Connect with us


Why Do PGA Tour Players Change Equipment?



So far in 2017, we’ve seen some of the best golfers in the world drastically shake up their equipment, more so than in any other year in recent memory. TaylorMade has added possibly two of the most popular golfers in the world in Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. PXG has signed a number of players away from their existing golf equipment companies, including Lydia Ko and Pat Perez. And Callaway’s new driver technology has tempted plenty of Tour Professionals to experiment with it.

These equipment changes at the highest level of professional golf have led many of my students to ask me, “Why would one of the best golfers in the world change their clubs? Isn’t this a risk?” So I’m here to give you my opinion on why PGA Tour players would switch from one golf equipment sponsor to another.


Let’s face it, regardless of anyone’s financial status on Tour, money talks! I promise you that if X company offered Phil Mickelson enough money he’d leave Callaway. The same is true of Sergio Garcia with TaylorMade. That’s not a knock on their loyalty; there’s simply no substitute for long-term financial security in a game like golf where there are no guarantees.

Deep down, every PGA Tour player has the fear that he could be the next guy to lose his game, and there are several notable examples of this in every golf generation. Having a long-term, guaranteed contract guarantees that the golfer and his family will taken care of regardless of how he plays after he signs on the dotted line. Who wouldn’t take that security? 

To become “the” franchise player of a company 

Every top athlete has an ego to some degree. In the professional ranks, it has typically been “all about them” since the day they laced up their first pair of spikes. Every player wants to be the focal point of a company’s marketing strategy. Seriously, would you want to be the player in the very back of the pack when the promo photos for each golf equipment company are released at PGA Show? Of course not; we all want to be front and center. We want to be the man!

Existing in the shadow of one of their rivals on the PGA Tour can drive PGA Tour players crazy, so when a new company wants to focus on them as its franchise player, most jump at the chance.

Following the success of other players and their friends on Tour 

Some PGA Tour players are like sheep; they play follow the leader whether it comes to instructors and new golf equipment. Most of them have been beating everyone’s brains in since their junior days, so when they’re struggling or getting beat they first look to external factors.

We see it every week; player X is putting with the newest putter in play from a certain company and making everything as he wins. The next week, five other players have switched to that putter in hopes that their putting will also improve.

The other influence are the guys PGA Tour players tend to hang around with on Tour. Players at the same levels tend to pal around together, so when your buddy starts to get the upper hand on you after switching to a different club or set of irons, you follow suit. Look at how Tour players from the same area of the country see the same swing coaches. See what I mean?

To eliminate the shot patterns that plagues their game 

I was working with a certain PGA Tour player when I was teaching in Southern California who continued to miss the ball slightly left when he made his stock swing, and the miss was creeping in at least once per nine holes. It was not a swing flaw, but a club issue. He was under contract to play the woods from a certain company, but he no shaft or amount of hot melt could eliminate his leftward miss. Thus, he opted out of his contract. At the time he was not considered a “top player,” so it was not that big of a deal for the company to let him go. He was lucky.

He tested drivers until he found one that worked for him, signed a deal to play that company’s equipment and started driving the ball better than ever. He just moved into the top-50 in the Official World Golf Rankings after his first win at the end of last season.

Sometimes, no matter what you do you cannot make club X do what you want. When that happens, you cannot continue to push a rope uphill… or you won’t be on Tour for much longer. You can either wait for next season’s model or switch companies ASAP. Sometimes, flight is better than fight when it comes to golf equipment.

To use different technology that improves their ball flight 

Closely related to the points above would be switching companies to hit a club that helps change ball flight for the better. Different center of gravity locations in metal woods can cause different launch conditions. Different golf balls balls can react and feel different to players. Wedges can interact with the ground differently. All these factors help give Tour players a reason to change.

Sometimes it’s nothing more than a club’s ability to help a player hit the ball higher, spin less, or spin more. On the PGA Tour, golf is a game of inches. A new wedge could make the difference between making and missing the cut; cashing a paycheck or going home empty-handed.

Freedom to play your favorite clubs

You might not know it, but certain companies require their staff players only to play X number of clubs, or a certain type of club so the company can promote its “strengths” to the masses. Most of the time, you sign with a company whose products you like, but you might not prefer its golf ball, putters, or wedges. So if you have the freedom to use the clubs you want to play, you keep your favorite clubs in the bag and life is good.

All too often, PGA Tour players start to switch to a new company’s clubs and find out that they’re not playing well with that company’s putters, balls, or wedges, etc., so they change their contract in order to do so. It happens all the time. Check out any player’s bag on Tour and you will see that most do not play 14 clubs from one single golf equipment company; now you know the reason.

So overall, is switching equipment a good or bad idea? To me, it all comes down to what you’re trying to accomplish as a player. It’s hard to say “yes” or “no” before the fact, and much easier to play Monday morning quarterback. Fortunately, the clubs today are much more consistent and easier to custom fit, which makes them much easier to switch out than they used to be. That’s to say, you can’t really go terribly wrong since all of the equipment today is good. So if you think it will help, do some experimenting with Trackman and on the course. Then analyze the results and your scores. It won’t take long to recognize whether something is worse, better or the same.

