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Using detailed testing with the GC Quad from Foresight, I compared the Wishon and Cobra one-length irons with my Ping iblades Have a look and see for yourself!

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Shawn Clement is the new Director of Development at the Royal Quebec Golf Academy in Quebec City, Canada and a class A PGA teaching professional. Shawn was a 2011 and 2015 Ontario PGA Teacher of the Year nominee while Directing at the Richmond Hill Golf Learning Centre. He was also voted in the top 10 (tied with Martin Hall at No. 9) as most sought after teacher on the internet in 2016 with 83 000 subscribers on YouTube and 36 millions natural views. Shawn has been writing for numerous publications since 2001 including Golf Tips Magazine and Score Golf Magazine. He also appeared of the Golf Channel’s Academy Live in July 2001 with Jerry Foltz and Mike Ritz. Shawn Clement has the distinction of being one of the only professionals fit by Ping’s Tour fitting centre where he was fitted with left and right handed clubs including 2 drivers with 115 plus miles per hour and 300 plus yard drives from both sides.

37 Comments

37 Comments

  1. Ken

    Sep 25, 2018 at 4:15 pm

    LOL, I love that any positive review of SL clubs is combatted with a negative comment by those that just can’t believe there could be another way to play the game, having to hold on to “the way we all do it is the only right way”. Who cares, play whatever gets the ball in the hole in the least number of strokes and quit trying to disprove everything to make yourselves feel better.

    I am now a 6 handicap, down from a 10-11, playing Sterling SL irons going on my third summer. My misses are much less severe and I can’t tell you how many GIR I have hit with my 6 iron at 185-190 yards. Best thing, is that I can take off a few weeks and when I come back out to play, my game doesn’t drop off. I hardly practice anything except my chipping / pitching and putting anymore as IMO the SL irons has simplified may set up and has improved my ball striking. I had my set made up with graphite shafts, MOI spec’d, 6-SW, 2 deg up. Same weight, length, lie, MOI, through out the set. YMMV…..

    • ogo

      Sep 26, 2018 at 3:28 pm

      So you have five irons (6-SW) at single shaft length. What about the remaining eight clubs? Are they all different shaft lengths… and nine different swings?

      • Ken

        Sep 26, 2018 at 11:09 pm

        See, there you go, having to get a dig in on 9 different swings vs possibly accepting the fact that some has success with SL irons. There are no absolutes in life, play how you want to play. I’m not selling anything here.

        I play 11 clubs. Driver (44.25”), 4w 42”, 21 degree hybrid at 39”, putter and my (7) irons. I Found playing my longer clubs a little shorter than std has given me improved accuracy.

        Most people that carry 14 can’t hit half of them consistently lol.

  2. Results

    Sep 22, 2018 at 11:37 pm

    “Here are the results.” There are literally no results except “I love my 3-iron.” Cmon guys, numbers. This is like one of your 70 min podcasts with 5 seconds of actual material. So, are you going post results?

  3. oppie

    Sep 22, 2018 at 3:12 pm

    I can play both types of clubs because I have control of my swing regardless of club length and lie. If you can’t control variable length clubs it’s unlikely you can control so-called single length irons. If you can’t compensate for length and lie, it’s likely you don’t have any golf swing eye-hand coordination.

  4. Steve Cantwell

    Sep 22, 2018 at 2:04 am

    How about just simply learning to hit a decent shot that can be repeated. If a guy can’t break 100 with a traditional set up, He isn’t going to break 100 with this single length set. Someone else however will benefit with his money in their pocket.

    • Brent

      Sep 22, 2018 at 8:30 am

      Couldn’t disagree more. “simply learn to hit a decent shot that can be repeated” Millions of golfers have been trying that for decades. What’s the harm in trying a slightly different club.

      • oppie

        Sep 22, 2018 at 3:17 pm

        Simple test: — Play a round only with a 5/7/9-iron combination and adjust for distance by gripping down or reducing your backswing and clubhead speed. Use hybrids for sub-4-iron play. Wedges are essential the same.

  5. Ty

    Sep 21, 2018 at 9:50 pm

    That was “nutted” haha I like this guy! Back swing is kind of ugly but he obviously Gets the job done . I am now anxious to try the shorter length on my longer irons . Great video .

