Last week, I decided to take the plunge for my first set of fitted iron clubs. Prior to this I had been using a set of used Callaway Irons which I had managed to pick up for an absolute bargain when I first started to play golf. I didn’t want to spend lots of money originally, until I was sure that golf was the sport for me.
However, I am still somewhat sceptical as to whether this process will be worth it or not, and went into the fitting process with caution.
All in all, my set of irons (8 clubs: 4 iron to 9 iron, PW + GW came in at £828 – which isn’t cheap for anyone. But, looking at the stats on GC-Quad it was clear that there was something not quite right with my current clubs. I needed a significant adjustment to the lie angle on my iron heads due to the angle of attack due to my height.
Ping are the only brand who openly offer a significantly ride range of lie angle options, which would cater to my height. Despite this, we looked at a few different clubs:
- TaylorMade 790
- TaylorMade 770 (purely because I liked the look of it – but way out of my skill level)
- Srixon ZX5
- Ping i210
- Ping i500
It was pretty clear early on that Ping were the brand to go for based on my requirements. To go back to the lie-angle conundrum for a moment, this was the chart we based our decisions on:
My “Wrist to Floor” measurement was approximately 38.5 inches, and I am 6 foot 3. Therefore that landed me in the “Silver” section with +0.5″ to my clubs. Despite this, we made the decision to actually go for +0.75″ on the length of the shafts in the irons, and the 4 degrees (Silver) upright lie angle.
The question you may have is, why? What difference did this make? Well, the key difference is it brought my natural strike point closer to the centre of the club-face. Previously, due to the angle of attack, the majority of my strikes were coming out of the toe of the club-face. Admittedly, I had very forgiving clubs, so I would often get away with it. However, on occasion it would lead to a very aggressive rightward shot.
We went with Ping, I’ve already said….but which Ping clubs did we go with?
When I started the fitting session, I wanted to go into each club relatively blind. I asked the PGA Pro fitting me not to tell me anything about the club I was hitting. I am a stats and numbers guy. I wanted the numbers to tell me what clubs to go for, not the subconscious pre-conceptions of each club….otherwise I would have tried to convince myself the TM 770’s were a great idea for me (when they definitely were not!)
One of my key weak points in my golf game is getting real height on my shots. This can be good for longer range shots, as it means I tend to get a lot of extra total distance after the ball has landed. However, in shorter shots, when I want the ball to stop quickly, this can be a nightmare.
The Ping i210’s for whatever reason enabled me to get some fantastic height onto my shots, and stop the ball in it’s tracks.
On the other hand, the next weakness my game has is in my longer irons. There is a huge gap in distance between my 5-iron and my woods in the 160-200 yard range. So, I needed a bit more distance. This is where the Ping i500’s came in…
I was adding at least 10 yards of carry onto my shots with the i500 clubs compared to my current Callaway’s. So, in the end we went for a combo-set:
- 4, 5, 6, 7 irons are Ping i500’s for the extra distance when I need it
- 8, 9, PW, GW are Ping i210s to get that control around the green
If you’ve come to this post to answer the question on whether it is worth getting fitted, then the answer is 100% yes. But. I will mark that answer with a sub-note. You need to be fitted by someone who knows what they’re talking about. I had previously been “fitted” for clubs that I decided weren’t worth following through with. But the process was very different. There were not statistics, there was no analysis….it was just a case of hitting a lot of different clubs and seeing what happened. This meant that it wasn’t really a fitting at all, it didn’t provide any benefit beyond just testing clubs by myself. Therefore, I think it is key to do some research into your local fitters, and select someone who really knows what they’re doing, and will really dig into the analysis of your requirements when you’re in your fitting session.
I will keep everyone up to date with my progress when it comes to these new irons. The current plan is to focus on my irons only over the winter, and hope that by the next summer season, I will have significantly improved my iron shots. Only then will I move onto getting fitted for woods/driver.
Here are some helpful links to read about getting fitted: