This week’s Q&A is an excerpt from Dear Frank…Answers to 100 of Your Golf Equipment Questions
Does a golf club “forgive” a bad swing, poor alignment, poor posture, and a bad grip? Wouldn’t most golfers benefit more from lessons from their local PGA professional rather than spending money on the “high tech” craze that’s swept the game? I’ve tried several “game improvement” irons in particular, but nothing works like hitting the ball in the middle of the club face on the intended line to the target. I always come back to the type of forgings I grew up with. I’m 60 years old and my handicap fluctuates between 7 and 14 all year long depending on how well I chip and putt. If these clubs are so forgiving, why haven’t handicaps improved over the last 10-15 years? I enjoy your writing
and your expertise.
A forgiving golf club is one that will reduce the effect of an imperfect impact for those of us who do not always hit the sweet spot, but it will not correct a bad swing.
Unfortunately, no matter how much we believe in magic, there are few if any clubs that will make you swing better. The exception is a well-fitted club when compared to a badly fitted club – one that is too long or short (by several inches), too heavy (by several ounces), or too stiff. Notice that a club has to be extremely ill-fitted to make a significant difference.
Yes, technology has made some wonderful strides to help us enjoy our game a little more, and many of these advances have happened in the last twenty years or so. We are all the same at times, in that we believe there is a little magic around the corner, something we can buy to improve our game and not have to work for it.
Buying a Formula One car will help us get around the track a little faster, but we really do need a lesson on how to drive it first. You’re absolutely right that most people who keep buying new clubs looking for magic would be better off giving a fraction of that money to a well trained, enthusiastic teaching professional for a series of lessons. Clubs today are more forgiving, but they can’t provide complete absolution.