  6. Robb Houle

    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    I have been using “dual length” irons since 1999. 8-W are Wedge length and 4-7 are 7 iron length. Only have to be able to hit 2 clubs to be consistent.

    I play in the Midwest where due to weather it is hard to get out and play 3-4 month out of the year. I play at a 7 handicap but thanks to my irons I can go 4 months without playing and come back and never be worse than a 9.

    • ogo

      Sep 22, 2018 at 5:38 pm

      What was your handicap level before you switched to the dual length irons? Most ‘golfers’ can’t hit one club consistently. To blame it on the multi-length irons is just a feeble excuse… blame the clubs not the duffer.

      • Robb Houle

        Sep 24, 2018 at 3:55 pm

        My handicap before was probably in the 14-15 range. Read an article about Bryson that had a good explanation. It referenced Occam’s razor theory. Which is the problem-solving principle that says the simplest solution tends to be the right one.

        If golf was just now being invented would the easiest solution be 14 different clubs each one at a different length?

        • shane

          Sep 24, 2018 at 11:17 pm

          They are NOT 14 different golf clubs; they are a progressive set of clubs that are matched to distances and trajectories. If single length were the standard somebody would invent progressive length clubs.

          • Robb Houle

            Sep 25, 2018 at 8:21 am

            A set of 14 progressive clubs are ABSOLUTELY 14 different clubs. They are different length, loft and lie. Which is the definition of “different”

            I am not arguing that single length should be the standard. I was giving an example where a version of non-traditional progressive length worked for me.

            What it comes down to is that you need 14 clubs in your bag that can fill yardage gaps and go the direction you think they are going to go.

  7. Bob the Gopher

    Sep 21, 2018 at 1:41 pm

    I just snagged a set of the Wishon Sterling irons. Best golf purchase I’ve made in a long time. Standing over the 5-7i feels like cheating. Never been more consistent from 200 yards out. The biggest adjustment you have to be prepared for is the mental aspect. If you can consistently put a smooth swing on these, they are absolutely phenomenal. I recommend to anyone who struggles with the irons.

    • oppie

      Sep 21, 2018 at 7:00 pm

      Anyone who struggles with irons will not solve their swing problems with single length irons… believe it…!!!

    • A. Commoner

      Sep 21, 2018 at 8:26 pm

      Ridiculous fabrication.

  8. Ken singer

    Sep 21, 2018 at 11:29 am

    Great video. I tried the single length Wilson irons. ( wishon makes great products ) Yet, I found that I was hitting my 5 hybrid and4 hybrid better then the 5 and 4 single length irons. I think this goes back to club speed ( not sure) and even though the 5 and 4 iron are shorter, they still have the loft of typicial 4 and 5. I would have liked to seen more of a comparison. Of single length vs those of us who use hybrids. Thanks Ken singer

    • christian

      Sep 21, 2018 at 7:23 pm

      Your issue is iron vs hybrid and not with single length. Most average non-pro golfers hit their hybrids better than their long irons.

      • Ken singer

        Sep 22, 2018 at 9:18 am

        I agree ( Christian) about hybrid vs iron. Yet more and more pros are using hybrids. Second many recreational golfers with low handicaps are using hybrids. In the single length set wishon made, he includes hybrids at the 4 and 5 length clubs. If you talk to Tom wishon he says that his single length clubs were made more for the recreational golfer ( yet Bryce d has turned this upside down ) What I’m saying in my experience with the single length clubs ( which I tried out about a year ago) is that loft is more important then length of a club in hitting consistent shots , and once you get up to long irons hybrids are easier to hit.

  9. Spitfisher

    Sep 21, 2018 at 11:17 am

    I could see the possibility of 3 different lengths over the set of 7-8 irons being marketed. Including gap. I just don’t believe the single length is for better players period, people that are looking for something to improve their game , have at it

    Personally develop a swing or lessons and you won’t need single length. Ignore lofts and club heads. If you hit a 6 hybrid as far as a well struct 4 or 5 iron go for it. Most people should not even carry a 4 iron and some not a 5 iron.

    Deschambau should not be used as testimony to this theory. He has a unique swing perhaps only to himself and one only has to see that his clubs are 12-14 degrees upright with baseball bat size grips.

    • Equs Golf

      Sep 21, 2018 at 11:58 am

      http://www.equsgolf.com

      The new EQUS series of irons highlight traits of both traditional length and single length golf clubs. Using matched combinations in three progressive lengths, this concept is designed to improve consistency, ball striking ability and therefore, performance for golfers of all levels.