As always, enjoy the process. Happy testing!

Your Reaction?
  • 226
  • LEGIT34
  • WOW3
  • LOL1
  • IDHT2
  • FLOP5
  • OB2
  • SHANK12

Tom F. Stickney II, is a specialist in Biomechanics for Golf, Physiology, and 3d Motion Analysis. He has a degree in Exercise and Fitness and has been a Director of Instruction for almost 30 years at resorts and clubs such as- The Four Seasons Punta Mita, BIGHORN Golf Club, The Club at Cordillera, The Promontory Club, and the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. His past and present instructional awards include the following: Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher, Golf Digest Top 50 International Instructor, Golf Tips Top 25 Instructor, Best in State (Florida, Colorado, and California,) Top 20 Teachers Under 40, Best Young Teachers and many more. Tom is a Trackman University Master/Partner, a distinction held by less than 25 people in the world. Tom is TPI Certified- Level 1, Golf Level 2, Level 2- Power, and Level 2- Fitness and believes that you cannot reach your maximum potential as a player with out some focus on your physiology. You can reach him at [email protected] and he welcomes any questions you may have.



  1. Gorden

    Jun 14, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    For top golfers equipment can be a big issue, for any one over 30 with the ability to reach about a 15 handicap (men’s regular tees) your the guy that can play what he wants. Your ability puts you in the best position to HAVE FUN playing the game (make good scramble players). There is a time to play to enjoy more and improve less.

  2. Vanessa Carlysle

    May 31, 2017 at 1:49 am

    Arguing the money point is pointless – there is money in the game and players aren’t able to put that aside and make club choices without it — wait..didn’t that happen when Nike left golf clubs? Seems like I remember that 15/17 (check it, it’s close) chose to go with TM – why was that?

    The question shouldn’t be why they switch but why they choose to play what OEM, because at the end of the day these athletes are measured up against one thing and that is “did they win?” Or “did they lose?” And if they choose equipment that hurts their performance…then why do we care what they play? They arent going to be around long enough to bother

  3. D

    May 26, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    Yeah, before both of u got here

    • Benny

      May 30, 2017 at 6:30 am

      I am a fan of this. Great website and nice to see positive open minded comments instead of snobby negative jamokes telling us how bad their life sucks by whinning about, literally, everything. Great article!

  4. RogerinNZ

    May 26, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    Thanks Tom, as always, a great informative read!!

    Nothing worse than a Hook or Auto Lefts club.
    This ruins confidence more and more
    I;m currently Straight or a Lite Fade and thats just great!
    All old timeless gear too!!
    Thanks Tom.

  5. Jack

    May 26, 2017 at 10:12 am

    So it’s the money

    • rebfan73

      May 29, 2017 at 7:58 pm


      • Benny

        May 30, 2017 at 6:33 am

        I fully agree… but Zach Johnson switched to PXG for slightly less $.
        Why? Because the money was the same but he could now be the star at PXG while back of the pack at Titliest. So not always is it the $, but bet its 95%!

  6. Joro

    May 26, 2017 at 9:37 am

    Most players are under contract and will change to a new club so people will see them and run to the store as fast as their little feet will carry them to buy a new game, which for years has not worked. At any rate to tell if a club is that good watch what the player is using after a month or so, if the new is still in the Bag, that says it is better than his old stuff, but,,,,,, if they go back to their gamers as most do, that tells you new is not the best.

    • CoryUS

      May 26, 2017 at 10:30 am

      This is not true, every time I go buy new clubs my handicap goes down by a minimum of 3 shots. Every taylormade driver I buy I hit it 5 yards farther than the previous model and I am now a scratch golfer and plan on being better than that with my next set and hitting the ball around 480 carry…………………….

      • cgasucks

        May 26, 2017 at 11:03 pm

        What a weakling you are. My carry is over 520….with a PW.

  7. AndyUK

    May 26, 2017 at 9:07 am

    I take it you can’t name the OWGR top 50 player that changed their equipment to help tame a miss?

    • Mike

      May 26, 2017 at 9:55 am

      Sounds like Kisner

      • AndyUK

        May 26, 2017 at 10:01 am

        I’m thinking more Pat Perez now I’ve looking at who won at the end of last year?? Kisners been with Callaway for a while

        • Jack

          May 26, 2017 at 1:49 pm

          Kisner uses a teacher in Georgia. I agree it’s most likely Perez.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Everything you need to know about PXG’s new 2023 Gen6 golf clubs



Parsons Xtreme Golf (PXG) has officially announced the release of its new Gen6 family of products, which replace the company’s previous Gen5 lineup.

The new Gen6 stable includes two driver options (o311 and 0311 XF), two fairway woods (0311 and 0311 XF), two hybrids (0311 and 0311 XF), and two iron models (0311 P and 0311 XP).

PXG offers two different versions of each club type to satisfy the varying needs of different golfers. The standard 0311 metalwoods and 0311 P irons offer players a combination of forgiveness and performance, whereas the 0311 XF metalwoods and 0311 XP irons are made for players who need a little “X”-tra forgiveness on mishits.

