Club building, club fitting, and other conversations at the 2020 PGA Merchandise Show.

The 2020 PGA Merchandise show was a great week.  I always enjoy seeing new products (too bad I can’t use those non-conforming golf balls 😊), meeting new colleagues and catching up with old ones.  It is always nice to hear how happy people are with Mitchell Golf equipment!

One area that caught my eye was the number of new styles of putters on the market.  Mitchell Golf is always on the forefront to ensure our machines will be able to accommodate these trends and new products.  If you ever come across a model that does not fit properly in a Mitchell machine, please let us know!

All our machines, whether it’s a custom machine or from our product line, are manufactured in-house at our facility in Albion, MI.  Besides the pride we have for making products that are Made in America, keeping our production in house also allows us to constantly prototype new products and stay up to date with the ever-changing designs.

Club building and club fitting 

I really enjoyed the conversations about custom golf club building and fitting with my customers and other PGA professionals at the show.  This was a popular topic throughout the entire week, starting at demo day and continuing through the educational sessions at the convention center.  I had numerous conversations about the Mitchell Golf Club Performance School.  https://www.mitchellgolf.com/shop/classes/mitchell-golf-performance-school-repair-build-and-fit-clubs/

This interest doesn’t surprise me, as there is increased pressure on golf club builders to hit the numbers that the golfer was fit for.  A custom fit is key, as the days of buying a manufacturer’s standard set of clubs off the rack are rapidly declining.  Technology is continuing to evolve at an unbelievable rate and what the golf industry is doing with this technology is still unfolding.

Still a disconnect with some golf instructors

With all the positive emphasis on custom fitting, what still concerns me is hearing many instructors say they are focused on swing improvement — not buying a golf swing or using club fitting to address the ball flight issue.

This makes me cringe whenever someone mentions this.  I understand that tour professionals are at a different level then the students most instructors are working with.  However, the majority of tour professionals are constantly altering or changing specs, shafts and even clubheads.  So, are they “buying” a swing?  I guess you could argue they are when they get their check on Sunday!

There is a lot that goes into club evaluation. A golf instructor and fitter have so many different choices to make before they even step foot on the lesson tee:

  • What launch monitor should I use?
  • What fitting system should I have?
  • Should I fit them for their swing now or where I want them to go?
  • How am I going to help my students get better?
  • What training aids should I use?
  • What drills will help the student feel the changes?
  • What camera/software should I use?

For industry leaders, the above is just a start.  In my opinion, the equipment side of things often gets overlooked.  I feel that the most overlooked topic is, “Should I fit them for their swing now or where I want them to go?”

Everyone may have a different approach to this but there should at least be a plan of attack when it comes to constant equipment evaluation.  When a swing change is implemented, the equipment is too. Some things to consider:

-The impact position is hopefully improving which should be addressed and adjusted to accommodate the golfer – Club length can also change

-The player may have gained clubhead speed – this could really alter the shaft performance the student is playing

-Clubhead design – Amount of bounce, offset, loft (especially woods)

 

 

In an industry where things are constantly changing, I am eager to see where the industry is heading and look forward to spreading the message of custom fitting and building.  I am also excited about the interest being generated about the upcoming Mitchel Golf Performance Schools. It looks to be another great year of participation.

 

And last but not least, a friendly reminder to know your specs and check them regularly! #whatsyourangle.

-Patrick

Patrick Gallagher, PGA Director of Golf Operations
Patrick Gallagher, PGA
Director of Golf Operations

 

 

 

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