What Loft Should Senior Golfers Have On Their Driver?
As we mature and the pace of life starts slowing down, we can spend more time participating in our beloved game of golf. Unfortunately, this also takes a toll on our muscular system and we start slowing down.
The slowdown in our muscle directly impacts on our ability to retain the swing speed that you were able to generate when you were young. To counteract this, it is important to look at what loft a senior golfer should have on their driver and as we get older and our swing speed starts to slow, a higher loft can be the best way to get the best distance possible for our potential and improve our ball flight and accuracy as well. Having the correct loft for on your driver will minimize the loss in distance as your swing slows down thus enabling you to maintain your competitiveness. Driver lofts are available between 4 and 20 degrees and your swing speed, shaft flex, torque, shaft type, angle of attack, and lie angle will play a significant role in selecting the best one for you.
Intro To Your Loft Of Golf Drivers
Golf drivers are the lowest lofted hitting club in your bag for maximum distance. The loft is one of the most misunderstood factors in deciding on your next driver. Many golfers select the loft on their driver based on what the professional golfers use.
More mature golfers will apply more common sense in selecting the loft but find it hard to move from away from the loft that has been successfully in play for many years.
The fact that drivers are available in lofts between 4-degrees and 20-degrees does not make the selection any easier.
Avoid The Low Loft = Extra Distance Trap
There exists a fallacy that a lower loft will increase your distance. This may apply to golfers with an extremely high swing speed of more than 110 miles per hour. At high speed, they can generate sufficient spin to achieve the height required to keep the ball in the air.
Slower swing speed will not be able to achieve the same spin and distances
What Are The Elements That Go Into Selecting The Right Driver Loft?
Swing speed is defined as the speed of your clubhead at the time of impact and you can increase your swing speed through increased flexibility, stretching, exercise, and practicing your swing.
The angle of attack is the angle at which the club head strikes the golf ball. Your driver swing should connect the clubhead with the golf ball while on the up for optimum spin and distance. A higher lofted club will aid in creating a more positive angle of attack.
So, What Loft Driver Should Suit What Swing Speed
As described earlier your swing speed should be a decisive factor in your decision of which loft to select. Below is a comparison between clubhead speed and the recommended loft
|< 80mph||Between 14 degrees and 20 degrees|
|80-95mph||Between 12 degrees and 14 degrees|
|95-105mph||Between 9 degrees and 11 degrees|
|105-115mph||Between 7 degrees and 9 degrees|
|> 115mph||Between 4 degrees and 7 degrees|
What Else To Consider – Weight, Shaft, Flex
Some factors to consider in selecting the best driver:
Slower swing speeds need some assistance in the form of a greater launch angle. While adjustability is handy it is not essential provided you select a driver with the correct angle. The slower your swing speed the more launch angle you need.
This is important for all golfers but particularly important to senior players that might have a slower swing speed.
The amount of movement that a shaft generates during the golf swing is called the flexibility. The faster the swing speed, the stiffer the shaft that is required.
Most, if not all, driver shafts in use today are manufactured from lightweight graphite. The lighter shafts are easier to swing and will achieve the maximum speed for low-speed golf swings. Heavier shafts are more appropriate for fast swing speeds.
Driver shafts vary between 43.5 and 46 inches. Longer shafts will enable you to create a wider arc and thus generate more clubhead speed. It has a negative side in that longer shafts tend to be more difficult to control. Ensure that your shaft is suited to your length and swing plane.
Clubhead Weight And Weight Distribution
A light clubhead will enhance your ability to reach the maximum speed and distance that you can achieve.
The placement of the weight in the clubhead will affect the ball trajectory. The further back in the clubhead the weight is the higher the ball trajectory will be, and it will provide more forgiveness.
Drivers should not produce excessive spin as this will create a trajectory that starts low and balloons further down the fairway, resulting in a loss of distance.
Lower spin of the face of the driver will produce a longer shot, but if the spin is too low you will lose distance as well.
Loft and shaft adjustability are not essential but will enable you to make changes as your swing and swing speed improves without having to replace your driver.
The grip is the only contact you have with your clubs and assists you in controlling the club. Larger hands will need larger grips for more control.
