• Announcements

    • iacas

      Introducing TST "Clubs!"   08/28/2017

      No, we're not getting into the equipment business, but we do have "clubs" here on TST now. Groups. Check them out here:
Sign in to follow this  
divot dave

What difference does it make?

Recommended Posts

divot dave    22

This is my first year golfing. I bought a full set of beginner clubs from Dicks on sale for about 125.00. Its an Acuity set for lefty's with Driver, 3w, 5w, pw - 5i with a 4h. I've used the mess out of them so far, and they especially took a beating early on when I first started swinging them. I've seen great progress (IMO) all summer long and I'm at a point where I'm hitting my irons good distances, much straighter, and with decent contact (mostly ball first, some fat/thin).

I played yesterday with another lefty who's been playing for 5 years. He's a better player than me all around, but we're in the same ball park I'd say in terms of skill. What stood out to me though was that his iron distance was about a club and a half longer than mine. He was playing with a nice looking set of taylor made irons, relatively new, and I'm just wondering: how much difference does it make at the end of the day when you compare the performance of beginner clubs vs. a more expensive name-brand set? Should I expect a performance bump if I upgrade my clubs? I'm debating whether to go with a new/new-ish set come spring time or put the money somewhere else if its not really going to benefit that much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Sign up (or log in) today! It's free (and you won't see this ad anymore)!

Sign up (or log in) today! It's free (and you won't see this ad anymore)!

dpgator33    1

It sounds like you're pretty serious about getting better.  If you have the means, I would get a used set of nice irons and a a nice used driver.  There are a number of web sites that are reputable and rate their used clubs from, for example, "fair" to "like new" and are priced accordingly.  You should be able to get a decent set of irons for a couple hundred bucks (I bought a set of TaylorMade R7 irons a couple years ago for <$200 and I'm still using them and they hit the same) and a decent enough driver for $100-150.  There are also some sites you might want to check out for "daily deals" that are typically new clubs that are a couple of years past being the 'latest and greatest".  With the advent of adjustable hosels on drivers, there seem to be a lot of non-adjustable surplus drivers that are very good clubs available for under $100.  Check out divot.com and sign up for their newsletter, as well as rockbottomgolf.com.  I hope there's no policy of mentioning other web sites in this forum.  There doesn't seem to be any conflict in doing so, at least for these kind of sites.  Also, if you have a few bucks to spare after purchasing used clubs, you'll probably want to get them re-gripped.  My used irons had new golf pride corded grips and I just went with them for a while not thinking much of them.  It wasn't until I randomly get a Winn Dri-Tac grip put on my driver did I realize the difference a grip could make.  I put the Winns on all my irons and my grip immediately became more stable and I started swinging more freely.  I'm not saying everyone should get Winns, but the grip is that important.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

wadesworld    15

Chances are good that a new set of clubs is not going to add dramatic distance.

Why do two people of the same relative build and strength differ in their distances, even if using the same brand of club?

Two reasons:

1)  Better release.  The player getting more distance is achieving better lag and a better release.  That's where club head speed and distance primarily come from.

2)  Better contact.  The player getting more distance is likely hitting the ball in the sweet spot more often.  I could give you the nicest club in the world, and if you don't hit the ball in the sweet spot, someone who does could outhit you with a club from the 70's.

Now, with all that said, it sounds like you're going to stick with the game of golf.  If so, no reason not to save up your money and get a new set of clubs that will take you through the next 5-10 years.  Just don't expect the clubs to transform your game.

If hitting it farther is important to you right now, I'd probably spend some money on lessons before clubs.  But it's a bit of a chicken-and-egg problem.  It's nice to have nice clubs while you're working to improve.  But it's nice to improve regardless of the clubs you have.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

divot dave    22
Originally Posted by wadesworld

2)  Better contact.  The player getting more distance is likely hitting the ball in the sweet spot more often.  I could give you the nicest club in the world, and if you don't hit the ball in the sweet spot, someone who does could outhit you with a club from the 70's.

You're probably on to something. My contact has improved much over the summer, but hitting the sweet spot consistently is not something i'm prone to yet.

Originally Posted by wadesworld

...  Just don't expect the clubs to transform your game.

If hitting it farther is important to you right now, I'd probably spend some money on lessons before clubs.  But it's a bit of a chicken-and-egg problem.  It's nice to have nice clubs while you're working to improve.  But it's nice to improve regardless of the clubs you have.

I don't, and I'm not delusional about the role good equipment has on performance. Just wondering, all things consistent (assume good contact, good release, sweet spot etc.) what the net impact of getting "better" clubs would have on performance.

