Club Fitting for Beginner Golfers

Nippon Shafts

pumbaa

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A genuine question I have as someone who is getting back into playing or even someone just starting. How would a fitter fit someone like that? Swing isn't really repeatable and inconsistent, swing will absolutely change and probably quickly when getting better, and I am sure club selection will change.

I think being fit once you have some time in the game and have an idea of how you like to play is probably great advice but for a true beginner in an already expensive hobby/sport this seems tough to swallow for me, because I feel like if I got fit now in less than 12 months I am probably going to need to be fitted again and adjust for changes in my swing. Maybe I am thinking about this the wrong way?
 

Daluteh

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Maybe this is already out there. I'd love to see a video of a fitter taking a beginning player who has a somewhat repeatable swing with hand me downs or a boxed beginner's set and seeing the improvement the fitting brings.
I have a box set, I won't be taking any video or anything but depending on what I go with it could likely bring lots of improvement. If there is a lot of interest I can keep a little diary and post results through when I get them.
 

JB

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A genuine question I have as someone who is getting back into playing or even someone just starting. How would a fitter fit someone like that? Swing isn't really repeatable and inconsistent, swing will absolutely change and probably quickly when getting better, and I am sure club selection will change.
The swing might be a bit inconsistent in terms of contact, but tendencies and delivery does not change drastically. Despite what a few continue to post, club fitting is not solely about plugging in the best distance, its about creating a bond where you are not fighting with the club tension wise to create better contact.
 

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A genuine question I have as someone who is getting back into playing or even someone just starting. How would a fitter fit someone like that? Swing isn't really repeatable and inconsistent, swing will absolutely change and probably quickly when getting better, and I am sure club selection will change.

I think being fit once you have some time in the game and have an idea of how you like to play is probably great advice but for a true beginner in an already expensive hobby/sport this seems tough to swallow for me, because I feel like if I got fit now in less than 12 months I am probably going to need to be fitted again and adjust for changes in my swing. Maybe I am thinking about this the wrong way?
I kinda agree. Fitting cost put into lessons would be much better. A decent teacher would be able to recommend changes if something is way off. Small adjustments aren't going to mean anything at that point.

I changed a lot of my "fitted" settings after playing more frequently.
 

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I kinda agree. Fitting cost put into lessons would be much better. A decent teacher would be able to recommend changes if something is way off. Small adjustments aren't going to mean anything at that point.
There is an assumption that the person interested in fitting would take lessons though. Most golfers won't and don't and want something to enjoy the game more. Fitting and lessons are not mutually exclusive. Most people playing the game want to enjoy it and from what we have seen, fitting will undoubtedly help that.
 

pumbaa

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The swing might be a bit inconsistent in terms of contact, but tendencies and delivery does not change drastically. Despite what a few continue to post, club fitting is not solely about plugging in the best distance, its about creating a bond where you are not fighting with the club tension wise to create better contact.
I can understand that and making sure the club is setup so they can worry about their swing and not fighting a club that isn't at all correct for them. Will the fitter build some "future proofing" into a club for a beginner or will they set it for right at that moment? If they set it for right now and my clubhead speed picks up with confidence and consistency I now need another fitting for stiffer shafts, or if my swing plane moves because I got lessons now the loft/lie has to be changed right? Do club fitters allow for changes/adjustments for a discount if things change within a certain amount of time?

Again I am not trying to be argumentative or anything, I am genuinely asking because I have never been fit and would love to know what I should actually be fit into, but the financial part of it is quit the preposition when I would need a 2nd fitting and possibly new shafts or a major adjustment that is even more money on top of the original investments.
 

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A genuine question I have as someone who is getting back into playing or even someone just starting. How would a fitter fit someone like that? Swing isn't really repeatable and inconsistent, swing will absolutely change and probably quickly when getting better, and I am sure club selection will change.

I think being fit once you have some time in the game and have an idea of how you like to play is probably great advice but for a true beginner in an already expensive hobby/sport this seems tough to swallow for me, because I feel like if I got fit now in less than 12 months I am probably going to need to be fitted again and adjust for changes in my swing. Maybe I am thinking about this the wrong way?
I was in the exact situation when I returned to golf. the basic level fitting that I went through was very important. Yes it's not the full Club Champion experience, but one that absolutely paid dividends. At the time, I also couldn't fathom going to a CC type full fitting. But like JB said, it probably would have served me even better than the fitting that i did receive.

