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Mandatory fitting for review contest winners?


NCST8golf
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Curly6's post in the G400 contest thread got me thinking about this. Should proper fitting be mandated for contest winners? I personally would love to have the assurance that winners were giving the most accurate reviews that can only come after a proper fitting. But there are a lot of variables here. This forum has debated ad nauseam what a “proper” fitting entails. To some, it's a visit to a manufacturers website to input some static measurements and ball flight preferences. To others, it is a day trip to Club Champion to evaluate all possible head/shaft combinations (unfortunately for my wallet, I belong in the latter group).

 

Allow me a brief vent. When I started getting serious about my game 11 years ago, my wife gave me a Callaway gift card as a wedding present. Gone was my starter set in a box from wally world and I was off to get fitted by the experts at Golf Galaxy. Two hours later I was the proud owner of a beautiful set of X-20 Tours at 1” long and 3* up (FWIW the golf expert told me I actually needed 6* up, but Callaway wouldn't bend them that far). I didn't know anything about clubs or fitting for myself at the time, so I thought I was good to go. After years of swing manipulation and inconsistent contact, I started messing around with an old 70's era set of MacGregor VIP blades that I inherited along the way – standard length and lie. Light bulbs. All of a sudden I was creating dollar bill divots instead of the snap hook generating mini-trenches I was used to. My current irons were fitted outdoors by a Hogan rep – ¼” long and ½* up. Long story short – all custom fittings are not equal. My review of those first Cally irons wouldn't have been worth squat to anyone considering a purchase at the time.

 

This brings me back to my original thought. Should proper fitting be a requirement for contest winners and how does one define “proper”? I believe there is a population of golfers that could benefit from member reviews of off the shelf clubs. I also strongly believe that population is largely uninterested in (and absent from) this forum. I'd like to hear the thoughts of others regarding what might be a “standard” fitting protocol for those members that are privileged to review clubs for all of us. What is acceptable to know that we are all giving each other the best possible data to inform our buying decisions?

 

 

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I don't think it should be required. Most golfers buy off the rack anyway, so it would not be accurate for them to read reviews of completely optimized clubs. Maybe suggested, though. I think everyone should at least do a free fitting/demo to test out different shafts on a launch monitor. I personally would get fit because I know that it really does make a huge difference, as far as performance is concerned.

 

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I can agree with some of that. But isn't the performance of the club part and parcel with the quality of the fit? For instance, if I review a club with a shaft completely ill suited for me, I will likely downgrade the performance of that club. I think it's tough to look at club performance in a vacuum, essentially removing quality of fit from the equation.

 

 

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I think you would miss out on some solid reviews if you made it for proper fitting only. No doubt there are more golfers in general who buy off the rack than “fitted” golfers. I would not make getting fit a requirement to test.

 

 

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I've pretty much have mixed feelings about Forum Reviews and whether or not the clubs should be fitted. I did a driver review several years ago and I'm still playing that very same driver. My only selection at the time was the shaft. S or R. Essentially the driver I reviewed was OTR. It's been the best driver for accuracy and distance I've ever owned. Who would have thought? However, if I'm buying new irons I'm defiantly going to see my fitter. I will not ever again play OTR irons. For Forum reviews I'm not sure it makes since to spend the money or time to have each participant fitted.

 

Disclaimer: I enjoy the Forum Reviews! I'm not grandstanding or admonishing anyone from participating in and enjoying the forum reviews. Just posting a simple thought to the above topic.

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I think you would miss out on some solid reviews if you made it for proper fitting only. No doubt there are more golfers in general who buy off the rack than “fitted” golfers. I would not make getting fit a requirement to test.

 

 

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I agree with you. It seems like anytime you make something mandatory a group gets excluded. I think it's best left up to the reviewers and I would hope they would state in their review if they were fitted and what were the results of that fitting.

 

 

 

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Make no mistake - I thoroughly enjoy reading reviews and hearing others' feedback, regardless of whether or not they were fitted. And I will continue to do so! It's just a thought that had been nagging me. I recognize the point about the vast majority of golfers choosing OTR clubs. I'm just not convinced that same majority is represented on this forum. But I have been wrong before and likely will be again. Thanks for sharing the thoughts. Keep em coming.

 

 

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If that was mandatory I'd be out 100% of the time. Not trusting this Yooper to fit me with another brands cart because he likes it.... nope. Not happening, but if I am in an area where I can find a reputable fitter I'd probably do it for sure.

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Make no mistake - I thoroughly enjoy reading reviews and hearing others' feedback, regardless of whether or not they were fitted. And I will continue to do so! It's just a thought that had been nagging me. I recognize the point about the vast majority of golfers choosing OTR clubs. I'm just not convinced that same majority is represented on this forum. But I have been wrong before and likely will be again. Thanks for sharing the thoughts. Keep em coming.

 

 

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I think your premise here is interesting, and you may well be right that the majority of people on a forum like this take golf seriously enough to insist on a fitting. But there are other golf nuts who operate under other constraints. Like Shankster, I live in the UP of Michigan. For me to get any kind of fitting, I'm likely looking at at least a two hour drive.