The Gen 6 clubs are available for purchase on PXG’s website, or in PXG in-store locations, as of Thursday, March 23. The Gen 6 driver is selling for $499, fairway woods $299, hybrids $289, and irons $219 apiece.

Below, we break down the new technological enhancements in the Gen 6 family.

PXG’s 0311 and 0311 XF drivers

The PXG 0311 driver model (pictured above and below) offers a traditional tear drop shape and a compact profile, and the PXG 0311 XF model has a larger footprint and shallower face to help players who hit mishit the ball more often.

New this year for PXG is a robotic polishing process that helps with tighter CT tolerances to boost ball speeds for product users. PXG has also improved sound and feel compared to previous iterations by using what the company calls High Modal Frequency Designs.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by GolfWRX (@golfwrx)

Additionally, each head is designed with a 3-port adjustable weighting system in the sole, and they’re built with high-strength Ti412 face structures to increase speed.

The 0311 driver is available in 7.5, 9 and 10.5 degrees, and the PXG 0311 XF is offered in 9, 10.5 and 12 degrees.

PXG’s 0311 and 0311 XF fairway woods

The PXG 0311 fairways (13, 15, 18 and 21 degrees) and the 0311 XF fairways (16, 17, 19 and 22 degrees) each have adjustable sole weights – three weight ports in the 0311, and two weight ports in the 0311 XF – and each are designed with flatter soles to lower the overall mass of the heads to increase forgiveness. The 0311 XF model, in particular, is designed with a Railed Sole Geometry to help create lower friction to help with turf interaction.

The Gen 6 fairway woods are built with AM355 steel bodies and HT1770 steel faces.

PXG’s 0311 and 0311 XF hybrids

The PXG 0311 hybrids have a more compact shape at address, while the 0311 XF features a larger shape that offers more forgiveness. As with the Gen 6 fairway woods, the soles of the hybrids are flatter to keep weight low, and the XF in particular has protruding split rails to enhance turf interaction.

The 0311 hybrids are available in 17, 19, 22 and 25 degrees, and the 0311 XF hybrids are available in 19, 22, 25, 28 and 31 degrees.

PXG’s 0311 P and 0311 XF irons

PXG’s new 0311 P and 0311 XP irons now have a 15 percent thinner face, and PXG is calling them “the fastest irons we’ve ever made,” and the “softest irons we’ve ever made.”

The faces are made from high strength HT1770 maraging steel, and they have milled channels behind the faces to increase face deflection, increase launch, and raise ball speeds. In between the faces and the back cavity, PXG uses its propriety XCOR2 material to enhance feel, energy transfer and durability. The bodies themselves are five-times forged from 8620 steel, and they have milled back surfaces to reduce wall thickness and increase precision.

PXG’s new 0311 P and 0311 XP irons also use Tungsten weighting in the low-and-back portions of the heads to increase launch and forgiveness.

According to PXG, the 0311 P irons are designed for low-to-mid handicappers and have moderate offset, whereas the 0311 XP irons have more offset, and they’re built for mid-to-high handicaps who want more distance and forgiveness.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by GolfWRX (@golfwrx)

The Gen 6 irons are also offered in a PXG Black Label Elite option, which comes with an Xtreme Dark finish.

See more photos of the Gen 6 products here

Your Reaction?
  • 14
  • LEGIT6
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT1
  • FLOP2
  • OB1
  • SHANK13

Continue Reading

Whats in the Bag

Scottie Scheffler WITB 2023 (March)



Driver: TaylorMade Stealth 2 Plus (8 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Black 7 X

3-wood: TaylorMade Stealth 2 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Black 8 X

Irons: Srixon ZU85 (3: 20 degrees, 4: 23 degrees), TaylorMade P7TW (5-PW)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 GOST Hybrid Prototype 10 X (3), True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 (4-PW)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (50-12F, 56-14F), Titleist Vokey Design WedgeWorks Proto (60-T), Titleist Vokey Design WedgeWorks Proto (60.5-T)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron Special Select Timeless TourType GSS prototype

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet

More Scottie Scheffler WITBs

Your Reaction?
  • 3
  • LEGIT0
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

Continue Reading

Whats in the Bag

Billy Horschel WITB 2023 (February)



Driver: Titleist TSR3 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus TR Black 6 X

3-wood: Titleist TSi2 (15 degrees @14.25)
Shaft: Project X HZRDUS Smoke Black RDX 70 6.5 TX

5-wood: Titleist TSi2 (18 degrees)
Shaft: Project X HZRDUS Smoke Black RDX 80 6.5 TX

Irons: Titleist 620 CB, Titleist 620 MB
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM9 (52-12F, 56-08M), Titleist Vokey Design WedgeWorks Proto (60-T)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue Onyx S400

Putter: Ping Tyne 4 Sigma 2

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord

More Billy Horschel WITBs

Your Reaction?
  • 1
  • LEGIT0
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

Continue Reading