Golf club fitting is one of the most discussed topics in the game today.
Read or watch any golf article or video and the view that the solution is a golf club fitting never seems far away from the top of the page or the lips of the YouTube presenter.
And its popularity and growth make sense given it’s a process that aims to make sure your golf clubs are right for you compared to the alternative of just buying clubs off the shelf which may be entirely unsuited to you and actively help to make you play worse.
But with some full bag fittings costing hundreds of dollars or pounds before you even start to look at the costs of the custom clubs which are potentially recommended as a result where you should go to get fitted for golf clubs is clearly an important question.
The best place to get fitted for golf clubs is an independent specialist golf club fitter. Specialists focus solely on club fitting, use the latest analysis technology and have hundreds if not thousands of demonstration models from multiple manufacturers available for golfers to test and assess.
The rewards that can come with a good golf club fitting can be significant for a large number of players in terms of the impact it has on their game.
Given the cost of golf equipment also these days choosing the best place to get fitted for you is vital in terms of ensuring you have a bag of clubs that are usable in as many situations as you find yourself on the golf course as possible.
Unlike the pros the vast majority of us lowly amateurs can’t afford to have a store of dozens of top of line clubs that we can swap in and out of the golf bag or get custom tweaked from week to week depending on where we are playing by the armies of golf technicians following us around the world.
We tend to have only one or two attempts at getting our full bag of clubs custom-fitted over a number of years so it’s important you get the choice of place to get fitted right the first time otherwise there could be a fair price to pay both on your scorecard and in your wallet.
Top 5 Options for Where to Get to Fitted for Your Golf Clubs
There are literally hundreds and hundreds of ‘golf club fitters’ spread around the country these days so unless you are living a fair distance from civilisation there should hopefully be a choice of a few options which will allow you to select the best one for you.
Whatever the individual choice of golf club fitter you have near to you however these will almost always fall into one of the 5 following categories.
1. Local Golf Professionals
If you are a member of a golf club your local club professional is the first and simplest option when it comes to venues for golf club fitting. Depending on the place also some course professionals also provide club fitting services to members of the public so if that’s the case at the course nearest to you it’s a definite possibility.
Many golfers want to support their local club pro and it’s often a straight forward option.
2. Golf Retailers
Another simple option when it comes to where to go for a golf fitting is a golf retailer. Chains of golf stores such as Dicks Sporting Goods, Golf Galaxy or the PGA Superstore in the US, Golf Town in Canada, or Golf Gear Direct and American Golf in the UK will offer a golf club fitting service at selected stores and this can be very convenient if they have a store near you.
3. Independent Specialist Golf Club Fitters
Next category up on the options list for golf club fittings is independent specialist golf club fitters.
These club fitting experts – for example True Spec Golf and Club Champion in the US, Tour Experience Golf in Canada and Precision Golf in the UK – core business is golf club fitting and therefore they often use the latest technology and have hundreds if not thousands of golf club options to try out.
4. Golf Club Manufacturers Fitting Centres
Given the huge growth of golf club fitting in recent years it clearly has made sense for the big golf club manufacturers to open up their headquarters to the public and install performance centres and labs in selected locations to enable their loyal brand fans to head straight to the source for their golf club fitting.
Ping, Taylor Made, Titleist, Callaway, Mizuno, Cleveland …. all the big names all do it so if you love only one brand of clubs you can go directly to them to get fitted.
5. Golf Club Manufacturers Demo Days
All the big golf club manufacturers however only have one headquarters and a small select number of regional centres dotted throughout the country.
If you are not lucky enough to live near one of them therefore the previous option will not be available to you unless you want to potentially add the cost of a flight and hotel stay to the cost of your golf club fitting.
To cater for those who aren’t close by though the leading brands send representatives from the company to run ‘demo days’ of their latest gear at golf clubs and trade shows throughout the country. And at these demo days you will be able to get a chance to test out their clubs in a golf club fitting.
How to Choose the Best Golf Club Fitter for You
Now that we know at a high level what our choices are for getting a golf club fitting things start to get a bit harder as with hundreds of options across the 5 main categories of fitting venues we need to narrow it down to make a choice.
A simple factor in that choice can simply be geography. It’s just a fact unfortunately that the options around the big cities and golf playing hot spots – Arizona, California and Florida in the US for example – are going to be greater than elsewhere in the country, particularly when it comes to independent club fitting specialists.
However if you are fortunate to have a few choices across the different categories here are some key factors to consider to help you choose the best place to get fitted for your golf clubs.
|GOLF CLUB FITTING DECISION FACTOR||WHAT TO LOOK FOR|
|1. PROCESS||A. A good golf club fitting will follow a process broadly similar to this:|
– Interview to assess your goals, budget etc
– Static measurements of you from head to toe
– Dynamic measurements (e.g. of distance, launch angle, spin rates etc) of you testing different clubs and models changing one aspect at a club (e.g. clubhead, shaft) at a time between tests using specialist fitting technology (i.e. a launch monitor).
