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Does Modern Golf Technology have too Much Technology? - Page 5

post #73 of 91

Having a 46" 59g shaft in my driver.... It feels good when I hit it in the center of the face.  And I like hitting 260yd+ drive on average.  Not bad for a guy who is 5'8" and 160lbs.

post #74 of 91

I'd be happy to see a rollback.  I learned with laminated maple woods and Golden Ram blades back in the mid 70's.  I'd have no issue falling back, or at least deadening the ball to bring some sanity back into the game.  I'd be shocked to see it happen though.  All you have to do is look at the brouhaha with the long putter to know that any such attempt would be blocked by lawsuits from the equipment manufacturers just like Ping did with the first attempt at limiting clubs to keep skill in the game. 

 

This is my big issue with the modern game.  They have dumbed it down so far in the interest of "growing the game" that it barely resembles golf as it was even in the 70's.  Clown drivers, shovel irons, wedges that peel the cover off the ball to take the rough out of play, and a ball that the previous generation wouldn't even recognize.  Trying to roll back the clubs would be an impossible feat, but taking some of the bounce off the ball would actually be a feasible goal if it was approached with a good marketing campaign.  

 

 

But first you'd have to come up with a way to convince internet golfers that 250 yards was long enough, and the average real player that 220 was a good drive. d2_doh.gif

post #75 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

I'd be happy to see a rollback.  I learned with laminated maple woods and Golden Ram blades back in the mid 70's.  I'd have no issue falling back, or at least deadening the ball to bring some sanity back into the game.  I'd be shocked to see it happen though.  All you have to do is look at the brouhaha with the long putter to know that any such attempt would be blocked by lawsuits from the equipment manufacturers just like Ping did with the first attempt at limiting clubs to keep skill in the game. 

 

This is my big issue with the modern game.  They have dumbed it down so far in the interest of "growing the game" that it barely resembles golf as it was even in the 70's.  Clown drivers, shovel irons, wedges that peel the cover off the ball to take the rough out of play, and a ball that the previous generation wouldn't even recognize.  Trying to roll back the clubs would be an impossible feat, but taking some of the bounce off the ball would actually be a feasible goal if it was approached with a good marketing campaign.  

But first you'd have to come up with a way to convince internet golfers that 250 yards was long enough, and the average real player that 220 was a good drive. d2_doh.gif

We also have to step back and realize that we are looking at this from a pretty narrow point of view.  The point of view that the 70's-80's was the "glory days" and the "correct" way to play golf vs. now.  I mean, somebody who's 100 years old could have written your middle paragraph in the 70's and the spirit of it would be exactly the same, I think:

 

"This is my big issue with the modern game.  They have dumbed it down so far in the interest of "growing the game" that it barely resembles golf as it was even in the 40's.  Big wood drivers, sand wedges, steel shafts, and a ball that the previous generation wouldn't even recognize.  Trying to roll back the clubs would be an impossible feat, but taking some of the bounce off the ball would actually be a feasible goal if it was approached with a good marketing campaign."

 

The point being that the game is, has been, and always will be, evolving, and there is really no getting around it.  And maybe we shouldn't be so against change.  I mean, you say that you'd be OK playing persimmon and balata, but would you be OK playing hickory shafts and gutta percha?

post #76 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

 

The point being that the game is, has been, and always will be, evolving, and there is really no getting around it.  And maybe we shouldn't be so against change.  I mean, you say that you'd be OK playing persimmon and balata, but would you be OK playing hickory shafts and gutta percha?

 

Yes, absolutely, but not on a 6500 yard course.  I love the game of golf, and I'll play it until I can't swing a club any more, regardless of what changes may come.  I play my own game.  That's one of the greatest strengths of the game, even with all of the changes.  Nobody is forced to play any game but his own unless he's playing in a competition.  In casual golf, you can choose your own rules, pick your own tee, play whatever clubs you like.  I choose to play by the Rules of Golf, but if my buddies choose not to, that's still fine with me.  You want to inflate your ego with an illegal driver or a hot ball, have at it.  That isn't my kind of game, but I don't begrudge anyone else their fun as long as we aren't competing.  

