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There is a lot of focus on fitting services lately. How would you rank them in order of importance and why? Driver fitting, iron fitting, or putter fitting.

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Great question.  So the obvious answer is all three, but If I had to rank them it would go like this, for me personally.

Driver: It set's up the entire hole for you, getting the ball in play at a reasonable distance for your swing, is going to affect the rest of your game.

Putter: will be used on at probably 35% of your shots...a rough estimate I read once,  if you shoot 70, you'll  likely have between 24 and 28 putts.    If you shoot 100 you'll likely have 35 or more putts. 

Irons:  Not that they aren't important, but just feel the other two are more important. 

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2 hours ago, Golfspy_CG2 said:

Great question.  So the obvious answer is all three, but If I had to rank them it would go like this, for me personally.

Driver: It set's up the entire hole for you, getting the ball in play at a reasonable distance for your swing, is going to affect the rest of your game.

Putter: will be used on at probably 35% of your shots...a rough estimate I read once,  if you shoot 70, you'll  likely have between 24 and 28 putts.    If you shoot 100 you'll likely have 35 or more putts. 

Irons:  Not that they aren't important, but just feel the other two are more important. 

Interesting thoughts Rob. Based on your own personal experiences, and your ranking, did your driver fitting(s) have the most impact on your own game?

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I would start with the category you are struggling with most.

 

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Just having gone through a fitting recently, my objectives and results were focused on GIR which was an issue with me.

So driver first and then my long clubs - fairway woods and hybrids. The last on the list were irons. As a disclaimer I told the fitter I was happy with my short game and putting. Both of which I practice a lot.



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In my case, I focused on irons first because I was looking to replace my irons.  Then I wanted to get my driver up to speed.  While I had it fit when purchased, it was nothing more than a fitting with the pro watching ball flight to see which shaft worked best for me.  Going though a LM fitting, I was able to improve the performance with a better shaft than the stock one from Taylor Made.

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#1...putter. you use this for at least 25%+ of your strokes and it's where you'll save yourself some strokes.

#2....irons. obviously you're using these throughout the round and they need to be set for you. But you can adjust for whatever irons you're swinging and most people have to adjust each day depending on which swing they brought to the course. Wedges would be #2 alone if irons and wedges are considered separate.

#3.... Driver. You hit this a handful of times each round. In reality, most folks would be better off hitting 3-wood or an iron off the tee anyway and would perform the same or better than using a driver.



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I agree that whatever you struggle with the most should be what you should fit first.  For me, I struggle with driver.  I took my driver out of the bag and will not put it back in until I have a proper fitting.

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1 hour ago, SmoothG said:

I agree that whatever you struggle with the most should be what you should fit first.  For me, I struggle with driver.  I took my driver out of the bag and will not put it back in until I have a proper fitting.

I've done the same thing. I am currently carrying 2 3W's, one of which is a little longer, the other is a bit more accurate and easier for me to hit off the deck.

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18 hours ago, russtopherb said:

Interesting thoughts Rob. Based on your own personal experiences, and your ranking, did your driver fitting(s) have the most impact on your own game?

Definitely, I would say the times I've been fit for a driver, the immediate results had much more of an effect than the irons.  

I have only been fit for a putter once in my life, and that was two months ago at PING.  But the putter I had been playing with for four years was pretty much a self fit.  And it worked for me not only on the course, but even at the PING fitting, the fitter said i putted at a 2.1 handicap level.  He kept me in the exact same style head but just the PING model and when tested afterward, i putted at a 2.5 level.   I attribute the slight difference to just having a slightly different look at setup. 

But now that I've had it on course for several rounds, I haven't lost anything at all in performance and last week, may have had my best putting day ever.   Didn't miss one putt inside 6 feet and made 3 or 4 in the 10 foot range.  

So all that said, I feel those are the two most important areas to be fit.

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I think most will see instant improvement in the driver because it’s the easier clubs to hit well. Especially when you gain confidence in the club. 

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how about a wedge fitting?  

