For those starting off in golf, simply getting a set of clubs is often the first milestone. Many new golfers won’t be looking to spend a fortune on their first set and will look for lower to mid-budget complete sets or secondhand clubs. While any club is invaluable for getting you on a driving range, a virtual sim, or an actual course, for those looking for a perfect set of clubs, a professional club fitting is a must.

What is a Club Fitting?

A club fitting will match a player to a club that best suits their game. Your handicap, golf swing, and overall body shape will impact the type of club you should be using. For example, beginners and lower handicap players should opt for more forgiving irons, woods, and drivers. These clubs come with heads that are designed to increase face flexibility and ball speed and will make any off-center strikes much more accurate. The club length and grip will also be factors that are taken into consideration. A club fitting will be led by an expert who will be able to judge your swing and play, as well as use data from a virtual sim, if available, to help you select the perfect club.

Club Length and Shaft

Most first-time golfers don’t consider the length of the golf club and how it can have a dramatic impact on your swing and ball-hitting ability. At a club fitting, if you are consistently hitting shots too low of the club face, you will likely benefit from a longer club. If the data shows you are hitting shots too high on the face, then a shorter club will suit you.

The type of shaft you use can also have a big impact on your game, especially in terms of the flex. A fast golf swing usually benefits from a stiffer shaft. A club fitting will also determine the type of material that best suits your game. Graphite shafts produce higher ball flights and spin and also have better shock absorption. Steel shafts generally produce lower ball flights.

Club Head

Choosing the right club head is arguably the most important part of the fitting. For example, when choosing the best type of iron, you can choose between cavity backs, blades, and muscle backs. Cavity backs, as the name states, have a cavity in the back that keeps the club more stable, especially during off-center strikes. Bladed irons are much less forgiving but allow for much greater shot shaping, which is why they are used by most pros. Muscle back irons are halfway between blades and cavity back irons, making them ideal for a good ball striker who still wants some forgiveness.

A club fitter will also look at the lie-angle. This is the measurement of the angle formed by the shaft when the club grooves are parallel to the ground. If your current lie-angle is too upright, you are more likely to hook your shots and make heel contact with the ball, which will push the ball to the left. If it is too flat, the contact will mainly come from the toe section, and you will slice the ball more to the right.

Grip

The final piece of the fitting setup is the grip. At a fitting, your hand size will first be measured to find the perfect width. The options are standard, midsize, jumbo, and undersize. You will also need to decide whether you prefer a softer or firmer grip and your preferred texture. The three choices are Cords, Hybrids, and Rubbers. Cord grips are much firmer and give the player greater feedback. However, they are also harder on the hands. Rubber grips are much softer and will reduce the chance of blisters for beginner and infrequent golfers. Hybrids combine the two, with the upper half of the grip made from cord and the lower part much softer. Some golf grips also come with moisture management to provide more traction. This is ideal for players in hot countries.

What to Bring to a Club Fitting

Unlike a regular trip to your local golf shop, a club fitting will require you to actively hit the ball. You should bring your current golf clubs if upgrading, as this will make it easier to judge and improve your current setup. You should also wear the clothes you usually would for a session at the range, as you will be required to hit plenty of balls in order to determine the right clubhead, shaft, and grip.

If you are interested in getting the right clubs for your game, we at GolfX offer a fitting service using data from the latest virtual sim technology.