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Driving distance ranges for junior golfers


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#1 CTgolf

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 07:33 PM

Anyone have stats on this by age, for an avg as well “very good to elite” (eventually able to play D1 college golf) player?

Of course a lot depends on size, which can vary a lot, but just trying to get a sense of what is typical and what is really good for different ages.

And at what age do you think distance really starts to matter in order to be competitive?



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#2 iteachgolf

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 07:36 PM

Distance is always important.  But kids mature and grow and vastly different rates and times.  Kids who are short at even 15-17 years old and ended up the longest on there college golf teams at 21.

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#3 wildcatden

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 08:54 PM

At ages prior to puberty, I wouldn't worry about being the longest off the tee.  If you look at some of the kids doing very well (perhaps winning Worlds), they are much bigger than other kids for their age.  Statistics report that things start to even out once they hit puberty.  

Rather than distance, I prefer to work on smooth swing and watching their swing speed improve. Distance comes along with that. And of course, the short game is what matters.

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#4 killer21

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 08:57 PM

Just to throw out my kids numbers...My soon to be 9 year old daughter was in the simulator today on Trackman. She hit her longest drive all in 121 yards if I remember.  Showed around 61-64 MPH club head speed with the driver.  I'm not sure how great that is.  She played against a 9 year old girl last year who probably hit her driver I am guessing 30% further.  I would guess there aren't many stats on this.  Just have to have patience and see how they grow and progress.  Good question though.
I hate to say but I would guess boys better be crushing it at a pretty early age..11 or 12 to become elite but I am just guessing.
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#5 heavy_hitter

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 12 February 2018 - 09:56 AM.


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#6 leezer99

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 10:30 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:


If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160


Carry or total?

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#7 heavy_hitter

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 11:07 AM

View Postleezer99, on 12 February 2018 - 10:30 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:


If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160


Carry or total?

Total.  

It is completely an opinion based on my son whom I believe is above average in distance.  Along with observations from when he and his same aged buddy play.  As well as observations from walking, caddying, and watching tournaments.  Nothing scientific behind it.  Easy to get total when observing, very hard to get carry.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 12 February 2018 - 11:08 AM.


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#8 CTgolf

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 11:16 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

These are good estimates; I would have guessed a little lower for the 'averages' for the younger ages (even for junior tournament players - at least from what I've observed)

Longer hitters obviously have a huge advantage at the younger ages - but is there an age/course length where the distance advantage decreases (assuming it does diminish and doesn't increase over time)?

Edited by CTgolf, 12 February 2018 - 11:16 AM.


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#9 heavy_hitter

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 11:37 AM

View PostCTgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 11:16 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

These are good estimates; I would have guessed a little lower for the 'averages' for the younger ages (even for junior tournament players - at least from what I've observed)

Longer hitters obviously have a huge advantage at the younger ages - but is there an age/course length where the distance advantage decreases (assuming it does diminish and doesn't increase over time)?

They may be a little high at 8-9.  I vaguely remember those days.  Kekoa, yourself and others may be better at estimating there because your kids are that age.

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#10 wildcatden

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 12:00 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:


If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160


These averages look a little on the high side, but definitely are targets to keep in mind. Of course, it's all relative. If you are an  8 year old who is the size of a 10 year old (article posted here recently on one of these kids) then you are going to be at a huge advantage. Combine that with some short game and you become very elite from age 8-12.  However, once puberty hits, things will start to even out.  If it didn't even out, then DJ, Rory and other long ballers on the PGA Tour would never lose and Spieth would never stand a chance.


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#11 hangontight

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 12:18 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 11:37 AM, said:

View PostCTgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 11:16 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9:    160-170
8:    150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

These are good estimates; I would have guessed a little lower for the 'averages' for the younger ages (even for junior tournament players - at least from what I've observed)

Longer hitters obviously have a huge advantage at the younger ages - but is there an age/course length where the distance advantage decreases (assuming it does diminish and doesn't increase over time)?