 

All you have to do is poll any group of golfers today and a large majority would vote for length being the most important part of the game.   As little as 25 years ago, length had a very different meaning.  While length was still an important part of the game, accuracy both in direction and distance would have been placed higher on the list of priorities.  Course management was a more important skill when players weren't hitting driver - wedge to most par 4 holes.  Golf was simply more interesting, more thought provoking.  There were still long hitters, but long was 270 yards, and that was rare.  And that 270 yard drive would still leave an 8I or 9I on a majority of par 4 holes.  The PW was more for when you needed a 110-120 yard 3rd shot on a par 5, not a 150 yard approach, and the SW was for close in greenside work.   And balata balls weren't as forgiving of crooked swing paths.  

post #77 of 91

I like the fact that if we want to we can basically play the gear the pros play (more or less, we dont normally have access to all the fitting systems etc) if we so choose. Personally I don't chase pro/ tour only gear as I know I have a LOFT (Lack Of F%&king Talent) issue and chase a bit more forgiveness in my equipment. 

 

I think even with the advances in tech over the years, the average handicaps etc haven't moved too much for the Joe average Golfer. All thats really happened is the older courses have been over-powered by the pros.

post #78 of 91
Watching golf is far less interesting today. Its target golf. The creativity has been erased. Its dumbed down. Techology should make the game more affordable, not necessarily easier. Hickory shafts aren't that much different than steel. Steel by and large is cheaper to produce. And its easier to produce a uniform set. Same with metal heads. But performance only improved fractionally with these 2 advancements. We can see were the game is headed. If you can't, you're blind. But we have the power to look back and ask ourselves, "when was the best time for golf? When was it the most fun?". We don't have to throw away all technology, but this game is headed for self destruction.
post #79 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

Watching golf is far less interesting today. Its target golf.

 

Not for me. HDTV,  ballflight software, super slowmotion. It all makes golf (to me) very interesting to watch.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

We can see were the game is headed. If you can't, you're blind.

 

Then I must be blind. To me it looks like the game is getting more fun to play using innovantions like SGI irons, hybrids and software to analyse your swing-errors.

post #80 of 91

you can have ball flight software and everything else TV brings to the game. but if golf equipment keeps moving forward in this fashion, there seems to be 2 directions for it to go: 1, golf courses continue to grow bigger to accommodate the pros adding more cost and difficulty to the game for amateurs or 2, pros will be carrying a driver, 3 wood, hybrid, 10 wedges, and a putter in their bag. in the eyes of a big OEM, there's only one way to move forward and that's with distance. companies will continue to play within the rules to increase distance. once those options run out, they will lobby the USGA to increase the limits yet again. seriously people, this is insane. it shouldn't cost this much money to play golf. all we have done in the last 20 years is considerably raise the price on ourselves because we are so obsessed with distance.

post #81 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacDutch View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

Watching golf is far less interesting today. Its target golf.

 

Not for me. HDTV,  ballflight software, super slowmotion. It all makes golf (to me) very interesting to watch.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

We can see were the game is headed. If you can't, you're blind.

 

Then I must be blind. To me it looks like the game is getting more fun to play using innovantions like SGI irons, hybrids and software to analyse your swing-errors.

 

I guess if you prefer playing like a robot, then it's more fun.   400 yards?  Driver, wedge.  420 yards?  Driver, wedge.  450 yards?  Driver, wedge.   Sorry but that is the ultimate in boredom.   None of those shot combos apply to me, but then I'm a senior golfer who's never been more than average for length even when I was a lot younger.  I learned in an era when you were required to learn how to play the ball, not just hit it.  I still play that way.  It's one of the reasons why I went to the steel shafted Titleist AP-2 irons 3 years ago, because I wanted to earn the reward for making a better swing, and suffer the consequences for a poor one.  I compromised and didn't go all the way back to a blade, but it beat the heck out of the graphite shafted, oversized SGI Cobras I replaced.  I wouldn't even hesitate going back to a true blade like I started with 40 years ago.

post #82 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

 