 

Others (and I'd include myself here) are trying to play a rich man's game at a discount. Here's where "fitting by eBay comes in": buying used and clearance clubs, I try stuff to figure out what works. While it might not be fully rational, it's part of the hobby. It's fun.

 

Again, I suspect that many—maybe most—of the regulars around here are the "get fitted" types. That might be different for the lurkers/readers.

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I think most of the reply's in this thread are pretty spot on.   Being fit has never been required for any forum testing since I've been a member.   I do know for the current Cobra Connect Full Bag testers, we suggested they get fit however they feel most comfortable in doing so.   Since it was a season long commitment to play the clubs I think it only made sense.   But we certainly understand the cost and access issues that might prevent some from doing so.  But if at all possible, I know I certainly would have done so.  But I can't speak for everyone.

 

All we ask from our testers is to live up to commitment of doing both stages for the product in a timely manner and giving a thorough and honest review of if the item does what it's advertised to do and give their opinion on some subjective items such as looks, feel and sound. 

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Here's another take on fitting.... in general. It's not for everybody. And by that I mean a "deep" professional fitting. Not a Big Box fitting. Although, I think at least some fitting (big box) should always be done. And once your club are returned from Big Box fitter make sure they are in spec. Most Pro - deep fitters not only fit you for your clubs in all aspects but they also build them. That's one of the big differences. IMO.

 

Golf is not unlike many other sports. You can take it as far as you like. My neighbor used to do a lot of big time Bass fishing and tournaments. Everything he owned was special and exacting. We laughed one day when I showed him my tackle box and Garcia rod & reel from Walmart. So, and OTR rod and reel is plenty good for my fishing game.

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I'm with jlukes here.

 

I really like reading club reviews. But if you think about it, there's no real reason to believe that someone else's review should have any bearing at all on a club that I buy. We know that when MGS comes out with their Most Wanted lists, that the first place club isn't going to be the best club for everyone. Other people's results don't necessarily correlate to mine.

 

So it is with the forum testers. One guy gets fitted for his F8 driver; the other doesn't. Suppose the guy who gets fitted loves his, and the other guy can't ever get on with his new driver. It might just as well go the other way: the guy who gets fitted ends up concluding that the F8 is going on eBay, and the guy who gets his by guessing his wrist-to-floor falls in love with his new driver.

 

In neither case do their results mean that the F8 is a good fit for me, fitted or not.

 

But we're club junkies around here, at least most of us. If we don't have new toys to play with, we actually like reading about and seeing pictures of other guys' new toys. I want to read the stories about how the reviewers get on with their clubs. Most likely, we'll see a few common themes among the reviews; those commonalities are probably the biggest takeaways of the reviews.

 

Too expand on this: A truly good review won't be about how well the club jives with the player.  Sure, it can be touched on, but a good review is about the club, how it performs, and if it lives up to the claims made by the manufacturer. 

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Well, part of the review could be about how well the manufacturers online fitting tool worked at properly fitting you into their clubs. I think that is a very important part of a review as many more players use an online fitting tool instead of an actual in person fitting.

 

I think a big thing for me is how do forum testers evaluate performance of clubs, particularly drivers.

 

I had put my name in for the G400 driver testing but then it dawned on me, I have no way of giving hard performance numbers in my review. I don't have access to a launch monitor so how can show the readers of MGS comparables between my current driver and the one I'm testing and draw a conclusion on performance?

 

I ultimately took my name off the list for the G400 because I don't think I could have given enough data, just my subjective thoughts on feel, looks, etc, while maybe guessing that, yes, the new driver is going longer, but no hard data to back up the claims.

 

 

 

 

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Too expand on this: A truly good review won't be about how well the club jives with the player. Sure, it can be touched on, but a good review is about the club, how it performs, and if it lives up to the claims made by the manufacturer.

I have to disagree somewhat here. The member reviews should be about how well it jibes with a player. The controlled testing by MGS staff is more about performance and claims made by the manufacturer.

 

 

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I have to disagree somewhat here. The member reviews should be about how well it jibes with a player. The controlled testing by MGS staff is more about performance and claims made by the manufacturer.

 

 

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If the reviewer explains why, then that's fine. But if a reviewer spends most of their time explaining why the club doesn't fit them and seemingly complaining about the club without explaining who the club would better fit than that review is absolutely useless to the community.

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At the very least a basic in store fitting is probably a good idea, but as a lot of people have said, it's not always available or practical for some people.

 

Going back to the Mizuno JPX review, we had to nominate which model we wanted to review prior to selection, so I had an in store hit of them, thinking the forged would be my pick. To my surprise, the Tours looked like being a better option.  For the Mizunos, an in depth fitting made sense because of the huge list of shaft options available, and the shaft optimiser Mizuno use seems to work really well.

 

The depth of the fitting should probably be in proportion to the number of options available from the OEM.

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I don't think that's a bad idea. I texted Cobra F7+ last year and stock shaft was not getting it done. Got fit, shaft change and all of a sudden we had a gamer and a product I'm raving about.

 

It's kind of a disservice to the community and the manufacturer if your testing something that isn't fit for your swing.

 

After fitting I was able to give an apples to apples comparison of the product vs my former gamer

 

 

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