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.