Thursday, August 23, 2007

Want the right club fit? Try Z Golf

Okay, so you know a little bit about club fitting in golf.

You know you need your clubs to be two degrees upright, standard length and have stiff shafts. You know the 10-degree driver works for you but you’re not sure why.

It’s amazing how much the guys who run Z Golf’s custom fitting operation can tell you about your golf swing, the clubs you’re using and the clubs that can honestly – and they’ll give you the statistical evidence to prove it – help you hit it 10 yards longer.

The third branch of Z Golf – the first two are in Memphis and Chattanooga – recently opened at the Ballantyne Golf Resort, bringing the latest in high-tech club fitting to Charlotte.

Club fitting came into vogue a few years ago and, like computers, it keeps evolving. If you’re thinking of buying new clubs, you’d be making a mistake if you didn’t get properly fitted first.

"You don’t wear a pair of shoes that’s too small for you," Dana Rader, a member of Golf Digest’s top 50 teachers, said. "You get a pair that fits.
"It’s the same with golf. You don’t have to get the top of the line stuff. It’s more about the fit. You need the right fit."

That’s what Z Golf gives you.

Utilizing the latest technology – a device called TrackMan – and enough club options to fill a superstore, Rick Spangler of Z Golf can break down the flight of every shot you hit with every different club into enough numbers to dazzle a NASA scientist. The good thing is Spangler will decipher the numbers, tell you what they mean and help you pick your equipment accordingly.

You can probably even forecast the weather while using TrackMan since it incorporates Doppler radar technology that provides 18 measuring points on each shot. It’s not just launch angle, clubhead speed and spin rate, it measures the angle of the clubface at impact, the angle of descent on shots falling out of the sky and other elements.

Because Z Golf’s program isn’t tied to any club manufacturer, it allows golfers to test almost everything – Titleist, TaylorMade, Callaway, Adams, Nike, whatever. It has more combinations than Starbucks and, should a player find a club or clubs he wants to purchase, they don’t cost anymore than at most retail shops.

"We have no brand identity so we’re not focused on touting specific clubs," Spangler said. "This is all about finding the right club."

It’s available for players of all skills levels. Beginners may not need the latest and greatest equipment but they need clubs that fit them properly.
Having analyzed hundreds of swings and players, Spangler has discovered a couple of things most players have in common.

First, many who come in determined to buy a specific brand of driver are surprised to find they often hit and like something else better;
And, almost no one hits it as far as they think they do.

"No one hits it 300 yards," Spangler said. "I tell them PGA Tour players fly it an average of 260 yards with their drivers."

Okay, sometimes the truth hurts.

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