There comes a time in every golfer’s life when they must retire a club. It can be emotionally hard, but it’s necessary. You can practice all day, every day, but Rock Heads, if you’re playing with bad gear, you’re not going to have the golf game you want.
With the holiday sales approaching, now’s the perfect time to replace old golf clubs. How do you know if it’s time to get some new sticks? Here’s Scratch’s 5 Signs You New Clubs!
1. Your Game Has Changed
If you’re playing much better or, heaven-forbid, worse than you were a year ago, it’s time to reevaluate your gear. As your ability changes, your clubs should change with them. If you’re game is improvin’ and your handicap is going down, you may want to upgrade to clubs that offer more substance and weight to help you make more progress. On the other hand, if you’re struggling more than you were a year ago, you should look for clubs that are more forgiving. Let’s look at cavity back clubs as an example. They are some of the most forgiving clubs out there. The weight distribution in the club head helps golfers hit the ball straighter, even if their swing may be off. This is why cavity back clubs are great for players who are just starting out. Once their game improves though, players may want to move away from cavity backed clubs to muscle back, or blade, style irons. These feature more even weight behind the club head, and allow a more experienced golfer to fine tune their control over where they put the ball on hitting it.
2. Your Club Is More Than 3 Years Old
Golf technology progresses fast! Every year, researchers are inventing new construction techniques for better clubs. For a while there, Taylor Made was even able to introduce two or three drivers A YEAR. Experts agree that the longest a golfer should go between purchasing new golf clubs is three years. Improvements in technology include movable club head weights, putter design, newly invented polymers, and club head materials. Adding the latest technology to a golf bag can help even an average golfer knock a few strokes off their score.
Wedges actually should be replaced more often than this. Experts say that a wedge should be replaced every two years. If you practice a lot in sand, your wedge may even need replaced earlier than that.
Want an easy way to tell if your clubs past its expiration date? Check out the Obsolete List on Golf Digest!
3. Your Body Has Changed
OK, this is a nice way of saying you, and everyone else, is getting older. You’re not as strong or as flexible as you once were. That means that your clubs need to reflex that. Most older players need more flex in their golf club shaft than younger players. More flex in a shaft means that the club bends slightly when it is swung back and when it is swung forward. Once it impacts the ball the shaft’s flex delivers more of a punch when it club face hits the ball, therefore sending the ball further. And here’s a fun fact: most players use a shaft that’s too stiff for their game anyway! If you are noticing that your shots are not going as far as they once did, and you want a little more pop out of your clubs, it might be time for a new set with more flex in the shafts. It’s important to match your shaft to your swing style so you get the most distance from your swing.
4. The Club Has Too Much Wear And Tear
It’s hard to part with a favorite club, but every golf club has its expiration date. Take a critical look at your club. Are there too many scratches, are the grooves too smooth? Other evidence of wear and tear could be cracking in the club shafts, too much denting or abrasions to the underside or face of a club, excessively worn club grips, and more. Also consider the environment in which you play. For example, if you’re playing in a lot of sand, your clubs are going to be more worn. If you have questions about whether or not your club can be repaired, ask your local pro.
5. Your Game Has Stalled
If you’re not making progress after hours and hours of practice and lessons, what’s holding you back might be your gear. You might not realize it, but your clubs might be affecting your swing or game-play for the worse. Just by adjusting your gear, you could see your scores start to go down!