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Richie3Jack's take on clubfitting-Taller golfers may want to read

Richie3Jack clubfitting tall

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#1 CrisPy3

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 07:47 PM

http://3jack.blogspo...lubfitting.html

Rich seems to subscribe to the idea that no golfer should extend or shorten their clubs by .25" either way. Also says to stay away from upright lie angles (I'm 6'4" and have always played with 2* up irons). I've tried "swinging/exiting left" and must say that it's been very difficult for me to do and I'm starting to think i may need to move towards flatter lie angles to achieve this. Rich even explains why with regards to CP vs. CF release. I've been a S&T'er for a few years now and have a flatter/1 plane swing but have always been sort of a flipper as well. There's been more and more data recently showing that lie boards tend to "lie" and this is probably the main reason why. Anyway, just wondering if anyone else (taller players?) play standard or flatter lies and their corresponding iron play.

Thanks


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#2 TLT_Dan

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 08:33 PM

I don't agree with his position on length - which is directly related to the lie - if you want great directional control.

Tall players are force to crouch to play standard (whatever that is), pulling them out of an athletic stance.

The correct combination of length and lie should be putting the player into an athletic stance, and if you are crouching then added length and upright lie are the only 2 options. By limiting both (which is what he seems to be doing) will limit your ability to get athletic.

Clubs need to be built correctly - allowing you to play to your potential, and if the equipment cannot be set to your personal address athletic address, then you are still compensating. The correction can come in a form of both upright and longer, and as long as the total weight and swing weight does not get to high then the set is very playable.

I've built many sets at over length and upright (for tall players), as well as under length and flat (for shorter players) - allowing them to remain athletic relative to their size and fit. Forcing a player out of his best address position or forcing him to make an adjustment is simply not in my best interest. This is what Professional Custom Clubmaking is all about, and I have a tough time understanding why limits (to a degree) are applied.

#3 TLT_Dan

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 08:34 PM

duplicate

Edited by TLT_Dan, 30 January 2013 - 07:46 PM.


#4 J.W.

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:04 PM

I generally don't go more than 0.5" either way of "standard" and believe "shortest playable club" is the best way to efficiently fit taller players.  Posture is number one with length fitting and keeping it so the player can consistently strike the middle of the face.  By shortest playable club you want to get the taller player enough length in the short irons and wedges so he is not hunched over or in a poor posture.  If you need to build the clubs with smaller increments like say 3/8" instead of 1/2" then so be it.  Most players don't benefit from making long irons even longer because it generally hurts center contact.

#5 kloyd0306

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:40 PM

I'm glad that I don't have to pay Richie3jack for advice.

I can just see some poor 6ft 5in golfer stooped way over, curved spine and heaps of knee flex, trying in vain to strike the ball but forever catching everything thin. At impact, the poor soul would be on his toes, struggling to keep his balance.

How he can put everyone under 6ft 6ins in the same category is just laughable.

Height is not even relevant when statically fitting irons. Two golfers of the same height might use irons that are different by as much as 1.5 inches because of different leg lengths, different arm lengths and different shoulder widths. A golfer's levers are attached at the shoulders, not to the top of his head.

I can only hope Richie doesn't have a wide audience.


#6 CrisPy3

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:57 PM

I thought I would possibly hit a sore spot with the clubfitters here. My apologies as that's not what I intended. A question though to you guys. Do you use a lie board for adjustments, trackman, dynamic lie fittings or possibly something else?
Thanks

#7 proguy

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:10 PM

6'-3"   .25 over  4 degrees flat.

#8 Hstead

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:22 PM

I am with kloyd and JW, you cannot just say "oh he is 6'3" he needs plus 1/2".  Everyone is built differently, wide shoulders, narrow shoulders, long arms, short arms etc. One of my buddies was an Offensive G in college, his shoulders are way wide and we always joke that he cannot put anything in his front pockets because he would not be able to get it out his arms are so dang short.  He is also 6'2".  He would need longer and more upright clubs than a guy 6'4", that weighted 180 lbs, narrow shoulders, and long arms.  