They may be a little high at 8-9.  I vaguely remember those days.  Kekoa, yourself and others may be better at estimating there because your kids are that age.

Good estimate for skilled 8 year olds. My son is 7 - the top kids in the 7 YO 'sare 140-145.  He has a few 8 YO buddys he has been playing with and they get it to 150+ .  Coincidentally or not, I've noticed 8 is about the age when the better kids move on from USK drivers and on to Cobra F7 (8) or other OEM.

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#12 kekoa

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM

I think HH's averages are pretty accurate.  Again, those are averages.  

As mentioned there can be huge difference in carry distance and total distance.  At courses in Pinehurst, carry distance is very important unless the kid knows how to hit stinger draws that can run forever.  My 7 y/old carries it anywhere from 135 to 145 yards.  If any of you have played Rio Hondo, he was putting out there consistently 180 yards with roll.  I thought he was pretty long until you see some of the beasts come out at Worlds who carry it 200+ yards- referring specifically to some of the Thai kids.  I question whether they are really 7-8 yrs old though.

Edited by kekoa, 12 February 2018 - 12:51 PM.

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#13 darter79

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

From your experience where do girls fit into this number?

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#14 hangontight

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 01:02 PM

View Postkekoa, on 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM, said:

I think HH's averages are pretty accurate.  Again, those are averages.  

As mentioned there can be huge difference in carry distance and total distance.  At courses in Pinehurst, carry distance is very important unless the kid knows how to hit stinger draws that can run forever.  My 7 y/old carries it anywhere from 135 to 145 yards.  If any of you have played Rio Hondo, he was putting out there consistently 180 yards with roll.  I thought he was pretty long until you see some of the beasts come out at Worlds who carry it 200+ yards- referring specifically to some of the Thai kids.  I question whether they are really 7-8 yrs old though.

Man, that one Tai Kid who came in 2nd in 6 YO last year, and I think 7 YO this year is HUGE.  Last year at Midland in the 6 Year Olds. he would fly and hold just about every green (par 4) it seemed.

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#15 heavy_hitter

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 01:12 PM

View Postdarter79, on 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

From your experience where do girls fit into this number?

Honestly don’t know.  My daughter didn’t pick up a club until just before she turned 12.  At 13 she started playing tournament golf and was probably around 215 as an 8th grader.  I wasn’t a golf dork back then  like I am now.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 12 February 2018 - 01:30 PM.


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#16 Golfingdawg19

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 02:47 PM

View Postdarter79, on 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9: 160-170
8: 150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

From your experience where do girls fit into this number?

My daughter played in the US kids Holiday classic back in December and they had trackman out on the 9th hole collecting data. I emailed the guy and he sent me the data on my daughter and what the average was for her age group. She is 10 years old and is 55' tall and weighs about 65 lbs. She is middle of the pack as far as size goes for her age. Her swing speed was 63 and the average was 69. Her total distance was 136 and the average was 161.

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#17 iteachgolf

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I’ve worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

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#18 hangontight

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 03:19 PM

View PostGolfingdawg19, on 12 February 2018 - 02:47 PM, said:

View Postdarter79, on 12 February 2018 - 12:50 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Distance is important the first time you step on to the course.  Doesn't matter what age.  I personally don't believe distance is something you can teach.  You can either hit the ball far or you can not.  It is similar to a baseball pitcher.  You can teach someone the proper mechanics, it doesn't mean they can throw the ball 90 mph.  You either have the given ability to throw it 90 or you don't.  Proper mechanics can help increase swing speed a bit, still doesn't mean you can hit it far.  Working out can make you stronger, doesn't mean you will hit it that much further.  If all those things made someone longer, Zach Johnson and Luke Donald would be longer.