The chicken and Eggs question....Fitting or Lessons.....we all know the answer is both. But of your not perfectly "average" in your body measurables....then that alone tips the scale to Fitting, then lessons. After that and your improved your swing...in a few year(s)s when it's time for new clubs....then get fit again. I know my next set I'll be going through a CC style fitting.

I'll probably be out for a putter fitting soon.
 

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I can say that after being fit by professional in 2019 at Callaway that I had a better year of golf without a doubt.
I think a beginner should learn fundamentals first with lessons then once they have a consistent swing get a proper fitting done.
 

JB

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I can understand that and making sure the club is setup so they can worry about their swing and not fighting a club that isn't at all correct for them. Will the fitter build some "future proofing" into a club for a beginner or will they set it for right at that moment? If they set it for right now and my clubhead speed picks up with confidence and consistency I now need another fitting for stiffer shafts, or if my swing plane moves because I got lessons now the loft/lie has to be changed right? Do club fitters allow for changes/adjustments for a discount if things change within a certain amount of time?

Again I am not trying to be argumentative or anything, I am genuinely asking because I have never been fit and would love to know what I should actually be fit into, but the financial part of it is quit the preposition when I would need a 2nd fitting and possibly new shafts or a major adjustment that is even more money on top of the original investments.
Is their future proofing for long term? Probably not. To be fair however, that won't change with or without a fitting, right? Meaning you pick something up now, if you feel as though it is holding you back, you have to change anyway.

The other side is fitting doesn't necessarily mean expensive. One could go to a Club Champion for a complete premium fitting, one could also use the Mizuno Optimizer free at retailers and get something decent and definitely better than nothing at all.
 

pumbaa

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Is their future proofing for long term? Probably not. To be fair however, that won't change with or without a fitting, right? Meaning you pick something up now, if you feel as though it is holding you back, you have to change anyway.

The other side is fitting doesn't necessarily mean expensive. One could go to a Club Champion for a complete premium fitting, one could also use the Mizuno Optimizer free at retailers and get something decent and definitely better than nothing at all.
When I am thinking of a fitting, I am thinking CC or Gloftec type fitting. I didn't even think in the realm of the fairly inexpensive fitting options at PGA Superstore or something like that.
 

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The other side is fitting doesn't necessarily mean expensive. One could go to a Club Champion for a complete premium fitting, one could also use the Mizuno Optimizer free at retailers and get something decent and definitely better than nothing at all.
And I think this is the point that many are missing. You don't have to get the Cadillac to get out on the course.
 

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I can say that after being fit by professional in 2019 at Callaway that I had a better year of golf without a doubt.
I think a beginner should learn fundamentals first with lessons then once they have a consistent swing get a proper fitting done.
I haven't looked at all the post yet, But I agree with you on this. I think a new player should get coached first and then be fitted for his swing type before making a major purchase. His swing will change once he/she gets coached properly.

Sent from my SM-N981U using Tapatalk
 

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Good article @Jman!

I'd really like to get fit for clubs. I thought it was going to be in the cards for me last year but world events got in the way, so there's a pin in it for now.

I wonder if there could be any market for a distance fitting using something like the Mizuno Optimizer. I know that I'd definitely be interested in seeing those results for myself anyway. But then, I enjoy stats and data so I might be an anomaly.
 

Jman

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Wow, that's shocking that when you ask fitting companies and fitters if people should be fit, they would say yes!
Thanks for taking the time to read (y)
 

Jman

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Glad most of you enjoyed this one, it’s fun to pick the minds of two of the most knowledgeable on the planet when it comes to fitting.
 

bbutler

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Nice write up. Got people to voice opinions on both fitting and lessons. I’m of the opinion that fitting should come first if the person has any kind of golf swing. Lessons with poorly fitting equipment whether it be length loft lie or incorrect shafts. Not to mention if they come up with a club that is way above their pay grade. Not sure what the percentage of golfers who actually take lessons but I would expect it to be low.
 

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Good article, @Jman. I think most golfers would benefit from a fitting, even a rudimentary one is better than not being fit at all.
 

Bernoulli

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I found the article and the comments interesting. I don’t believe that lessons should necessarily precede any fitting for a beginner.
 

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After seeing the fitters' exasperation in my first couple of fitting attempts, I did not attempt another one till well after I had a couple of lessons under my belt...the feedback/interaction was much better (in my mind) after that...
 