Dynamic fitting is just that, dynamic.  You can't just measure wrist to floor either.  The best length is the length that allows the player to setup with a correct golf posture, athletic position, etc.
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#9 sblack5

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:30 PM

I am very aware of what works for me and my swing and talk with my club fitter and builder if I would like something checked or changed....I equate buying new gear and getting fitted to building a track car......I want to know everything about every little detail and the goods and bads and how they will affect things overall before I make a decision as to what Im going to use as parts of a unified working project.   I love it when a guy at a retail store finds out my specs and tells me how wrong everything is.

6'4".....2" over titleist standards.....standard lie angles...moi matched...HEAVY.....100 gram 3 wood shaft, 110 gram hybrid shaft, 130 gram iron and wedge shafts....6i swingweights at E0...driver  and 3 wood at d8.......+4 cap....think my specs are just fine for me sir.

Edited by sblack5, 29 January 2013 - 11:31 PM.

hit is with so much authority
that when you find it
and it sees you, it is trembling.

#10 Tuba

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:33 PM

I'm with Richie.  I've seen a 6'3" college player lose his game completely to a "fitter" who gave him +2" and +4*.  With irons based on a 37.5" 5 iron he was one of the best in the state.
A 6' friend hit his +2* irons o.k. until he grabbed my -2* 6 iron and hit lasers.  Granted, not a ton to go on, but a place to start.


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#11 CrisPy3

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:38 PM

 proguy, on 29 January 2013 - 11:10 PM, said:

6'-3"   .25 over  4 degrees flat.

This is interesting stuff. Mind me asking how you came up with that? Standard fitting?
Also, type of swing you have/philosophy, etc? Thx

Edited by CrisPy3, 29 January 2013 - 11:39 PM.


#12 sblack5

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 12:59 AM

A rotary swing where the body's rotation is used to square the club dictates flatter lie angles......i used to be 3* up until I adopted this type of swing....had to take 3 degrees off and ended up at "standard" lie angles
hit is with so much authority
that when you find it
and it sees you, it is trembling.

#13 Golfer_LD

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 11:02 AM

I honestly don't see how you can be completely against lengthening or shortening an club as much as .25 inches especially since there isn't really much of a "standard length" among the different companies.  In fact, I was just looking up some of the length differences between the different companies and found that some clubs have "standard lengths" with as much as a 1" difference.  An example is the Ping G25 3 iron is 38.75" while Cleveland 588 TT 3 iron is 39.75", both with steel shafts.

#14 Cwebb

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 12:08 PM

A good way to figure this out, is to fit for starting length by using the shortest wedge in their potential setup, a lob or sand wedge.  Before handing them any club at all, have them and/or their instructor get them into their ideal posture.  Then start handing them the shortest length wedge to determine what the minimum length would be for them on a full wedge shot.

So instead of trying to figure out length based on a mid iron, use the shortest club in a set, figure out the minimum "comfortable" length for their ideal posture on a full shot,.....then work the set length increments up from there.  Some will find that they can go shorter than what they've been using, but others will need more length.

#15 CrisPy3

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 01:59 PM

Cwebb - Funny you mention that. The more I read and study the effects of different clubs, it does seem as though there isn't one static way (say in increments of .5") that fits everyone. Maybe this is what Dan was saying above...
I've played my wedges standard since I started playing and have only tinkered with my irons and driver...


#16 RichieHunt

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 02:32 PM

Thanks for the thoughts.

I've changed my position a bit on length.  But, that's because I understand equipment design and things like MOI Matching and how the weight of the main components (head, shaft and grip) all work together.

The problem with adding length to your irons is it *may* make your clubs much heavier.  And it could also throw off your effective lie angles.