If you are talking solely junior golfers this is my take:
Average only
12:  190-200
11:  180-190
10:  170-180
9:    160-170
8:    150-160

At 8 to around 10 the above average kids to Elite kids in distance your are talking about adding on 10-30 yards to the high end.  11 to 12 is when it gets really tricking and it is all due to growth.  At these ages you are talking about above average distance adding 10 to 40 yards on.  Elite distance at 11 and 12 is 40 to 80 yards more of distance to the high end.  The kid who won the US Kids Worlds at 12 this year is 6'5".  Stood on a practice green next to him and thought it was the brother of a player.  Nope.  He had an inch on me.

From your experience where do girls fit into this number?

My daughter played in the US kids Holiday classic back in December and they had trackman out on the 9th hole collecting data. I emailed the guy and he sent me the data on my daughter and what the average was for her age group. She is 10 years old and is 55' tall and weighs about 65 lbs. She is middle of the pack as far as size goes for her age. Her swing speed was 63 and the average was 69. Her total distance was 136 and the average was 161.

Ide say that's as good a sample you will get for kids 10u-holiday classic seems to be one of the more popular USKG regionals. Good competition .  Cool they did that. We were there too, I had no idea they were collecting data but would love to see the data.  Maybe it was for the older groups, I don't recall seeing any of that on the boys 7 course.

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#19 heavy_hitter

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM, said:

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I've worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

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#20 iteachgolf

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 05:46 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM, said:

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I've worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I’ve had 2 adult mini tour players go from 98-101 mph clubhead speed to 113-117 mph clubhead speed.  Both went from 265 yard drives to capable of over 300 in normal conditions. It’s even more common with teenage kids.  Very few golfers come close to reaching their genetic peak.

90+ mph fastball would be the 128+ mph clubhead speed equivalent.  Most can’t get that fast, but many can learn to get into the 112 or more range.

Edited by iteachgolf, 12 February 2018 - 05:48 PM.


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#21 tiger1873

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 10:25 PM

Distance is hard to compare because some areas the ball just goes farther.  For instance 12 year girls may be hitting the ball 200 yards off the tee in Texas but in Florida the long hitters are only 170 yards.

The kid in Florida though may actually 220 yards when the altitude and humidity changes. Since most kids do not play with kids from all over until there older you can’t really compare stats. Generally speaking though you need to be able to hit the greens in regulation so being able to control the driver and hit far is more important then people think. I seen great putters who can’t break 80 because there taking 3 shots to green and struggling to make par.

Edited by tiger1873, 12 February 2018 - 10:26 PM.


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#22 heavy_hitter

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:04 AM

View Posttiger1873, on 12 February 2018 - 10:25 PM, said:

Distance is hard to compare because some areas the ball just goes farther.  For instance 12 year girls may be hitting the ball 200 yards off the tee in Texas but in Florida the long hitters are only 170 yards.

The kid in Florida though may actually 220 yards when the altitude and humidity changes. Since most kids do not play with kids from all over until there older you can't really compare stats. Generally speaking though you need to be able to hit the greens in regulation so being able to control the driver and hit far is more important then people think. I seen great putters who can't break 80 because there taking 3 shots to green and struggling to make par.

A lot of truth in this statement.  Humidity and Barometric Pressure changes how far the ball goes as well as terrain.

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#23 MrJones

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:27 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I just would like to point out that it's quite rare that any human being reaches their absolute genetic potential in physical or even mental pursuits. Only Olympic level athletes come to mind when I think of someone who's done everything they can to reach their peak performance level in a given activity. People in everyday situations rarely if ever max out their potential. It just bothers me when people use "genetics" as an excuse for why they couldn't achieve something without really giving it everything they've got.

I see many more people limited by time, money, and resources that won't ever get to be as good as they could have otherwise. Never seen anyone reach their genetic peak.

Edited by MrJones, 13 February 2018 - 09:27 AM.

