Power Outage
Golf Digest South Africa|Aug 2018
Power Outage

New data shows we’re not hitting it further.

Mike Stachura

The so-called “distance explosion” that has the R&A and USGA in a tizzy? Yeah, that might be happening on tour, but it ain’t happening to you. New data on average golfers, including more than 10 million drives gathered by Arccos, the GPS-based stat-tracking app, paints a slightly stagnant picture about driving distance for the paying public. Even though golf’s ruling bodies are alarmed by the 2.5-yard increase in average driving distance this past year on the PGA Tour, some amateur-golfer distance numbers haven’t moved that much in two decades, and many are hitting it shorter than they used to. Here’s our exclusive report on what the numbers say everyday golfers are doing wrong and why – and, frankly, what can be done about it. Of course, the stats are a little discouraging, but the prospects are game-changing. It just takes the right technology and understanding.

AVERAGE GOLFERS MIGHT BE GETTING SHORTER

DISTANCE IS DOWN the past four years, according to Arccos research. Looking at full-year data only, it’s down 0.6 metres from 2015-’17. If you include 2018, distance has dropped to 198.5 metres, 3.5 metres less than in 2015. One bright spot: Better players (0-5-handicap) saw a 2.4-metre gain from 2015-’18. All other handicap groups lost five to seven metres.

GOOD PLAYERS HIT IT FURTHER . . . DUH

THE BEST EVERYDAY players hit it longer than the worst. In the Arccos study, 0-5-handicaps average 219 metres, and high-handicappers average 184. The maths suggests high-handicaps should play from tees at least 450 metres shorter than the tees played by low-handicaps.

EXPERIENCE IS GOOD, JUST NOT FOR DISTANCE

articleRead

You can read up to 3 premium stories before you subscribe to Magzter GOLD

Log in, if you are already a subscriber

GoldLogo

Get unlimited access to thousands of curated premium stories, newspapers and 5,000+ magazines

READ THE ENTIRE ISSUE

Aug 2018