That's why I use Wishon's irons.  He makes his heads ultra light.  Now, I don't want to play with an ultra light clubhead...but, what I want to be able to do is to add the appropriate amount of weight to each clubhead until the total club MOI is where I want it.  As clubmakers always say 'it's much easier to add weight than to take it off.'

So with Wishon, I've made my irons +1/2" over standard (or thereabout as I use 3/8" shaft increments for each club) and have no problem with the added weight.  I play Wishon's Stepless Steel shaft as well (115 grams).  Before, I was playing a 130 gram KBS parallel tip shaft.  Again...no problems with the clubs being too heavy.

Most of my clubs are 1* flat.  That makes the effective lie angle about standard.

I think that for golfers, going longer to correct toe hits is a faulty idea.  And usually with taller players they go way too long.  I would follow Wishon's suggested chart in 12 Myths That Could Wreck Your Game and go with that.

I will say that regardless of height, golfers should seriously consider making their length of drivers shorter than 45" long.

I was playing a 45-1/8" driver.  I went on Trackman and then installed the same model shaft, but at a heavier weight and cut that down to 44-3/8" long.  Essentially, a 3/4" shorter shaft length.

Here's the specs

45-1/8" shaft
2,825 Kg/cm^2 MOI
D-4.3 swingweight
321 grams


44-3/8" shaft
2,825 Kg/cm^2 MOI
D-4.3 swingweight
334 grams

What I found on Trackman was I only lost 1 mph of clubhead speed.  BUT, the launch angle improved by nearly 2 degrees and the ball was going further.  And it was far easier to control, not only from a horizontal launch perspective, but as far as how curve I could put on the ball, particularly on mis-hits.





RH

#17 RichieHunt

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 02:36 PM

 kloyd0306, on 29 January 2013 - 09:40 PM, said:

I'm glad that I don't have to pay Richie3jack for advice.

I can just see some poor 6ft 5in golfer stooped way over, curved spine and heaps of knee flex, trying in vain to strike the ball but forever catching everything thin. At impact, the poor soul would be on his toes, struggling to keep his balance.

How he can put everyone under 6ft 6ins in the same category is just laughable.

Height is not even relevant when statically fitting irons. Two golfers of the same height might use irons that are different by as much as 1.5 inches because of different leg lengths, different arm lengths and different shoulder widths. A golfer's levers are attached at the shoulders, not to the top of his head.

I can only hope Richie doesn't have a wide audience.

Why would you want a 'flat spine' at the address position?







RH

#18 Golfer_LD

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 03:13 PM

 RichieHunt, on 30 January 2013 - 02:36 PM, said:


Why would you want a 'flat spine' at the address position?







RH

By 'flat spine' are you referring to a straight spine?  Because 'flat spine' sounds to me like you are talking about it being horizontal.

#19 kloyd0306

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 04:13 PM

 RichieHunt, on 30 January 2013 - 02:36 PM, said:

 kloyd0306, on 29 January 2013 - 09:40 PM, said:

I'm glad that I don't have to pay Richie3jack for advice.

I can just see some poor 6ft 5in golfer stooped way over, curved spine and heaps of knee flex, trying in vain to strike the ball but forever catching everything thin. At impact, the poor soul would be on his toes, struggling to keep his balance.

How he can put everyone under 6ft 6ins in the same category is just laughable.

Height is not even relevant when statically fitting irons. Two golfers of the same height might use irons that are different by as much as 1.5 inches because of different leg lengths, different arm lengths and different shoulder widths. A golfer's levers are attached at the shoulders, not to the top of his head.

I can only hope Richie doesn't have a wide audience.

Why would you want a 'flat spine' at the address position?







RH

The term "flat spine" does not appear in my response.

The vast majority of teachers advocate a spine that is as straight as possible - from the base of neck to the base of the spine (tailbone). For some, that is just not possible, but rotating around a straight spine is much more efficient than rotating around one that is curved.