I guess if you prefer playing like a robot, then it's more fun.   400 yards?  Driver, wedge.  420 yards?  Driver, wedge.  450 yards?  Driver, wedge.   Sorry but that is the ultimate in boredom.   None of those shot combos apply to me, but then I'm a senior golfer who's never been more than average for length even when I was a lot younger.  I learned in an era when you were required to learn how to play the ball, not just hit it.  I still play that way.  It's one of the reasons why I went to the steel shafted Titleist AP-2 irons 3 years ago, because I wanted to earn the reward for making a better swing, and suffer the consequences for a poor one.  I compromised and didn't go all the way back to a blade, but it beat the heck out of the graphite shafted, oversized SGI Cobras I replaced.  I wouldn't even hesitate going back to a true blade like I started with 40 years ago.

 

I am not that long, not that consistent and I don't play SGI's. I also like to shape shots when needed. But the questions was if there is to much technical innovation. And because the majority of the golfers don't hit that well, it is a good thing they get some help. Why learn it the hard way like you did? 

post #83 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

you can have ball flight software and everything else TV brings to the game. but if golf equipment keeps moving forward in this fashion, there seems to be 2 directions for it to go: 1, golf courses continue to grow bigger to accommodate the pros adding more cost and difficulty to the game for amateurs or 2, pros will be carrying a driver, 3 wood, hybrid, 10 wedges, and a putter in their bag. in the eyes of a big OEM, there's only one way to move forward and that's with distance. companies will continue to play within the rules to increase distance. once those options run out, they will lobby the USGA to increase the limits yet again. seriously people, this is insane. it shouldn't cost this much money to play golf. all we have done in the last 20 years is considerably raise the price on ourselves because we are so obsessed with distance.

Now this part I don't agree with at all.  I bought a brand new 910D3 a little over a year ago for $400.  My previous driver was a 975D ... from sometime around 1999-ish.  Guess how much that thing cost?  You guessed it. $400.  Most companies have a $400 driver each year and the rest are $300.  (TM and Cobra each have a special edition driver for $500 right now, but that's basically it)

 

Clubs have NOT increased in price for 15-20 years.  Factor in inflation/cost of living/all that good stuff, and you could easily argue they've gone down in price.

post #84 of 91

You can't give the equipment all the credit, as golfers have evolved right along with the equipment.  Guys like Tiger, Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson and Rory would likely hit clubs from the 80's close to the distances they do with todays clubs. 

 

Look at football, these guys are faster, stronger and bigger than the game ever intended.  There has been a huge advancement of technology in pads and helmets since the days of the leather helmet but all that technology can't prevent concussions from being a major concern. 

 

The problem is the average golfer isn't an athlete, he's a regular guy that wants to go out and enjoy a nice day outdoors.  We all talk about playing the same game and using the same equipment as the pro's but the reality is only about 10% of the people on this board (myself not included) are playing the game anyway close to the level the pro's do.  The rest of us need the more forgiving irons, the bigger driver and livelier ball to get through a round in a reasonable amount of time. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

you can have ball flight software and everything else TV brings to the game. but if golf equipment keeps moving forward in this fashion, there seems to be 2 directions for it to go: 1, golf courses continue to grow bigger to accommodate the pros adding more cost and difficulty to the game for amateurs or 2, pros will be carrying a driver, 3 wood, hybrid, 10 wedges, and a putter in their bag. in the eyes of a big OEM, there's only one way to move forward and that's with distance. companies will continue to play within the rules to increase distance. once those options run out, they will lobby the USGA to increase the limits yet again. seriously people, this is insane. it shouldn't cost this much money to play golf. all we have done in the last 20 years is considerably raise the price on ourselves because we are so obsessed with distance.

post #85 of 91

Most courses I've ever been on have tees from 6000-7000+ yards. Anyone but a select few on this forum will be playing driver/PW to a 440 yard par 4. Even to a 420 yard par 4. If you're that long, play the championship tees and enjoy. If you want to go persimmon and balata, buy two sets - one classic and play from the 6200 yard tees, then one modern and play the 7200 yard tees. Maybe that's a good way to improve your game anyway.

 

Technology won't be stopped in any industry. Anyway - marketing is a big part of this all. Club technology can;t improve infinitely. One of these days we'll have to live with the best of what's around until the USGA allows grenade launchers on the course. And so what if the average joe shoots 85 when it would've been 95 with older equipment? Until he shoots 65, there's room to grow.

post #86 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post

You can't give the equipment all the credit, as golfers have evolved right along with the equipment.  Guys like Tiger, Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson and Rory would likely hit clubs from the 80's close to the distances they do with todays clubs. 

 

Look at football, these guys are faster, stronger and bigger than the game ever intended.  There has been a huge advancement of technology in pads and helmets since the days of the leather helmet but all that technology can't prevent concussions from being a major concern. 

 

The problem is the average golfer isn't an athlete, he's a regular guy that wants to go out and enjoy a nice day outdoors.  We all talk about playing the same game and using the same equipment as the pro's but the reality is only about 10% of the people on this board (myself not included) are playing the game anyway close to the level the pro's do.  The rest of us need the more forgiving irons, the bigger driver and livelier ball to get through a round in a reasonable amount of time. 

 

 

By same game nobody means the same level of play as a pro.  All that is meant is that we have the same available equipment and we play by the same rules (at least those of us who choose to play as it's intended).  Many of the same courses are also available for us to play.  Try getting a pick-up game of baseball in Fenway Park, or one-on-one hoops at the Forum.  Golfers may play at different levels, but we still DO play the same game.

post #87 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

 

I guess if you prefer playing like a robot, then it's more fun.   400 yards?  Driver, wedge.  420 yards?  Driver, wedge.  450 yards?  Driver, wedge.   Sorry but that is the ultimate in boredom.   None of those shot combos apply to me, but then I'm a senior golfer who's never been more than average for length even when I was a lot younger.  I learned in an era when you were required to learn how to play the ball, not just hit it.  I still play that way.  It's one of the reasons why I went to the steel shafted Titleist AP-2 irons 3 years ago, because I wanted to earn the reward for making a better swing, and suffer the consequences for a poor one.  I compromised and didn't go all the way back to a blade, but it beat the heck out of the graphite shafted, oversized SGI Cobras I replaced.  I wouldn't even hesitate going back to a true blade like I started with 40 years ago.

Were you shooting par with the SGI's? It seems that unless you were, there'd be no reason to go looking for more of a challenge in the game. Since you're a mid handicap, why not try to improve your scores rather than keeping them the same but making the shots harder? 

 

And how does it make any difference in your enjoyment of the pro game whether the hole is 400 or 500 yards for a long par 4? It's just a number. And you're still allowed to play whatever tees you want so don't act like it affects you. The main challenge and design of a hole is supposed to be about more than the yardage. It's supposed to be a hazard that you could try to carry with the driver to give you a short iron, for example, or a curved fairway. Whether you fly it 200 yards or 300 off the tee you still have to play the correct shot or suffer the consequences. That's still "playing" the ball. But I'm pretty sure golf has always involved "hitting" the ball.

 

You can play whatever irons you want, I can understand if you want the satisfaction of really good iron shots. But don't act like modern equipment has you cruising to par rounds. Even breaking 80 takes some game, no matter what they play. If someone played a round with you and whooped your ass by 9 shots, but was playing game improvement clubs, is he a better player or a lesser player than you?

post #88 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

 

I guess if you prefer playing like a robot, then it's more fun.   400 yards?  Driver, wedge.  420 yards?  Driver, wedge.  450 yards?  Driver, wedge.   Sorry but that is the ultimate in boredom.   None of those shot combos apply to me, but then I'm a senior golfer who's never been more than average for length even when I was a lot younger.  I learned in an era when you were required to learn how to play the ball, not just hit it.  I still play that way.  It's one of the reasons why I went to the steel shafted Titleist AP-2 irons 3 years ago, because I wanted to earn the reward for making a better swing, and suffer the consequences for a poor one.  I compromised and didn't go all the way back to a blade, but it beat the heck out of the graphite shafted, oversized SGI Cobras I replaced.  I wouldn't even hesitate going back to a true blade like I started with 40 years ago.

