Also, if you’re at 100 now... you can be at 105 in less than 6 months. Between some targeted workouts... and, as silly as it sounds... swinging harder.
At the end of a range session, take 20 swings or so as hard as you can. Like fucking nail them. You have to get your body used to moving faster. Your 90% swing will get faster by default, because 90% of 105 is faster than 90% of 100.
Keep me updated on progress!
I had the same problem until I started playing with friends at the simulator this past winter. Noticed my spin rate on drives was over 7,500 at times. I was struggling to carry 240 even though I hit my 3 wood further than that.
I bit the bullet and bought 3 months worth of lessons then got fitted for an Epic Max LS. Now even my miss hits are carrying 265+ and still going fairly straight. My good drives are carrying 285+ and rolling well past 300. And this is with club speed of only 105. Getting that speed up is my next goal.
Surprisingly it was only the mevo. But now that I am reaching closer to my potential with my current fitness, it is motivating to know increased fitness should translate to even better shots.
Statistics have proven that that saying is completely wrong. It’s not even debatable anymore.
Congrats man! I found the same thing when I started hitting off a sim. Seeing the actual numbers is hands down the best way to practice. Even a driving range doesn’t do much in comparison anymore
The mevo+ has been great for everything except short game. I was hoping to use it as an actual simulator in the winter but it has been so inconsistent with either completely not picking up chips & putts or being way off if it does pick it up. The firmware updates have made it more usable for that but I still don’t recommend it for actual simulation play. I found I was hitting chips and putts in a very specific way so that it would read it that it was dangerous I would be doing that on the actual course. Anything over a 30 yard shot seemed to be quite accurate.
How do you feel like you actually used the monitor to achieve the results? In other words, do attribute the improvement to the launch monitor or the ability to practice year round?
90% launch monitor, 10% extra time to swing. I never would have changed my swing if I didn’t see the numbers. I would have just reinforced my bad swing.
Interesting story. Can you point us in the right direction to start hitting up on the driver? Any video resources you used?