From behind the ball, looking down the target line, 99.7% of tour players and top amateurs have such postures. There will always be exceptions (Tommy Gainey for one).

When a tall player is using irons that are too short for him, there are only three ways he can set up to the ball:

1 - Tilt his spine more horizontally
2 - Bend his knees more
3 - Stoop

Or - a combination of two or all three of the above.

In a good static fit, the straight spine and knee flex angles should be such that the golfer can turn efficiently and maintain balance from address to impact and thru to the finish.

An example of a top player who is clearly using irons that are too short is Keegan Bradley. Being the athlete that he is, he maintains his spine angle very well until impact but then has to stand up sharply after impact for fear of falling on his face. His divots are remarkably deep due to his steep downswing (caused by using clubs that are too short).

David Howell (European Tour) is another example. Poor guy can only play once every three weeks bceause his back can't hack the punishment. Chris Wood (European Tour) - hugely talented - is another who attacks steeply and gouges deep divots. His spine angle tells us that his irons are too short.

#20 kevcarter

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 04:28 PM

Nobody is ever going to 100% agree on anything golf related, but if it comes from Richie, I'm listening. Not to many folks who are bigger students of the game, and anything he discusses comes without prejudice, bias, or agenda. It may change or evolve over time, but that's the nature of the beast...

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I have been before.
I will be again.
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#21 RichieHunt

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 05:10 PM

Quote

The term "flat spine" does not appear in my response.

No, it doesn't.  But, I think 'flat' or 'straight as possible' are virtually the same in meaning.

Quote

The vast majority of teachers advocate a spine that is as straight as possible - from the base of neck to the base of the spine (tailbone). For some, that is just not possible, but rotating around a straight spine is much more efficient than rotating around one that is curved.

I would like to know what proof that a straight as possible spine is much more effecient than rotating around one that is curved other that what many teachers advocate.  I can simply state that many teachers do not advocate a straight spine, either like Grant Waite or Sean Foley.

In fact, here's some pictures of great players with a curved spine at address:

http://www.historicg...571/3/14046.jpg

http://www.historicg...4381/3/4371.jpg

http://www.historicg...4381/3/4371.jpg

http://www.historicg...3590/3/3582.jpg

I think the straight spine hurts rotation and hurts the spine in itself.  The spine is not 'designed' as straight.  It is naturally curved

http://www.chiroprac...lSpineLat21.jpg

Straightening the spine causes a multitude of things to be done before the club is even swung.  The golfer will likely have their chest puffed out in the attempt to straighten the spine and that can restrict the arm swing going back.  Then there's other things like the alignment of the hips, head, etc. and all of the things that those changes can cause problems with.

I don't think a curved spine at address is radical at all.  That's how the anatomy of the human body was built and I think the straight spine stuff didn't become en vogue until the golf instruction boom happened.

That's just my point of where I'm coming from.







RH

#22 Hstead

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 05:30 PM

 RichieHunt, on 30 January 2013 - 05:10 PM, said:

Quote

The term "flat spine" does not appear in my response.

No, it doesn't.  But, I think 'flat' or 'straight as possible' are virtually the same in meaning.

Quote

The vast majority of teachers advocate a spine that is as straight as possible - from the base of neck to the base of the spine (tailbone). For some, that is just not possible, but rotating around a straight spine is much more efficient than rotating around one that is curved.

I would like to know what proof that a straight as possible spine is much more effecient than rotating around one that is curved other that what many teachers advocate.  I can simply state that many teachers do not advocate a straight spine, either like Grant Waite or Sean Foley.

In fact, here's some pictures of great players with a curved spine at address:

http://www.historicg...571/3/14046.jpg

http://www.historicg...4381/3/4371.jpg

http://www.historicg...4381/3/4371.jpg

http://www.historicg...3590/3/3582.jpg

I think the straight spine hurts rotation and hurts the spine in itself.  The spine is not 'designed' as straight.  It is naturally curved

http://www.chiroprac...lSpineLat21.jpg

Straightening the spine causes a multitude of things to be done before the club is even swung.  The golfer will likely have their chest puffed out in the attempt to straighten the spine and that can restrict the arm swing going back.  Then there's other things like the alignment of the hips, head, etc. and all of the things that those changes can cause problems with.