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I can’t help but wonder if fitters could do what I would call a “starter fitting”. Could be as simple as shaft lengths and lie angle depending on height, natural posture ect. Maybe grip size depending on hand size ect. A 6’3” person using the same clubs as a 5’8” person could be vastly different. Then go get lessons. And after the lessons, return for a full fitting after swing speed and contact are more consistent. Once contact is at least somewhat consistent shafts and lofts and swing weight and torque and gapping and all the tech stuff that maximizes distance control (which is far more important to me that just max distance) can be of more benefit.

I, like many, started with off the rack clubs. They were prob to long for me. I tried a ladies club from someone on the range one day after I had been playing for a year or so and the contact I was making was so much better. And it ending up being because it was an inch shorter. And sure enough when I got a fitting done almost all my clubs got cut down to better match me.

This can also make it more affordable for the beginner who may not be ready to make that kind of investment in equipment. For the fitters it’s a fairly easy fitting I would think. And they have now established a relationship with a potential life long customer.
 

mtbloco

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I can’t help but wonder if fitters could do what I would call a “starter fitting”. Could be as simple as shaft lengths and lie angle depending on height, natural posture ect. Maybe grip size depending on hand size ect. A 6’3” person using the same clubs as a 5’8” person could be vastly different. Then go get lessons. And after the lessons, return for a full fitting after swing speed and contact are more consistent. Once contact is at least somewhat consistent shafts and lofts and swing weight and torque and gapping and all the tech stuff that maximizes distance control (which is far more important to me that just max distance) can be of more benefit.

I, like many, started with off the rack clubs. They were prob to long for me. I tried a ladies club from someone on the range one day after I had been playing for a year or so and the contact I was making was so much better. And it ending up being because it was an inch shorter. And sure enough when I got a fitting done almost all my clubs got cut down to better match me.

This can also make it more affordable for the beginner who may not be ready to make that kind of investment in equipment. For the fitters it’s a fairly easy fitting I would think. And they have now established a relationship with a potential life long customer.
This is basically what I did by way of a box store. They measured me and determined length and initial lie. then I tried a range of irons from various makers and designs. finally tested shaft weight briefly. This made all the difference in giving me a platform to learn to improve my swing. When I'm ready for new irons/club it will be really cool to see the full CC style fitting process and what it determines for my current swing.

Best part of my initial box store "fit".....it was free.
 

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I can’t help but wonder if fitters could do what I would call a “starter fitting”. Could be as simple as shaft lengths and lie angle depending on height, natural posture ect.
For beginning players (or any player wanting to be set up well to make fundamentally sound swings) I believe a static fitting makes good sense. Specifically, fitting for height and wrist-to-floor will produce a club length and lie angle that fits a player's physique. From there he/she is well set up to make good swings.
A problem with dynamic fitting (based on ball flight etc...) is that method could promote and, or, ingrain swing faults.
 

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When I am thinking of a fitting, I am thinking CC or Gloftec type fitting. I didn't even think in the realm of the fairly inexpensive fitting options at PGA Superstore or something like that.
Just don't get fit by a newbie at a big box store that fits everyone one degree upright and the most expensive clubs.
 

Blade Man

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I can say I would have preferred a beginner type fitting when I started. Actually would have saved me some money. Length, lie, shaft weight and flex would have benefited me. Instead I think I went through 3 sets of clubs in the first 6 months before I did go get fit.
 

JB

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I can’t help but wonder if fitters could do what I would call a “starter fitting”. Could be as simple as shaft lengths and lie angle depending on height, natural posture ect. Maybe grip size depending on hand size ect. A 6’3” person using the same clubs as a 5’8” person could be vastly different. Then go get lessons. And after the lessons, return for a full fitting after swing speed and contact are more consistent. Once contact is at least somewhat consistent shafts and lofts and swing weight and torque and gapping and all the tech stuff that maximizes distance control (which is far more important to me that just max distance) can be of more benefit.

I, like many, started with off the rack clubs. They were prob to long for me. I tried a ladies club from someone on the range one day after I had been playing for a year or so and the contact I was making was so much better. And it ending up being because it was an inch shorter. And sure enough when I got a fitting done almost all my clubs got cut down to better match me.

This can also make it more affordable for the beginner who may not be ready to make that kind of investment in equipment. For the fitters it’s a fairly easy fitting I would think. And they have now established a relationship with a potential life long customer.
They do don't they? Between World Wide Stores, PGA SuperStores or many others. Combine that with stores that offer the Mizuno optimizer and you really have some options that go from very simple of length and lie to even moderate with shaft types based on delivery.
 

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