Following Mizuno's announcement that it has developed a sophisticated device which can identify the DNA of a golfer's swing and which in turn will help interpret that information to suggest the best head and shaft combination, Golfmagic decided to put it to the test.
We sent three golfers to the Mizuno National Fitting Centre at Clays golf course near Wrexham and asked PGA pro James Davies to take a computerised 'swab' from each and recommend the combination of shaft and Mizuno iron clubhead that would improve each player's performance.
Sean McDonald (48) is a horse race starter who has officiated at two Grand Nationals and a 10-handicapper, while Mike Barr (36), an electrical contractor from Eastham Lodge in The Wirral, also plays off 10. Completing the trio was commercial manager Michael Smyth (34), who has a four handicap at Trent Park and City of Derry.
In the past, the most complex decision a serious golfer had to make for the shafts in a set of irons was 'Steel or Graphite? Stiff or Regular?' Now, with Mizuno's range of forged clubheads and a wide variety of shaft materials and flexes, the choices are far more sophisticated, enabling the fitter to identify with pinpoint computer accuracy, the combination of shaft and clubhead that will make the most of a players swing.
Says James: "Identifying a golfer's Swing DNA blueprint is really important because two players with identical clubhead speeds might need completely different shafts to maximise their ball flight.
"Players who release the club early, for example, need a different bending profile to those who favour a late hit. Their swing speeds might be the same, they might even need the same flex, but fitting them for the same shaft could be disastrous."
After comparing three shots by our Golfmagic testers with their own 6-iron with three shots with the Mizuno Swing Optimiser (MSO) 6-iron, with its specially developed strain gauges and a microprocessor, Mizuno software narrowed down 50 shaft options to the best match with two back up suggestions.
The five-point blue print the Optimiser identified was:
How fast the clubhead and shaft are moving during the swing. Relates more to age and physical ability rather than to the direction of the shot.
How quickly a player make the transition from the upswing to the downswing
Shaft Toe Down
A measure of the bowing of the shaft in a downward direction during the downswing.
Shaft kick angle
The amount of shaft forward bending during the downswing motion.Where the shaft flexes to deliver a higher or lower launch
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