Having the properly fit golf equipment is no different than having the correct shirt or shoe size.
There are many variables that go into to a custom club fitting, and even the slightest alteration can make a huge difference in your game.
By PGA Pro, Paul Bucy, Palm Desert Golf Academy
The clubs that are displayed at the big golf shops and online retailers are built to standard specifications. If your irons are off by four degrees, this could result in shots that travel 40 feet offline. That’s the difference between hitting the middle of the green and missing it completely. In order to get the most out of your equipment, I recommended being fit by a trained and experienced club fitter before your next purchase. Here are some of the important steps that I take when fitting a player for custom golf equipment.
Shaft Length: In order to determine the proper length, I first do a static measurement from the golfer’s wrist to the floor. I then take the golfer onto the range for a dynamic fitting with face tape to confirm our findings. Having the proper length clubs will ensure consistent impact in the middle of the clubface.
Lie Angle: The lie angle of a club is formed between the shaft and sole of the club. A lie angle that is too flat may result in pushed or sliced shots. A lie angle that is too upright, having the toe of the club off the ground, will cause shots to be pulled or hooked. As stated above, an improper lie with your irons can cause the ball to fly up to 40 feet offline of your intended target. I use an impact board and lie tape to determine the proper lie angle.
Shaft Flex: Certainly one of the most important factors of having properly fit equipment is selecting the proper shaft. Shaft flex determines such things as trajectory, accuracy, distance, and feel. Shafts now come in many different weights, materials, and flexes, allowing a player to achieve his or her optimal ball flight. Having the proper shaft allows the player to swing naturally and in balance with proper tempo.
Ball Flight Analysis: The most important step in the process is ball flight analysis. Having the ability to see the flight of the ball is critical to confirming the previous steps. When selecting an experienced fitter, I would make sure that they conduct their fittings outdoors. This will allow both you and the fitter to confirm your findings.
In addition the steps outlined above, there are several other factors that will be considered during your fitting, including grip size, club head design, and set makeup. While fitting for drivers, a good fitter will use the latest technology like a launch monitor to help identify the club head speed, ball speed, spin rate and launch angle. If you simply purchase your clubs off the rack, or from the Internet, you probably won’t be selecting clubs that are perfectly suited for your game.
After a custom club fitting, you will confident that you have made a good investment. This confidence will now allow you to play your game without any doubts in your equipment.
Paul Bucy, PGA is the Director of Instruction at the Palm Desert Golf Academy at the Desert Willow Golf Resort in Palm Desert, CA. Paul has been teaching top-ranked players for over 15 years. He was awarded the 2008 & 2009 PGA Junior Leader of the year for the Desert Chapter. Paul can be reached by email at [email protected]
Now is a perfect time to stay at The Westin Desert Willow Villas, book a tee time, and plan your custom fitting at the Desert Willow Golf Resort.