How Backspin Affects Your Driving Distance

Backspin can have a major impact on the distance of your drives, along with a handful of other factors. If you have a slower swing speed, you need more backspin to get the ball airborne, but if you have a higher swing speed you need a lower backspin rate to ensure the ball won’t ‘balloon’.

When your clubface makes contact with the ball, the ball is going to roll up the clubface…hence the creation of backspin. The creation of backspin creates lift for the ball but it can create too much spin which will cause a loss of distance on your drives. The combination of loft and launch angle needs to be taken into account when it comes to backspin and distance.

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7 Responses to How Backspin Affects Your Driving Distance

  1. 3_Ironz October 30, 2018 at 1:25 pm #

    How about posting a chart showing optimum spin rates for various clubhead speeds.
    This video is faaar too vague imo.

    • Bob Pegram October 31, 2018 at 9:12 pm #

      He probably wasn’t more specific because there are so many factors involved. The lower the launch angle, the more spin is needed to keep the ball in the air. The higher the launch angle, the less spin is needed.The loft of the driver head, its center of gravity, the kick point and other characteristics of the shaft all play a part. How the timing and other characteristics of your swing interact with the shaft, head characteristics, the type of ball you play, etc. also come into play. Also, do you play a lot in the wind or are playing conditions usually calm? That is a big factor.He talked principles so you can adjust the factors you can control to get the best possible results for you and your swing.

      • Gene Parente November 1, 2018 at 2:26 pm #

        Bob,

        Well said. It is more complicated then a general chart. You identified correctly that the video was about general principles so that you can apply them based upon your own swing characteristics.

  2. Raymond CHASTEL December 1, 2018 at 5:20 am #

    So the only way to find out is by trial end error with different drivers ,different lofts ,different shaft specifications and a TRACKMAN .
    It can take a lot of time …

    • Gene Parente December 5, 2018 at 12:41 pm #

      Raymond,
      You are correct. To exactly dial in your driver can take a lot of time. That being said you can apply general rules to your driver. if the ball appears to be “flaring” at its peak then you have too much spin. If it drops quickly you have too little spin. If the ball doesn’t get in the air you need more loft. If your ball flight looks more like an iron shot then you need less loft.

  3. Charles Wood December 3, 2018 at 6:25 pm #

    But how do you get the correct amount of backspin? I probably get too much, and if I do how do I correct this problem?

    • Gene Parente December 5, 2018 at 12:39 pm #

      Charles, The best way to determine the correct amount of backspin is with a launch monitor. Ideally regardless of club head speed you don’t want to be over 2500 rpm.
      If you don’t have access to a launch monitor the next best way is to visually observe your ball flight. If the ball starts out and “flairs” increasing height quickly to its peak, you have too much backspin.
      You want your ball flight to be parabolic so that you can maximize carry and total distance.

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