Make sure your fitter also is measuring your strike specifically as at the end of the day that’s most of what ultimately matters – having your clubface square at impact. So your fitter needs to be checking what combinations let you strike the ball the best.
– Final recommendation which may not always mean you having to buy new clubs. Tweaks to your existing set (e.g. change of grip or loft) are a very possible outcome.
B. This process will typically take between 45 and 90 minutes for one category of clubs (e.g. driver, irons, putter fitting) and if you go for a full bag fitting this can take 3 hours or more.
So if it’s either a quick 10 minute or entirely ‘online’ fitting service you are buying cross them off your list!
|2. TECHNOLOGY||The technology that’s being used during your golf club fitting is also a good indication of the quality of service you are getting. If a launch monitor is not involved for club fittings not involving a putter forget it. |
While different club fitters use different technologies and software, and some manufacturers have their own proprietary tools, look out for names such as Trackman, GC2Quad Launch Monitors, SST PureGolf Shaft Analysis for clubs and Science & Motion (SAM) PuttLab and Quintic Ball Roll technology for putter fittings.
|3. FITTING VENUE & CLUB BUILD OPTIONS||– Quality club and putter fitting sessions should have hundreds if not thousands of options available for you to potentially test. So asking how many fitting demonstration models a fitter has on hand for you and them to choose between is an excellent indication of how extensive the fitting is going to be.|
– Indoor golf club fitting studios can be amazing and you will be blown away by the set up at some of them. But golf is played on grass on the course so if the club fitter has both outdoor and indoor facilities for you to test clubs out that’s a differentiator.
– The result of a club fitting can of course be new clubs with specific recommendations prescribed by your fitter for loft, lie, face angle, weight etc. How the fitter plans to get your clubs built exactly according to these specs is therefore clearly important so if they build the clubs on-site that can be an advantage in terms of ensuring you get what you paid for as for one it’s more convenient. If they use an off-site club builder that is not necessarily a problem but if they do it’s definitely worth checking how they ensure the club builder follows the fitting instructions precisely and of course that the instructions the fitter has passed on are the ones you’ve agreed!
– The very best service will also let you do a post fit check-up to confirm the loft and lie angles and to confirm no final additional adjustments are needed. Sometimes on fitting days you’re just not hitting the ball particularly well and you don’t want clubs fitted for your consistent worst swings. Many clubs nowadays have loads of adjustability, especially drivers, so a post fit check when you’re hitting the ball more like you usually do can help make sure you end up with the very best set up.
|4. STAFF||– WHO is going to do the club fitting for you is obviously as important if not more so than the process and technology they are going to follow and use. Just as it’s important that you choose the best teacher for you if and when you take golf lessons it’s also important that you go to a fitter whose approach you are going to engage with.|
– Do they simply read off the stats from the launch monitor and tell you this is what you need or do you they engage you in a consistent dialogue about what you think and feel about different clubs? Do they take the time to explain terminology and its relevance to you that you may not understand at first? Do they simply ask your handicap at the beginning and immediately tell you this is what you need? Do they keep good notes of the all-important custom details throughout the session or do they scribble them down in a rush at the end making mistakes more likely? Do they have a waiting list for appointments? If they do that’s a good sign that people are keen to use their services and are getting results.
– Check how long they’ve been specialising in club fitting. Are they certified? And make sure they are not just sales staff. Asking whether the custom fitting venue has a ‘head fitter’ is a good double-check on this as like all workplaces the best venues will have a lead who is typically the most experienced.
– Good club fitters genuinely want you to send you away with clubs that will help you get better and if they find nothing wrong with their existing set they will tell you vs. just trying to sell you more clubs.
|5. REVIEWS||As with every other product or service offering in the world these days ‘reviews’ are obviously an assessment criteria you can easily use to help you make the best choice of golf club fitting venue. |
Have any of your regular playing partners had a great experience with a fitter?
Or are there legitimate reviews online from other players which demonstrate to you that the fitting service you’re going to get will be a good one?
So to summarise and help you choose the best place to get fitted for clubs here is a 10 point checklist:
If the golf club fitters which are nearest to you all score a full 10 points then it all comes down to personal preference however I suspect just by going through the process of asking these questions you’ll get a good feel pretty quickly for which club fitter you want to go with.
As a further guide also to assist with your decision making the following table lists the high level pros and cons typically associated with each category of golf club fitters:
|GOLF CLUB FITTER CATEGORY||PROS||CONS|
|LOCAL CLUB PROFESSIONAL||– Local pros know you and more about your game especially if you already take lessons with them.|
– Lets you support your local pro and club.
|– Not all club pros are certified and trained club fitters or have the full range of technology or demo model testing options available. Can sometimes just involve static measurements and hitting balls into a practice net.|
– If your club pro is sponsored by a particular brand it may push them to recommend those clubs over others.
|GOLF RETAILER||– Convenience. Big chains have lots of stores throughout the country.|
– Often credit any fitting fee against any clubs you subsequently buy.
|– Staff can sometimes be incentivised to push certain brands and clubs over others.|
– Not all stores will offer the full fitting process and fitters may not always be very experienced and certified.
|INDEPENDENT SPECIALIST GOLF CLUB FITTER||– Excellent facilities with hundreds if not thousands of fitting options available on-site spread across multiple brands.|
– Expert & experienced trained staff with an exclusive focus on club fitting.