      This concept allows golfers to easily transition to the single length concept without changing their current swing or giving up standard grips, lies or the traditional lengths found in long, mid and short irons.

      • stevet

        Sep 22, 2018 at 3:02 pm

        Mr. Lytle(?): Viewed your website and read your US Patent Application (20180185718). Congratulation on bringing your product to market.
        Could you further clarify your advertisment or claims for static “swingweight” (1st MOI) and dynamic “MOI” matching (2nd MOI) for your clubs? Thanks.

        • EQUS Golf

          Sep 24, 2018 at 11:52 pm

          EQUS golf irons are MOI (Moment of Inertia) matched for each combination in each set. The result is a progressive swing weight, constant within each individual combination, and progressive in subsequent combinations.

          MOI is the force necessary to initiate the motion of a stationary object about an axis. In EQUS irons the axis is both the center of gravity of the club head and the pendulum created by the entire club. EQUS clubs utilize both of these matched forces to improve consistency within any given combination.

          • ogo

            Sep 26, 2018 at 3:25 pm

            You have 3 sets of irons with different lengths and 3 different swings. Why not a true single length for all the irons and only one swing?

    • Bruce

      Sep 21, 2018 at 3:47 pm

      Sounds like you made your decision before watching the video.

  10. Mike

    Sep 21, 2018 at 12:54 am

    Interesting video. I have considered the single length clubs at one time but was afraid of the longer irons having distance issues. Granted with today’s lofts, I would probably only use a 5 iron on down but still worried about the 5 and 6 iron distances.

    Do the companies make them at whatever length you want or is the standard a 7 or 8 iron? I thought Cobra was based on a 7 iron but could be wrong!

  11. steve

    Sep 20, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    Shawn… I notice in your swing… you turn your head back twice at Address… and your backswing comes to a virtual stop/pause at the Top. Your hips rotate quite a lot and your X-factor to your shoulder turn is small, but you unwind smooth and powerful. Your legs are active… 😉

    • Leo Vincent

      Sep 22, 2018 at 12:22 am

      Doubt the guy in the video can break 80

      • steve

        Sep 22, 2018 at 3:05 pm

        All that counts is proper desired impact results… style is secondary.

  12. ogo

    Sep 20, 2018 at 6:11 pm

    WOW!!!! Single length irons from PING??!!!
    And the empty cavity back Sterlings sound more pingy than elastomer filled iBlades??!!!

    • Bruce

      Sep 21, 2018 at 3:56 pm

      Pings were his variable length and used as a standard.
      Single length from Stirling and Cobra

  13. Tom

    Sep 20, 2018 at 5:16 pm

    Uhhh….Tommy Armour golf had this one length iron concept back in the mid 1980’s…they called it EQL….nothing new here.

  14. gunmetal

    Sep 20, 2018 at 4:10 pm

    Cool vid. Hopefully the rest of the companies take note of the benefits that most golfers in the world would see.

    • steve

      Sep 20, 2018 at 6:20 pm

      Any competent golf like Shawn can compensate and adjust their swing with any make of club. The results may be different but the performance is standard.

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Instruction

More stroke-saving advice for seniors: Love thy hybrid

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Continuing our series for seniors, this is a topic I’ve written about before but it is so important to our senior games, it is worth revisiting.

Some of you may be aware of the “24/38 rule.” It deals with the idea that most golfers lose consistency with an iron that is less than 24 degrees of loft and over 38 inches long. That USED TO BE a 3-iron. And I always thought even that was marginal—a 3-iron for a middle handicap players has always been a bit “iffy.”

Then came the “juicing era” when manufacturers started making golf clubs with much less loft and some added length. Now, that “24/38” rule applies to 5-irons! The cavity back era gave way to some great innovations, particularly forgiveness, but it also introduced stronger lofts and added some length. For example, today’s 6-iron, on average is 31 degrees and 37.5-38.o inches. The point is this: Many golfers do not have sufficient speed to hit 5-irons, maybe even 6-irons, from the fairway!

This goes for golf in general, but in senior golf, it is even more important to remember!

