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Getting older, have to adjust...
We are all getting older, an indisputable fact. Past a certain age, we lose flexibility, our joints ache and all sorts of other ailments we would rather not have happen. So how does that effect our golf swing? How does playing a round of golf effect our bodies?

An old friend called wanting my advice on getting back into the game and what clubs/shafts he should use. He, like me, is in his sixties. He had stopped playing because of a bad rotator cuff and a very sore elbow. Bob was a 4 handicap so he knows his game. He started playing again and noticed a distinct drop in swing speed and subsequently, a loss in distance. But what worried him the most was the impact on his body.

So we set about finding the right clubs for him. Thanks to NIKE, we started with a set of VR Pro Cavity Irons in steel, regular flex and went on from there until we found the best setup for him. Here are Bob's comments about this fitting exercise.

NIKE Shaft FittingThe Nike Pro Cavity with R-Flex steel that you originally sent me, are very nice clubs.  I was able to play them without a lot of swing changes.  They didn't load and release completely so consequently I had a very straight ball flight much as I had with my original clubs, but with a higher flight and a little more distance (maybe about 5%). Contact on fat shots was just as shocking to the elbow and shoulder as my old clubs, which made the move to graphite seem more like the thing to do.

You had me go to Carlsbad Golf Center to get fitted with the NIKE's. Because I hadn't played a much recently, a lot of the session was spent trying to fix my swing rather than getting a sense of what shafts were better suited for me.  But the fitter helped a lot and we ended up selecting the correct length, lie angle and flex of shaft that I needed to gain back some distance.  Accuracy was never a big issue as I hit balls fairly straight regardless of shaft flex.

We settled on the NIKE Project X 5.5 flex, standard length and they are the bomb.  I haven't hit high tight draws since I was playing twice a week and my handicap was a 4.  I've not been able to figure out how to cut the ball as yet, but I feel like I'm on the right path and only a few driving range sessions away from figuring it out.  Half and 3/4 shots are still a little problematic with the longer irons, but I need to be able to get to a range to figure that out.

I love the feedback of the graphite when I do hit shots a little on the fat side.  I don't get the jarring sensation that I did with the steel shafts.  Having a bad left rotator cuff makes these clubs more bearable.  These new shafts load and release at just the right time. My old clubs are just too stiff for me to be able to load and release, now that my swing speed has slowed down considerably.

Distance control - With my old clubs in my heyday, my distances were pretty accurate with each club, but in the past several years, it seemed that all my clubs went the same distance no matter what I did.  I could have a 140 yards and it seemed that I could hit a 7,6 and 5 iron and they would all end up fairly close to each other.  With the newer R-flex steel, those ranges closed to a 8,7 or 6.  With the graphite those ranges closed to 8 or 7.  I am also able to hit the 4 iron accurately both off the tee and in the fairway, which I never did with my old clubs.  Shorter clubs AW-PW-9 seem to get the correct yardages, but as I've said before, the half and 3/4 shots are not consistent as yet.

Accuracy - I've always hit my irons fairly straight no matter what shaft I was using. This has not changed between the old clubs and the new (steel and graphite).  What I do see with the Nike Pro Cavity R-Flex Steel and Project X Graphite shafts is that I get a much higher ball flight and more spin than with my old clubs.  Balls check up on greens rather than rolling out.

I am a happy golfer again. Still not playing as much as I would like but the new clubs are making the rounds much more enjoyable and my body thanks me for the graphite shafts.


Bob

So as your body slows down, drop the ego down a notch and choose the correct clubs and shafts, you will be happy you did...

12/09/2011
Comments...
janealice123
11/18/2014
I am 72yrs old and had back surgery 2yrs ago. Could not bend enough to hit wedge. Club pro suggested I try switching out my irons for fairway woods (longer shafts and I hit FW woods ok) I did and ordered 9,11,15,17 and 19(wedge). I can hit them fairly well, no problem with back. But I had to order them from a on line site called "golfclubsforless" actually Integra components. Is there a source that can give me an understanding I there is a company that is better than others with custom made FW woods. Adams has something close but low irons are still irons and shorter shafts. Would like to know if there is a Good, better, best as making custom made FW woods. or which components are the best.

sunshine44
02/01/2014
I am 63 and trying to play golf again. I have had neck and back surgery and know my distance will be a lot shorter. i did learn one trick though at age 50 before my surgery. I found an 80 degree wedge. Par 5's I was not hitting in two anymore were yeilding birdies again. As were the short par 4's. I am waiting for spring. I still have an old set of TM rac irons and will use them. but i did find a new 80 degree wedge.

Jack Colantino
06/07/2013
Had both knees replaced, didn't play for over three years till now..Was 6 before knee issues, started up again and had lost 10-15 yards with all stiff shafts..have shifted to regular shafts and regained lost distance..Am 72

yankee
11/25/2012
Just made the switch to regular flex after much debate with myself and found some yardage I lost as a result of getting older. Take that ego...