What is the Most Forgiving Driver?

Arghhh... shanked it again!! Don't let this be you:

You know it, I know it, that ball just isn't going to head straight and far down that fairway. What makes it worse that we also just don't have the time to practice or money for the many pro lessons needed to fix the problem. What about if there was another solution that is much quicker and cheaper? What if technology could step in to help? Well, guess what, there is, and it's not too far out of reach, welcome to the world of forgiving drivers and today we will discover the most forgiving driver for you.

Forgiving drivers can go a long way in improving your golfing skills. Get one of these babies and you can almost become a pro yourself... well, not really, but it will help keep the ball flying straighter and longer down the fairway. Today, I am going to discuss with you:

  •  A little history of forgiving drivers,
  • benefits that a forgiving driver has to offer you,
  • what factors that define a forgiving driver, and
  • finally which is the right forgiving driver for you.

Quick Overview of Drivers

ClubForgivenessPriceOur Rating
TaylorMade Men’s R15 460A+$$$
Callaway Men’s Big Bertha Alpha 815A$$$
Cobra Men's Fly Z DriverA$$
Cleveland Golf Men's 588 Custom DriverB+$$

History of Forgiving Drivers

ping_vaultThe technology behind golf has come forward in leaps and bounds. In the past, the drivers or golf irons used were basically blades having a small and thin clubface with the mass concentrated solely behind the sweet spot. This meant that if you were to hit the ball off-center then it would result in a poor shot. Literally, giving you no margin of error.

Karsten Solheim, the great golf inventor, is the man who you can thank for the forgiving drivers as he was the one who introduced the concept of perimeter-weighted irons into the game. These drivers helped in lessening the effects of a mishit or off-center strike by moving the mass to the perimeter of the driver head and are now termed as forgiving drivers. Step forward to today when a combination of a large face, over sized frame, and the internal-weight savings of the modern forgiving driver achieve an effective outcome.

Benefits of Using the Most Forgiving Driver

Let’s now move on to the benefits that you can avail by using the most forgiving driver techicon-utility-9pointavailable in the market.

Tighten Up the Radar

The large face on drivers such as these give you some leeway on having to hit the ball exactly in the middle of the club. For a player with a faster swing, this could be the perfect answer.

More Distance

Some players have naturally slower swings or come to the point in their lives that their bodies just can't do what they used to anymore. The over sized frame of amplifies the trampoline effect of the club face meaning the ball will receive an extra spring effect from the club, sending it further down the fairway.

Better Control

internal-veiw-berthaGiving control back to the player isn't easy to achieve when there are so many elements of a perfect golf swing. However, a good forgiving driver saves on internal weight in the club head and thereby allowing the players natural swing to not be adhered by the weight of the club. Professional golfers tend to prefer heavy clubs as they use this additional weight to their advantage in power and control. But for the amateur just looking for a stroke or two less of the handicap, the most forgiving drivers can give you a semblance of control over your shots.

Confidence & Enjoyment

You can lose confidence in your golfing abilities pretty quickly if you stick with a golf club that punishes you severely for hitting mishits. In contrast, having more drives go down the middle of the fairway and at a much further distance than you've ever gone before can do wonders for your confidence. Especially in other facets of the game, like putting and chipping. This is very important, because golf is just as much a game of confidence as it is ability.

golf_cage_12Saves Money & Time

Like we mentioned before, fixing issues with your swing is no cheap undertaking. There will be many lessons with the local club professional, time at the range (and the cost of hiring range time plus balls), or even buying and installing a golf netting in your own backyard. If a single club can eliminate all of this and save you on time and money, while slashing those strokes off the scorecard, then why not?

Factors that Separate the Most Forgiving Driver from the Rest

Cavity Back

prosoleThis refers to the hollowing of the back of the club head. This hollowing out of the back of the iron head creates a cavity which transfers the mass of the club head around its perimeter, creating a larger sweet spot for you to hit. These drivers have a cavity back which increases their forgiveness and makes them easier to play golf with.

Club head

The size of the club head and the diameter of the face of the club are distinguishable elements of a forgiving driver because you will notice that that are much bigger than any driver you have seen before. This has to do with increase the MOI and below we will discover exactly what high MOI means. But for now, it's important to note that the size of the club head relates to transiting all the weight resistance of the twist into the club head itself.


A golf club is said to have an off-set if the leading edge of the clubface is set back from the neck. Off-set is another design feature that you are only going to find in drivers.

High MOI

MOI or Moment of Inertia is the resistance of an object to twist around its axis. You will find that the most forgiving drivers all have a high MOI because of which they twist less if you mishit a ball.

