From a Level 10 Certified member in Canada Bert Reich. A good presentation of what an AGCP fitting is. Be sure and contact your nearest AGCP fitter.
First and foremost * VERY IMPORTANT *, ** MUY IMPORTANTE **……. no components, and I’ll say it again….. no components (whether it be head, shaft, or grip) are pre-determined when you walk into my shop, and they NEVER should be. It is impossible to know what head or shaft will perform the best in your hands until we can test it. We let the data we acquire from the fitting, and your feedback on FEEL govern which combination is best for you * VERY IMPORTANT *, ** MUY IMPORTANTE **.
Keep in mind that off-the-rack clubs are mass produced to one standard. Of all the sets I have built (one at a time by hand) over the years, I have yet to build two identical sets of clubs. This tells me that we all swing a golf club differently, and require different individual specifications. We believe it is easier to fit the equipment to the golfer than force the golfer to adapt to ill-fit equipment – the golfer will find it easier to excel at the game and improve when the equipment is made to work with their swing and athleticism.
A few things to keep in mind if you’re considering off-the-shelf clubs over custom fitted clubs;
The common message to the above points is to get fit first, and then purchase the right product for your needs.
I have witnessed with my own eyes a “fitting” in a retail golf store that took about 20 minutes from start to finish. In my humble opinion they didn’t even scratch the surface – there is much more to a proper fitting than knowing swing speed and a wrist-to-floor measurement. A typical “Gooder Golf” irons fitting lasts between 3-4 hours to complete. There are more than 20 variables to consider when it comes to a proper fitting, we try to leave no stones upturned. If you’re only addressing one or two of these variables in the “commercially convenient fitting”, you’re leaving an awful lot on the table still, and there’s a good chance you’ll be spending a lot of your hard-earned money incorrectly.
Something else I find baffling with the golf industry is the amount of technology they have applied towards golf clubs in the past 15 or so years. Yes, technology in golf clubs can be a wonderful thing, however it is not worth a pound of poop if it’s not applied correctly, or if it’s used in the wrong application. The same “technology” does not benefit every golfer in the same manner – it is possible that some of this “technology” can actually hurt a golfer’s performance. According to the National Golf Foundation – “The average 18-hole score for the average golfer remains at about 100, as it has for decades”. Now please tell me that with all of this technological “hoo-haa” they have put into golf clubs over the past few decades to make us straighter, longer, easier to hit – why hasn’t the average score decreased by even one measly stroke?
Point of note; “Don’t mistake a large advertising budget for top-shelf quality”. You do not see most of our boutique brands advertised a lot on TV, or in golf magazines, or tossed about by golf pros who get paid to promote them. Nor do you see a lot of advertising for the most exotic cars in the world like Rolls Royce, Lamborghini, Pagani, Ferrari, and others – mostly they rely on their industry leading excellence to bring customers to them. Regardless, many of our proprietary brands are designed by some of the industry’s best designers and manufactured in many of the same foundries the nationally advertised brands are manufactured – typically with even more exacting standards.
We’re just about to the FAQ’s – my last comment has already been made as one of my earlier comments. The fitting comes first – don’t buy the equipment then try to get it fitted. Get a proper fitting, then buy the equipment to match your needs – that way you get the best possible combination of everything FOR YOU. Now, on to the FAQ’s.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Here is a “before & after” impact labels picture of my friend Kyle, and shows what we have the potential to accomplish in about 4 hours of fitting. The before picture on the left is Kyle with his old set of off-the-shelf irons (he played to a 10-11 handicap at the time). The picture on the right is the “after” about 3 hours of fitting/testing (or what I like to call being “Gooder-ized”). Ever since he’s been playing his new clubs his index now ranges between 5.5 and 7.5 – Kyle is a BIG believer in proper clubfitting too!!! NOTE: Not every iron fitting has a perfect result like this, but it just goes to show you that testing with different length/weight/flex/head design can REALLY make a difference.
Here is a “before & after” impact labels picture of my friend Roy – we fit/built a beautiful set of Wishon irons for Roy in Summer of 2018, in early 2019 Roy came back for a driver fitting. On the left was 6 swings with his off-the-rack driver (46+ inches long – way too long, shaft too light, the club was just WRONG), and on the right is 5 impacts with our best performing test club (which was a full TWO inches shorter than his off-the-rack driver – and we actually GAINED DISTANCE with the short driver because quality of contact was soooooooo much better). We built a matching 3w and 5w to go with the driver. NOTE: Not every driver fitting has a perfect result like this, but it just goes to show you that testing with different length/weight/flex/head design can REALLY make a difference.
The importance of consistent center hits is distance and accuracy. If you miss the center only 1/4″ you can lose 15% of your carry distance with a driver and off center hits can cause fades or draws that turn the ball offline and off target. To drive it longer and more accurately you need to hit the center of the face with every swing. AGCP fitting will find that club for you.