By Dean Cheesley – CEO – eGolf Megastore
As a golf store owner, when I meet new golfers or customers for the first time, what naturally follows is a series of questions that usually centre around the latest equipment releases.
The most common query I get, is whether or not they really need to update their clubs regularly to keep in touch with the latest advancements in technology.
I’ll respond that they should only consider a change when they’re working with a professional club fitter who is equipped with a launch monitor and have both seen a material improvement in performance against their current gamer.
Even then, I caution them that if something is their ‘go to club’ or ‘old trusty’, don’t rush to change it unless the difference in performance in testing is considerable.
Right now, I love the example of Steve Stricker. Last month the former world number 2 dominated the US Senior Open field, winning by six-shots. The irons in his bag? A set of Titleist 755 CB Irons. Their year of release? 2006! He also won the Sandford Championship last year where he had in play, a set of Titleist AP2 710s and has won over $40 million globally with a 2002 Odyssey White Hot putter in his bag.
The takeaway message: A new product release doesn’t warrant an automatic upgrade. It’s all about finding the right product with professional advice that performs the best for you. I’m also asked regularly about all of the new releases and whether they really are “game changing,” as each time something new comes out from a marketing perspective it seems to be touted as such.
In each year, it’s fair to say that we come across no more than two or three products that could be truly classified as “game changing” for a wide-cross section of golfers.
That is, get one of these products in your bag and you can certainly shave one or two strokes off your handicap through distance gains or finding an extra fairway or two.
Innovations such as TaylorMade’s Injected TwistFace, Callaway’s Jailbreak face technology or the injection of polymer materials like TPE and COR2 inside PXG’s irons are just a few examples of ‘game changing’ innovations in the past few years which we have seen our customers walk away with tremendous performance gains that justify a sometimes-hefty price tag.
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— eGolf Megastore (@eGolfMegastore) July 8, 2019
It’s a pleasure to check back in with them after some time and hear them remark that it’s been the performance of the products themselves that have singe-handedly improved their scoring. Conversely, some products offer no performance improvement on their previous generation.
So what’s the final verdict? Certainly the equipment companies are making impressive technological advancements year on year, and they do, indeed, go out all guns blazing in marketing each of their products as revolutionary.
The challenge for you is to find the right products that fit your swing and the nuances of your game. In that respect, I would always advocate seeking out a professionally fit mixed bag of products from across the major brands, which more than likely includes new and old generation products.
From a performance perspective, a mix of brands is the way to go as we have learned that no single brand dominates every category of product in the bag from driver through to putter at any given time.
Good luck – and happy testing!