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What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know - Page 2

post #19 of 55
Thread Starter 

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

I think my original post might have been worded a bit strong about the club manufacturers. I have a regular group of guys that I play with that are constantly upgrading to the latest equipment, and I've got to laugh when they are constantly shooting the same scores week after week and year after year. When ever I mention going to the range and working on their swings.......... they look at me like I have 6 heads on my shoulders.
post #20 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

What worries me more is that the golf teaching world still holds onto incorrect information about the golf swing and keeps teaching it. Making golf easier should be a primary concern for instructors, to make the entry level lower for beginners.
post #21 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by JWL1957 View Post
When ever I mention going to the range and working on their swings.......... they look at me like I have 6 heads on my shoulders.
The major majority of golfers don't work on their game at the range. I am included in this group. We just want to play. We aren't interested in working at droppng our hc's. And if new clubs brings us a little more enjoyment, so be it.
post #22 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by shades9323 View Post
The major majority of golfers don't work on their game at the range. I am included in this group. We just want to play. We aren't interested in working at droppng our hc's. And if new clubs brings us a little more enjoyment, so be it.
Good post! IMHO, the reason indexes haven't dropped more is because of our society/culture. The world is becoming more and more fast paced and golf does not mesh well with "fast paced." People are now cramming more stuff into their day than ever before and this leaves less time to work on their game. I mean on this very board there are almost daily posts (with increasing frequency) of people complaining about slow play. I think this is largely due to people being more rushed. Personally, I believe we would see average scores going up were it not for advancement in golf technology.
I do see and agree with your overall point though. You cannot buy a good game.
post #23 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

There's evidence out there that handicaps HAVE DROPPED. I've linked to this before and I'll link to it again:

Originally Posted by Bomb & Gouge
We are getting better. And equipment technology is the reason.

Either that or we're in the midst of one of the most curious coincidences in the 500-year history of our game. First, to the evidence about us. The USGA is unequivocal about average golfers: Despite decades of naysayers and experts alike suggesting that the average handicap is not dropping, has not dropped and never will drop, the fact is, it has. Let's say that again: The average handicap of all golfers -- men, women and children -- has decreased consistently for the past 15 years. The average handicap today is two strokes better than it was in the early 1990s, according to research provided to Golf Digest by the USGA's Golf Handicap & Information Network (GHIN). This decrease coincides with a remarkable decade of equipment innovation that has brought us titanium drivers in every shape and size, game-changing hybrids and oversize putters.
Source: http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-equip...evolution_0902
post #24 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

When they make a putter that reads the line, lines up the putt, and swings itself, then you'll see the scores drop. A similar wedge for chipping would certainly drop scores.
post #25 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Handicaps haven't dropped much because many amateur golfers do not get club-fitted. I think it's something like 65% of golfers don't get fit for their clubs.
post #26 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

I suspect the average index is dropping because good players are getting better. Bad players might be getting relatively worse, but they tend to come and go. Courses are longer and tighter, with more hazards and the ones that are shorter typically have tricked up greens or put the pins in ridiculous spots - pin positions that 20 years ago would have caused the membership commitee to call for someone's head. I have no stats in front of me - this is just based on experience and the courses I play.
post #27 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by iacas View Post
There's evidence out there that handicaps HAVE DROPPED. I've linked to this before and I'll link to it again:



Source: http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-equip...evolution_0902
and when you take into consideration that more and more golfers are playing every year and the handicaps are still dropping, i'd like to think there is a correlation between new gear and the advancement of one's game. it's logical to think that new golfers are buying new gear...which is helping them to then lower their handicap, as well as the overall. taking into consideration there's a chance that new technology is also helping golfers who've been playing for some time to hit longer, more accurately or just flat out shoot better overall. i think we'd almost have to assume it's not just a gimmick or something like that but GENERALLY as technology has been improving the overall handicaps of the average golfer have decreased.

Source of golf populus numbers: http://www.grounds-mag.com/news/number-golfers-growing/
(allbeit they are older statistics, still making a point)
post #28 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Training and practice are good for your game, but the right equipment can make a difference too. Despite appearances, not all clubs are equal, and different clubs can be better suited to different swings and playing styles.

It's true that some players keep buying new stuff solely because they can't stand to be on the course without the latest and greatest, regardless of any actual improvement. But for others, finding the right driver or putter can really make a difference.

I changed drivers (yes, I bought a new one, but only after playing a demo so that I knew what I was doing) last week and I'm hitting the ball farther and with more accuracy than I have in years. It's possible that it's just a honeymoon effect, but I don't think so. Time will tell, but this driver just feels better when I swing it, and that has always been important to me.

So while I agree with part of the OP's statement that many players buy into the hype from the manufacturers, it is still possible to actually improve your scoring by adding a club or clubs or ball that is more suited to your game. It may not be a dramatic swing, but gains are possible through careful shopping and testing. It all depends on where you are right now with your game and your gear.
post #29 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by JWL1957 View Post
If the newer club technology is so good...........why hasnt the national average handicap dropped for decades? Think I'm kidding?.... go look for yourselves. The national average handicap for men hasn't changed since the 1960's.

People get sucked in every year on the newest, latest, greatest, longest, most forgiving,...etc. etc. etc.

The avid golfer needs to wake up and put their time into practice, and learning to get around the course .......... instead of making the club makers rich.