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#24 kcap

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:30 AM

HH - really good job on the averages. Think they are  quite close to what I have seen over the last few years as my now 10 yr old has moved from lower end of the pack to the higher end.  He is definitely not elite but i see the the difference between elite and good.  It is amazing how 20-30 yds longer from the tee box can change the hole for anyone let alone kids where 30yd represent 3-4 club difference.

I do hope you are not right about your second point i.e. in ability to teach a faster swing and hitting the ball further.  My personal belief is that you are incorrect (nothing to back it up but just a gut check)  and while some kids with great sporting, athletic genes are just able to hit the ball further others need to be taught to work on it, whether it is strength, flexibility, efficiency or just mechanics...

Different question.  How many parents have actively worked on swing speeds and distance?  We have spent a fair bit of time this off-season working on speed and flexibility.  Not sure it is will have the desired impact;  I assume he will hit the ball further just due to natural growth and doubt he reaches elite level.

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#25 Tcraw59

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 11:16 AM

Can’t really speak to the younger ages, but the range when you be into high school can vary tons depending on body type. Between freshman and sophomore year I gained probably 30 yards off the tee, but I mainly attribute that to growing 3 inches and hard work in the gym. I find that distance off the tee is very important at the higher levels of junior golf because of course setups and conditions. But, playing in a high  School event it won’t be as important because the course will play at maybe 6500 instead of 7000, which limits the amount of drivers you can hit. I will say that once you reach a certain point, it becomes not as a beneficial. For example, last summer I reached the point where I carried it 275-280 off the tee, and noticed recently that my gain of another 15 yards of carry hasn’t really made a difference, except on par 5s. You will see many more types of players in the Lower levels of junior golf who might shoot under par. But those players who don’t have the distance and ability to play courses longer than 6800 yards struggle when they play longer and harder courses. It really comes down to when you grow and body fills out


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#26 heavy_hitter

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 11:50 AM

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 05:46 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM, said:

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I've worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I've had 2 adult mini tour players go from 98-101 mph clubhead speed to 113-117 mph clubhead speed.  Both went from 265 yard drives to capable of over 300 in normal conditions. It's even more common with teenage kids.  Very few golfers come close to reaching their genetic peak.

90+ mph fastball would be the 128+ mph clubhead speed equivalent.  Most can't get that fast, but many can learn to get into the 112 or more range.

A lot of that distance from teenagers is coming from natural growth and development of the body rather than teaching isn't it?  In the adults it is coming from fine tuning the skill and raising the smash factor along with the combination of the correct settings/lofts on the driver?  Just curious because this is an interesting conversation.

How much speed is related to growth in a junior?  As an example if a kid is 5'3" and he grows to 5'9" over the next year.  How much distance/speed will that kid gain by growth alone over the next year?  In my mind for some reason I am relating 3 yards of distance to each inch grown.  That is without the natural development of the body that comes with it.  So at a minimum that kid would gain at least 18 yards of distance over the year without doing anything but growing.

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#27 iteachgolf

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 11:57 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 13 February 2018 - 11:50 AM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 05:46 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM, said:

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I've worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I've had 2 adult mini tour players go from 98-101 mph clubhead speed to 113-117 mph clubhead speed.  Both went from 265 yard drives to capable of over 300 in normal conditions. It's even more common with teenage kids.  Very few golfers come close to reaching their genetic peak.

90+ mph fastball would be the 128+ mph clubhead speed equivalent.  Most can't get that fast, but many can learn to get into the 112 or more range.

A lot of that distance from teenagers is coming from natural growth and development of the body rather than teaching isn't it?  In the adults it is coming from fine tuning the skill and raising the smash factor along with the combination of the correct settings/lofts on the driver?  Just curious because this is an interesting conversation.

How much speed is related to growth in a junior?  As an example if a kid is 5'3" and he grows to 5'9" over the next year.  How much distance/speed will that kid gain by growth alone over the next year?  In my mind for some reason I am relating 3 yards of distance to each inch grown.  That is without the natural development of the body that comes with it.  So at a minimum that kid would gain at least 18 yards of distance over the year without doing anything but growing.

