If you watch any televised golf event today, you will notice stats being displayedjust about every time a golfer hits a driver.
Not only do we get the amazing shot tracker, but we can also see the swing speed, ball speed, carry distance and the total distance on many of the televised shots.
This often leads to golfers wondering just how fast they swing the club, their ball speed and the total distance of their drives.
While many golfers probably overestimate their total driving distance, there are some pretty tried and true ways to know your total driver distance.
However, unless you have a speed radar or launch monitor it might be difficult to figure out your swing speed.
Below, we will provide a formula you can use to calculate your golf swing speed.
How To Calculate Golf Swing Speed
The simple calculation is to take your total carry distance and divide it by 2.3, you will have a general idea of how fast you swing. Another option, if you know your ball speed, is to divide that number by 1.4.
Here are are two examples:
- If your driver carried 240 yards. Take 240 and divide it by 2.3. Your approximate swing speed with the driver is 104 miles per hour.
- If your driver carried 300 yards. Take 300 and divide it by 2.3. Your approximate swing speed with the driver is 130 miles per hour!
Please keep in mind that these are general numbers and have a + or – 7 factor. There are many other factors that influence driver carry distance that we will get into below.
A second method that can be used if you have your ball speed is to divide your ball speed by 1.4.
Here are two examples:
- If your ball speed with your driver is 150. Take 150 and divide it by 1.4. Your approximate swing speed with the driver is 107 miles per hour.
- If your ball speed with your driver is 130. Take 130 and divide it by 1.4. Your approximate swing speed with the driver is 92 miles per hour.
To get the best possible estimate complete the following drill:
- Take 20 balls at the driving range and hit all 20 with a driver.
- Record the approximately carry distance of each shot.
- Go ahead and add all 20 shots up and divide by 20.
- Now take that number and divide it by 2.3.
- If you have a couple outliers on both ends, you can elongated those in the count to get the most accurate calculation.
This is your estimated driver swing speed!
Factors that Impact Total Carry Distance
There are other factors that impact the total carry distance of a driver. These include: spin rate, launch angle and center face contact.
If these are adjusted slight there could be a 20 yard difference. This is why the calculations above can give you a herbal idea, but overall it might not be very accurate.
Let me explain how these factors influence total carry distance.
Spin rate is calculated using total RPMs on a shot. Typically, with the driver you’ll see the RPMs in the 2000 to 5000 range.
The ideal skin rate is between 2000 and 3000 for most swing speeds. Once your skin rate gets above 3000 you will lose significant distance.
Have you ver hit the shot that balloons and comes up shirts. Chances are your skin rate was too high!
This is the angle in which your golf ball leaves the club face. it is typically slightly higher than a loft with a driver, but lower than a loft with your irons.
With the driver, most golfers hit it on the upswing with a bit of additional loft. While with the irons, the best golfers compress the ball and reduce the amount of loft.
Too low of a launch angle and your ball won’t maximize its carry distance. Too high and you lose distance. This is where the calculation is impacted.
Center face hits
The maximum distance with a driver is going to take place when you strike the ball on the center of the club face. Once a golfer starts getting outside of the center of the face the total distance is negatively impacted. Club head speed remains the same, but the top distance will be impacted negatively.
How To Get More Precise Driver Speed Measurements
Option 1: Launch Monitor (Best Option)
There are two very good options in today’s golf market. The first is a portable launch monitor. Gone are the days of having to purchase at $16,000 or more Trackman or similar device.
Now a golfer can have access to some incredible club and ball data starting at around $500. That mid entry level is between 500 and 2000 dollars and they are well worth it.
Not only can you have a more exact driver speed, but you can have the following data with a device like the Skytrak or a similar level portable launch monitor.:
- Ball Speed
- Club Speed
- Launch Angle
- Spin Rate
- Spin Axis
The pros all use some level of launch monitor, now the pricing of these more entry level launch monitors are affordable and the quality is high. When compared to the top models in head to head comparisons, many hold their own and are within a yard or two on total carry distance and other metrics.
While many won’t have $16,000 to spend on a Trackman, there are some great affordable options that can be used at your local driving range, on the golf course or in your garage or house as part of a practice area of golf simulator setup.
You can use these devices at home with something as simple as a net and mat, a home simulator setup, the driving range or take it with you to the course. Overall the data provide can help you increase your swing speed and other elements of your game.
Here are my top 3 recommend affordable golf launch monitors:
Option 2: Swing Speed Radar (Quality Option)
While this device won’t give you all the data of the launch monitor, it does provide a fairly accurate swing speed:
How To Increase Your Swing Speed
Regardless of your current ability level or swing speed, we could all use additional speed.
This speed drill below will also help you improve your swing mechanics. It is worth checking it out regardless of your current ability level. The swing mechanic improvement along with the additional distance will help your game!
Let’s face it, regardless of the current state of your game we all want more speed. It has become very clear the need for speed in the golf swing and there are ways to add speed! The analytics on all levels of golf show how important speed and additional speed are in reducing golf scores.
ONce you have identified your swing speed, get to work and train every other day for best results!
It is time to start training for some additional speed. This is a drill and training protocol that I would highly recommend.
SPEED DRILL: Increase your swing speed through overspeed training
- Check out SuperSpeed Overspeed Training Protocols
- Train every other day for 10-15 minutes.
- See a 4-6% increase in swing speed as early as the first training protocol.
The number one thing that has helped me gain significant distance is the SuperSpeed Training System. This overspeed based system where you train every other day for about 10-15 minutes with different swing sticks can help you increase your swing speed by 5-8% which can be 20-30 yards. Who wouldn’t want an extra 20-30 yards. Plus it helps improve your mechanics.
Check current prices on SuperSpeed Training System, here.
The analytics are pretty clear on the importance of speed in the game of golf. Would you rather hit your approach shot from 130 yards of 160 yards? The answer is pretty simple! We know that over the course of time, we will hit shots from 130 yards much closer than from 160 yards, whether we are an average amateur golfer, a scratch golfer, or a PGA Tour member!
The key is having shorter approach shots, so we can hit the ball closer to the hole and then make more putts! Speed is king in the game of golf! Make sure you check out SuperSpeed Golf!
Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better
What does this mean for you? I believe in the following recipe to get better:
1 – Improve your motion in the golf swing by identifying a golf instructor. Here are some options:
Here is a list of golf instructors that we have reviewed:
2 – Train to swing faster and improve your swing speed. Here are some options:
Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:
3 – Understand course strategy and work to break through your next barrier. Here is a series on breaking through:
We have provided guides on how to break 100, 90, 80 and 70. Check out more below, if interested.
4 – Practice Frequently
Did you know that I build a golf simulator in my garage and have played over 500 rounds of golf on my SkyTrak system? It has been a game changer and one worth checking out. Here are some of my other posts on golf simulators frequently asked questions:
- Is a Golf Simulator Worth It?
- How to Build a Golf Simulator?
- What is the Best Golf Simulator?
- Golf Simulator Accessories?
- How to Build a Golf Simulator for under $7000
- Top 11 Reasons to Buy a SkyTrak
- How to Build a Golf Simulator for Under $1000
- Why Build A Golf Simulator?
- What Space is Needed?
- Can A Golf Simulator Improve My Game?
- How Much Does A Golf Simulator Cost?
- Don’t Forget to Check out our 15 best golf swings of all time.