– Large volumes of reviews.
|– Can be the most expensive venue to get fitted.|
|GOLF CLUB MANUFACTURERS FITTING CENTRE||– Will have the latest testing technology and every model for their brand available for you to test.|
– Fitters are the foremost experts in that brand of clubs.
|– Club options are entirely restricted to one manufacturer.|
|GOLF CLUB MANUFACTURERS DEMO DAY||– Fitting service on demo says is often free.||– Club options are entirely restricted to that manufacturer.|
– Testing options available on demo days are not always as extensive as those available at the manufacturer’s fitting centres.
These are of course simply general guidelines and not hard and fast rules and you should run through 10 point checklist with any club fitting venue that you are potentially considering.
List of Best Golf Club Fitters in USA, Canada and UK
Ok, we’ve been through all the categories of potential golf club fitting venues, we’ve covered in detail what you ideally should be looking from a fitter and how you can choose between them.
So the obvious question that follows is WHERE can actually go to get a club fitting done.
To list all the golf club fitters in the world would clearly be an impossible task but to help as much as we can we’ve listed below details of fitters sourced from Golf.com and Golf Digest‘s superb analysis of the best club fitters in the USA and Canada, together with individual manufacturers lists of their own top 100 fitters including PING and Mizuno.
We’ve also listed all the main club fitting options we could find in the UK and hope this look up tool helps and give you an excellent starting point.
|wdt_ID||Country||State / Province / Region||Category||Fitter details||Comments|
|1||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||Golf Town, Calgary, AB|
|2||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||Alberta Golf Works, Red Deer, AB|
|3||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||GOLFTEC Calgary Midnapore, AB||Golf Digest Top 100 Best Clubfitter, Golf.Com Top 50 Clubfitters, 6 manufacturers carried, Indoor fittings|
|4||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||GOLTEC Calgary Beacon Heights, AB||Golf Digest Top 100 Best Clubfitter, Golf.Com Top 50 Clubfitters, 6 manufacturers carried, Indoor fittings|
|5||Canada||Alberta||Golf Retailer||Golf Town, N Edmonton, AB|
|6||Canada||Alberta||Golf Retailer||Golf Town, NW Edmonton, AB|
|7||Canada||Alberta||Golf Retailer||Golf Town, Red Deer, AB|
|8||Canada||Alberta||Golf Retailer||Golf Town, Sherwood Park, AB|
|9||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||Blue Devil Golf Club, Calgary, AB||Taylor Made Performance Centre|
|10||Canada||Alberta||Specialist Club Fitter||Legends on the Niagara, Niagara Falls, ON||Taylor Made Performance Centre|
|Country||State / Province / Region||Category||Fitter details||Comments|
Wherever you decide to go for your golf club fitting be prepared to contribute and feedback to the club fitter as you go along.
They always work best when the golfer is taking a full part and having an active dialogue with the fitter on how things are going along throughout the process.
And if you’ve never done one before we would recommend breaking things down rather than going straight for the ‘full bag’ custom fitting.
Believe it or not a golf club fitting is a tiring process as there’s a lot of information, much of it potentially new, to take in and so just beginning with a single category of clubs such as irons, wedges or the driver to start with will help you get to the grips with how the process works and what will work best for you.
And don’t be afraid to take a step away if things aren’t going according to plan.
Even the very best golf club fitters can only base their opinion on what they see on the day so if you find yourself hitting a big slice throughout your fitting when your normal shot for the last decade or so has been a draw the chances are what the fitter recommends for you tat that time may not work for you going forward.
So if you’re really not happy with the way you are hitting it then don’t get fitted on that basis. Take a break, grab a coffee and then have another go. Or ask to come back on another day.
It’s better to walk away empty-handed than with a set of custom fitted golf clubs that aren’t going to be right for you in the long run.
Other top articles related to this post:
- How Much Does a Golf Club Fitting Cost? Is it Worth it?
- Should High Handicappers Get Fitted Clubs? The Benefits Apply to All
- Can You Get Your Existing Golf Clubs Custom Fitted? Complexity = Cost
- Is a Putter Fitting Worth it? It Removes a Variable or Three
- Should I Get Fitted for Golf Clubs Before Lessons? Get Both Together
- How Often Should You Get Fitted for Clubs? Use the 3 Tests
- Should a Beginner Get Golfer Fitted for Clubs? Focus On Enjoyment
- How Long Should a Club Fitting Take? Take Your Time!