A typical driver over the past couple of years would weigh roughly 310-320 grams. This is broken down by 200-205 grams for the head, a 60-65 gram shaft and a 50 gram grip. In 2011 and 2012, we have seen 270 gram weight drivers: 195 gram head, 45 gram shaft and 30 gram grip. The theory is that the lighter clubs will produce a faster swing speed which in turn creates more distance. These clubs are also getting longer. The typical driver length in 2008 was 45 inches. The average length now is 46 inches. And now, Cobra is introducing the Long Tom driver at 4 feet! Remember the Killer Bee?
But with the trend comes a couple of issues. First, it has long been known (see Tom Wishon’s books and research at www.wishongolf.com) that missing the sweet spot on the club face can cause you to lose more distance than the gain of a higher club and ball speed. Second, if you do not deliver a certain amount of momentum at and through the ball, you will not create enough energy to gain distance. Finally, when you hit these monstrous drives, your accuracy usually is not the same as it is with shorter clubs. A perfect example is the PGA Tour where the average driver length is 44.5 to 45″. If YOU struggle with accuracy off the tee the LAST thing you need is a longer driver to put you deeper in the trees!
The only way to see if this trend works for you is to go through a proper fitting for your driver. In that fitting, we will use our proprietary software to recommend a specific head and shaft combination that optimizes your distance AND shot dispersion. You will be able to see the difference in shot dispersion and distances with these new clubs and compare to what you are currently hitting. So don’t just buy the hype. Come in and see for yourself if lighter and longer shafts REALLY make your drives go longer!