FWIW, I've taken a few lessons this summer, and I'm no expert, but I've received a lot of positive feedback concerning my swing.

Thanks for the input btw.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

divot dave    22

So seems like i've been able to find my own answer... bottom line, yes, there is a performance difference as you make your way up the chain from beginner to more advanced clubs. Apparently there's 3 classifications of clubs out there (someone correct me if I'm wrong).

Player's clubs

Game Improvement "GI"

Super Game Improvement. "SGI" geared toward beginners

I'm guessing the clubs I'm playing with are SGI and I probably (read definitely) will bump to regular GI clubs although there's debate as to whether or not I'll experience a noticeable difference.  In short, the differences are size, feel, weight distribution, precision, forgiveness etc. The discussions I've read suggests players clubs offer the best reward for well struck balls while GI and SGI clubs are more forgiving but less intended for shaping shots and the more skilled player.

Either way, I'm due for a proper fitting and I think that will be the most efficient route to confidence that I'm using the right set of tools.

For more input on the matter, check out the discussions here http://thesandtrap.com/t/33549/players-irons-or-game-improvement-irons

and here http://thesandtrap.com/search.php?search=players+vs+game+improvement

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

tuffluck    10

SGI to GI won't make much of a difference.  GI to Player's would not be advisable in your situation.

unless you're a non-average build, you probably don't need to be fitted just yet.  if you're between 5'6" and 6'2" you probably are just fine with a standard set until you get your ball striking down.

as for distance, it won't make much of a difference at all.  i went from used clubs to my first new set recently.  i hit the new clubs better in terms of consistency, but distance is almost exactly the same.  again, your ball striking makes more difference in distance than anything, aside from power obviously.

i think you should stick with your set through the rest of the year and into the spring of next year.  if your ball striking gets to 75% excellent then you should buy new clubs.  as for now a fat shot with a GI is going to have exactly the same result as a fat shot with an SGI.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pablo68    16

Maybe the guy's iron shafts were longer or the lofts were lower and that's why he was that much longer than you. No way to tell so it's best not to pay attention to other people's distances on the course.

I'm another lefty thinking about switching from GI clubs to a set of Mizuno blades. The one thing keeping me from doing so is that I'm in the middle of fixing a major fault (poor weight shift). Until I groove my new swing, I'm holding off then getting on a launch monitor to see what shafts would better suit me.

Fix your swing first then think about getting a new set.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Datsyuk    11

Either use the starter set until they break or get a nicer set and learn how to hit them. Fitting schmitting - when in a comfortable address position is the sole roughly flat on the ground (slight toe up is tolerable)? When simulating impact position do they sit flat? Press on the shaft (make them flex) in that impact position. Do the shafts feel like noodles? Get stiffer ones. Go hit balls.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

showtime583    10
Originally Posted by tuffluck

SGI to GI won't make much of a difference.  GI to Player's would not be advisable in your situation.

unless you're a non-average build, you probably don't need to be fitted just yet.  if you're between 5'6" and 6'2" you probably are just fine with a standard set until you get your ball striking down.

Disagree completely.....at the very least get a "static" fitting done to ensure you have the proper length clubs, lie angle and grip size. No need to spend $100+ on full-out fitting on a tracman, but making sure the specs are appropriate will do you wonders.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

divot dave    22
Originally Posted by showtime583

Disagree completely.....at the very least get a "static" fitting done to ensure you have the proper length clubs, lie angle and grip size. No need to spend $100+ on full-out fitting on a tracman, but making sure the specs are appropriate will do you wonders.

couldn't agree more, might as well have as many variants as possible working for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

tuffluck    10
Originally Posted by showtime583

Disagree completely.....at the very least get a "static" fitting done to ensure you have the proper length clubs, lie angle and grip size. No need to spend $100+ on full-out fitting on a tracman, but making sure the specs are appropriate will do you wonders.

yeah, go online to ping's site and see where they fit you at.  that's a pretty comprehensive fitting system, and it actually guessed my specs the same as an actual fitter did, so i think it's pretty accurate.

that being said, if you are an average build, chances are the result of the fitting will come back suggesting standard or close to standard.  if your current clubs are standard and the fit does indeed come at least CLOSE to standard, no reason to change clubs this early in your game IMO.  if your clubs are grossly unfitted for you, then that's a different story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

divot dave    22

yeah, go online to ping's site and see where they fit you at.  that's a pretty comprehensive fitting system, and it actually guessed my specs the same as an actual fitter did, so i think it's pretty accurate.

that being said, if you are an average build, chances are the result of the fitting will come back suggesting standard or close to standard.  if your current clubs are standard and the fit does indeed come at least CLOSE to standard, no reason to change clubs this early in your game IMO.  if your clubs are grossly unfitted for you, then that's a different story.

cool, i appreciate that... earlier you said:

Originally Posted by tuffluck

... if you're between 5'6" and 6'2" you probably are just fine with a standard set until you get your ball striking down.

