Custom Fitting- The Evidence Base (VERY long post)

Backsticks

Assistant Pro
Joined
Aug 7, 2012
Messages
356
I guess any major change is going to have a settling in period.
If there was any basis to "fitting", surely not? They idea being that there is such a thing as a perfect fit for you, and the club is moulded to your and your swing, not that you must then adapt to the clubs.
 

RichA

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 24, 2021
Messages
906
Location
UK
If there was any basis to "fitting", surely not? They idea being that there is such a thing as a perfect fit for you, and the club is moulded to your and your swing, not that you must then adapt to the clubs.
Not how I see it. When I really go after a shot without thinking, muscle memory kicks in, along with all sorts of unconscious biomechanical adjustments - all based on thousands of golf shots played with irons that were shorter and flatter.
I wouldn't have expected that I could instantly adjust.
I have a tall friend who still ducks as he walks through doorways, purely based on growing up in an old house with low ceilings and short doors.
 

Whereditgo

Journeyman Pro
Joined
Mar 24, 2009
Messages
1,772
Location
East Yorkshire, UK
Had my driver fitting at the Titleist National Fitting Centre as I was considering replacing my 913 driver and 3 wood. I bought the driver unseen from someone on here around 6 years ago who had used it for a couple of rounds but couldn't get on with it, so I had no clue whether the loft, shaft etc was suitable for me.

I arrived early and took a few balls into the range next to the fitting bays to warm up. There was a strong wind pretty much directly into bays, I was striking a sweet 5 iron out to 150 the yards marker, so perhaps not the best of days to get fitted?

Introduced myself to the fitting team and met the club fitter Paul, who ran through the obligatory Covid safety protocols, then asked what I was hoping to achieve from the fitting. I hit a few balls with 913 as a bench mark and was hitting it ok, spin rate was a little high at around 3,000 rpm, but the smash factor on centred strikes was good, between 1.48 to 1.50, the carry wasn't great obviously, owing to the wind, but again ok at around 230 to 240.

We then spent around 45 minutes, trying the TSi2 & TSi3 with Paul tweaking the set-ups and different shafts. We got the spin rate down to around the 2,500 rpm mark and with a similar smash factor there was a gain of 6 to 10 yards total distance, possibly a more significant gain on off centre hits, the newer head design a bit more forgiving in that respect. Ultimately the set-up was very similar to my existing driver, the proposed head being TSi2 at 9 deg with a shaft that was fractionally stiffer than my current 9.5 deg driver.

We spent the remainder of the fitting looking at 3 wood options, with the TSi2 at 15 deg (my current 3 wood is 13.5 deg used primarily for a couple of tighter tee shots) being stand-out more consistent in shot shape and decent length.

The club fitter, Paul, was very friendly and clearly very knowledgeable I have no doubt that had I rocked up with my current driver/shaft combination being completely unsuitable we would have seen much greater gains.

So, having spent a few days pondering, I have decided to stick with my current driver, the gains were not sufficient in my mind to warrant a £ 500 spend, I may still order the 3 wood as the extra loft may encourage more use off the fairway, or try adjusting my current 3 wood in the short term.



Although......other driver manufacturers are available :unsure::eek::LOL:
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2013
Messages
552
Location
Somerset
Had my driver fitting at the Titleist National Fitting Centre as I was considering replacing my 913 driver and 3 wood. I bought the driver unseen from someone on here around 6 years ago who had used it for a couple of rounds but couldn't get on with it, so I had no clue whether the loft, shaft etc was suitable for me.

I arrived early and took a few balls into the range next to the fitting bays to warm up. There was a strong wind pretty much directly into bays, I was striking a sweet 5 iron out to 150 the yards marker, so perhaps not the best of days to get fitted?

Introduced myself to the fitting team and met the club fitter Paul, who ran through the obligatory Covid safety protocols, then asked what I was hoping to achieve from the fitting. I hit a few balls with 913 as a bench mark and was hitting it ok, spin rate was a little high at around 3,000 rpm, but the smash factor on centred strikes was good, between 1.48 to 1.50, the carry wasn't great obviously, owing to the wind, but again ok at around 230 to 240.

We then spent around 45 minutes, trying the TSi2 & TSi3 with Paul tweaking the set-ups and different shafts. We got the spin rate down to around the 2,500 rpm mark and with a similar smash factor there was a gain of 6 to 10 yards total distance, possibly a more significant gain on off centre hits, the newer head design a bit more forgiving in that respect. Ultimately the set-up was very similar to my existing driver, the proposed head being TSi2 at 9 deg with a shaft that was fractionally stiffer than my current 9.5 deg driver.

We spent the remainder of the fitting looking at 3 wood options, with the TSi2 at 15 deg (my current 3 wood is 13.5 deg used primarily for a couple of tighter tee shots) being stand-out more consistent in shot shape and decent length.

The club fitter, Paul, was very friendly and clearly very knowledgeable I have no doubt that had I rocked up with my current driver/shaft combination being completely unsuitable we would have seen much greater gains.

So, having spent a few days pondering, I have decided to stick with my current driver, the gains were not sufficient in my mind to warrant a £ 500 spend, I may still order the 3 wood as the extra loft may encourage more use off the fairway, or try adjusting my current 3 wood in the short term.



Although......other driver manufacturers are available :unsure::eek::LOL:
Great write up - to me what's interesting is that you bought the 913 untried and over time have adapted your driver swing to the club, adapting to a club is exactly what I found with my currently driver Ping G425. Initially fitted for it, borrowed a demo for two week happy with the real world results decided to purchase one. Club arrives for what ever reason I'm all over the place with it but after a couple of weeks its the club I had hoped it would be. Fast forward to 4 weeks ago tried the latest and greatest 425 which is supposed to be much more forgiving, granted the head is 460cc and the 410 is less and the shaft was same but 5 gram heavier I just couldn't hit consistently however I sure give time I could, but why bother
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
26,211
I'm struggling with my G425 irons. My old Eye 2s have stiff shafts and didn't fit me. I got so used to a flat lie, short shafts and having to really hit the ball.
If I just remember to hit the new ones with minimal effort and concentrate on keeping my posture, they're amazing. A gentle brush with the 5 iron and it goes straight 180 yards; go after it and it hooks left into the rough 100 yards away. I guess any major change is going to have a settling in period.
This is me at the moment.

10yrs working out how to hit my old mismatched 4w and 3h, and now I have a matching 5w and 4h. They may well now also be matched to my stance as to each other, but I have to work on my swing as I can’t expect to make such ‘swinging’ changes without having to put in some effort.

At the moment I have sorted out hitting my new driver but can barely get my 4h and 5w off the ground - my muscle memory is incredibly strong... As drastic as my shots are it is obvious to me that I am doing something fundamental that needs changing - indeed might be a simple tweak to address, and a change to how I think of striking the ball with them.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jan 10, 2016
Messages
1,745
Location
Southampton
I went into AG to get some new shoes earlier, had some vouchers to spend. Whilst chatting with the sales guy, he asked if there was anything else I needed. I said I was looking at some new irons but wasn’t sure, nobody was in the bay so he insisted I try out some new clubs.

First question was “which ones do you like the look of?”

“The new Wilson Staff CB’s”, so they were tried first, with the shafts he gave me the results weren’t anything special. Next step he took was to try a different head, latest Ping offering I think it was. Results with this head were a bit better than with the Wilson. Changed the shafts up a couple of times till we settled on something he was happy with. No other heads were then offered to try. He was happy he had found me some extra distance, which is not something I was aiming for. I’m not a short hitter, so extra distance isn’t a focus for me.

I asked what the loft was on the Ping 7 iron he had suggested, it was 30* which probably accounts for the extra distance as my current 7 iron is 34*.

Now I definitely do not consider myself anywhere near an expert on clubs, but I have read enough to know a little bit. All today did was reinforce that if I am going to spend the best part of £1k on a new set of irons, I definitely do not mind paying the extra for a proper custom fitting.
 
Joined
May 29, 2020
Messages
50
I'm struggling with my G425 irons. My old Eye 2s have stiff shafts and didn't fit me. I got so used to a flat lie, short shafts and having to really hit the ball.
If I just remember to hit the new ones with minimal effort and concentrate on keeping my posture, they're amazing. A gentle brush with the 5 iron and it goes straight 180 yards; go after it and it hooks left into the rough 100 yards away. I guess any major change is going to have a settling in period.
The major change for me with my new set (also G425s) are they’re an inch and a half longer than my previous set. When I set my posture right, they are brilliant and I’m already hitting them more consistently than my previous set. My bad shot is when I do the bad posture I had with my old set, which for me previously was bending my knees to compensate for the shorter length rather than bending over more with my back. It’s muscle memory as you say, that was my standard posture for ten years, it’s not going to be a change that occurs like a flick of a switch.

The good thing now though is I know I have the right clubs to enable having the right posture more easily that I know will lead to more consistency.
 

Curls

Journeyman Pro
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
3,139
Titleist brought the fitting bay to a local club this afternoon and I enjoyed an hour of the range to ourselves, just me and the very sound fitting guy, going through the options until I wailed on driver after driver launching missiles I can’t stop thinking about. No sign of my bad hooky miss i couldn’t make it happen. Bolt straight. High. Long.

Expensive afternoon for a free ting.
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
26,211
Down the range this afternoon trying to work out how to hit my new hybrid. For the first time I’ve had clubs custom fitted (woods and wedges arrived, irons in a couple of weeks) and boy does my ‘old‘ way of doing things not work. Got the mat right beside where our pro was giving a lesson. Strategic thinking 😊

Sure enough he immediately spotted a couple of things that needed sorting and that would be causing me problems. Most obvious was grip...so we changed position of both hands. Feels v weird but actually feels right. Second was address. I needed to stand a little closer to the ball (before hitting it 😀) to more upright address and get club toe down...it was (still) a bit up.

And on top of that I have to imagine doing what I have to do to hit a slice to combat the faults of the ‘learned method’ I’ve developed over three decades, a method that has enabled me to play vaguely successfully and down to a h/cap of six. But it’s a method that will no longer work at all with my new custom fitted full set, not at all...and boy does it not work at all...

I‘ve played this bleedin game for 50yrs and today I am on Day 2 of a new way👍😻 And I have a match tomorrow morning...🙄
 
Last edited:

Backsticks

Assistant Pro
Joined
Aug 7, 2012
Messages
356
Down the range this afternoon trying to work out how to hit my new hybrid. For the first time I’ve had clubs custom fitted (woods and wedges arrived, irons in a couple of weeks) and boy does my ‘old‘ way of doing things not work. Got the mat right beside where our pro was giving a lesson. Strategic thinking 😊
Like my earlier question, surely this is a complete contradiction of custom fitting ? Or an example of it complete bunkum ? Is its premis not that you indeed keep swinging with you 'old' way of doing things, and that the clubs are fitted to your way ? Sounds like rather than being fitted with clubs that optimise your swing, your have been seriously set back and now have to adapt your swing to the clubs ? Money back time with the 'fitter' ?
 
Joined
Mar 9, 2017
Messages
150
Location
West Sussex
Like my earlier question, surely this is a complete contradiction of custom fitting ? Or an example of it complete bunkum ? Is its premis not that you indeed keep swinging with you 'old' way of doing things, and that the clubs are fitted to your way ? Sounds like rather than being fitted with clubs that optimise your swing, your have been seriously set back and now have to adapt your swing to the clubs ? Money back time with the 'fitter' ?
I agree with this. It would be the equivalent of trying a bunch of clubs on the sim, a whole selection of shafts, and then the fitter asking you to buy the one which you weren’t hitting well.

I’m booked in with Jason at Golf Principles next week for irons. The 3 wood I got last time goes like a bullet.
 

Rlburnside

Challenge Tour Pro
Joined
Jan 16, 2014
Messages
2,361
Interesting post, I’ve have been custom fitted for clubs twice once for irons once for driver, don’t know if it was nerves but when I was fitted for irons I only hit 2 decent shots the rest were really bad I commented to the fitter that wasn’t very good to get a good fitting.

But he thought he could go ahead based on the 2 good shots, I had my doubts but went ahead with the fitting, I was fitted for soft flex shafts and do hit them better but my h/c has remained more or less stagnant since.

The driver fitting was a better experience, after trying 5/6 different shafts I found the one I liked, it was strange as I said to the fitter that “this was the one”before I even hit a ball and sure enough that shaft was the best.

I think knowing what shaft is best for you is the most important thing and you don’t have to necessarily get a custom fit for that.
 
Joined
Mar 9, 2017
Messages
150
Location
West Sussex
Reporting back on my previous post:

I had a great fitting session on Friday. Ordered the following:
Apex Pro 3-PW with Project X IO 105 5.5
Apex Hybrid with Oban Isawa 70

The interesting thing was for me, how awful at golf I become when the shaft gets to 110g on irons. Lose all efficiency, strike and ball speed. He said 110 was “big trouble” which was apt 🤣

The numbers were looking better and better, all in all it was a really interesting process. Now probably have to wait 8 weeks for the clubs for the verdict as per other threads about delays...
 

MadAdey

Money List Winner
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
5,535
Location
Greensboro, North Carolina.
IS there really any way to get an accurate answer to this? I will say what I always say.................. Do you not alter your car seat when you get in so you can drive your best? Do you not make sure that your shoes fit you properly when you buy them? Do you not make sure your golf glove is the best fit possible to help you perform your best? Do you just buy a suit online and hope that it will fit properly? You know where I am going with this.

So why are so many golfers against getting custom fitted? Everything else in your life you make sure enables you to perform your best, so why not golf clubs too. I have never seen a golfer that fitted CORRECTLY play worse.
 

MadAdey

Money List Winner
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
5,535
Location
Greensboro, North Carolina.
What are you basing this on? Surely if they play regularly and submit cards then their handicap is what it is? I am an 18 handicap but can get the odd birdie, even had 3 in one round but this doesn’t make me a potential scratch golfer 🥺

Basing it on my own experience, having played the game for best part of 30 years at a variety of clubs with a variety of golfers. Theres plenty of golfers out there who arent playing off what I would call an accurate handicap of their ability, some are sandbaggers, some have vanity handicaps, some only put the minimum cards in, some play badly with card in hand, some had a purple patch for a couple of weeks and ended with a handicap they havent got close to playing to for a year or more since. Sample size of numbers of rounds players submit for handicap at any point in time are far too small in most cases to be statistically reliable, handicap systems are a best guess and nothing more
100% agree with this. If you put your cards in and play an honest round then your handicap is accurate. I know this from experience, the amount of people who made comments at me a few years ago about being the best 9 handicapper they've played with is innacurate. Imight have looked like a bandit when playing matchplay, but in stroke play I was a 9 handicapper because I always had a total brain meltdown a 2 or 3 holes that would screw the card up.
 
Last edited:

sawtooth

Tour Winner
Joined
Jul 1, 2009
Messages
5,197
Location
Berkshire
Logically, custom fitting has to be beneficial. We are all different shapes and sizes so you can't expect to have a one size fits all golf club.

So you probably wouldn't reach your full potential or at least it would take longer with ill suited clubs than it would with made to measure ones.
 

chrisd

Major Champion
Joined
Sep 22, 2009
Messages
23,134
Location
Kent
I was fitted for a driver last week.

We took data from my current driver (Ping G400 LST) which I knew the shaft was too heavy (76g) and hard for me at 68 to get the ball airborne enough, I could still hit 250 roll out but with a very low flight.

We tried Cobra radspeed XB, Taylormade Sim 2, Callaway Epic Speed and Titleist TSI2. so we got the Cobra performing well, changed the shaft until the Motore stiff 60g was giving the best results and then checked it against my Ping, and it was better in flight and dispersion.

We went through the same exercise with the other clubs and kept comparing until the look, feel, dispersion and results indicated that the Cobra as set up was best, the Sim2 was a close second.

I bought the Cobra, satisfied that the fitting was as professional as it could be 👍
 
Last edited:

Orikoru

Tour Winner
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
15,955
Location
Watford
Down the range this afternoon trying to work out how to hit my new hybrid. For the first time I’ve had clubs custom fitted (woods and wedges arrived, irons in a couple of weeks) and boy does my ‘old‘ way of doing things not work. Got the mat right beside where our pro was giving a lesson. Strategic thinking 😊

Sure enough he immediately spotted a couple of things that needed sorting and that would be causing me problems. Most obvious was grip...so we changed position of both hands. Feels v weird but actually feels right. Second was address. I needed to stand a little closer to the ball (before hitting it 😀) to more upright address and get club toe down...it was (still) a bit up.

And on top of that I have to imagine doing what I have to do to hit a slice to combat the faults of the ‘learned method’ I’ve developed over three decades, a method that has enabled me to play vaguely successfully and down to a h/cap of six. But it’s a method that will no longer work at all with my new custom fitted full set, not at all...and boy does it not work at all...

