There are two ways to get better scoring at golf. One is to get a club and adjust your swing to match it; the other is to get a custom-fit golf club that matches your prior swing.
This makes many golfers wonder if they can get their previously purchased golf clubs fitted for better performance.
Golf clubs can be fitted after they are purchased because the loft, the grip, and the shaft of a pre-owned club can all be adjusted to optimize your performance. However, if an alternate head is required to make your performance even better, you will need to replace the club.
This article goes deeper into what happens at a fitting, how long it takes to get fitted, and what materials are best to bring down your score.
It also covers how you can improve your game regardless of the fit or the material.
What Happens at Golf Club Fitting?
The concept of golf club fitting is to adjust one’s club to match their natural swing.
This reduces the learning curve and does not force one to adjust their swing to a standard golf club but focuses on picking and adjusting the club to match a golfer’s swing.
For this, the golfer is given a club with a head of choice to try his swing at a golf screen with a program that monitors the score.
Multiple lengths, angles, etc. are tested, and the fitter comes up with the specifications that would be ideal for the golfer. If ordering a custom-fitted club, the specifications are noted for the manufacturer to produce the exact club.
When getting fitted before purchase, the player has the added advantage of trying multiple heads, including different types of wood and iron pick the best head.
If you already own a club, you will let the fitter know which head the club has so he or she can only test with the same head.
This will restrict how much your fitted-club will reduce your score, but it will still be significantly better than trying to adjust to a standard golf club.
After you receive your specifications, you have to give them to a facility that can customize your club.
Of course, you also have to part with your club while they re-forge and adjust the club to match your needs.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Golf Club Fitted?
It can take anywhere between thirty minutes to an hour to get your club fitted, depending on the variety of heads you are testing for.
If you already own a club, it will take significantly less time as you will not test for different heads.
However, this does not include the customizing time, which can depend on the number of adjustments that need to be made.
Is Golf Club Fitting Considered Cheating?
Novices might feel that getting fitted makes the game easier; hence, it might be unethical or equivalent of an easy mode.
However, professionals have never debated the ethical status of club fitting.
It is considered a must in the professional community because golfers replace their clubs too often, and it would be unfair to expect to adjust to a new club every time one is worn out.
Even amateurs get fitted because the fitting is just an extension of picking the right size. You would not force yourself to adjust your swing to a golf club that is clearly too large for you.
If you pick a club based on what is convenient for your height and the weight you can swing, getting fitted is just a natural step in making this more precise and is not considered by anyone in the community as unethical.
Should a Beginner Get Fitted for Golf?
While you may read about professionals getting custom fitted golf clubs, beginners may wonder if it is wise to get used to customized clubs before getting used to standard clubs.
Beginners should get fitted for golf because everyone has a natural swing, and unlearning it is counterproductive. If you get custom-fitted, you can learn how to make the most of your natural swing.
In sports like basketball, there is a universal ball that one should master handling, and if a person changes his ball to adjust to his playing style, he will face a handicap when facing off in standard games. However, in golf, there is no universal golf club.
So putting yourself on the harder path of learning to swing an off-the-shelf club will give you no added advantage in a regular game.
How Often Should You Replace Your Golf Clubs?
How often you should replace your golf clubs depends on how frequently you use them.
If you regularly use your golf club, even the highest quality material will need replacing every four years, but lower use-frequency and durable material can add up to ten years to your club’s longevity.
What Is the Best Material for Golf Club Heads?
The selection of golf clubs can get confusing because it is not as simple as picking a wooden head or a metal head. The head of a golf club varies the most between different clubs. To reduce the confusion, here are the top three materials used for golf club heads:
If you see a metal club, chances are the head is made of steel. It comes the closest to being called the standard metal head. Manufacturers often use it because it is cheaper to make, relatively durable, and can be easily cast into different shapes.
This is aircraft metal, which means it is durable and light yet has enough drive to become the most popular golf club head of all the materials. Professionals often use this club head and get exclusively fitted for titanium. That said, it is much harder to master than wood and aluminum.
These factors make it a rare purchase among beginners who want to invest in inexpensive clubs that they can easily play with.
They are among the lightest ones in the metal head category but also the least durable. You can buy them for much less than titanium head clubs but should expect to replace them more often. These clubs are also pretty easy to master but may later become a handicap.
Once you learn how to swing with aluminum heads, you are confined to getting fitted for aluminum heads and thus replacing your golf club often.
How to Improve at Golf Without Getting Fitted?
Peter F Druker said, “One cannot build performance on weakness.” Though the quote was for business management, it has since become an important part of game theory.
If you wish to improve your golf swing without getting fitted, you are playing with the odds stacked against you.
However, there is one thing that will improve your game and remain transferrable to other clubs as well, and that is, focusing on precision over distance.
Do not get good at blindly hitting the ball farther when your score comes down to your ability to get the ball in the hole with the least hits.
Train yourself to prioritize precision over distance, and you will get good at the game regardless of the club head, length, and material.
Just like choosing a club that matches your height contributes to reducing your golf score, getting a club customized to your natural swing will strengthen your game. Selecting the head based on your natural ability is ideal, but if you have already bought a club, you can still maximize your performance by getting your club fitted and customized.