...

FWIW, I'm 6'3, built more for basketball than any other sport... large hands, long arms etc. I probably need to get a proper fitting of some sort.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  



  • Want to join this community?

    We'd love to have you!

    Sign Up
  • 2017 TST Partners

    Talamore Golf Resort
    PING Golf
    FlightScope Mevo
    Mission Belt
    Snell Golf
    Frogger Golf
    PitchFix USA
  • Posts

    • The entire purpose of rules are to make things fair... Someone breaching a rule could literally make it unfair. 
    • A meh, but fairly satisfactory 84 considering the break. I had like 9-10 pars or better. got lucky on more than a few scrambles, but a lot of doubles+. My biggest lesson learned after a long break: don't try to go after it.  it cost me a bunch of penalties trying to rope a few out there.  Aviara's beautiful tho, almost disneyland like.  Watching LPGA highlights there on youtube made us all sad about ourselves.
    • So.....you're sayin' it's physically mental......or mentally physical or is it feel vs mechanical or is it a sport or a hobby all I know is I want to golf that ball with my fairway metal while sporting my cargo shorts and rocking my driving hat while hitting a golf shot and being a great driver of the golf ball while someone mumbles 'shot' after a good golf strike of the golf ball and driving the golf cart and drinking the golf bloody mary
    • I don't know if golf is more mental than physical or vice versa.  But I am convinced that a different mental approach/focus can help many problems in the game that many, if not most, instructors view as purely physical/swing related issues.  A correct mental picture/intent can help golfers improve, and combining a mental approach with physical swing training can greatly accelerate improvement.      Take an over the top swing as an example.  With the pure physical approach, the instructor watches the player hit a few balls and dissects the swing into component parts.  The instructor gives a bunch of physical causes:  you take the club too inside or outside, you have too much weight on the front or back foot, you should be supinating your wrist or pronating it, your hips are firing too soon or too late.  The instructor has the player work on a different take away for the first week.  When that gets better, they move onto the next problem and try to fix it.  Two months late, the player is hitting it much better on the range, but still frequently comes over the top on the course.  The more the student focuses on the ball, the more likely a OTT swing will show up.     The other approach:  the instructor watches the student take some practice swings and then hit some balls.  The instructor notices that the student rarely comes over the top for a practice swing but does so on most, but not all swings with a ball.  Okay, she asks, why is the player sometimes coming over the top?  Why is it worse when a ball is present?  The instructor asks what the player is focused on.  The ball of course.  I want to hit the ball, make sure the club head makes good contact.  The instructor then changes the focus of the player from hitting the ball to swinging through the ball to a target.  The instructor explains that OTT is the default when the ball is the target.  She gives some drills to improve focus away from the ball:  the player hits whiffle balls to warm up, the player has to verbally identify the target and intermediary target and rehearse swinging out to the target, the instructor gives the student a mental image of swinging through the ball instead of hitting at the ball.  After a week, the over the top move shows up less often and is not as pronounced.  The instructor continues to have the student work on the mental side of swinging to the target and combines that with swing changes.     In the physical only approach, the physical changes will be harder to adopt because the physical swing is fighting against the students mental image of what is needed and the student's primary focus.  When the mental and physical are aligned, progress will be faster.  Another way to say it:  the mind directs the body. The mind is telling the body to swing one way when the ball is the target and a different way when swinging to the pin.      In any case, an instructor who ignores the student's thoughts is short changing the student by focusing only on the physical.  There's an old saying, if the only tool you have is a hammer, everything begins to look like a nail.  If the instructor only deals with physical swing changes, every problem looks like a physical problem.     On the course, which is more important, the physical or the mental?  I don't know, but it is important that the mental image/goal/focus aids the physical side instead of fighting against it.  
  • TST Blog Entries

  • Blog Entries

  • Today's Birthdays

    1. Dresilved
      Dresilved
      (52 years old)
    2. kpetrina
      kpetrina
      (25 years old)
    3. Luana
      Luana
      (39 years old)
  • Get Great Gear with Amazon