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What effect does shaft weight have on your golf shots? With the help of Nippon, Coach Matt Lockey and I put it to the test in this new video.

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Mark Crossfield has been coaching golf for more than 20 years, and has enjoyed shaping the digital golf world with fresh, original and educated videos. Basically, I am that guy from YouTube. You can connect with Mark on Periscope (4golfonline) and Snapchat (AskGolfGuru), as well through the social media accounts linked below.

11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. KK

    Jul 30, 2016 at 7:26 am

    It’s all about feel, with lighter shafts generally spinning a bit more with a bit more speed. The real problem is many golfers choose ego and show over darts-into-the-green control and scoring.

  2. Nooner

    Jul 27, 2016 at 3:25 am

    I think the length and girth of the shaft are more important in satisfaction for all involved

  3. Variable Step Patterns

    Jul 26, 2016 at 7:51 pm

    You’re talking about two shafts with variable step patterns as well. So that should be considered. Mark obviously loads the shaft different than coach. And as Mark stated he adjusted to the lighter shafts second time around. You shouldn’t have to adjust to a shaft. Your natural tendency will come out eventually. I’m willing to bet if they went with the lighter shaft they would develop different swings to compensate to get his timing right all the time to play the irons. But then he will have to compensate the rest of the bag. You should swing what ever allows you to achieve the proper shot window and dispersion and swing the same through out the bag.

    Like people have stated people need to be fit. what works for one may not work for another. Plus not having an industry standard for flex doesn’t help. DJ plays KBS Tour 120 in his wedges….that’s light for a wedge shaft…..but look at his stats…

  4. FlexVariesWithWeight

    Jul 26, 2016 at 5:43 pm

    It’s disappointing to see Mark Crossfield completely miss the fact that flex does in fact vary according to shaft weight. Even Nippon will tell you that a 950GH stiff is not equal to the 1150GH stiff in absolute flex. Looking at EI profiles, the Zelos 7 is nothing like the Modus3 shafts that Mark compared. Mark continually “emphasized” that all the shafts were stiff flex, but he just doesn’t seem to get it. So unfortunately there were a lot more variables in play here than just shaft weight.

    • Nooner

      Jul 27, 2016 at 3:27 am

      And what about MOI? He’s only swinging one middle club. I would love to see how this same test works with the PW and 3 irons

  5. Mmmmm

    Jul 26, 2016 at 3:17 pm

    What
    Was
    The
    Swingweight
    in
    Each
    Club
    Tested

  6. MB

    Jul 26, 2016 at 8:03 am

    I agree with Steve. Also I think it has to do with feel. A full swing wedge made by a pro, is different to a full swing 3i – 9i. The shaft is shorter, not generating the same speed and a greater value is put into dispersion and zooming in on target. In order to create the same feel as with X100 in their other irons they choose a shaft with the same weight but slightly softer in overall flex, adding a fraction more spinn. Feel being factor No. 1 in their priority.

  7. JG

    Jul 25, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    Great analysis! My question goes back to flex… Many tour pros use a different shaft in their irons versus their wedges with TTDG S400 being the popular wedge shaft choice. Is this just a feel thing? How would an amateur know whether they would benefit from different flex in their wedges?

    • steve

      Jul 26, 2016 at 7:35 am

      From what I understand they want a softer tip in wedges to create more spin

    • jo

      Jul 26, 2016 at 7:42 am

      Test it. Like Mark said, go to a golf shop and hit as many different weights and flex’s of shaft as you can. And instead of looking at the results, only go by ur feel to narrow down ur top three shafts. Then look at the numbers or results. I did this with my irons. Did it with the Mizuno shaft optimizer fitting system, even tho I don’t play Mizuno irons. I fully went in thinking I was going to be getting KBS tour shaft because of the hype. But after testing my top three where in order Project X 6.5, DG X100 and then KBS tour. I didn’t not like the feel of the KBS shafts at all. And the Project X shafts distance numbers were slightly longer then the DG X100 by a yrd or 2. But the feel of the DG X100s for me was way above the others for my swing which is compact, short and aggressive. All and all no one person can tell u ur shaft weight and flex, you need to go out and feel the perfect shaft for you.

    • Alex

      Jul 26, 2016 at 3:01 pm

      The s400 is heavier than the x100 so it gives the feeling of fractionally more control with the s400 wedge shafts. Thats the main reason why the s400 is more sought after is the weight. But there are a few outliers i.e. Rory McIlroy who uses PX 7.0 in his irons and PX 6.5 in his wedges. The 7.0 weighs more but is also stiffer, so he choose the lighter but not quite as stiff shaft in his wedges. To answer your question, most off the rack wedges come with DG s200 aka “Wedge Flex” These shafts are plenty heavy enough for I would say >90% of golfers. For most people I would say start with the s200 and work you way down to a lighter shaft.

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Opinion & Analysis

The Wedge Guy: Is lighter always longer?

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One of the continuing trends in golf clubs – particularly drivers – is the pursuit of increasingly lighter shafts; this obsessive goal has given us the premise that the lighter the club, the faster you can swing it. And that idea is driven by the relentless pursuit of distance at all levels, and for all golfers.

