The driver is the club the majority of beginner golfers and high handicappers struggle with the most, so we've picked out the best options that offer plenty of forgiveness.
The driver has the longest shaft, is swung at the highest speeds, and (should) hit the ball further than any other golf club in your bag.
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Whilst no two golfers are the same, most new golfers struggle with slicing their driver and/or failing to get enough launch angle to maximise distance.
No golf club is a magic wand that can overcome your swing flaws – lessons and practice is what you need for that – but some drivers are better than others when it comes to mitigating the common problems beginners and high handicappers face with their driver.
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We test every driver that comes to market, and have picked five specific models as being best at helping beginner golfers and high handicappers.
It's also worth noting that these drivers aren't only good for beginner or high-handicap golfers. They can help golfers of varying handicaps, and, importantly, will continue to serve you well as your golf game improves.
The TaylorMade SIM Max range is probably the best looking driver in golf this year. You might think that looks aren't important, but feeling good when you look down on your driver is key to building confidence, which is hugely important for beginners and high handicappers.
The SIM Max D model is designed to help reduce the fade or slice that most beginners and high handicappers struggle to control (the 'D' stands for 'draw'). It does that by adding extra weight in the heel, which will help you square the face at impact.
This model also has an 18% larger face than the standard TaylorMade SIM, which will help beginner golfers and high handicappers who tend to have an inconsistent strike pattern.
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It's also the easiest to launch, thanks to the way the head shape has been designed to put the weight low and deep.
TaylorMade have made several draw drivers and the SIM Max D is their best yet. You get a great-looking carbon crown, Twist Face technology to help off-centre strikes, Speed Injection (which puts every driver face TaylorMade produce right on the limit of golf's rules, great aerodynamics to increase clubhead speed, plus an excellent stock shaft and grip – all in a package that will reduce your slice, helping you keep the ball on the straight and narrow more often.
The Callaway Mavrik Max is Callaway's easiest to hit driver, making it a great option for beginners and high handicappers.
It's built for high launch with medium spin, and the head is designed to be ultra-stable, making your misses left and right less severe.
The Callaway Mavrik Max features two interchangeable weights; one setting offers maximum forgiveness and a slight draw bias, while the other increases the draw bias further, which will be great for any beginners and high handicappers who are suffering with a slice.
The Mavrik Max comes with a full range of shaft options as standard, from lightweight and fast to stiff and heavy. Not all beginners and high handicappers have slow swing speeds, so Callaway have provided options to suit you no matter how much speed you generate.
The Ping G410 SFT is a draw driver pumped full of performance-enhancing steroids. It offers even more draw bias than Ping’s brilliant G410 Plus with its weight in the draw position, which makes it a serious slice-tamer for beginner and high-handicappers sick of seeing their ball curve off into the trees.
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We love the matt finish, and how the crown ridges and aero turbulators focus attention on the ball at address; it’s something you won’t find on other models and it's really useful for golfers of all abilities – not just high handicappers.
The Ping G410 SFT is a brilliant all-round driver that delivers excellent distance and plenty of help for beginners and high-handicappers. It's a lot louder than most drivers these days; whether that suits you or not will come down to personal preference.
The ST200X is Mizuno's best driver for years, and beginners and high-handicappers who want to increase their clubhead speed will love it.
The 39g shaft weight is about as light as it gets, which will help maximise speed, while the heel weighting and upright lie angle are designed to reduce a fade or slice and promote the draw shape that so many beginners and high-handicappers dream of.
It's also considerably cheaper than most modern drivers, which could save you some money to spend on the rest of your bag or on lessons.
Cleveland have taken a very different approach to driver design. Where most manufacturers release several models, hoping to offer a driver to every possible golfer, Cleveland have simply come up with one solid, powerful, non-adjustable model that suits a decent amount of the golfing population – and that includes beginners and high-handicappers.
The head sits beautifully at address; there’s quite a few creases and ridges on the crown, but thanks to a matt black paint job it’s inoffensive and the Cleveland Launcher's reassuringly wide footprint inspires confidence.
It's the cheapest driver in our selection, but that isn't a reflection on the quality; it's simply because Cleveland is a less premium brand name in the driver category and the Launcher HB driver doesn't offer the adjustability you get with other models.