Wedge Fitting

Ask any tour pro and they will tell you: Of all the clubs played before reaching the green, the wedges should be the most thoroughly thought about in relation to the character of your game. An adjustment in a few degrees of loft, different bounce characteristics, the number of wedges you carry and the spacing between the lofts, special grinds; these are all essential elements that get substantially magnified as you get within 125 yards of the pin. While the driver is your muscle, the wedges are your soft touches that are key to scoring.


Speaking from experience (some of it recent) it really sucks to get close and drop a ton of strokes.

People typically think of golf in 2 ways - either (1) from the hole back to the tee or (2) from the tee to the hole.
Depending on how you think about it I'd start there.
If (1) then putter/wedges/driver and if (2) then driver/wedges/putter

I'd save irons to the end. Although it is critical to get the right shaft I think you save more strokes with the other 3 clubs.

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I would rank club fitting: Putter-Irons/Wedges-Driver. Putting is half your game, and if you have the wrong putter (length, lie, loft, balance) you'll never improve your game. I like the SAM system, but I believe being fit on "real" grass is a must! Irons and wedges need to have the correct shaft in length and weight, plus the correct lie. Driver's need the right loft and shaft in length and weights. Plus, don't forget the correct grip size and a comfortable grip. 

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I would agree with the notion on whatever you struggle with most.  I will say that of the fittings I have done, the putter fitting had the most effect on my handicap.  

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I would offer that the value of iron fitting increases as the golfer deviates from average build, to the point of being most important for someone like me at 6’4” with long legs.

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22 hours ago, howellhandmade said:

I would offer that the value of iron fitting increases as the golfer deviates from average build, to the point of being most important for someone like me at 6’4” with long legs.

This is funny because I had the exact same problem as I am 6'5. I bought new irons last year without even thinking about standard length vs what I should have. The workers at Golf Galaxy looked at me like I was insane haha.

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6 hours ago, bmaru99 said:

This is funny because I had the exact same problem as I am 6'5. I bought new irons last year without even thinking about standard length vs what I should have. The workers at Golf Galaxy looked at me like I was insane haha.

Fitting very tall golfers is its own topic and it’s no surprise that GG “workers” would have no idea what to do. But we especially suffer with the short irons and wedges, while drivers are already plenty long. For the very tall golfer, finding an iron/wedge length and lie that improves posture and matches lie to swing plane is low hanging fruit. There may be swing weight implications, and some manufacturers (Mizuno) are more accommodating than others.

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Here's a follow up question: what kind of "services" or capabilities should you be looking for in a fitting (putter, irons, driver)?

I know some of the big box stores around here offer fittings, but for example, the putter fitting looks like you just pick a putter that suits your eye and they make sure to get you the correct length; not necessarily fitting you to a putter head that complements your stroke.

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10 hours ago, ncwoz said:

Here's a follow up question: what kind of "services" or capabilities should you be looking for in a fitting (putter, irons, driver)?

I know some of the big box stores around here offer fittings, but for example, the putter fitting looks like you just pick a putter that suits your eye and they make sure to get you the correct length; not necessarily fitting you to a putter head that complements your stroke.

I have a certain personality where before I get "into" something, I do extensive research -- I think that's what brought most of us to the forums. You could call me a well-informed consumer I guess. I do decent financially, but also live in one of the most expensive states and don't take money for granted, so I try to employ my dollars as best as I can. A great fitter should be able to articulate to me what they see in the numbers, and what they'd like the outcome to be post-fit. It's a fine line because I don't want to be a number chaser and be a great "Trackman" or "Quad" golfer, I want it to translate to the course. So I guess my ideal fit would be someone who can leverage the LM as a tool, but not rely on it entirely, if that makes sense? If not, at least lie to me and make me think you know wtf you're talking about. Fake it till you make it 🙂

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This is an interesting and important topic. Greens in regulation has the most direct impact on handicap. You must hit greens in order to score well. That said, if you can't find a fairway, you can't find the green unless you are Seve. You hit driver a maximum of 14 times per round but irons (if you include wedges) on every hole. The same is true (use on every hole) with putter. Don't get me wrong - driver is critical and I know the correlation between driving the ball well and iron play. As others have said, start where you struggle but I would personally rank them: putter, irons/wedges, driver.


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