But as long as he is, for example, Dustin Johnson ran away with the Masters because he was exactly that – a “master” at ball control and precision. DJ outperformed almost everyone in the field in terms of fairways and greens. That gave him more birdie putts, better looks because of his precise approach shots, and many fewer tough par saves.

But my topic today is to pose the question: “Is lighter really the key to being longer for all of us “recreational” golfers?”
Let me begin by saying that “recreational” doesn’t mean any lack of seriousness or dedication to the game. Hitting better shots and shooting lower scores is the goal for all of us who care about our golf games, right? What I mean is that we do not make our living playing the game. We do not practice incessantly. We do not spend hours at the gym every day specifically preparing our bodies to optimize our golf skills.

Today I’m going to put on my “contrarian” cap and challenge this assumption of “lighter is longer” on a couple of bases.
First, if you watch every accomplished player, you will see that the body core rotation is fast enough to “beat” the hands and clubhead to the ball. All instructors agree that the big muscles of the legs and body core are the key to power and repeatability in the golf swing. The faster you can rotate your body through impact, the more power you generate, which flows down the arms, through the hands and shaft and to the clubhead. This is a basic law of “golf swing physics”.

The simple fact is, the speed at which you can fire these big muscles is not going to be measurably impacted by removing another half ounce or less of weight from your driver. But what that removal of weight can do is to possibly allow for your hands to be faster, which would aggravate the problem I see in most mid- to high-handicap players. That problem is that their body core is not leading the swing, but rather it is following the arms and hands through impact.

Secondly, speed without precision is essentially worthless to you, and likely even counter-productive to your goal of playing better golf. Even with the big 460cc drivers, a miss of the sweet spot by just a half inch can cost you 8-12% of your optimum distance. You could never remove enough weight from the driver to increase your club speed by that amount. So, the key to consistently longer drives is to figure out how to make consistently more precise impact with the ball.

No golf adage is always true, but my experience and observation of thousands of golfers indicates to me that the fastest route to better driver distance is to get more precise with your impact and swing path, and not necessarily increasing your clubhead speed. And that may well be served by moving to a slightly heavier driver, not a lighter one.

I’ll end this by offering that this is not an experiment to conduct in a hitting bay with a launch monitor, but rather by playing a few rounds with a driver that is heavier than your current “gamer”.

Continuing with my “contrarian” outlook on many aspects of golf equipment, the typical driver “fitting” is built around an intense session on a launch monitor, where you might hit 30-40 or more drives in an hour or so. But the reality of golf is that your typical round of golf involves only 12-13 drives hit over a four-hour period, each one affected by a number of outside influences. But that’s an article for another time.

For this week, think about pulling an older, heavier driver from your closet or garage and giving it a go for a round or two and see what happens.

I would like to end today’s post by wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. It’s been a helluva year for all of us, so let’s take some time this week to count our individual and collective blessings.

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Podcasts

TG2: Reviewing the first major OEM (Cobra) 3D-printed putter!

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The first major OEM with a 3D printed putter is Cobra Golf! I took the new Limited Edition King Supersport-35 putter out on the course and found it to be a great performer. Cobra partnered with HP and SIK Putters to create a 3D printed body mated to an aluminum face that features SIK’s Descending Loft technology.

 

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Opinion & Analysis

You went to play, now you want to stay: Homes near Cabot Links & Cliffs

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At some point, we’ve all had that moment during a vacation where we look around and think to ourselves, “Instead of visiting, why don’t we just move here?” It always sounds a little crazy in the moment, but really, what’s stopping you?

Like many, I have done this myself, and it leads me down a rabbit hole of golf destination real estate to places all over North America where you get world-class golf minutes from home.

So whether you’re a big spender or looking to downsize and find a cozy hideaway, these homes near Cabot Links & Cliffs have it all.

Homes near Cabot Links & Cliffs

Inverness, Nova Scotia

Steps away

$1,495,000 – 12 Mine Road Inverness MLS Number: 202011562

Location, location, location!

This is currently the most expensive house in Inverness NS, and for good reason. It’s steps away from Cabot Links and overlooks the resort. It’s over 2,600 square feet of beautiful open concept living, and with a local address, you get a discount on tee times at the course, although with its growing popularity, you aren’t guaranteed times like if you stay on the actual property.

Who wouldn’t want to wake up to this view every day? Listing: 12 Mine Road – Realtor

Just up the road

$980,000 – 30 Broad Cove Road Inverness, MLS Number: 202010717

If the first one seems a bit crazy, this next one might be right up your alley.

This 4,000 square foot home, is only minutes from Cabot Link and Cliffs and has amazing views that overlook the Gulf of St. Lawrence. It has everything you could want including a large chef’s kitchen and enough room to host friends and family.

Listing: 30 Broad Cove Road – Realtor

Just you and the ocean

$394,000 – 6 Bayberry Road, Port Hood, MLS Number: 202015994

If you like golf but want a little more separation from the Cabot golf resort, less than 20 miles down the road is Port Hood, another quiet seaside town filled with quaint shops and endless views of the ocean.

You can wake up every morning to the sounds of the ocean and the smell of sea air, and when you want to play golf at a top 50 course in the world, you just need to make a relaxing drive along the water to get there—heck, if you are so inclined, and happen to have a boat, you can go almost door to door that way too!

Listing: 6 Bayberry Road – Realtor

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