True Spec Golf Review

True Spec GolfSnowflakes started falling on the range as I began to loosen up for my fitting at True Spec Golf in Columbus, Ohio. Appropriately enough, it was April 1. Mother Nature had clearly pranked me. At least the snow melted as soon as it landed on the newly greened range grass.

True Spec’s Columbus location occupies one side of the range at Brookside Golf & Country Club, a course that regularly co-hosts the final round of U.S. Open qualifying. True Spec uses a brand-agnostic approach to custom fitting and building clubs to best fit any player’s golf swing. That means you get to try a much wider variety of clubheads and shafts than you would at a typical demo day. And while most big box golf stores can put you on a simulator or launch monitor and walk you through several brands of clubheads, the shafts are limited to the stock options and perhaps a handful of special-order shafts, In comparison, True Spec boasts some 50,000 clubhead and shaft combinations to find just the right fit for any player. With 23 locations in the U.S. and three in Europe, you may need to travel a little to get fit. (Maybe finally take the wife to Paris and work in a full bag fitting for yourself?)

Back to the Snow

On that snowy April Fool’s Day in Columbus, I was happy to find that True Spec’s indoor-to-outdoor hitting bay is, indeed, heated. Services range from shaft-only fittings or gap analyses for $125 to full bag fittings for $375. Most fittings last an hour. Iron and wedge, as well as all woods will take two hours. For a full bag fitting, be prepared to put in three hours of swings.

True Spec Golf features a plethora of club head and shaft combinations.
True Spec Golf features a plethora of club head and shaft combinations.

I chose to do a driver fitting because, although I’d driven the ball well the summer before, as fall swept into central Ohio my drives were more and more erratic. My gamer was a Ping 410 LST with 9 degrees of loft and Ping’s “Tour” 65-gram shaft. At age 58, I have had some doubts that my swing speed still supported using a low spin head. I also hoped that a more “forgiving” head might tighten my dispersion pattern a bit.

Chad Evans, a 26-year PGA Professional, is a Master Fitter for True Spec and, on this day, had the unenviable task of finding a new driver setup that would complement my “new” and clearly still erratic swing. Less than a month before I had taken a lesson that changed several aspects of my swing and I was (and am) still working to get those parts to work in concert.

Chad Evans, Master Fitter, assembles one of the many driver setups we tried that day.
Chad Evans, Master Fitter, assembles one of the many driver setups we tried that day.

I warmed up with a six iron and after slapping a dozen shots out onto the wet grass, I was ready to let the big dog eat (or at least sniff at a few dry pieces of kibble). My first drive with my current driver flew 251 yards, launched at 13.3 degrees and spun at 2039 RPM, producing a 1.47 efficiency number (or smash factor).

“That’s going to be tough to beat,” Chad said.

I assured him that the swing was the exception rather than the rule. I continued hitting a handful more shots with my 410, setting a baseline for the fitting. As I hit, Chad assembled a quiver of drivers that fit our goals of tightening dispersion and maximizing distance.

Chad noted that my swing was coming too much from the inside with a high angle of attack. As the session wore on, that resulted in a lot of blocks out to the right side of the range. As I said, the new swing had not completely taken hold yet. But the drives were serviceable for the most part, and the swing speed was pretty close to where I’ve been in recent years, so that was reassuring.

Which Comes First: The Shaft or the Head?

Chad likes to start with the club head. He believes that the equation for a quality fitting is 60-40, club head to shaft. The shaft is often referred to as the “engine” of the golf club, but Chad disagrees.

“The numbers start with the head,” he said. “The shaft is about feel. Find the club head that performs best for you, then you can fine tune the feel with the shaft. The shaft is complimentary.”

Just some of the driver heads available for a fitting at True Spec.
Just some of the driver heads available for a fitting at True Spec.

The variables in the shaft that make up “feel” include its weight, flex, torque, bend, weight distribution and even the paint scheme. A lot goes into the shaft, and there are a lot of different shafts to choose from, but they do tend to fall into categories that make the fitting them easier. Over the course of 100 or so swings, Chad continually put different shafts into the different club heads, and only on a couple of occasions did I really notice an improvement in feel. The Fujikura Ventus Blue and KBS TD stood out to me in terms of feeling smooth and solid throughout my swings. The others did not feel bad, these just felt better.

