I’m now at that stage in life where weddings and christenings start to become permanent fixtures on my calendar. And in the hope of looking dapper in any of the several thousand photographs I will undoubtedly be forced to flick through, it was time to get tailored for a light grey suit.
Several days later after travelling to the Titleist National Fitting Centre at St Ives Golf Club in Cambridgeshire, I realised the importance of applying that exact same attitude toward my golfing gear.
Just as an outfit might look great on one person when plucked off the rail, it might look completely different on someone else. So too can be the result when purchasing clubs straight out the pro shop, simply because you like the look and feel of them.
Off-the-shelf clubs – which typically come in standard shafts - are developed by manufacturers so as to cover a broad spectrum of the market. You may get lucky. You may not. Either way, that ‘one size fits all’ approach to golf equipment is now becoming a thing of the past. If you don’t believe me, Tiger Woods may persuade you.
“The thing I notice most about the amateurs I play with is that they aren’t custom fit to their clubs,” the 14-time major champion recently told the Golf Channel. “The benefit of doing so is that they could accentuate the positive things they do in their swings and offset any chronic mistakes.”
As I walked through the doors and shook hands with my custom fit expert for the day, Paul Thomson, the Titleist Fitting Technician got me hitting several balls to warm up while learning more about my current equipment and specs, on-course problems and goals for the future.
Paul then measured and evaluated my current setup - which included more of a mixed bag than Brandt Snedeker’s – and then looked into my clubhead speed, ball speed, smash factor (ratio between clubhead speed and ball speed), launch angle, spin rate, carry, distance and other little vagaries with the help of his TrackMan Pro Launch monitor and innovative Titleist SureFit system to maximise the number of options available to me.