No I’m talking about for example a 2020 grad who’s a top 130 polo ranked player picking up 30 yards off the tee in last 4-5 months and is that same size he was 5 months ago, about 5’6 and 160lbs.   Those mini tour players were full grown adults who picked up 10-15mph of clubhead speed.  There no setting you put a driver into that gains 15 mph of clubhead speed.  They played golf for a living, smash factor wasn’t an issue.  Their mechanics got better and as a result the became more efficient and had higher clubhead speeds.  Very rarely will you see anyone close to maxed out from a technique standpoint.  Especially juniors

Edited by iteachgolf, 13 February 2018 - 11:58 AM.


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#28 heavy_hitter

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 12:18 PM

View Postiteachgolf, on 13 February 2018 - 11:57 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 13 February 2018 - 11:50 AM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 05:46 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 02:59 PM, said:

I think HH targets are pretty close. If anything I think the 12 year old number is short to be elite at that age group.  The elite 12 year olds I've worked with, even the smaller ones, all hit it further than 200 with driver.  

I do disagree that you can absolutely teach speed as long as you start doing it before they are adults.

The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I've had 2 adult mini tour players go from 98-101 mph clubhead speed to 113-117 mph clubhead speed.  Both went from 265 yard drives to capable of over 300 in normal conditions. It's even more common with teenage kids.  Very few golfers come close to reaching their genetic peak.

90+ mph fastball would be the 128+ mph clubhead speed equivalent.  Most can't get that fast, but many can learn to get into the 112 or more range.

A lot of that distance from teenagers is coming from natural growth and development of the body rather than teaching isn't it?  In the adults it is coming from fine tuning the skill and raising the smash factor along with the combination of the correct settings/lofts on the driver?  Just curious because this is an interesting conversation.

How much speed is related to growth in a junior?  As an example if a kid is 5'3" and he grows to 5'9" over the next year.  How much distance/speed will that kid gain by growth alone over the next year?  In my mind for some reason I am relating 3 yards of distance to each inch grown.  That is without the natural development of the body that comes with it.  So at a minimum that kid would gain at least 18 yards of distance over the year without doing anything but growing.

No I'm talking about for example a 2020 grad who's a top 130 polo ranked player picking up 30 yards off the tee in last 4-5 months and is that same size he was 5 months ago, about 5'6 and 160lbs.   Those mini tour players were full grown adults who picked up 10-15mph of clubhead speed.  There no setting you put a driver into that gains 15 mph of clubhead speed.  They played golf for a living, smash factor wasn't an issue.  Their mechanics got better and as a result the became more efficient and had higher clubhead speeds.  Very rarely will you see anyone close to maxed out from a technique standpoint.  Especially juniors

Interesting.

Smash factor is the measurement of efficiency in the swing unless I am reading it wrong.  Smash factor still has a roll to play in it.  If a person swings out of their shoes creating 100mph clubhead speed but can't control the ball off the face then the efficiency isn't there in there swing.  So they swing at 95 mph increasing the smash factor and getting more distance.  Tightening up what they are doing in relation to the 100 mph swing will get you back to the smash factor they are used to.

Want to let you know I am doubting or trying to start an argument with you.  I am soaking all of this information in and learning.  

How about the second part of my question in terms of growth?

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#29 iteachgolf

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 12:26 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 13 February 2018 - 12:18 PM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 13 February 2018 - 11:57 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 13 February 2018 - 11:50 AM, said:

View Postiteachgolf, on 12 February 2018 - 05:46 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 12 February 2018 - 05:36 PM, said:


The numbers I through up are just what I see being a driving distance average for golfers of those age groups.  Has nothing to do with whether or not they are elite golfers.  Just because someone can throw a baseball 90 mph doesn't mean they are elite.  Just means they can throw the ball 90 mph.  I do agree that the better junior golfers at 12 are putting up more than a 200 yard drive.  Mine is 225-240.  I have seen kids at 12 pushing out to 280.