I asked Chad a question that I’ve been asked a few times: are premium shafts really worth their often steep price tags? Chad readily admits that you can get lucky with a stock shaft. The brands want to provide options that can be used by the largest number of golfers after all, but those options are still limited. And stock shafts are often not quite the same animal as the same as the “real deal” shafts you can purchase aftermarket or through True Spec. Often stock shafts are mass produced versions that are made to approximate the premium model. For example, some stock Ventus shafts lack the Velocore tip that you’ll find in a shaft purchased directly from Fujikura. In addition, Chad points out, the variations in the mass-produced shafts can make them perform very differently, not only from the “real” model but from “identical” stock shafts on the rack right next to it.

Shafts come in a myriad of weights, flexes and kick points to fit all sorts of golfers.
Shafts come in a myriad of weights, flexes and kick points to fit all sorts of golfers.

The first driver head that I tried was the TaylorMade Stealth with a Ventus Red shaft. I really liked the feel of the ball coming off the face, but numbers showed that the 410 was still a better fit. Over the next hour, I worked through the Callaway Rogue Max, Cobra LTDx, Titlest TSi2, Ping 425 Max, and a couple other heads. I lost track of the shafts that Chad swapped in and out of rotation, but I’m pretty sure it exceeded the number of heads by maybe a factor of two. All of them were reasonably close in performance characteristics to the Ping Tour 65, but we were looking to see if one noticeably improved ball speed, launch or dispersion without another metric significantly dropping.

After what had to be at least a jumbo bucket of range balls, Chad arrived at a conclusion. He could fit me into a driver that would perform better than the one I walked in with, but there was not going to be a night and day difference in performance. I really appreciated the honesty.


Following the fitting, Chad sent an email with some notes from the fitting and a quote for a recommended club head and shaft combination. He even pointed out some aspects of my swing that had impacts on my performance.

Chad’s best setup for me was essentially a toss up between the Callaway Rogue Max or the Titleist TSi2 coupled with the Ventus Blue or the TD. My slight preference for the TSi head shape pushed it over the Rogue. In the end, Chad paired the TSi2 with a KBS TD 60-gram Cat 3 shaft in stiff.

The iPhone timer failed to actually capture a swing. Still the range was beautiful, if a bit cold.
The iPhone timer failed to actually capture a swing. Still the range was beautiful, if a bit cold.

The paring included a $550 clubhead coupled with a $375 shaft. Final cost, including shaft puring, assembly and taxes would run $1,097.43. Yikes.

A few years ago, I’d have probably scoffed at the idea of spending $1,000 on a driver. I think most golfers would have to mentally debate that purchase for a while. With the modest performance gains shown by the recommended combination, I could not justify buying a new driver when mine was clearly not costing me strokes (I wish the same could be said of my swing). But if I had picked up a five or more yards on average or minimized my misses significantly, I would be sweating out that purchase decision.

A few of the head and shaft combination I demoed at True Spec Golf.
A few of the head and shaft combination I demoed at True Spec Golf.

Happily for my wallet, Chad also recommended simply replacing the Ping LST head with a 425 (or even 410) Max, paired with my current shaft, to bring the spin numbers up a little to help maximize carry and minimize dispersion. It should be noted that the Ping 410 and 425 Max clubheads are relatively low spinning options compared to some brand’s “regular-guy” heads.

A custom fitting like the one I got from True Spec is not going to be something that works for every golfer or every golfer’s pocketbook. Getting exactly the clubhead and shaft that best fit your swing, however, can help you maximize your performance. Can you get lucky walking into a big box golf store and walking out with a driver played by your favorite PGA Tour player? Sure. (That PGA Tour player is definitely not playing a stock shaft, by the way.) Obviously stock shafts are not horrible. They can get the job done, but they can also be inconsistent.

If you want to take some of the chance out of the club buying process start with a quality fitting like the one I got from Chad at True Spec. It will help ensure that you make a more reliable buying decision and might just teach you a thing or two about your game and your clubs in the process.

4 thoughts on “True Spec Golf Review”

  1. Thanks for sharing. I learnt a lot of new things from this blog. I am new to golf and everything I got for it was online from Discount Golf. And I learnt online too. So I am always up for learning new things.