Were you shooting par with the SGI's? It seems that unless you were, there'd be no reason to go looking for more of a challenge in the game. Since you're a mid handicap, why not try to improve your scores rather than keeping them the same but making the shots harder? 

 

And how does it make any difference in your enjoyment of the pro game whether the hole is 400 or 500 yards for a long par 4? It's just a number. And you're still allowed to play whatever tees you want so don't act like it affects you. The main challenge and design of a hole is supposed to be about more than the yardage. It's supposed to be a hazard that you could try to carry with the driver to give you a short iron, for example, or a curved fairway. Whether you fly it 200 yards or 300 off the tee you still have to play the correct shot or suffer the consequences. That's still "playing" the ball. But I'm pretty sure golf has always involved "hitting" the ball.

 

You can play whatever irons you want, I can understand if you want the satisfaction of really good iron shots. But don't act like modern equipment has you cruising to par rounds. Even breaking 80 takes some game, no matter what they play. If someone played a round with you and whooped your ass by 9 shots, but was playing game improvement clubs, is he a better player or a lesser player than you?

 

Why do you think that I play a softball sized driver?  Or carry 2 hybrids?  I'm not stupid.  In order to compete I have no choice but to make some compromises.  But the question I was asked several posts earlier is whether I would be willing to go back to blades, or even earlier to hickory shafts, and I said yes I would, and willingly, because I love golf.  But I wouldn't do so and try to compete straight up against someone with all the latest technology.  The inference was that the rules would roll us back to those clubs, so everyone would be playing them.  It was strictly a hypothetical question, with no chance of it becoming reality.  My choice of gear is my own, just like anyone else.  As long as I can continue to shoot scores that I find acceptable, I'm not going to worry about what anyone else uses.

 

And I've had my ass whooped by a lot more than 9 strokes, but it had very little to do with what equipment was being used.  It only had to do with the other guy playing better to his handicap than I did to mine on that day.

post #89 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Now this part I don't agree with at all.  I bought a brand new 910D3 a little over a year ago for $400.  My previous driver was a 975D ... from sometime around 1999-ish.  Guess how much that thing cost?  You guessed it. $400.  Most companies have a $400 driver each year and the rest are $300.  (TM and Cobra each have a special edition driver for $500 right now, but that's basically it)

 

Clubs have NOT increased in price for 15-20 years.  Factor in inflation/cost of living/all that good stuff, and you could easily argue they've gone down in price.

 

That club was an exception. Before the 975D, the average rack price on a driver was less than $199. Then all companies followed the 975D and jumped to $399. This is about the time when all the clubs started getting manufactured in china, lowering production cost. Then the high performance shafts started taking off raising the prices yet again. Only now with the economy in the tank, prices are coming back down to earth. But not only did equipment cost go up, green fees went through the roof because courses were getting bigger increasing maintenance costs and some had to do with market demand. but usually, bigger, longer fairways, more tee boxes, more real estate equals higher green fee.

post #90 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagogolf View Post

That club was an exception. Before the 975D, the average rack price on a driver was less than $199. Then all companies followed the 975D and jumped to $399. This is about the time when all the clubs started getting manufactured in china, lowering production cost. Then the high performance shafts started taking off raising the prices yet again. Only now with the economy in the tank, prices are coming back down to earth. But not only did equipment cost go up, green fees went through the roof because courses were getting bigger increasing maintenance costs and some had to do with market demand. but usually, bigger, longer fairways, more tee boxes, more real estate equals higher green fee.

I disagree.  That may be true about that being the year that all prices jumped up, (probably related to the "Tiger effect") but since then they have hardly changed.  Top of the line drivers are still 400 (a lot of nice ones are 300), irons have been in the 600-900 range forever.  Heck, in the 90's when Big Bertha's were all the rage, those things were 1000+ if you wanted graphite shafts.  Titleist professionals were over 40 then, prov1's over 40 now.

 

Greens fees may be a little higher now than then, but by and large, costs are what they've been for a long time, even with all of the advancements in technology.

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