What to do? Voila! The invention of HYBRIDS! We have to understand one simple golf impact principle:  Getting the golf ball airborne from the turf requires speed. If we lack that speed, we need clubs with a different construction. The HYBRIDS are built to help launch the golf ball. Basically, it works like this: when the center of gravity is further from the hitting area (face), it is easier to launch the golf ball. On an iron that CG is directly behind the ball. In a hybrid, it is moved back, so the ball can be launched higher. There are other factors, but basically, that’s it.

My personal recommendation is as follows

  • If your driver clubhead speed in under 85 MPH, your iron set might go 7-PW
  • Driver speed 85-90 MPH, your iron set might be 6-PW
  • Driver speed 90-100, your iron set might be 5-PW
  • Driver speed over 100, you can choose the set make-up with which you are comfortable

As this piece is largely for seniors, I’m assuming most of you are in one of the first two categories. If so, your game may be suffering from your set make-up. The most common swing issue I see in seniors is “hang back” or the inability to get weight through at impact. This is often the result of a club shaft too stiff, OR clubs too difficult to launch—example, a 3-iron. Please DO NOT beat yourself up! Use equipment that is easier to hit and particularly easier to launch.

The question invariably arises, what about fairway woods of similar loft?  They are fine if you do not mind the added length. The great thing about hybrids is they are only slightly longer than similarly lofted irons. My advice is to seniors is to get with a pro, get on a launch monitor, find your speed and launch conditions and go from there.

Note: I am NOT a fitter, and I DO NOT sell clubs of any kind. But I do know, as a teacher, that hybrids should be in most seniors’ bags.

 

Want more help with your swing? I have an on-line swing analysis service. If you are interested in a “look” here it is.

 

 

 

 

 

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Clement: Long and short bunker shots

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It happens to all of us where: We get short-sided and need to put a shot together to save the furniture. The short bunker shot can really be a challenge if you do not have the right task to perform it and can result in you wasting a shot in the bunker or letting the shot get away from you because you don’t want to leave that delicate shot in the bunker.

And of course, so many of you are afraid to put a full swing on a longer bunker shot because of the dreaded skull over the green!

We have the easy solutions to all of the above right here and the other videos I have, which are great complements to this one including an oldie but goodieand this one with Chantal, my yoga teacher.

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The Big Shift: How to master pressure and the golf transition using prior sports training

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If you’re an #AverageJoeGolfer, work a day job, and don’t spend countless hours practicing, you might be interested in knowing that sports you played growing up, and even beer league softball skills, can be used to help you play better golf. We’re sure you’ve heard hockey players tend to hit the ball a mile, make the “best golfers”, while pitchers and quarterbacks have solid games, but baseball/softball hitters struggle with consistency. Did you know that a killer tennis backhand might help your golf game if you play from the opposite side? Dancers are way ahead of other athletes making a switch to golf because they understand that centeredness creates power and consistency much more efficiently than shifting all around, unnecessary swaying, or “happy feet.”

Lurking beneath fat shots, worm burners, and occasional shanks, are skillsets and motions you can pull from the old memory bank to apply on the golf course. Yes, you heard us right; your high school letterman jacket can finally be put to good use and help you improve your move. You just need to understand some simple adjustments different sports athletes need to make to be successful golfers.

In golf, shifting from your trailside into your lead side is what we’ll call the TRANSITION. Old School teachers refer to this motion, or shift, as “Foot Work”, New-Fangled-Techno-Jargon-Packed-Instruction uses “Ground Pressure/Force” to refer to the same concept. Don’t worry about the nomenclature; just know, as many GolfWRXers already do, that you must get your weight to your lead side if you want any chance at making solid and consistent contact. TRANSITION might be THE toughest motion in golf to master.

The good news for you is that TRANSITION happens in all other sports but in slightly different ways, depending on the sport. Golfers can more quickly learn TRANSITION, and speed up their swing learning process by understanding how prior sport experience can be applied to the golf swing.

[The basics of a solid golf move are; 1) you should have a SETUP that is centered and balanced, 2) you move your weight/pressure into your trail side during the TAKEAWAY and BACKSWING, 3) TRANSITION moves your weight/pressure back into your lead side, and 4) you FINISH with the club smashing the ball down the fairway. Okay, it’s not quite as easy as I make it sound, but hopefully our discussion today can relieve some stress when it comes time for you to start training your game.]

