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PowerBilt moving the way of… Mixed Martial Arts?

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As the age-old question goes: Are golfers considered athletes? Ok, maybe not age-old. John Daly, Craig Stadler and even Jack Nicklaus put kinks in any argument that the stereotypical definition of athleticism is required to be a successful golfer. However, with athletes like Gary Woodland, Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods choosing golf instead of another “more athletic” sport, the argument now has some substantiality. The youth of today is seeing younger, more fit players taking the reigns of professional golf.

PowerBilt is taking the argument a step, a few powerful kicks and a choke-hold farther by signing professional MMA fighter Cub Swanson to their team to promote the company’s new Air Force One DFX driver and other new releases. Swanson is an avid golf who grew up in Palm Springs, Calif., and will help PowerBilt in their marketing campaign with an edgier personality.

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“We’re in the process of signing other extreme sport athletes,” said Ross Kvinge, president of PowerBilt. “Cub is the first because of his passion for golf and his connection to the local community. Cub gives us the opportunity to enhance the future of golf and the idea of golfers as athletes. In signing Cub, other MMA athletes, and additional extreme sports figures, we are reaching younger demographics to entice them to consider PowerBilt for their golf equipment. We are breaking the mold of who golf companies should endorse.”

Not only does the new campaign influence young athletes to take up the game, but it will help develop their bodies to become more powerful, specifically for the needs of a golf swing.

“PowerBilt will announce a power golf fitness program in 2014 that will showcase Cub and other extreme athletes,” Kvinge said. “The program will feature custom fitting instructions and extreme fitness techniques with the theme of ‘get your game power-built’ from the ground up with PowerBilt Golf.”

Golfers like Rickie Fowler, who engages himself in the motocross and extreme sports world, help to expand the horizons of golf and perception of the sport. PowerBilt is moving in a similar direction.

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“We need to get them off the electronic games and out on the course,” Kvinge said. “The youth are following the extreme sports athletes and we feel we can have an impact by reaching out through our athletes and introduce them to golf. PowerBilt will reach out to baseball players, MMA fighters, BMX, Motocross, surfers and snowboarders.”

The newest technology from PowerBilt represents the edgy quality of the company’s marketing direction and philosophy. The Air Force One DFX driver features Nitrogen N7 “Nitrogen Charged” technology, which is a newly patented method that reinforces the club face without adding weight.

The driver also comes equipped with a forged titanium body, titanium cup face technology and what the company calls an “aerodynamic clubhead shape.” It’s available in either a high MOI or Tour Series, with lofts of 8.5 degrees, 9.5 degrees, 10.5 degrees and 12.5 degrees. Both drivers are sold at retail starting at $299.99, with an upcharge for certain shaft models.

Maybe the PGA Tour won’t be stealing its tour pros from the UFC or NBA anytime soon, but the sport of golf is definitely moving in a more athletic direction with the help of PowerBilt, and a generation of younger, in-shape and body-conscious players.

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Andrew Tursky is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX. He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Anthony

    Apr 29, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Does anybody remember that Calloway tried something like this? Commercial with tattooed guy hitting a ball out of a trailer. Remember the Diablo?….?…..neither do I. Powerbilt is still Powerbuilt….the club that big box stores sell to people that are new to golf or don’t want to/can’t spend the money on name brand clubs. Good marketing try but I am going to stay with name brands a model year or two old or demo’ed and save some money.

  2. TheLegend

    Apr 26, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    This is why power built is being forgotten. What are they thinking? I could bring powerbuilt to new levels. This direction will only hurt the however.

  3. Dave S

    Apr 23, 2014 at 11:40 am

    I don’t get it… seems like they’re trying too hard. There’s not even a crossover at any point in the commmerical b/w the two sports. It’s just a guy doing MMA with a Powerbilt tee on and then pics of a driver interwoven. This could have been more effetive IMO had at the end the MMA guy changed into athletic golf apparel, pulled the driver, gave a mean look down the fair way and then crushed a drive.