  2. Golf really is a meaning full game. Its called gentleman’s game. There is no violence in this game. Its a total peace to look at a golf game. The way players play the game with passion. Its truly remarkable.
    If u wanna know more about golfing. visit here

  3. I was lucky enough to play a lot of golf in my 20’s 30, & 40’s.
    Back injury playing squash.
    Golf was out for 15 years. Finally had the surgery. My old Calloway X 10’s with s300’ and my grafalo stiff shaft felt like Broom sticks . A whole bunch of money on a fitting and new sticks. I’m all set .
    61 with a bad back! All about the Shafts!!!!!. Stock shafts vary! Spend the money! So happy! ❤️KBS ti ‘s in all my irons! Heaven!
    Paradigm X & ventus blue.
    Bo Gorman was my fitter. grand central station location inNYC

  4. Golf Drills to Increase Distance Off the Tee
    Increasing distance off the tee in golf takes a mix of technique, strength, and flexibility. Here are some golf drills and ideas to help you attain better distance:

    Proper Setup
    Ensure your stance is shoulder-width apart, and the ball is teed up appropriately, with roughly half of it above the clubhead. Your lead foot should be somewhat flared out.

    Swing Mechanics: Work on your swing mechanics, focusing on a full shoulder rotation and maintaining a broad arc. This helps you to create greater power.

    Weight Transfer:Practice moving your weight from your rear foot to your front foot throughout your downswing. This action provides power and helps optimize distance.

    Hip Rotation: Incorporate drills that promote hip rotation. Proper hip rotation helps you to put more force into your swing.

    Strength Training: Off the course, incorporate strength training routines, especially for your core, legs, and back. Stronger muscles may create more clubhead speed.

    Golf Drills to Increase Distance Off the Tee

    Flexibility: Stretch frequently to preserve flexibility in your shoulders, hips, and torso. This might help you attain a greater range of motion in your swing.

    Speed Training: Use speed training tools and drills like overspeed training to enhance your clubhead speed gradually.

    Tempo and Rhythm: Maintain a steady speed and rhythm throughout your swing. An excessively forceful swing might affect control and accuracy.

    Grasp Pressure: Ensure you have a proper grasp with the optimum amount of pressure. Gripping the club too tightly might impede your swing speed.

    Launch Monitor: Use a launch monitor to track your clubhead speed, ball speed, and launch angle. This data might help you make modifications to your swing.

    Club Fitting: Consider obtaining a professional club fitting to verify your equipment is appropriate for your swing and body type.

    Mental Game: Work on your mental game to stay focused and confident. Confidence can lead to more aggressive swings, which can enhance distance.

    Remember that improving distance requires time and practice. It’s also crucial to mix power with precision to improve your entire golf game. Consider working with a golf teacher to customize drills tailored to your swing and requirements.

    FAQs About Golf Drills to Increase Distance Off the Tee
    1. How can I boost my clubhead speed?
    To enhance clubhead speed, work on increasing your swing mechanics, strength, and flexibility. Speed training routines might also assist.

    2. Should I use a driver with a greater loft for extra distance?
    It depends on your swing. While lower lofted drivers might possibly produce greater distance, they may also be tougher to control. A professional club fitting may identify the correct loft for your swing.

    3. Is it important to go the gym for golf distance improvement?
    While it’s not required, strength training can help boost your power and, in turn, your distance off the tee. Exercises that target core, leg, and back muscles are useful.

    4. How can I stop slicing the ball and still gain distance?
    To stop slicing, improve on your grip, posture, and swing path. A slice might deprive you of distance. Once you hit the ball straighter, you may work on improving distance.

    5. Are there any particular routines to promote hip rotation for extra power?
    Yes, there are drills that can enhance hip rotation. Practicing hip rotation drills and flexibility exercises will help you produce greater power in your swing.

    6. Is there a certain tee height that’s optimum for distance off the tee?
    The appropriate tee height might vary based on your swing and the club you’re using. As a general guideline, with a driver, set the ball up so that roughly half of it is above the clubhead.

    7. What function does ball position play in improving distance?
    Ball location might alter your angle of attack. For a driver, put the ball slightly ahead in your stance to facilitate an upward stroke, which can contribute to additional distance.

    8. Should I emphasize distance above accuracy?
    Balancing distance and accuracy is key in golf. While distance is vital, neglecting accuracy can lead to difficulty on the course. Work on both areas to enhance your overall game.

    9. Can I use particular golf balls to obtain additional distance?
    Golf balls may make a difference. Some balls are built for longer distance, while others emphasise control. Experiment with different ball types to discover one that matches your game.

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