How To Find The Best Custom Clubfitters
With the advent of adjustable hosel drivers and special order fitting options from the big golf club companies, a growing number of golfers have become aware of the claims that custom clubfitting is a way for them to improve their play. The problem with the source of this type of awareness among golfers about custom fitting is that it becomes too easy for uneducated golfers to be fooled into being custom fit by people and businesses that cannot perform the type of custom fitting that can deliver, let alone maximize game improvement from clubfitting.
Using an adjustable hosel driver or simply ordering custom specs from a big golf company are in no way the same type of fitting we refer to as FULL SPECIFICATIONS PROFESSIONAL CUSTOM FITTING. Full specifications custom clubfitting means fitting and custom building each one of the woods, irons and wedges so all 12 of the KEY fitting specifications fit the golfer’s size, strength, athletic ability and swing characteristics. Not 1 or 2 clubs with only 2 or 3 of the key fitting specs altered within a very limited range. Nothing less than full specs fitting will allow a golfer the greatest opportunity to experience measurable game improvement.
The 12 KEY fitting specifications that must be a part of a professional fitting experience intended to maximize game improvement are, Length, Loft, Lie, Face Angle, Shaft Flex, Shaft Bend Profile, Shaft Weight, Golf Club Total Weight, Swingweight/MOI, Set Makeup, Clubhead Design/Model and Grip Size/Type. If only a handful of these key specs are fit for only a few of the clubs in the bag, the golfer will fall short of being able to achieve the greatest potential for game improvement through custom fitting.
How do you find a professional custom clubfitter who can fit for all 12 of the key fitting specifications for each club in the bag? Your odds are very slim to none in a retail golf chain store. It’s not likely to be found in a golf course pro shop either. And that’s sad to say because of the huge number of golfers who frequent big retail golf stores and pro shops.
The high image retail chain fitting centers such as Club Champion, True Spec or Hot Stix come much closer to full specs fitting than the usual retail golf stores and golf course pro shops but they still fall short and attach a very high price to their work. These high end retail fitting stores pursue a business model to dis-assemble and re-build standard made golf clubs from the heavily marketed golf club brands as their means of custom fitting. Very often the most expensive graphite shafts are recommended while still falling short of being able to fit for all 12 of the key fitting specs for all 13 of the full swing clubs in the bag. The end retail price to the consumer for a full set of clubs approaches $3000 and more.
To contrast you’ll find the best custom clubfitters typically working solo in their own small, independent golf shop. And yes for sure, because professional custom clubfitting is a “cottage industry”, you can also find a very good custom clubfitter working from the basement or garage of their home. In fact, there have been past winners of the custom clubmaking industry’s Clubfitter of the Year award who operate their fitting business from a shop in their home.
If you want to be fit the RIGHT way by a person with real knowledge and skill in professional Clubfitting, there are three places you can go to find out if there is a good, experienced clubfitter in your area.
This is the Clubmaker locator of the Association of Golf Clubfitting Professionals. The AGCP is one of the two trade organizations of professional custom clubmaker/clubfitters. The AGCP consists of the best of the best of the independent custom clubmakers in the world. In short, if you are fit by an AGCP Clubmaker, you most definitely will have been fit by a very good, very knowledgeable person.
This is the member directory for the International Clubmakers’ Guild, the second of the two trade organizations of professional custom clubmaker/clubfitters. Many of the ICG clubmakers came from the former Professional Clubmakers’ Society and also represent people with a lot of experience in full specifications custom Clubfitting. In addition, the ICG offers accreditation certification so when you find an accredited ICG member, you have found a very good person you can trust to fit you properly.
This is the link to my company’s Clubmaker Locator. These are clubmakers that we have screened, that we know, and in many cases that I have personally trained in the past to offer golfers a full specifications, professional fitting experience.
Between all three links, many golfers should be able to find a competent clubfitter within a reasonable distance to where they live. Of course, there will be areas of the country not served by a full specifications custom clubfitter. But I can tell you if you are interested in having your clubs fit so that you have the most chance of game improvement and the best chance to play to the very best of your given ability, that’s going to happen from a Clubmaker you’ll find through one of these three sources and not through a big retail golf store or pro shop.