I‘ve played this bleedin game for 50yrs and today I am on Day 2 of a new way👍😻 And I have a match tomorrow morning...🙄
How on earth did you end up with a club you can't hit at all from a custom fitting?? Isn't that the opposite of the expected result?
 

Backsticks

Assistant Pro
Joined
Aug 7, 2012
Messages
356
IS there really any way to get an accurate answer to this? I will say what I always say.................. Do you not alter your car seat when you get in so you can drive your best? Do you not make sure that your shoes fit you properly when you buy them? Do you not make sure your golf glove is the best fit possible to help you perform your best? Do you just buy a suit online and hope that it will fit properly? You know where I am going with this.

So why are so many golfers against getting custom fitted? Everything else in your life you make sure enables you to perform your best, so why not golf clubs too. I have never seen a golfer that fitted CORRECTLY play worse.
These days, we all go and get measured up and fitted for our cutlery, and bring it with us when we go out to a restaurant or to dine with friends. We are hardly going to risk using some fork or spoon of some random size and assume it will meet our needs. We are all different, have different size fingers, and lengths of arms, levels of dexterity and coordination. Of course no one size of knife or fork can suit everyone and we all accept that. It would be impossible to eat effectively. We would stab ourselves inthe cheek with the fork, fail to cut our meat through at all, or end up stirring our tea all over the tablecloth. There would be no weight balance on the fulcum of the fork in our hands to food on the end of it, and we would end of dropping it and making a right mess. I wouldnt ask my wife to use my cutlery as she would find it impossibly unwieldy and it would ruin her enjoyment of her meal. So she has her own. Cutlery fitting is simply essentail to eat correctly.
I think you know where I am going with this.

I think the accurate answer does exist, in that club fitting has never proven its case. What you cite are a list of false analogies - faulty instances of an argument from analogy which is weakened by low or unestablished relevance and similarity. That club fitting resorts to, and people accept, such weak or false arguments in its justification I find damning in itself, highlighting the lack of genuine evidence. And put it in the same bracket as the advertising blurb selling this years latest club 'upgrade' where it is loaded with even more 'tech'. We all know it is nonsense, and accept it as such. Club fitting just has a little more smoke an mirrors going on that some people are still taken in by it.
 

MadAdey

Money List Winner
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
5,535
Location
Greensboro, North Carolina.
These days, we all go and get measured up and fitted for our cutlery, and bring it with us when we go out to a restaurant or to dine with friends. We are hardly going to risk using some fork or spoon of some random size and assume it will meet our needs. We are all different, have different size fingers, and lengths of arms, levels of dexterity and coordination. Of course no one size of knife or fork can suit everyone and we all accept that. It would be impossible to eat effectively. We would stab ourselves inthe cheek with the fork, fail to cut our meat through at all, or end up stirring our tea all over the tablecloth. There would be no weight balance on the fulcum of the fork in our hands to food on the end of it, and we would end of dropping it and making a right mess. I wouldnt ask my wife to use my cutlery as she would find it impossibly unwieldy and it would ruin her enjoyment of her meal. So she has her own. Cutlery fitting is simply essentail to eat correctly.
I think you know where I am going with this.

I think the accurate answer does exist, in that club fitting has never proven its case. What you cite are a list of false analogies - faulty instances of an argument from analogy which is weakened by low or unestablished relevance and similarity. That club fitting resorts to, and people accept, such weak or false arguments in its justification I find damning in itself, highlighting the lack of genuine evidence. And put it in the same bracket as the advertising blurb selling this years latest club 'upgrade' where it is loaded with even more 'tech'. We all know it is nonsense, and accept it as such. Club fitting just has a little more smoke an mirrors going on that some people are still taken in by it.
I think you make a good point there, why would companies offer custom fitting for free at heir own expense to help you use their equipment better if it was pointless. Why does every tour pro get fitted for their clubs? Go on a YouTube channel called TXG and maybe you could learn a thing or 2 about custom fitting. There is a good one on there where an older every day golfer gets fitted for a driver and the difference the shafts make. Or go on Mike Newton Golf and watch him doing shaft comparissons. Or any of a thousand YouTube videos with people getting fitted and the difference it makes.

But being a child and saying about cutlery is a little bit of a stupid arguement don't you think. But hey go troll someone else cause I really could not give 2 ............. about what someone like you has to say if they can not even form a sensible arguement.
 
Top