Why You’re Not Hitting the Golf Ball Far
If you’re not hitting the golf ball very far and wondering what is causing your lack of distance, then you’re in the right place.
There are a few fundamentals that impact your golf swing speed the most that I was able to learn about and use to increase my distances with my golf clubs.
I’ve been able to hit the golf ball 10 yards further with my irons and hit drives 20 yards further, which has helped make the game easier as holes become shorter.
The reason you’re not hitting the golf ball far is likely due to:
- Your swing speed (mph)
- Your ball speed
- Your ball spin rate
- Your accuracy & straightness of shots
How Swing Speed Affects How Far You Hit the Ball
The number one factor that separates most golfers ability to hit the golf ball far is swing speed.
PGA Tour pro’s can swing a driver 120+ mph with guys like Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson reaching 125-130 mph.
Compare this to the average golfer who has a swing speed of 90 mph. Adding an extra 10 mph can make a huge difference and if you can add an extra 30 mph, then you’ll be swinging as hard as the pro’s.
A rule of thumb is that swinging 100 mph with your driver should hit the golf ball 250 yards. Increase your swing speed to 110 mph and you could carry the ball 280 yards. For 300 yard drives, you’re likely going to need a swing speed above 120 mph as well as high ball speed and lower spin rates.
Golf Ball Speed Impacts How Far You Hit Your Driver
Not only is club head speed important but so is ball speed.
You could have your club swinging super fast, producing 115-120 mph swing speed but if you don’t hit the ball very square, all that energy will be lost during the transfer.
Ball speed is often judged by “smash factor” which is a metric you get access to when you swing on a simulator like the Trackman.
It tracks how well you hit the ball on the club face and is judged using your clubhead speed and ball speed.
A perfect smash factor score is 1.5 which basically means your ball speed is 1.5X your clubhead speed.
So if you currently swing at 90 mph with your driver, then your ball speed would max out around 135 mph if you were able to reach a 1.5 smash factor.
How does this compare to the pro’s?
Let’s take Tiger Wood’s swing of 120 mph and apply the 1.5 smash factor to get a ball speed of 180 mph! Wow.
I think you can see why a golf ball can fly further traveling 180 mph compared to 135 mph. But one other factor that impacts the ball is the wind and the balls spin rate.
Golf Ball Spin Rate Impacts Your Club Distances
Every golf club in your bag has a different loft angle on the club face. As the club makes contact with the ball, it imparts spin on the golf ball.
Since the loft angles differ, so do the spin rates.
You’ll find that wedges and shorter clubs like your 9 iron or Pitching wedge will have higher spin rates compared to your long irons, woods, and driver.
A high spin rate usually results in less roll upon landing.
This is why we use our wedges to chip around greens instead of 4 irons. The wedge will put more spin on the ball, giving us more control and helping the ball stop quicker on the green.
But with tee shots, the goal is to hit the golf ball as far as you can down the fairway.
Driver’s should ideally have lower spin rates to allow the ball to roll more, adding to your total distance you hit your tee shot.
One reason you might not be hitting the ball very far is that you have too high of a spin rate with your driver and irons.
An easy way to spot this is watching how high your shots go in the air. Golf shots that get hit with high back spin rates tend to climb higher into the air.
Hit More Accurate Golf Shots
This final golf swing tip to hit further is quite simple. The straighter your golf ball flies, the further it can go.
If you tend to hit a hard banana slice into the rough, you’re probably losing distance from the golf ball curving off line.
Same can be said for those who hit a duck hook that curves hard into the rough.
Once you’re able to straighten out your swing, you should notice an increase in club distances as a result.
Monitor your club distances over time by downloading our printable worksheets here.
Tips on Hitting the Golf Ball Far
The overall takeaway today on how to add distance to your tee shots and start hitting the golf ball farther is you need to analyze a combination of factors.
It could be that you have a low club head speed. This can be fixed by improving your swing sequence and fundamentals.
Swinging harder isn’t always the best answer because it can lead to out of control shots.
You also have to improve your ball striking contact to maximize energy transfer from the clubhead speed to the golf ball, launching it into the air with fast ball speed.
Smash factor is the analytical stat you can monitor on a Trackman to learn how well you’re striking the ball on the center of the clubface. A score of 1.5 is great, meaning your ball speed is 1.5 times your club head speed.
Once you increase your clubhead speed and ball speed, the final tip to hit the ball further is perfecting the spin rate and launch angle for each club.
Controlling your golf ball’s trajectory and accuracy can add yards to your swing and leave shorter approach shots into the green.
This is a challenging step to perfect in your golf swing but doing so can lead to more greens in regulations and more birdie opportunities.
Thanks for reading and make sure to check out our resources below that golfer’s love following to improve their scores quicker. We’ve helped thousands of golfers and look forward to helping you too!
- All Access Golf Resource Library
- Short Game Practice Plan
- Indoor Golf Practice & Fitness Plan
- 36 Easy to Follow Golf Practice Routines