Let's take some time to cover this topic, because it's a core principle behind this technology. MOI is calculated by how much an object resists an angular acceleration or in other words, twisting. To understand this concept we'll do a practical exercise. Firstly, pick up your golf club (any club will do) and on each end of the club tie two equally heavy objects, maybe a shoe on each end? Now, with the heavy objects on the absolute ends of the club, try twisting from side to side while keep the club parallel to the ground. Not easy is it? Ok then, we can make things a little easier for you by moving the heavy objects to the center of the club. Again, try twisting now with the objects in the center. What you will notice is that it's a little easier and what you have found is high MOI.

High MOI is what club makers use to add the forgiveness to the club. They effectively transition the heaviest weight to the middle of the club face. All of this translates into your shanks not looking so bad and having the feeling like there is a massive sweet spot on your club that you just cannot miss.

Low Center of Gravity

A standout feature of the most forgiving driver is that it has a low center of gravity. This low center of gravity means that you can hit higher and longer shots with such drivers with ease. Some of the drivers even come with the ability for you to adjust the gravity mid-round. Callaway and their famous forgiving club, the "Big Bertha" realizes every golfer has a different center of gravity:

Which is the Driver For You

Good question and this depends on what is going wrong most in your game. Without knowing too much about you and your swing, we can start with the symptoms of the cause:

  • Hooking/Slicing (too far left or right)
  • Shanking (straight into the ground)
  • Sky-balls (straight up into the air)
ClubForgivenessPriceOur Rating
TaylorMade Men’s R15 460A+$$$
Callaway Men’s Big Bertha Alpha 815A$$$
Cobra Men's Fly Z DriverA$$
Cleveland Golf Men's 588 Custom DriverB+$$

TaylorMade Men's R15 Driver

This is the perfect driver for those of us who are shanking the ball too much. This driver boasts of the lowest center of gravity among the drivers in this list and thus produces the least amount of spin. It has a head size of 460 cc and comes with a new front track system that which increase the size of its sweet spot.

However, what gives this driver it's special forgiveness qualities is it's adjustable hosel that has a 4-degree loft range and perfect for trying to lower that center of gravity to the right sweet spot.

Callaway Men's Big Bertha Alpha 815 Driver

The Callaway Men’s Big Bertha Alpha 815 is an excellent and beautifully designed driver. The Big Bertha range is synonymous with driver forgiveness and shocked the market with it's sized when it was first seen on shelves years ago.

It has an RMOTO face and a head size of 460 cc. Fitted with OPTIFIT technology, the Big Bertha Alpha 815 allows you to choose from a set of 8 different lie and loft angles. This driver has a very light-weight chassis and is made using eight different materials.

The thing that makes the Big Bertha Alpha 815 truly one of the most forgiving drivers is its “Gravity Core” technology, which allows you to adjust the driver’s center of gravity as per your choice.This gives you the chance to manipulate the spin rate of the drive without changing its launch angle and as such reduce those sky balls from your game.

Cobra Men's Fly Z Driver

The Cobra Men’s Fly Z is a great piece of golfing equipment which is among the drivers you can find in the market at the moment. This driver has a head size of 460cc and also comes with an adjustable hosel that offers a 4-degree loft range.

The Cobra Fly Z makes use of Cobra’s crown zone weighting technology which removes weight from the crown and displaces it low into the back of the head, giving this driver a low center of gravity perfect for making long shots. The thing that makes the Cobra Fly Z standout from other forgiving drivers is its Speed Channel Face which is an engineered trench around the clubface. It helps in improving ball speed and reduces your hooks and slices.

Cleveland Golf Men's 588 Custom Driver

The Cleveland Golf Men's 588 Custom Driver is undoubtedly the most forgiving driver of all. This driver has a large club face and an extremely low center of gravity which is positioned rearwards. These features increase the MOI which allows this driver to produce high ball speeds even on poor shots.This is why, with this driver you can get long distance shots even with mishits, cool isn’t it.

The best thing about this club is that it can work for fixing both hooks and slices as well as sky-balls and shanks. Although, I admit, I'm biased, I own one of these and ever since having in my bag, have not looked back.

6 Responses

  1. Robert Lee
    Why is the Cleveland Golf Men's 588 Custom Driver undoubtedly the most forgiving driver of all, when you rated its forgiveness at B+, the lowest of all (as indicated in your chart).
  2. Golf Pro Emma
    This is quite a detailed post. Amateur golfers should go for these types of clubs, however there are many more to choose from and this post just scratches the surface when it comes to golf clubs, however it gives an excellent description of what you should be looking for when choosing a 'forgiving' golf club. Take notes!
  3. Raul
    It was so helpful to me all information about these most forgiving drivers and now I´m ready to take a decision in which driver to buy; I´m a beginner and looking in to find the best equipment to improve my play score I´ll be in atention about your information Thanks
  4. Larry Calton
    I am looking for an older (or newer) Raider Mass driver. Will buy immediately. Thanks. Larry 417 332 5445
  5. Patrick Connolly
    All clubs mentioned are men's, what about the millions of ladies that need help as well
    • Johnnie Quinn
      You're right Patrick. An update to the article is on the way, stay tuned.

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