How To Know What Flex To Get
The shaft flex is the amount of flexibility and curve that the shaft will experience during the swing. If the flex is too high for your swing speed it will curve too much and result in unpredictable and offline ball trajectory.
The recommended flex for your swing speed is:
- X (Extra stiff) Flex shafts are aimed at swing speeds more than 110 mph
- S (Stiff) Flex shafts are aimed at swing speeds between 95 to 110 mph
- R (Regular) Flex shafts are aimed at swing speeds between 85 to 95 mph
- A (Amateur) Flex shafts are aimed at swing speeds between 75 to 85 mph
- L (Ladies) Flex shafts are aimed at swing speeds slower than 75 mph
How To Know Too Little Or Too Much
- Too much loft on your driver will generate a high-flying ball trajectory that falls short of your expected distance
- Too little loft will generate a tremendous amount of spin and create an initial low penetrating ball trajectory that balloons as the spin take effect later in the trajectory
Manufacturers have made adjustable loft drivers available to nearly any golfer that has a reasonable budget. This will enable you to select the loft that you require depending on the state of your swing and changing swing speed.
When adjusting your loft take cognizance that this will adjust the lie of the clubface and adjust the way your clubface points. Higher lofts will present a more closed clubface while a lower loft will present a more open clubface.
Remember, Straight Is Better Than Long
Generating long-distance produces a great feeling when standing on the tee but the longer your shot the more likely you are to encounter some problems. Professional golfers frequently run out of the fairway and into the rough or end up far of the fairway in deep rough. You want to avoid this.
It will be much more beneficial to have a slower swing if it provides you with more control and ends with more balls in play on the fairway.
Should I Hit A 3-Wood Off The Tee?
Confidence plays a significant role in whether you hit your driver off the tee. If you are not confident in your driver swing, or hazards are withing reach of your driver the use of a 3-wood will be highly recommended. Plenty of players actually find that the loft of the three wood enables them to hit longer, straighter shots consistently and this is probably the biggest sign that your drivers loft is too high for your swing speed.
3 Best Drivers For Seniors
Our top 3 driver picks for senior golfers:
TaylorMade RBZ Black Driver
The TaylorMade RBZ black first appeared in 2018 with its adjustable loft clubhead at the maximum allowed size of 460cc and has a ultra-lite titanium core with a black satin finish
Shaft length 45.5 inches
Speed pocket is located behind the center of the club face enabling maximum energy transfer to the ball.
Check Out More Reviews Here:
Ping G25 Driver
The Ping G25 was first released in 2013 and is a titanium driver with a lie angle of 58 degrees and a club head volume of 460 cc weighing in at 205 grams and has a D3 swing weight.
The shaft length is 47.75 inches
Check Out More Reviews Here:
Cobra Golf King F8 Driver
Released in 2018 the Cobra F8 driver has a 460cc head made from a titanium and carbon composite and has a D1 swing weight.
The shaft length is 45.75 inches
Check Out More Reviews Here:
Correct Your Technique
The most important part of striking the ball consistently is to have a good posture and technique. The in-to-out swing on the correct swing plane will enable you to hit straighter shots and may even produce the much sought-after draw.
Although there are many videos and instructions available on the internet and YouTube, a visit to your local golf professional will benefit you tremendously. They have been through a detailed process and have seen many mistakes that amateur, and professional, golfers make.
If you have budgetary constraints, take a couple of lessons to learn about the basics of the swing and what you have to concentrate on. You can always return when you have a bigger budget for more detailed lessons.
Get A Fitting
Many golfers buy equipment either from suppliers or from internet shops without knowing the exact requirements that will assist them in getting better.
Your local golf professional or a certified fitter will be able to provide you with the details for every club ranging from shaft length, shaft flex, lie angle, and many more factors that will enable you to produce your best golf and reduce your handicap.
Selecting a driver as a senior golfer is rather interesting. Your experience is based on a body that is fully functional with all your muscle groups performing at peak. However, your muscles break down as you grow older and this puts a new perspective on factors to be considered.
To mitigate the loss of muscle power and swing speed you must increase the loft of the driver however much this may hurt your ego, it will produce longer and more accurate drives.
Undertake a fitting session to make sure that the configuration of the driver fits your unique body and swing traits.