Baseball/Softball Hitters

Hitting coaches don’t like their hitters playing golf during the season, that’s a fact. The TRANSITIONS are too different, and if they play too much golf, they can lose the ability to hit off-speed pitches because their swing can become too upright. Golf requires an orbital hand path (around an angled plane) with an upright-stacked finish, while hitting requires batters to have a straight-line (more horizontal) hand path and to “stay back or on top of” the ball.

Now we apologize for the lack of intricate knowledge and terminology around hitting a baseball, we only played up through high school. What we know for sure is that guys/gals who have played a lot of ball growing up, and who aren’t pitchers struggle with golf’s TRANSITION. Hitters tend to hang back and do a poor job of transferring weight properly. When they get the timing right, they can make contact, but consistency is a struggle with fat shots and scooping being the biggest issues that come to mind.

So how can you use your star baseball/softball hitting skills with some adjustments for golf? Load, Stride, Swing is what all-good hitters do, in that order. Hitters’ issues revolve around the Stride, when it comes to golf. They just don’t get into their lead sides fast enough. As a golfer, hitters can still take the same approach, with one big adjustment; move more pressure to your lead side during your stride, AND move it sooner. We’ve had plenty of ‘a ha’ moments when we put Hitters on balance boards or have them repeat step drills hundreds of times; “oh, that’s what I need to do”…BINGO…Pound Town, Baby!

Softball/Baseball Pitchers, Quarterbacks, & Kickers

There’s a reason that kickers, pitchers, and quarterbacks are constantly ranked as the top athlete golfers and it’s not because they have a ton of downtime between starts and play a lot of golf. Their ‘day jobs’ throwing/kicking motions have a much greater impact on how they approach sending a golf ball down the fairway. It’s apparent that each of these sports TRAINS and INGRAINS golf’s TRANSITION motion very well. They tend to load properly into their trailside while staying centered (TAKEAWAY/BACKSWING), and they transfer pressure into their lead side, thus creating effortless speed and power. Now there are nuances for how to make adjustments for golf, but the feeling of a pitching or kicking motion is a great training move for golf.

If this was your sport growing up, how can you improve your consistency? Work on staying centered and minimizing “happy feet” because golf is not a sport where you want to move too much or get past your lead side.


Dance

My wife was captain of her high school dance team, has practiced ballet since she was in junior high, and is our resident expert on Ground Pressure forces relating to dance. She has such a firm grasp on these forces that she is able to transfer her prior sports skill to play golf once or twice a year and still hit the ball past me and shoot in the low 100s; what can I say, she has a good coach. More importantly, she understands that staying centered and a proper TRANSITION, just like in Dance, are requirements that create stability, speed, and consistent motions for golf. Christo Garcia is a great example of a Ballerina turned scratch golfer who uses the movement of a plié (below left) to power his Hogan-esque golf move. There is no possible way Misty Copeland would be able to powerfully propel herself into the air without a proper TRANSITION (right).

Being centered is critical to consistently hitting the golf ball. So, in the same way that dancers stay centered and shift their weight/pressure to propel themselves through the air, they can stay on the ground and instead create a golf swing. Dancers tend to struggle with the timing of the hands and arms in the golf swing. We train them a little differently by training their timing just like a dance routine; 1 and 2 and 3 and…. Dancers learn small motions independently and stack each micro-movement on top of one another, with proper timing, to create a dance move (golf swing) more like musicians learn, but that article is for another time.

Hockey

Hockey is a great example of the golf TRANSITION because it mimics golf’s motions almost perfectly. Even a subtlety like the direction in which the feet apply pressure is the same in Hockey as in Golf, but that’s getting in the weeds a bit. Hockey players load up on their trailside, and then perform the TRANSITION well; they shift into their lead sides and then rotate into the puck with the puck getting in the way of the stick…this is the golf swing, just on skates and ice…my ankles hurt just writing that.

If you played hockey growing up, you have the skillsets for a proper golf TRANSITION, and you’ll improve much faster if you spend your time training a full FINISH which involves staying centered and balanced.

Now we didn’t get into nuances of each and every sport, but we tried to cover most popular athletic motions we thought you might have experience in in the following table. The key for your Big Shift, is using what you’ve already learned in other sports and understanding how you might need to change existing and known motions to adapt them to golf. If you played another sport, and are struggling, it doesn’t mean you need to give up golf because your motion is flawed…you just need to know how to train aspects of your golf move a little differently than someone who comes from a different sport might.

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