Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

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Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by bulls9999 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 10:27 am

Mickelson's extensive testing process

Phil's Club Fitting Process

February 12, 2016
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM

What goes into Phil Mickelson's testing process? As you would expect with one of the most particular players on TOUR, there's more to choosing a new club than simply grabbing one off the rack and hitting a few ball to see if it feels good.

During a recent Callaway Golf podcast, Mickelson discussed his fitting process, why he relies on blind testing and how he determines if a new club is worth adding to the bag. Click here to listen to the interview in its entirety.

Why blind testing is the best way to test new equipment

"The best way to do it is to blind test. It's a process where you wear goggles over your eyes, where at impact they go dark. Or you have someone put a sign or a board in front of your eyes where you can't see where the ball goes. The reason this is important is because once you see a ball hook, you instinctively make a change to your swing or adjustments."

What happens when one club in particular starts hooking or slicing during testing

"If it's an iron, I adjust the lie. If that works, great, that's usually a simple fix. But if I start getting a sporadic displacement or dispersions of shots — one that hooks or fades when I hit a good shot — then we go to the shaft and just re-shaft it and start new. Because sometimes you'll just get a bad shaft that's just a different frequency or doesn't quite flex right."

How he determines if a club is worth adding to the bag

"I'll hit five to 10 shots that I deem good. So I'll say, 'That was a good one, let's count that.' Again, I haven't seen where the ball went; I just know it feels like a good swing. So I could probably do the entire set within an hour and a half or so. And then I'll do that for a couple of days. You just want to make sure your swing is right.

"And here's the other thing, I'll do it when I'm playing well. I'm not going to do it when I'm playing bad. So I'm going to get my swing on film not when I'm playing bad, like everybody else, but when I'm playing good so I have a reference. If everybody who was playing great went down and got their swing on film when they were playing great, then they'd have a reference to compare so they could see when they were a little flatter or more upright."

His one-shot testing process

"When I get a new club and don't want to go through [the blind test] process, I hit one shot with it. I'll hit one shot with a hybrid, then I'll go hit a 7-iron; I'll hit another shot with [the hybrid] and then hit a 5-iron. I'll go back-and-forth and only hit one shot because I'm making an adjustment. So if I get that first shot to go well, I know that we're onto something. If it starts leaking one way consistently after two or three shots, I won't even waste my time. Something is wrong with it and it's not going to be the right fit."

Other technology he uses during the fitting process

"It's usually a secondary thing for me. I'm not using the launch monitors or TrackMan as my primary go-to source. I'm going to use my eyes and my feel first; then I'll use the launch monitor as validation for what I'm seeing."

His lead tape sensitivity

"A lot of golfers are shaft sensitive, and some are head sensitive. I am not very shaft sensitive. If we put four or five shafts that were reasonably close, I'm not going to be able to tell them apart. But if you put one strip of lead tape on the heel of the club, I'm going to notice it draw more.

"I'm sensitive enough to notice it, especially in the longer stuff, with even a strip of lead tape on the heel or the toe."

When he does testing at the Ely Callaway Performance Center

"I'll get out there a few times early in the season. I'm actually there the most in October, November, December, because I want to get my clubs fitted and right so when January comes around and I've taken a month off and haven't been playing that much, that I know that it's already ready. So after the Ryder Cup, or last year with the Presidents Cup, then the next two to six weeks I'll spend getting all of my equipment right for the new season."
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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by gophil36 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 12:15 pm

I heard on tv this morning that a new 3-wood in the bag resulted in the bogey on the par 5. They say he's trying out new clubs, etc. in prep for the US Open. He keeps it interesting for himself. They also said that they expect him to be a winner this year.

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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by j58golf on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:00 pm

Who thought of that? Whatever works:)

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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by bulls9999 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:09 pm

I kind of like the idea of not seeing where the ball is going in order to evaluate clubs....that if you see the ball flight, it might influence what you do on the next shot to 'make it better', but he wants to have the ball go where he wants with his natural swing, not change the swing to fit the ball flight (with the particular club). Interesting concept. I still don't understand about tinkering within a tournament....would have thought you get that worked out before hand. Although I must say, I'm kind of like Phil...also a lefty and have same initials :-) ...also have 6 drivers (sold 2 more a few months ago on Ebay) and I don't think I played more than 2 rounds with the same driver before changing it out trying the others, and I keep changing settings and shafts on my removable head drivers. I'm now comfortable with a Callaway FitXtreme with a 75gm stiff 3-wood shaft, so it's like 1.5-2 inches shorter than the driver shaft, been keeping me in the fairway....at worst, I have a left-to-right baby draw that I might start out too much left and stays on the left, but I'm more fairways than with the longer & Reg-flex shaft. Got about 4 shafts for that 1 driver alone....yea, I guess I'm a 'tinkerer' too, so I can't fault PM :-)
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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by bulls9999 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:11 pm

I kind of like the idea of not seeing where the ball is going in order to evaluate clubs....that if you see the ball flight, it might influence what you do on the next shot to 'make it better'

.....haven't we all done that, put one in the hazard, then take another ball out and overcompensate and push/pull it in the opposite direction?  Except, I sometimes put the 2nd, even 3rd ball exactly the same as the 1st :-(
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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by bulls9999 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:13 pm

Phil is out with Freddie Jacobson?  I like that guy.  He took off like 6 months last year because his young son had to have a heart operation, and I think he has some medical exemption where he has to make X-amount of money in a short time to get his tour status (or something like that), but glad to see he has been doing well and I think he will get it....but don't want him to win :-)

Thing about Jacobson, his swing is a little 'wierd', and looks a bit like me swinging the club...seems to come down on the ball like an amateur, lol, at least when I saw him last few weeks. My wife said, nah, not close to me at all, unless he does the 'walk off' after the tee shot (where my momentum makes me step forward, lol).
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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by j58golf on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:22 pm

PHIL is still with Reed .the cut is today.

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Re: Phil's Club-Fitting Process....

Post by bulls9999 on Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:23 pm

Oops, my bad...I just looked at their starting times and not the course.

j58golf wrote:PHIL is still with Reed .the cut is today.
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