  4. 3 putts

    Apr 22, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Pay atention to most low handicap golfers. They often are the more than not a pretty good athlete. Comparing NFL players to pro golfers is apples vs oranges. It’s not even fair to compare a defensive back vs an offensive lineman. I think of Olympic athletes that throw javelin or dicus. It requires good form to optimize efficiency and maintain consistency. Are they athletes? Hard to deny if you see there physiques. Golf is like this. Can you do it and not be athletic? Sure, but don’t forget about that unathletic kid that played right field in little league. He played but prob wasn’t very good.

  5. Justin

    Apr 22, 2014 at 11:14 am

    I can’t see any of my buddies that are fans of MMA dropping 300+ bones on a driver with a bunch of tribal graphics.

  6. Elmo

    Apr 22, 2014 at 10:46 am

    Golf is a sport because physical training is will make you better. Those who are physically fit have an advantage over those who are not. You could play soccer while holding a beer and being 340 lb. You just will be out advantaged by those who are in shape. Therefore the difference between a sport and a game is wether physicality makes any difference.

  7. christian

    Apr 22, 2014 at 8:35 am

    Sport it is, just not an athletic one. Hand eye coordination and balance does not make you an athlete. That would be like calling throwing darts an athletic sport, or archery, fly fishing.

  8. Scooter McGavin

    Apr 22, 2014 at 8:22 am

    Are kids still into extreme sports? I thought the extreme sport fad ended a decade ago…

  9. Christian

    Apr 22, 2014 at 12:27 am

    That driver looks like it wants to take me into an alley n kick the s**t out of me..I’m scart.

  10. Miles

    Apr 21, 2014 at 10:08 pm

    Ok I’m sorry but did you proof this before posting? Additionally Rickie Fowler is into Motocross not BMX…

  11. RG

    Apr 21, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    If you can drink beer and smoke cigarettes while your doing it it’s not a sport it’s a game.
    If your waist is 46 and your length is 34, your not an athlete, but you could be a golfer.

    • MHendon

      Apr 21, 2014 at 10:57 pm

      That’s just a stupid statement. You can drink beer and smoke while playing any sport and I’m pretty sure there are some guys in the NFL and maybe even the major leagues with a waistline pretty close to that. If your only definition to what makes a sport running then I guess golfs not. But to me great balance, body coordination and hand eye coordination are very athletic traits. Elite golfers display if nothing else great hand eye coordination so its definitely a sport. Just look how unathletic golf makes some of the so called greatest athletes of other sports look. Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky almost look spastic and don’t even let me get started on Charles Barkley!

      • christian

        Apr 22, 2014 at 8:36 am

        How do you smoke and drink beer WHILE playing soccer, do a high jump, wrestle etc etc?

        • MHendon

          Apr 22, 2014 at 5:09 pm

          How do you do it while swinging a golf club, you don’t! its in the breaks between shots. Not different then a guy sitting on the bench in any other sport between action. Its just the moments of action in golf are shorter followed by longer moments in between.

      • TheLegend

        Apr 26, 2014 at 4:16 pm

        well said.

    • Jlam1127

      Apr 22, 2014 at 12:24 pm

      Well, look up Roy Nelson… he has just about a 46 inch waist and he’s a pretty solid athlete….and also the linemen in the NFL…

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Equipment

Jimmy Walker spotted testing a Titleist prototype driver?

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As spotted by GolfWRX Forum Member “anthony007,” Jimmy Walker was shown on the Golf Channel’s Morning Drive hitting an unidentified driver at the Warrior Open.

In anthony007’s forum post, along with the photo, he asks the question “Is this a new Driver from Titleist?”

Well, it’s hard to tell from the grainy photo exactly what the driver says on the sole. But then Jimmy Walker himself posted on Twitter saying: “Great catch! Its always fun to test new prototypes and the [Titleist on Tour] guys have given me some cool toys to play with that are incredible – but unfortunately I can’t talk about them yet!”

While the response is a bit cryptic, it does seem that Walker confirms he was indeed testing a Titleist prototype driver.

What do you think?

Click here to see what GolfWRX members are saying about the photo.