I don't think a curved spine at address is radical at all.  That's how the anatomy of the human body was built and I think the straight spine stuff didn't become en vogue until the golf instruction boom happened.

That's just my point of where I'm coming from.







RH

I am pretty sure he means having a posture where the spine is just as your picture shows of the correct anatomical position vs a spine that is bent over, reaching for the ball.  I promise you if I hit a wedge that is under 35.5" I am reaching and my spine bends, curves, or what ever forward which is not good.  

I am pretty sure Grant and Foley advocate and work on posture with their players vs just letting a guy stand like this..............
http://www.mikepeder...olf-posture.jpg  in fact, Sean says this........


I like a lot of your ideas Rickie but on this one I am going to have to disagree.  There is a correct golf posture for everyone, and the club has to fit that posture, not the other way around, the golfer should not fit the club.

Check out this guys blog, it is pretty good........http://3jack.blogspot.co.uk/2009/04/vision-and-posture-video-by-sevam1.html

Edited by Hstead, 30 January 2013 - 05:39 PM.

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#23 RichieHunt

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 08:47 AM

Quote

like a lot of your ideas Rickie but on this one I am going to have to disagree.  There is a correct golf posture for everyone, and the club has to fit that posture, not the other way around, the golfer should not fit the club


I believe posture is important as well.  I just don't believe the spine should be as straight as possible.  I would not want the torso (say, from the waist to the shoulders) tilted too much towards the ball at address.  Conversely, if the torso is too upright, that can cause problems as well.

Like I posted here, I have changed my mind on the length of the shafts for taller people. But, understand the issues with making the shafts longer as far as a weight, MOI and effective lie angle perspective.





RH

#24 Hstead

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 09:35 AM

 RichieHunt, on 31 January 2013 - 08:47 AM, said:

Quote

like a lot of your ideas Rickie but on this one I am going to have to disagree.  There is a correct golf posture for everyone, and the club has to fit that posture, not the other way around, the golfer should not fit the club


I believe posture is important as well.  I just don't believe the spine should be as straight as possible.  I would not want the torso (say, from the waist to the shoulders) tilted too much towards the ball at address.  Conversely, if the torso is too upright, that can cause problems as well.

Like I posted here, I have changed my mind on the length of the shafts for taller people. But, understand the issues with making the shafts longer as far as a weight, MOI and effective lie angle perspective.





RH

See, we can agree to agree. lol.  I am 100 percent with you now.  I play my clubs at plus 1/2" and with shorter clubs, the swing weights can get way too  heavy.  I have never hit MOI matched clubs, so I cannot speak to the weighting of MOI clubs, but by traditional swing weight method, long clubs can feel like anvils.
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#25 CallawayLefty

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 09:41 AM

6 foot 3 here.  Had been playing +1" for most of my life.  Just went back to standard.  No change in distance.  Not hitting the ball thin.  Feel like there's more room to swing.  Already stand too close to the ball, so 1 extra inch distance certainly helps things.


#26 swizbeatz

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 01:39 PM

I'm 6'2, play standard length (6 year old irons so probably short of today's standard) and 2* flat.
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#27 kloyd0306

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 05:38 PM

 RichieHunt, on 31 January 2013 - 08:47 AM, said:

Quote

like a lot of your ideas Rickie but on this one I am going to have to disagree.  There is a correct golf posture for everyone, and the club has to fit that posture, not the other way around, the golfer should not fit the club


I believe posture is important as well.  I just don't believe the spine should be as straight as possible.  I would not want the torso (say, from the waist to the shoulders) tilted too much towards the ball at address.  Conversely, if the torso is too upright, that can cause problems as well.

