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Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Check out these

http://www.tourspecgolf.com/proshop/.../c1/index.html

These are totally different than the stuff available in the US and EU. Even big brands like Callaway and Taylormade make special productions that are sold only in Japan and nowhere else. Even Mizuno has a whole line of drivers and irons called JPX (and they look impressive, specially that JPX E600 driver: http://www.golfersland.net/jpx/driver/e600/index.html)


So why specially Japan? Why not Korea? or China, or Germany, or any other country. What's so special about Japan that they have all these exclusive brands and gear?

I was wondering about this for quite some time now.
post #2 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by Golfaway View Post
Check out these

http://www.tourspecgolf.com/proshop/.../c1/index.html

These are totally different than the stuff available in the US and EU. Even big brands like Callaway and Taylormade make special productions that are sold only in Japan and nowhere else. Even Mizuno has a whole line of drivers and irons called JPX (and they look impressive, specially that JPX E600 driver: http://www.golfersland.net/jpx/driver/e600/index.html)


So why specially Japan? Why not Korea? or China, or Germany, or any other country. What's so special about Japan that they have all these exclusive brands and gear?

I was wondering about this for quite some time now.
Well I'd venture to say that Japan has a much, much larger population of people who spend significant money on golf than China or Korea - and it's culturally different enough from the US to warrant its own line of clubs, unlike, say, Germany.
post #3 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Who cares. Their golfers still can't compete with ours.
post #4 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Don't they have different rules for gear? Like, the COR's can be higher there as per their rules (no USGA)?
post #5 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Asian has smaller built compare to Americans or European.

Most of them cannot handle clubs which has american / european specification.

A "Regular" flex shaft in US will be "Stiff" for most asian. That us why TM / Callaway / McGregor etc all have ASIAN SPECs clubs.

The shafts are lighter since they dont have the strength of the Americans / European.

Maruman / PRGR / XX10 / Honma are engineered for Asian. They are super light weight and forgiving and you need to pay a lot for them .

Golf is still an expensive game in ASIA especially in KOREA / JAPAN / CHINA .and unfortunately only the higher income group can afford to play.

CHINA folks is taking golf very seriously , and if you give them another 10 to 20 years , they will produce some world class players. Koreans who lived in the US has proven especially in the LPGA in these few years.
post #6 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by mdvaldosta View Post
Don't they have different rules for gear? Like, the COR's can be higher there as per their rules (no USGA)?
Some yes , unfortunately .
post #7 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

They have different regulations, they are allowed a higher COR aswell
post #8 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

im pretty sure that as of last year, both the USGA and the R & A have deemed anything over .830 COR as being illegal as of January 1st, 2008. so those higher COR drivers are now illegal EVERYWHERE
post #9 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

To the original question of "why" I'm sure none of us really knows, but one will find that many aspects of Japanese society are very unique to Japan. Having traveled many many times to Japan and other parts of Asia on business, I've found the Japanese people very warm and friendly, but the overall culture in Japan is still quite insular. People are either Nihon-jin (Japanese person) or a Gai-jin (literally "non-Japanese person"). There is a lot of cultural pride in the differences, and I've found that there is a uniqueness in Japanese consumer goods that is unlike most other countries. If you go into the stores in Japan, you'll find that nearly all classes of consumer goods are very different: appliances are styled completely different, consumer electronics have a lot of different features and functionality, most sporting goods that I've seen there like skis, tennis rackets, camping gear, and golf gear are different. Even the cars from the Japanese manufacturers are very different than what they export.

BTW, I've also found much the same in Korea, but not to quite as large degree. I see very different golf brands and gear there, but the cars are pretty familiar. The only Asia country where I see mostly US brands is China, but I suspect that's because pretty much all of it is counterfeit!
post #10 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Mostly answered above but the Japanese market is big enough to support several companies there and the Japanese are quite willing to pay a lot for what they believe to be superior products over those made in mainland China. (where all US golf heads are made except PING) Japanese irons are designed to be played on Japanese golf courses with minor grind changes from non Japan products and cosmetically appear to the local market there. Miura is a good example of a Japanese company which makes a line for the world market and a line for Japan which has more informational graphics. Of note, even the Japanese drivers and fairway woods are mostly made in China, even for the Japanese market, but the local shafts sold there are almost all made in Japan.
post #11 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by kevin.chan View Post
Asian has smaller built compare to Americans or European.

Most of them cannot handle clubs which has american / european specification.

