The Newest Golf Gear Won’t Help Your Game, Getting Optimized Will

By Nathan Yates

Last week we posted an article on what equipment last year’s Major champions used. This is the first in a three part series on the importance of getting your clubs optimized, regardless of what brand you prefer.

Technology has certainly changed the game of golf.  But upgrading to the latest tech every 6 months like the club manufacturers want you to will only hurt your bank account.  You’re better off taking the time to get optimized…you know, like the pros are.

We’re Here to Separate You from Your Money

If club and ball manufacturers were honest, the above would be the only copywriting they need.  Yes, technological improvements are made over time.  But every three to six months?  Give me a break.  Just a handful of years ago TaylorMade came out with the much anticipated SLDR driver that was to revolutionize the game by imparting a higher launch angle and lower spin on your drives.  And it’s true, a higher launch angle and lower spin do indeed lead to longer drives.  But since the debut of the SLDR TaylorMade has introduced several new generations of “the best driver ever”.

How is this possible?  Sure, every club manufacturer employs incredibly smart and talented engineers to continuously design technologically advanced clubs.  But the advances can’t and aren’t all the marketing department would want you to believe.  Golf clubs are marketed to be in a constant state of planned obsolescence.  Don’t fall for this trick to separate you from your hard-earned cash.  Your game will not magically improve simply because you’re playing the latest and greatest model just like the pros.  The truth is, the pros are actually playing different sticks than what you’ll find online or your local golf store.  Details to follow.

If the New Clubs Are Nothing Special, Then Why Are the Pros Using Them?

Yes, pretty much every pro upgrades their bag whenever new clubs are produced.  But remember, they’re getting paid to play these clubs.  They’re not paying to play them like you are.  That’s all the difference in the world.  Of course Jason Day and Dustin Johnson are playing the new M2 Driver from TaylorMade.  And Jordan Spieth and Jimmy Walker are playing the latest hitsticks from Titleist.  They’re contractually obligated and getting paid millions of dollars to do so.

This isn’t to say that the pros clubs aren’t special.  You better believe they are.  But they’re not special because they’re the newest generation.  They’re special because they have been optimized.

Optimized?  What is That? 

Optimization means getting yourself on a proper launch monitor, or better yet, a TrackMan in order to determine what combination of shafts and heads are best for your unique move.  If you haven’t heard of TrackMan, check out the article linked below to grasp the awesomeness of this new golf technology and why it is so important for optimization.

Back to our previous topic, if you’re just starting out your golf journey, you probably don’t need to get optimized.  But once you’ve achieved a fairly repeatable swing and know what you’re at trying to do out there (this is all we can ever really ask of ourselves), optimization is the way to go.  So how to do it?

Many upscale golf courses partner with an optimization company to provide this service.  Head to your local track and ask if they do or if they know of anywhere where you can get custom fitted.  Again, be sure to get on a proper launch monitor or a TrackMan.  You’ll have to try a number of combinations of shafts and heads to find the optimal combo but once you do prepare to have your mind blown.  I was a skeptic about optimization until I got fitted in college.  It’s now over a decade later and I still use my optimized 510 TP driver from TaylorMade.  Getting properly optimized essentially turns your clubs into the golf equivalent of a 1964 Mustang.  You won’t want to trade them in for the new version.

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