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The Science Of Fitting Custom Clubs

The Science of Fitting Golf Clubs

There are many important factors (13 to be exact) which make up the proper fitting and manufacture of golf clubs. We are going to cover a few of them here:

1. Driver Length

The club length the large "name brand" manufacturers use on their clubs is TOO long for 90% of men golfers and 98% of women golfers. These large companies make drivers that are 45½" to 46½" where as the average length of drivers used by Tour Professionals is 44½".

So why is this done? Because, companies advertise that the longer the length is, the longer you will hit the ball. Except it only works when you have smooth tempo, a consistent square swing path, a LATE RELEASE OF YOUR WRIST-COCK ANGLE (notice it is capitalized...must be important), good swing timing and rhythm.

If this isn't you, it's not going to work.

This chart gives a good starting point when considering what length will work best.

Avg. 18-Hole Score Driver Length Avg. Drive Distance

Avg. Dispersion

(yds. off center of fairway)

94 - 106

45"

44"

43"

206.4 yards

207.0 yards

207.3 yards

+/- 25.3 yards

+/- 21.3 yards

+/- 16.7 yards

88 - 93

45"

44"

43"

214.2 yards

214.8 yards

215.7 yards

+/- 26.4 yards

+/- 22.7 yards

+/- 17 yards

82 - 87

45"

44"

43"

221.3 yards

222.5 yards

222.8 yards

+/- 23.5 yards

+/- 18.1 yards

+/- 15.1 yards

76 - 81

45"

44"

43"

227.1 yards

228.1 yards

228.4 yards

+/- 18.2 yards

+/- 15.6 yards

+/- 11.8 yards

70 - 75

45"

44"

43"

238.7 yards

238.3 yards

237.5 yards

+/- 15.7 yards

+/- 12.2 yards

+/- 9.7 yards

Chart courtesy of 12 Myths That Could Wreck Your Golf Game by Tom Wishon

2. Driver Loft

Many golfers select the wrong driver loft for their ability and strength. They believe that a low lofted driver will hit longer drives which is absolutely untrue! The best loft angle for a driver is determined by swing speed and ability. Large golf manufacturers, "big box" chain golf stores and many golf professionals tell customers that male golfers swing a driver at an "average" speed of 87 mph, which is also not true. Most male golfers swing between 75 - 80 mph.

If a golfer swings a 10.5° Driver at 50 mph, the total distance will be 87 yards. If a 14° Driver is used, the total distance would be 96 yards.

If a golfer swings a 10.5° Driver at 60 mph, the total distance will be 127 yards. If a 14° Driver is used, the total distance would be 137 yards.

If a golfer swings a 10.5° Driver at 70 mph, the total distance will be 164 yards. If a 14° Driver is used, the total distance would be 176 yards.

If a golfer swings a 10.5° Driver at 80 mph, the total distance will be 206 yards. If a 14° Driver is used, the total distance would be 216 yards.

If a golfer swings a 9.5° Driver at 90 mph, the total distance will be 229 yards. If a 12° Driver is used, the total distance would be 245 yards.

If you are a beginner or an occasional golfer, select the highest loft available.

Total Distance in Yards for Carry + Roll

Swing Speed (mph) Driver Loft (9.5°) Driver Loft (10.5°) Driver Loft (12°) Driver Loft (14°)
50 mph 81 yards 87 yards 93 yards 96 yards
60 mph 117 yards 127 yards 133 yards 137 yards
70 mph 155 yards 164 yards 171 yards 176 yards
80 mph 198 yards 206 yards 212 yards 216 yards
90 mph 229 yards 237 yards 245 yards 240 yards
100 mph 262 yards 269 yards 265 yards 258 yards
110 mph 295 yards 288 yards 281 yards 273 yards

Chart courtesy of Tom Wishon Golf Technology

3. Grip Size

One of the least scrutinized factors in golf clubs is the grip size. Large manufacturers build stock clubs that have only one size grip, mens standard (or womens standard). The problem is that the grip is the only part of the club that you actually have some physical contact. It is your only link to the club. For this reason, Condor Golf considers it be one of the biggest factors in any purchase of golf clubs (either buying off the rack standard clubs, or completely custom fit and manufactured clubs).

Even though 2 golfers might be the same height and build, their hand size is generally different plus they probably don't hold the club the same way (and even that makes a difference). Ninety-nine out of a hundred golfers have grips that are not suited to their hand size and position of hands on the grip. I constantly see golfers on the course or in my store whose grips are so small in diameter, it's a wonder they can even hold on to the club. Once a club is regripped with a new larger size, the golfer is amazed that this is so important.