A "Regular" flex shaft in US will be "Stiff" for most asian. That us why TM / Callaway / McGregor etc all have ASIAN SPECs clubs.

The shafts are lighter since they dont have the strength of the Americans / European.

Maruman / PRGR / XX10 / Honma are engineered for Asian. They are super light weight and forgiving and you need to pay a lot for them .

Golf is still an expensive game in ASIA especially in KOREA / JAPAN / CHINA .and unfortunately only the higher income group can afford to play.

CHINA folks is taking golf very seriously , and if you give them another 10 to 20 years , they will produce some world class players. Koreans who lived in the US has proven especially in the LPGA in these few years.
Not really related to the OP question.

I have tried several "Japan spec clubs" as I sometimes travel and play in Asia. As far as I know, Japanese/Asian spec clubs are in general a bit shorter and has flatter lie angle which match Asian build (shorter legs relative to arms). My mom uses Maruman. It's so light and its shaft wobbles a lot when I waggle. It seems that Asian spec shafts are lighter and have higher torque?

Almost all of my Asian friends complain that US spec clubs are heavy. One of my friend who is a Asian tour pro and can easily hit 180 yards with 7I uses 695MB with NS pro shaft...I once tried to sell my used driver with Aldila NV-65S in Asia and the shop didn't want to buy it because the shaft is too heavy!
post #12 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Asian golfers (or Japanese golfers) also like their clubs to look a little more "high tech" than they do here. Often they like to "see" the technology more, while the U.S. and other countries tend to favor a bit more of a "traditional" look (i.e. hide the tech).

So that's part of it, too.

So too is the stuff about how Japanese golfers tend to be of a different stature, size, and strength.
post #13 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by iacas View Post
Asian golfers (or Japanese golfers) also like their clubs to look a little more "high tech" than they do here. Often they like to "see" the technology more, while the U.S. and other countries tend to favor a bit more of a "traditional" look (i.e. hide the tech).
This may be true for driver or wood. It's a different story for iron I guess.

I actually found that Japanese made tons of irons with traditional look. Take Fourteen, Yonex, RC or so. Sure there are some exceptions like JPX which aims towards higher HCP players. I would think in this aspect both markets are similar--better players prefer more traditional looks. I also think Japanese may in fact tend to favor luxurious looks.

BTW, I haven't seen any Japanese iron that looks as fancy as TM Burner.
post #14 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by plop View Post
BTW, I haven't seen any Japanese iron that looks as fancy as TM Burner.
Maybe that's because, despite their penchant for visible technology, they also still have taste?
post #15 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by iacas View Post
maybe that's because, despite their penchant for visible technology, they also still have taste?
hahahaha!
post #16 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by iacas View Post
Maybe that's because, despite their penchant for visible technology, they also still have taste?
True, True, So True


The JDM(Japanese Domestic Market) only products are not limited to golf. As an Avid fisherman, their JDM fishing gear(rods, reels, lures) are to envy. They also tend to be more apt to spend the appropriate money for the technology and quality; in other words they are not looking for the bargian that has bling to make it look like quality. They also don't buy 6 sets of irons in a year, thinking it's the clubs fault. The big fishing companies, Shimano and Diawa, make some incredible products for the JDM. In recent years we have been able to get some of this gear, but at a PRICE. I have several Japanese friends that buy JDM instead of our ABM(American Bling Market) regardless of price.
post #17 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

Originally Posted by iacas View Post
Maybe that's because, despite their penchant for visible technology, they also still have taste?
Not entirely true! I think if Huggy Bear played golf, he'd have these in the bag:



The Honma Twin Marks MG-818 model is available in 3-Star and 5-Star versions and is the world's most desirable and expensive iron. At a cool £22,200 for the full set of 10 clubs, the 5-Star MG-818 can boast film stars and royalty as delighted owners.

The irons have heads of Japanese soft steel, with tungsten weights positioned differently through the set to make each iron as forgiving as possible. The cavity is plated with 24 karat gold, with platinum inserts bearing the Honma Twin Marks logo and the 5-Star emblem. Even the shaft and grip receive the 5-star treatment; the five hosel rings are made from pure platinum or 24 karat gold and the butt of the grip is adorned with a 24 karat gold ingot bearing Honma's "Mole in Hole" logo.
post #18 of 22

Re: Why does Japan have it's own exclusive market??

LOL, WOW!!! That's just... ummm... interesting. It's almost like a train wreck. You know you shouldnt watch, yet you cant look away!
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