We are pleased to be once again chosen as one of America’s Top 100 Fitters in Golf Digest’s May of 2015 issue. We are honored to be in the company of so many respected artisans of the club fitting and building world. Many thanks as well to Mike Stachura of Golf Digest and his staff for putting in many hours of exhaustive research to arrive at such a distinctive list of professional club fitters and builders. Last and certainly not least, a big “thank you” goes out to our loyal customer base who have played a big part in making this selection possible!
Enjoy Mike’s column on Club fitting from the May of 2015 Golf Digest.
Get Fit, Play Better
A clubfitting can unlock your potential
Get Fit, Play Better
GET FIT: 3 KEYS TO FITTING
1. Bring your current clubs with you, and be honest about the state of your game. An expert fitter and a launch monitor will show you the power of change.
2. Approach your fitting session like you would a tournament round, physically and mentally. Stretch and warm up until you feel ready, and then focus on every shot.
3. Don’t make a decision based on one pure strike. If you can’t repeat it during a fitting, you won’t see it on the course.
You’re missing out on golf’s most game-changing technology: clubfitting. “A lot of golfers don’t know about custom-fitting, or they greatly underestimate the impact of a properly fit set of clubs.” says Craig Zimmerman, general manager at RedTail Golf Center in Beaverton, Ore. “They think a clubfitting is for tour pros or better players. But the more they learn, the better golf they’ll play.” That education begins by visiting a clubfitter, like at RedTail or one of the other top facilities named to our third listing of America’s 100 Best Clubfitters.
In the world of golf equipment, one size doesn’t fit all. Especially today when there’s almost infinite complexity. A qualified clubfitter makes it simple. “Small changes can make big ripples in your game,” says Nick Sherburne, who oversees a team of clubfitters at Club Champion, a national chain of fitting centers on our list. Sherburne and other America’s 100 Best Clubfitters we surveyed see the same five problem areas. It’s time to start finding out what’s wrong and how quickly you and a clubfitter can make it right:
• Driver. Your loft is too low or sometimes too high. Achieving the ideal golf-ball spin rate, launch angle and direction is possible only through a launch-monitor fitting. “Because drivers have different characteristics, not all lofts across all brands are equal,” Sherburne says. “Loft has the biggest impact on spin, so getting the right loft to properly spin the ball is critical.” Also, the standard shaft length for many drivers is almost always too long. “When we shorten the shaft, golfers hit more solid shots,” says Steve Ball of Ball Golf Center in Oklahoma City. “Solid strikes always win the distance race compared to longer shafts that create off-center contact.”
• Putter. The most overlooked club when it comes to fitting, the putter is the easiest to match to your game. “Contrary to popular belief, putting isn’t all about feel,” says Dana Upshaw of Dana Golf in Warner Robins, Ga. “Yes, it’s important to use a putter that feels good and has visual appeal, but more important is how well the technical specifications fit the golfer to produce a predictable, consistent roll.”
• Wedges. As iron lofts have gotten stronger, they have created a gap where your wedges start. Throw in the variety of sole grinds and bounce configurations, and you’ll need an advanced degree to figure out what you should do. Or you can visit a clubfitter. Says Sherburne: “Players should be gapping off their pitching wedge to create as many full shots as they can. Many players come in with a collection of different brand wedges with different shafts, lie angles, bounces and lengths. Wedges should be an extension of your irons.”
• Long game. Odds are you’re hitting two of your longer clubs—maybe three—about the same distance. “Often you need a 5-iron and a 5-hybrid, or sometimes a 5-wood goes farther than a 3-wood,” says Joshua Chervokas of New York Golf Center (Cool Clubs) in New York City. “You might need a 4-hybrid and a 2-hybrid because the distance separation is too small between consecutive clubs. You cannot buy a modern golf set by the numbers.”
• Shafts. There are so many shaft options on the market, even computer databases can’t keep pace. Consequently, self-fitting can’t be the answer, says Brad Fellinger of Fellinger Custom Golf in Hobe Sound, Fla. “Once I correct their shaft flex, they cannot believe it’s the same person hitting golf balls,” he says. “Their consistency, control and accuracy improve 110 percent.”