I'll probably get slammed for this post....... but facts are facts.
I´m pretty certain you wouldnt be too happy playing 1960s clubs - not irons or putters maybe (you probably could put with a broomstick if you practice it), but drivers/fairway metals/wedges/balls - those are the things that technological advanced quite a bit. But lets be honest - what could the engineers come up with within the next couple years, that actually would justify buying new gear. I cant really think of anything, esp. since we are pushing the regulatory limits for quite a while already, and any "advancements" are really minor and will profit the very best players a lot more than any amateur player. In fact - we are going backwards with the technology if you think about the new groove regulations - but of course club makers wont market that too loud, that might look a bit silly.....
post #30 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by kafka01 View Post
I´m pretty certain you wouldnt be too happy playing 1960s clubs - not irons or putters maybe (you probably could put with a broomstick if you practice it), but drivers/fairway metals/wedges/balls - those are the things that technological advanced quite a bit. But lets be honest - what could the engineers come up with within the next couple years, that actually would justify buying new gear. I cant really think of anything, esp. since we are pushing the regulatory limits for quite a while already, and any "advancements" are really minor and will profit the very best players a lot more than any amateur player. In fact - we are going backwards with the technology if you think about the new groove regulations - but of course club makers wont market that too loud, that might look a bit silly.....
1960s era woods are easier to hit. They're shorter, higher lofted, with more stable and stiffer shafts, less turf interaction, and have less COR. Of course, most players miss the center of the face nearly all the time, so, for them, the older woods would be harder to hit.

Therein lies the main difference. There's two types of golfers, those who hit the center of the face, and those who don't. The vast majority don't. I always take a look at the bags outside the pro shop on the rack, and day and and day out, I see clubs with ballmarks all over the face. I occasionally see a bag with wear spots on the center of the faces (my clubs have these marks too). I instantly can tell this person is below a 10 handicap.

The clubs forgive a lot more than people realize. I was down at the green the other day, and there was a guy with an insert putter, and his insert was worn down from where he had hit the ball. Amazingly, it was well out onto the toe of the putter! He hit the toe every time, and never even realized it. It was one of those mallet type putters, so he was getting enough forgiveness to play, but his speed control couldn't have been that good.
post #31 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by Shanks A Million View Post

Therein lies the main difference. There's two types of golfers, those who hit the center of the face, and those who don't. The vast majority don't. I always take a look at the bags outside the pro shop on the rack, and day and and day out, I see clubs with ballmarks all over the face. I occasionally see a bag with wear spots on the center of the faces (my clubs have these marks too). I instantly can tell this person is below a 10 handicap.
We should call you FIGJAM
post #32 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by Shanks A Million View Post
1960s era woods are easier to hit. They're shorter, higher lofted, with more stable and stiffer shafts, less turf interaction, and have less COR. Of course, most players miss the center of the face nearly all the time, so, for them, the older woods would be harder to hit.
Yeah sorry, i dont buy into that - i´m NOT a equipment••••• anymore, but if these way older clubs would be better than current equipment, everybody who would hit the sweetspot constantly would use those clubs, esp. since these are the guys who shouldnt be confused by all the marketing talk and know what to pick to improve their game.
post #33 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by kafka01 View Post
Yeah sorry, i dont buy into that - i´m NOT a equipment••••• anymore, but if these way older clubs would be better than current equipment, everybody who would hit the sweetspot constantly would use those clubs, esp. since these are the guys who shouldnt be confused by all the marketing talk and know what to pick to improve their game.
The problem is, they can't keep up with the modern course. The modern wood affords a higher, longer flight, with a more controlled spin.

Originally Posted by Kieran123 View Post
We should call you FIGJAM
Maybe, but they do. I constantly evaluate the faces of my clubs. I look for shot dispersion patterns, dirt marks (to gauge if the lie angle is still acceptable), and other such things. I never said my ballmarks were small, in fact, they're maybe the size of a ball itself, not dimes like better players will have. Considering I hit 40,000 range balls a year, I get the marks fairly quickly.

The real difference, however, is that I don't hold out any false illusions that I hit the ball 280 yards on average with my driver, or that I could make the tour, or even pass the PAT.
post #34 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by Shanks A Million View Post
1960s era woods are easier to hit. They're shorter, higher lofted, with more stable and stiffer shafts, less turf interaction, and have less COR. Of course, most players miss the center of the face nearly all the time, so, for them, the older woods would be harder to hit.
I have a basement full of clubs from the 1950 to today (ditched the ones from the 30s and 40s). Some older drivers are easy to hit and some aren't - same as today - but the drivers of today get the ball out farther. The longest persimmon drivers I have (a couple MacGregors, a Ram, a Powerbilt. a Lynx, and a Cleveland) are a shade shorter than my current 3-wood. And yes, you can work the ball better with persimmon, but straight is good too.
post #35 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

Originally Posted by sean_miller View Post
I have a basement full of clubs from the 1950 to today (ditched the ones from the 30s and 40s). Some older drivers are easy to hit and some aren't - same as today - but the drivers of today get the ball out farther. The longest persimmon drivers I have (a couple MacGregors, a Ram, a Powerbilt. a Lynx, and a Cleveland) are a shade shorter than my current 3-wood. And yes, you can work the ball better with persimmon, but straight is good too.
Yes, it was hit and miss back then. Good ones were great, easy to hit, etc. Some of them were duds, bad COG, hard to launch, etc. I had Northwestern, Wilson, Callaway, Ping, and Pinnacle woods.
post #36 of 55

Re: What the USGA and club manufacturers dont want you to know

I would say that there is a decent chance that at least some of the handicap drop is due to the lack of growth of the game. There are fewer and fewer kids playing, so that lack of poor players bring down handicaps, at least a little.
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