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Whats in the Bag

UNLV Rebels WITB: 2018 NCAA Men’s Championship

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The University Of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) Men’s Golf team is participating in the 2018 NCAA Championship at Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Oklahoma on May 25-30. Representing the Mountain West Conference, the team is led by Head Coach Dwaine Knight.

To see the team’s full roster, click here

Below, we highlight the clubs and shafts that each of the players on the team are using at the championship.

Shintaro Ban

Driver: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Orange 70TX

3 Wood: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Blue 80TX

Hybrid: Callaway Epic (20 degrees)
Shaft: Oban Steel 115

Irons: Callaway X Forged (4 and 5 iron), Callaway Apex MB (6-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Fourteen RM Raw wedge (50, 55 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 (50 and 55), S400 (60)

Putter: Odyssey O-Works 7S

Harry Hall

Driver: Titleist 917D2 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Orange 70TX

3 Wood: Titleist 917 F3 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue M-AX 65TX

5 Wood: Titleist 917 F2 (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue M-AX 65TX

Irons: Titleist 718 AP2 (3-9 iron)
Shafts: KBS Tour V 120X

Wedges: Titleist SM7 (48, 54 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold S300

Putter: Evenroll ER5 Hatchback (36.5 inches)

Jack Trent

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 7X

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 Tour (15 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 8TX

Hybrid: Titleist H2 818 (17 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 105X

Irons: Titleist T-MB (4 iron), Titleist 718 CB (5-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold X100

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (50, 56 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold X100

Putter: Scotty Cameron Futura X5R
Grip: SuperStroke Flatso 1.0 (35 inches)

Justin Kim

Driver: TaylorMade M2 2017 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 7TX

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 2017 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 8TX

Driving Iron: Titleist 712U (3 iron)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 105X

Irons: TaylorMade P-750 (4-PW)
Shaft: KBS $-Taper 130X

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Sm6 (50, 54 and 58)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron

Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Justin Chong

Driver: TaylorMade M4
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-IZ 6X

3 Wood: TaylorMade M3
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 7X

5 Wood: Ping G30
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 7X

Hybrid: TaylorMade M1 (21 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD 85X

Irons: Miura CB-57 (4-PW)
Shafts: Project X LZ 6.5

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (52-09 F Grind and 58-08 M Grind)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Odyssey V-Line Fang O-Works

Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Garrick Higgo

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue Silver 60X 120MS

3 Wood: Titleist 917F3 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana Black 70 TX

Hybrid: Titleist 816H2 (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue 85H X-Flex

Driving Iron: Titleist TMB (2, 3 and 4 iron)
Shaft: KBS C-Taper 130X

Irons: Titleist AP2 (5-PW, GW)
Shafts: KBS C -Taper 130X

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 Matte Black (55 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: KBS C-Taper 130X

Putter: Scotty Cameron Futura X7M Black Tour Only

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

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Equipment

Spotted: New Aldila Rogue Silver 130 MSI shaft

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The official Tour launch of the Aldila Rogue Silver 130 MSI shaft is this week at the 2018 Forth Worth Invitational at Colonial, and we were able to snap a few photos on the range. MSI stands for millions of pounds per square inch, and basically, it refers to how stiff the fiber is — the higher the number, the greater stiffness it has.

Headed to retail later this summer, according to Aldila, the lower-launching, lower-spinning Rogue Silver 130 MSI is the successor to the Rogue Silver 125 MSI.

Per the company, the new Rogue Silver 130 MSI will feature the same tapered butt-counter-balanced design as the 125. The stronger 130 MSI carbon fiber produces slightly lower torque, however, and is the strongest material in a Rogue shaft to date.

Several Tour pros have already made the switch to the new shaft:

  • Jimmy Walker put the 70 TX in his driver for the first time at The Players. He had been gaming the 80 TX in his fairway wood since the Masters.
  • Kevin Chappell has been playing the 80 TX in both his 3 and 5-woods.
  • Martin Flores has put the 70 TX in his driver
  • Chez Reavie put the 60 TX in his driver at the Masters.

We’ll bring you more details as they become available closer to launch. Click here to see what GolfWRX members are saying about the new shaft in our forums.

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