Show of hands. How many of you are playing with a set of golf clubs that you have been officially fitted for? Hmmm….not many. So I guess the question I would ask is: Why is that?
I can just hear it now: “Lack of availability.” Nope. That’s not a thing.
“I didn’t know amateurs could schedule a fitting.” They can.
“I don’t need to get fitted for my clubs.” Only, you do.
“I am a little intimidated to get fitted. I mean, don’t you have to be a professional or someone with a really great swing?” I totally get that. But no.
Playing with a set of clubs that is perfectly fitted to your golf swing is about as satisfying as stretchy pants and a bulky black sweater on Thanksgiving just as dessert is about to be served. And just as vital for success.
Been playing with an angry fade your whole life and finally just accepted it? There are clubs for that.
Can’t seem to get a trajectory as high as you would expect with your irons? There are clubs for that.
You’ve given up on your driver and settled with using your 3-wood off the tee? There are clubs for that.
So why hasn’t a session with a club fitter become standard protocol before buying that new set? Many reasons. None of them valid.
Most players don’t realize just how important it is. But if you could play with a set of clubs that were designed to accommodate your swing flaws and help correct the bad shots, why wouldn’t you do it? Unless you are actively trying to punish yourself and if that is the case, there are therapists for that. Good ones. Trust me.
So now we know that it’s critical to make sure your clubs are right for you, swing flaws and all. What’s next? Many players like the idea of getting fitted but don’t know how readily available club fittings are. You don’t have to be “special.” You don’t need to be at a certain ability level. You don’t need to make major swing changes before getting fitted….unless you had already planned to. And if that’s the case then get those swing changes so ingrained that they become your natural swing. If you intend to do a swing overhaul, this would not be the time to buy a new set of clubs, much less get fitted for them.
So where do you go? Just about anywhere. It’s not like the underground speakeasies where you have to know someone who knows someone just to get to the right address. A quick Google search will give you a ton of options for club fittings at your local golf shops (see: Roger Dunn), golf courses and fitting studios (see: GolfTEC). And no, that does not obligate you to buy clubs. A fitting can remain simply that: a club fitting. You can purchase a set of clubs, or a single club, when you are good and ready.
So now you have your appointment to get fitted and you are excited….until you’re not. You have started to get in your own head about things. Things like what your golf swing will look like to others…..especially the club fitter.
But what is important to remember is the fact that the swing itself is not being analyzed. It’s the numbers that are being looked at: swing speed, launch angle, and more statistics that you really don’t need to understand as long as the person fitting you does. The club fitter is studying the number (not judging them) in order to place just the right club in your hand to help make you excited about your next round of golf. That. Is. All.
The club fitter doesn’t care what your numbers are. Whatever your stats, they have seen worse. Much worse. And for the player who twirls their club just a little too much and holds their finish about 7 seconds too long…..yeah you. They have also seen better.
Trust me. Your golf swing is the last component of the fitting experience they are concerned about. That’s not to say they don’t care. They do. But they are focused on making sure the golf clubs you end up with are perfect for your golf swing….they don’t expect your golf swing to be perfect. In fact, there is no judgment attached to your swing whatsoever.
I was actually talking to a couple buddies of mine who are club fitters. One friend asked the other about a celebrity’s golf swing who had just been fitted the day before. The person who fit him could not recall much about the details of his swing, but could easily and excitedly rattle off the specs, which fairway woods they went with, what degree their different wedges were, and how many hybrids were in the bag. He was super excited that he got that player into the perfect set of clubs and couldn’t wait to hear the results of his next round. But no. He couldn’t tell you much about his actual swing. So there. Honest. They are not impressed nor turned off by a golf swing…..no matter who you are.
So now that you have reasons and examples as to how to get out of your own way on this, what are you waiting for? The holidays and gift giving season will be here before we know it. Why not just take the lead on making sure you get a gift you love? Go get fitted. Get into the perfect set of clubs. Put that wrapped bad boy in the pile of gifts the family will be opening. So when you open Aunt Gretchen’s knitted sweater with kittens on it that is so short it barely covers your navel, it will be easier to feign excitement if you have something you are truly ecstatic about…..your next round of golf.