You can teach speed, absolutely.  I probably didn't make my point clear enough.  Throwing baseball out there again as an analogy.  There are very few people out there that can throw a 90+ mph fastball.  You can teach them proper mechanics, give them the exercises and strength training to do so.  It doesn't mean they will ever reach 90 mph.  Those things may raise the speed, but if their body may have limitations and they will never get out of the box of those limitations.  Same thing goes for creating more swing speed in golf.  The golfer is limited by what genetics give them.  You can't teach a guy that is driving the ball 250 to drive the ball 300.  You may teach them to driver it 258, maybe even 265, but you aren't going to get 300 out of them.  People are limited by genetics.  That is what I meant by you can't teach someone to hit it long.  They either can or can't.  Certainly you can get a little longer out of people.  Especially, if you hit the speed windows at the right times.  Still, we will always be limited by genetics.

I've had 2 adult mini tour players go from 98-101 mph clubhead speed to 113-117 mph clubhead speed.  Both went from 265 yard drives to capable of over 300 in normal conditions. It's even more common with teenage kids.  Very few golfers come close to reaching their genetic peak.

90+ mph fastball would be the 128+ mph clubhead speed equivalent.  Most can't get that fast, but many can learn to get into the 112 or more range.

A lot of that distance from teenagers is coming from natural growth and development of the body rather than teaching isn't it?  In the adults it is coming from fine tuning the skill and raising the smash factor along with the combination of the correct settings/lofts on the driver?  Just curious because this is an interesting conversation.

How much speed is related to growth in a junior?  As an example if a kid is 5'3" and he grows to 5'9" over the next year.  How much distance/speed will that kid gain by growth alone over the next year?  In my mind for some reason I am relating 3 yards of distance to each inch grown.  That is without the natural development of the body that comes with it.  So at a minimum that kid would gain at least 18 yards of distance over the year without doing anything but growing.

No I'm talking about for example a 2020 grad who's a top 130 polo ranked player picking up 30 yards off the tee in last 4-5 months and is that same size he was 5 months ago, about 5'6 and 160lbs.   Those mini tour players were full grown adults who picked up 10-15mph of clubhead speed.  There no setting you put a driver into that gains 15 mph of clubhead speed.  They played golf for a living, smash factor wasn't an issue.  Their mechanics got better and as a result the became more efficient and had higher clubhead speeds.  Very rarely will you see anyone close to maxed out from a technique standpoint.  Especially juniors

Interesting.

Smash factor is the measurement of efficiency in the swing unless I am reading it wrong.  Smash factor still has a roll to play in it.  If a person swings out of their shoes creating 100mph clubhead speed but can't control the ball off the face then the efficiency isn't there in there swing.  So they swing at 95 mph increasing the smash factor and getting more distance.  Tightening up what they are doing in relation to the 100 mph swing will get you back to the smash factor they are used to.

Want to let you know I am doubting or trying to start an argument with you.  I am soaking all of this information in and learning.  

How about the second part of my question in terms of growth?

Smash factor has nothing to do with efficiency of the swing.  Just how solid someone hits it (driver) and how well their clubs fit them (irons).  Plenty of extremely inefficient swings produce high smash factors.  Ton of golfers have 1.5 smash factors and are swinging 15mph slower than their potential.

Growth is very individual.  Plenty of kids grow a lot and don’t really hit it further or swing faster.  It’s definitely not linear.  Height is just one factor of speed.   Ton of short and thin guys who absolutely smash it.

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#30 heavy_hitter

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 01:03 PM



Gotcha.

I think you may be missing my question.  I understand that growth is individual.  Every inch someone grows they are increasing the length of the lever they are using.  In relation to that inch of growth how much club head speed will increase just because the length of the lever is increased?  Physics says there will be an increase.


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