Regular vs. Stiff Shaft Driver Distance

Forget everything you have heard in those marketing campaigns. Most of them are ambiguous. Playing with the wrong equipment is probably the worst thing that can ever happen to you as a golfer. To get the best out of your play, you need the right clubs by your side. 

Tiger Woods did not wake up one day, and all of a sudden topping the charts. No, being the best involves hard work, and it all begins with choosing the right golf clubs. 

As a golfer, you have to make two critical decisions when choosing a club. Either you go with a regular shaft or a stiff shaft. Of course, you have to make other important decisions, but your club choice will, in due course, determine your performance on the golf course. It is therefore vital that you find a comfortable club that is suitable for your swing speeds and allows you to draw long and accurate balls. 

So, how is your shaft flex related to the driver distance? This article looks at the discrepancies between regular shaft driver distance and stiff shaft driver distance. If you are hoping to improve your game, do not let the wrong club choice ruin it. 

Regular Shaft Flex versus Stiff Shaft Flex

There are degrees as to how far your shaft flex can go. The flexes are divided into five groupings: the regular flex, Senior (A), Ladies (L), extra stiff, and stiff. However, we can classify the five types into regular shaft flex and stiff shaft flex. Regular shaft flex is best suitable for an amateur because it offers more swing speeds that can help improve their handicap. 

You could, however, be an amateur with considerably high swing speeds, and a regular shaft won’t be the thing for you. That is why it is essential to go for customized club fitting for your drivers to achieve your best. Looking at a stiff shaft flex, you will notice that it has relatively low flexes than regular shafts.

It is the main reason behind their design. Even from the name, it is quite evident that you won’t get many flexes from stiff shafts. If you tend to swing your driver hard, then a stiff shaft may be the right thing for you. Unlike regular driver shafts, they provide more power and control on the club to draw better balls. 

The high flexes on a regular club provide more incredible swing speeds. A golfer with relatively low swing speeds will therefore find it more useful. On the other hand, a stiff golf club has low flexes, and golfers with high swing speeds will appreciate such a club because the stiffness brings their high swing speeds under control. With the swing speeds under control, such a golfer can draw more accurate balls. 

How Regular Shaft Flex and Stiff Shaft Flex Relate in Driver Distance

How many yardages or how far does your golf ball go off the tee? If you can answer this question, then you know what driver distance is. In the following section, we look at how the two shaft flexes relate to driver distance. It would be best if you got your flex right to cover the driver distance and accuracy you so much desire. 

Will You Cover more Distance with a Regular Shaft Driver or a Stiff Shaft Driver?

Someone once said that golf is one complicated mistress. Before we continue, you should note that every golfer has different dynamics, and the rules of thumb may not apply to you. One golfer with a regular shaft is not the same golfer with a stiff shaft.

The outcome results vary slightly, because when fitting golf clubs, the main objective is usually to achieve maximum performance. Let’s say you give a golfer with high swing speeds a golf club with regular shaft flex. You will note that they tend to cover a great distance, but they are likely to miss the fairway. 

Now take a look at a golfer with low swing speeds using a stiff shaft flex. You will notice is that the accuracy will be much more significant, but the distance will be relatively low. From the two scenarios you can see that there are significant discrepancies. The purpose of custom fitting is to find the middle ground. At what point do you, as a golfer, achieve maximum performance? Most fitters would ask you this question.

It would be best if you found the middle ground where you achieve both distance and accuracy. Therefore to find the right balance, a golfer with high swing speeds is fitted with a stiff club, and the one with low swing speeds a regular shaft flex. Remember, these thumb rules do not apply to every golfer because each of them has different dynamics. 

Also, note that your flex affects your distance. However, this may not necessarily mean that a regular shaft flex will cover more distance as the rule of thumb suggests. It drops down to a personal level. Your gameplay, swing dynamics, height measurements, and more other factors affect the shaft flex you pick, which eventually affects the driver’s distance. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Q: Is there a big difference between stiff and regular flex?

There is a difference between stiff and regular shaft flex. A regular shaft bends more than a stiff shaft. When you hold a regular shaft and stiff shaft, you will notice the difference in flexibility. A stiff shaft produces fewer flexes and has a firm feel, unlike the regular shaft. 

Q: Does Tiger Woods use Regular or Stiff Shafts?

Tiger Woods consistently hits distances of more than 305 yards. In most cases, he uses a regular shaft for his driver. Now, this does not mean that you switch to regular shafts because Tiger Woods is doing so. Remember that everyone has different dynamics, and you might cover greater distances with a stiff shaft than when you use a regular shaft on your driver. 

Q: Will I lose distance with a stiff shaft?

It depends. If you have low swing speeds and using a stiff shaft, chances are you will lose some distance. But if your swing speeds are high, then a stiff shaft will bring them to balance, and you may gain some distance. Distance is affected by many variables and not swing speeds and shaft flex alone. 

Hopefully, you have now understood the dynamics between stiff and regular shaft flex driver distance. There are many pieces of research on the internet, but the conclusions are quite inconsistent. Some will tell you that using a stiffer shaft guarantees you longer distances than regular shafts. Other researchers will tell you the exact opposite. 

What does this tell you about shaft flex and driver distance? It all trickles down to the golfer as an individual. Some golfers will boast about how stiff their shafts are, while others will be so proud of their regular shaft flex. 

Therefore golfers are different, and the rule of thumb will not always apply to you. All you need to know is that your shaft flex affects the overall driver distance, but the effects are different depending on the golfer’s dynamics.

Last Updated on April 10, 2021 by Tom Fiore

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Hey ! I'm Tom. I have been playing Golf for most of my adulthood and have an experience of about 10+ Years. I love to guide people on their golf journey and share my experience of playing Golf, using products and all the tips I have for people out there ! Thanks for reading my blog.

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