When you should and shouldn’t – hit your driver – part two

“A perfectly straight shot with a big club is a fluke.” - Jack Nicklaus 

By Ian Hardie

In the post ‘When you should and shouldn’t – hit your driver’ I talked you through my decision process (these days) if I was standing on the tee of a short

But not reachable in one shot – par 4

As I went through the plusses and minuses of the possible options

It would have become pretty clear to you as to which one

Allows for trouble free, consistently good scoring

Which is what most golfers experience when they play well

And golfers who aren’t playing so well

Really want to do

Yet one of the most common things I see golfers do without thinking

Is tee off every par 4 and par 5 they play with a driver

Irrespective of how early it is in their game

Or whether they are warmed up or not

Which when for most golfers

The driver is the club that invites the most trouble into their game

Is not the most effective way to use it

In fact in that first post my personal point of view was that

‘I need to make better decisions off the tee.’

Which in that context was about leaving a shot into the green

‘That had a very low chance of being messed up.’

Golfers who hit their driver off the first tee

Without being properly warmed up

Invite the possibility

Of messing up right from the start of their game

And invariably

If the first drive of the day isn’t good

Then neither is the second

Or the third

Which can start to create a ‘downward spiral’

That sometimes continues for the whole game

Which can keep going from game to game

Until eventually the golfer considers themselves

‘To be a poor driver’

And their game suffers accordingly

The good news is that there is something you can do

So that situation never eventuates

Like most everything else I suggest

It’s simple enough to do

All you need to do is create a personal framework

That you think through before each game

A set of ‘personal rules’ if you like

A set of rules that remind you things like;

‘I don’t hit my driver until my body and action are fully warmed up’

And more importantly

‘I don’t hit my driver until I am feeling like I am in the groove’

You could say to yourself

‘No driver if I am not feeling 100% confident’

As well as

‘I don’t hit driver if I am playing with any sort of injuries’

The path towards trouble free, consistently good scoring

Is simpler when you use a fairway wood, hybrid or long iron

In conjunction with the above personal framework

On at least the first six holes of your round

If not later

After all, most poor rounds are the result of poor shots

And subsequent poor decisions

In the first six holes of a golfers round

Now you might be reading this thinking

‘Hang on Ian, all the tour pros on television start their rounds hitting driver off the tees’

Which is generally true

But they have normally done at least 2 hours warm-up and physical preparation

Finishing with at least 10 drives before they get onto the first tee

So if you are able to do a tour length warm up before you tee off the first

Then by all means – bomb it down there with a driver!

But if you aren’t able to do that before your rounds

Create and use your own personal framework

A framework you can use to figure out the best way

To start each round on the path towards trouble free, consistently good scoring

Play well

 

Related Posts

When you should and shouldn’t – hit your driver

A quick tip for hitting great tee shots

Why does my driver slice but my 9 iron goes straight?

Do you swing the golf club too fast?

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