Like I posted here, I have changed my mind on the length of the shafts for taller people. But, understand the issues with making the shafts longer as far as a weight, MOI and effective lie angle perspective.





RH

"Straight as possible" is not the same as "straight". Perhaps you are reading my comments a smidge too literally?

Anatomically, there is a slight natural curve from the base of the neck to a point somewhere level with the shoulder blades. I doubt if anyone can alter that.

The efficiencies of a "straight as possible" spine are pretty clear. It is easier on the spinal joints if they are in line vs curved and the easiet way to align the spinal joints is to stick one's butt out - just as two of your submitted photos (Jack and Nancy) show. This makes rotation easier too.

Sure there are exceptions and it is interesting that you resort to old photos. Certainly, before video and other technologies, there were a greater variety of postures and swings. In the modern era, however, teachers have faboulous tools and analysis so as to incorporate posture and techniques of the likes of Rory McIlroy, Louis Oostheizen and Luke Donald - all of whom have fabulous "butt out" postures.

The length of the shaft is paramount to correct fitting. That one dimension alone will affect posture (especially spine angle tilt), spacing (from toes to the ball) and is the starting point for establishing the correct lie angle. Get that dimension wrong and it snowballs, usually causing golfers to have to compensate during the swing itself. The OEMs are mostly to blame for that by not recognizing that it is not possible to cram 80% of golfers into the same length.

#28 smoky25

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 05:40 PM

Might as well say there's no reason to have more shoe sizes than 8.5-9.5. Rich, introduce yourself to the concept of the bell curve.

#29 Hstead

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

We might want to back off Rich fellas, he recanted and said he does not think the length should only be plus or minus 1/4".  He has recognized the same points that many of us have had and agreed.  He has a lot of good ideas and I like reading his stuff.
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#30 robbie91

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 01:09 AM

Well here's my 2 cents for anyone that is interested..

1. Club lengths for irons should be no more than -1/4” to +1/4” from standard (unless you are 6’6” or taller).

I would say +1/2" and in 95% of cases this is absolutely true. But, there is 5% that benefit from that extra length either from having a nagging injury or swing plane.. we cannot discount this.

2. You do have the Mizuno Shaft Optimizer, which is a good thing.

100% agree. It is an excellent tool.. not the end all be all.. but an excellent tool.

3. Avoid upright lie angles like the plagued.

Ridiculous point imo. Vintage irons of the past also used hickory shafts, leather grips, and were far shorter than todays irons. A lie angle is a number.. that all it is. Since every iron has a different lie angle once a player determines what iron they need lie angle should be decided based on the results of lie testing. Who cares what the number is.. if it works it works.

4. CP and CF Likely Require Different Lie Angles.

Excellent point!!


5. Driver length should be about the same distance as a measurement from the ground to about 1” above the belly button.

Over length drivers are certainly a problem. That being said, there are plenty of golfers that play an ultra long driver and are able to strike the ball consistently enough to benefit from the increased length. Again, there is no hard fast rule when it comes to driver length your estimate is fine but it is not at all optimal for all golfers.. or even a majority of golfers.

6. Keep Your Iron Shafts weights to 115 grams and heavier

:vava:  There is NO data proving this. Further, there are plenty of older golfers looking to improve their swings that cannot handle a heavy steel shaft. There's tour players using sub 115 shafts.. are they not able to improve their swing?? Give me a break!!

7. You should keep your swingweights at least at D-2 or heavier.

Ok..

8. Avoid lie boards and use the line test instead.

:boredom: You do realize lie boards and the line test both require tweeking to find the right fit. Using a combo of both is probably the best way to go but the lie board has been around for quite a long time and fit enough golfers to prove its use.

9. Prefer forged over cast

What you prefer is different than what you need in many cases. The average 20 handicapper isn't going to be able to get results with forged. But I agree if you have the game it makes adjustment easier. It certainly isn't that important though.


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