Monday, October 8, 2018

Determing the proper length club for a golfer

     Determining the proper length club for a player is one fitting component that is often done incorrectly, resulting in a player using clubs that are either too short or too long. Using a ruler or yardstick to measure wrists or fingertips to floor is an incorrect method, and has little to do in determining the proper club length for an individual. This method doesn't take into consideration a player's ability level or posture when addressing a ball.

     A player should use the longest possible length club they can handle that produces consistent center face impact, good directional control and a solid feel at impact. Keep in mind as a club gets longer it is more difficult to hit in the center of the face resulting in a loss of distance and directional control.

      Using impact tape on the clubface is the correct method to determine the proper length club for a player. During the process the player is given a progressively longer iron of the same number (i.e. 7 iron) We know we have exceeded their proper club length once the player can no longer produce consistent impact marks near the center of the face.

     As you can probably tell by now the biggest factor in determining proper club length is the player's ability. As a player's expertise improves his impact patterns will be more consistent and closer to center.

     In regards to the driver it is interesting that a shorter driver length will often increase a player's distance. This is because the ball is struck closer to the center of the clubface applying more energy to the ball.  Most weekend players will hit the ball straighter and more consistent using a driver no longer that 44 1/2 inches in length.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Interesting facts

Here are some amazinging facts that occur during the golf swing.

1. During the downswing the shaft is flexing in various directions causing the club's length to actually shorten. A driver's length will shorten by approximately 1/4 ".

2. The elapsed time from the very top of the backswing to just before impact with the ball is approximately 1/5th of a second. During this short time the average male player will generate a clubhead speed of 90 to 100 MPH.

3. During impact the ball stays on the clubface for 5/10,000 of a second. During this time the ball travels a distance of  3/4 " to 1".

4. The maximum forced (energy applied to the ball) at impact approaches 2,000 pounds, or one ton and causes the ball to compress 15% to 30% of its original diameter.

5. The centrifugal force exerted downward and pulling on the golfer's hands at impact is the equivalent of 40 to 60  pounds.

6. Because of the time required for the impact to travel through the clubhead, up the shaft, into the golfer's hands and register with the brain, the golf ball is already 10" to 12" from the club face when the player feels the hit.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Understanding clubface rotation

    I have found during my teaching career that students have many misconceptions as to how to swing the club. One of the most frequent misunderstood concepts is the rotation of the clubface during the swing.
    It is true the clubface opens in the backswing and closes in the follow through.  The confusion comes in how this is interpreted. The opening and closing of the clubface is relative to the target line rather than a rolling of the hands around the circumference of the shaft.
    Try this simple exercise to understand the correct motion. Take an iron and hold it straight out in front of you with the toe pointing straight up. The clubface is now pointing directly toward your target. Now rotate your body around your spine slightly to the right so the club has moved about two feet from its starting point. Do this without any rolling of the hands so that the toe is still pointing straight up. Notice how the clubface is now pointing right of the target line. At this point the clubface  appears to have opened. Do the same exercise except this time rotate your body slightly to the left so the club again has moved about two feet. Notice how the clubface is now pointing to the left of the target line. At this point the clubface appears to have closed.
     During the swing the clubface remains square to the arc. The opening and closing refers to the clubface and the target line. If you roll you hands clockwise during the backswing you must roll them back the exact amount in order to square the clubface. It is nearly impossible to do this with any amount of consistency.
     Here is a simple drill to help demonstrate the correct motion. Grip your putter with the flat part of the grip facing up - while making three quarter swings make sure the flat part of the putter grip is always facing towards you. After doing this with your putter take a short iron and create the same motion. You'll soon be hitting straighter and more consistent shots.  

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

End of Summer Close Out Sale

We have a great selection of 2018 drivers, fairways and hybrids at close out pricing. Brands include Callaway, Taylor Made and Mizuno. Call or come by for details on great savings on these products.
Also we just received the new Flat Cat putter grips now seen on the PGA Tour. We have all sizes and models so come check them out.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Proper gapping between irons and wedges

      In regards to improving your short game one of the most important factors in ensuring the proper gap in the distances between your irons and wedges. Typically the loft between irons is three to four degrees. Because of this you will probably need about 4 degrees between wedges.
To find the proper gaping measure compare the loft on your most lofted wedge to your shortest iron. Let's say your wedge is 58 degrees and your pitching wedge is 46 degrees. This 12 degree gap requires adding a 50 and 54 degree wedge to your bag. This spaces your lofts at 4 degree increments. Without these wedges you have an excessively large gap that requires partial shots on a regular basis.
     Getting fitted by a professional will ensure proper gaping between your irons and wedges and will most certainly lead to a better short game.   

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Mizuno JPX 900 Tour and Hot Metal irons / New Ping models

    Because Mizuno is introducing a new line of irons in September the JPX 900 Tour and Hot Metal irons are no longer available for order. The 900 Tour is the same iron Brooks Koepka has been using the past two years, and the Hot Metal is the best selling iron in Mizuno's history.

    I currently have one set of 900 Tour irons ( 4-PW KBS Tour C-Taper 120 S ) and two sets of Hot Metal irons ( Both 4-PW, one set has True Temper XP 95 R-300 and the other has Nippon NS Pro 950 GH R ) in stock if you are interested in a set. I will see the new models next month and the fitting clubs will be here in September.

    Ping has introduced two new iron models to their line up.

The i 210 replaces the i 200 and features a larger, softer elastomer insert for better feel at impact. It also has a more compact shape and thinner top edge.

The i500 is a hollow body design combining a forged C 330 face with a 17-4 stainless body. This results in faster ball speed for longer and higher shots. The design has a clean blade style shape similar to the i blade.

If you have any questions regarding your equipment call me at the shop or stop by.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

How long should your clubs be?

    Having your clubs fit to the proper length is an important variable in custom fitting. It is obvious that a person 5' 7'' tall compared to a person 6' 4" tall should not be using the same length clubs. But how do you know the correct length for you?
    A good starting point is measuring the distance from a player's wrist to floor. We use this measurement rather than height because body types are different. For example one person may be 6' 5" tall but has very long arms so his wrist to floor measurement is 36 inches. Another person may be 6' 0" tall but because his arms are shorter his wrist to floor measurement is also 36 inches. With this in mind a taller person may or may not need longer clubs.
    I am 6' 0" tall and have a wrist to floor measurement of 36 inches. For me standard length clubs are fine. A person 6' 3" tall with a wrist to floor measurement of 37 inches would generally need clubs 1/2 inch longer. Some players feel more comfortable with extra length which is fine as long as they can make solid contact with ball. In these cases I use impact tape to see where they are making contact on the clubface. At some point using a progressively longer club the player will no longer be able to consistently make solid contact You know that club is too long.
     Shorter players don't necessarily need shorter clubs, but often will need their lie angles flatter. When fitting juniors it is a good idea to make them slightly longer because they will be taller six months from now.
     Putter lengths will vary between 32 and 36 inches. Because putter length is more of a personal preference I use a fitting putter with an adjustable shaft. I will have a player address a ball to putt. I then hold the putter head against the ground and have them slide the grip up or down to their preferred length.
     Driver length is very important in regards to maximizing distance and control. The average length driver on the PGA Tour is 44.5 inches, yet most off the rack drivers are close to 46 inches. Almost every player would benefit using a slightly shorter driver because they will hit the ball more solidly resulting in more distance.
   In summary club length is an important fitting variable and should be done with a qualified club fitting professional.