Modern Club Fitting

By Anthony Barkley

These days most of you are aware of FlightScope and Trackman ball tracking machines used by professionals to give a more accurate fitting experience as well as giving an absolute understanding of what’s happening at impact for coaching.

Sound complicated? It is but it shouldn’t be for the client and that’s where the professional converts the data into simple understandable information. The FlightScope measures 24 variables so the professional will take time to convert this data so expect it to take at least an hour if trying several clubs. Longer if it’s a whole set.

Before we go too much further into this article, I know many of you will be saying “but my golf is not good enough to get fitted clubs”. If so I want you to think if you ride a bike and it’s too big or small. Is it easy to ride or hard? You can still ride it but you have to make compensations and this is what happens with golf clubs. You can get any set and compensate to hit a ball each time but do remember that any compensation equals inconsistency.  So whatever level golfer you are, a fitted set of clubs can help you hit a ball more consistently.

So if we get back to the fitting, if we are looking at drivers for example we want to find the best driver that produces the most consistent, powerful and accurate shots. We work this on an average of shots through a Flightscope and can compare directly with other models including a clients current club.

Through the process I will talk a lot about distance and consistency without getting too much into the other data variables as we don’t need to confuse clients. We do need to look at length of club, grip size and shaft characteristics as these all alter club performance.

So we get all this data, we determine the clubs that suit and we quantify it with proof from the FlightScope then the client will see the actual results for themselves. Here is where the professional should put the research we have done by asking probing questions through the fitting session into play. Do they play on a really tight golf course so straightness is essential or is it a wide open course? Do they like a lower ball flight, more power, less slice, more draw, workability, etc. A good fitter paints a picture of the ideal club through the process, then adds the FlightScope data to produce the perfect fit. Once there the client can make the final decision and often if it’s between several brands it can come down to if they like how it looks or often its brand loyalty that plays a part. They have used PING all their life so often a person will stick with that brand.

If you are tempted to look at a new driver for example book in and get it done. The results between a club that is 10 years old and a current model can be extremely different in terms of carry distance and consistency. Take the plunge in 2016 and trade in your old favourite, it could make a lot of difference to your game.

At 100% Golf Ltd in Rotorua we do own a FlightScope and carry the main golf brands if anyone does want to upgrade their current set we can help.