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Forgiveness vs. Playability


MTM

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How do you balance them?
You can see my sig for what I play.
I shot a disappointing 81 this morning. Actually, I have been stuck in that range most of the spring. My handicap at the end of last season was 4.7. Low 80s is frustrating for me. Sometimes I'm tempted to go buy a closed face driver, big cavity back irons, and a long putter.
My question is in the title-how do you decide that maybe your ball striking would improve if you had more forgiving clubs? Or do you go to the range and try to work out your swing? If you hit 14 fairways and 3 GIR to you look for new irons? If you have 39 putts do you look for a new putter? Do you grade EVERY shot of EVERY round to look for patterns?
I know I am a better than average golfer but I want to shoot in the 70s more often than not. I had and eagle and two birdies today. One of the birdies was a tap in because my 8 foot eagle putt just missed. I still had a damn 81. I don't know if equipment would help as my stuff isn't the most forgiving although a single digit should be able to play it. I don't know if it's just early in the year and it will come around. I don't know if I should quit playing or at least quit caring about score.
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I track all my shots for every round and put them into a stat program.

I'll give me breakdowns I need so I know where I need to work on things. (reality vs. what I think)

E.g. Approachs from 100 in, 100-125, etc...Drives, putts, up and downs, course managment, etc.

And I can input where shots are being lost (drives causing obstructed approaches, 3 putts, missed approaches, missed greens from inside x yards, etc..)

 

That being said I can see trends, see where I'm "losing strokes" and adjust accordingly.

 

As for your question I look simply to where the impact point is on my clubs. If I'm dead in the middle all the time (it's not the clubs) it's the guy swinging it. If I'm missing center impact in a consistant spot on my clubs, then I'll have them checked to see if my lie angles are off, or something along that line. If I'm all over the face...I stop playing golf and go to the range. (thankfully that hasn't happened yet)

:lol:

 

Bottom line, as a 4.7 index you can play. If you are hitting 14 fairways (that's like 100% of them!) it's not your tee ball.

You normally don't get to a 4.7 index with your clubs, and suddenly they stop working for you.

(Unless you made some new pickups and your game has gone to hell...I'm assuming not here)

Just remember it's early season, have a pro look at your swing if needed, add a little practice and you should have it back in no time.

Callaway GBB Epic 9* w/ Ahina 70x
Taylormade SIM Ti 15* w/ Ahina 80x

Srixon Z U85 18* Driving Iron w/ Ahina 80x
Callaway XHot Pro Hybrid w/ Ahina 80x
Mizuno MP60 3-PW w/ DG X100
Odyssey Black Series i #2
Mizuno MP-T4 52*, 60*, Vokey 64*

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great blog post by "The Wedge Guy" provides some input on blades vs. cavity back irons:

 

http://www.thewedgeguy.com/blades-versus-c...-club-epiphany/

 

with a similar index as yours and also going through a "shooting low 80's slump", I find the my problem is more a mental or focus issue that a club issue. IMHO, a sub 5 index can shoot a good round with any clubs - if his mental game is on.

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Thanks for the input.

In analyzing my round from today it seemed to be a little of everything that just wasn't always sharp.

I hit 9/14 fairways (14/14 was a hypothetical, hbear. I wish I was that good!) I hit 7 GIR and had 31 putts.

I take the GIR with a grain of salt because the greens at my home course are small.

The poor shots I hit today that I feel cost me strokes are hard to pinpoint. I 3 putted a par 5 but part of that was because I overshot a front pin to the back of the green from 70 yards. I had a double on one hole after I fanned a drive badly...but I was able to hit my second shot greenside, chipped on and then 3 putted.

After I eagled 12 I was +2. I doubled 13 (see above) and then finished bogey (missed a 3 footer), bogey (terrible tee shot on a par 3), bogey (overshot the pin see above), bogey (terrible 8 iron on par 3), bogey (fanned tee shot snookered me behind trees).

I think a lot of it IS mental. I don't always have good focus on the shot at hand. I'm probably overreacting a little too. I have changed a lot of equipment in the past few months (show me someone here who hasn't :lol: )

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great blog post by "The Wedge Guy" provides some input on blades vs. cavity back irons:

 

http://www.thewedgeguy.com/blades-versus-c...-club-epiphany/

 

with a similar index as yours and also going through a "shooting low 80's slump", I find the my problem is more a mental or focus issue that a club issue. IMHO, a sub 5 index can shoot a good round with any clubs - if his mental game is on.

 

Just read it! Very interesting. Turns conventional wisdom on it's head. The first time I saw my handicap drop under 5 was when I shelfed my 981s for some MP33s. And frankly, the clubs I like the best in my combo set are the 8-PW. I know some of that has to do with the fact that short irons are easier to hit anyway, but they just feel, well, better.

Thanks for the link!

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After reading that topic by the Wedge Guy, it would seem like combo sets would be the way to go for OHM companies. Easier to hit long irons with accurate blade short irons, how could u go wrong. So I think u have the right set-up MTM, maybe 7 or 6 iron to wedges should be blades. Keep practising and work on knocking those chips closer after missed greens.

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i just had a similar thing happen the other day. i only play to a 8 but i shot 82. it was horrible. i was 4 orver through nine which wasnt great and on the back the wind picked up to about a steady 20 mph and was 6 over. but after looking at the round i hit 9 GIR and 9 Fairways. but what killed me was 37 PUTTS. that is insane. i could have shaved at least 3 or 4 strokes that i can think of off the top of my head. So i know this wasnt a thread about how bad i suck but the moral of the story is even if your irons are off at your index u are still hitting greens or close to them so i would look at PUTTS. i mean im not that good and they kill me so anything above 25 IMO is to much for ur handicap. cause above 30 is to many for my 8. so it comes down to putting. But im sure it will come around. hope this helps. SOrry to bore u with my story but i had to tell someone all those putts have me steaming.

 

JonnyB

Taylormade M1
Titleist 913F 13*
Mizuno MP-54
Vokey 52 and 56
Piretti Potenza II
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When people talk about "playability", they're usually referring to the ability to intentionally work the ball one direction or another. IMO, you can play golf at a scratch or perhaps even professional level hitting the ball dead straight.

 

If mentally, you need a set of "players clubs" in order to focus, that's fine. But I think most people drastically overestimate the value of "playability" vs "forgiveness" in golf clubs.

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great blog post by "The Wedge Guy" provides some input on blades vs. cavity back irons:

 

http://www.thewedgeguy.com/blades-versus-c...-club-epiphany/

 

with a similar index as yours and also going through a "shooting low 80's slump", I find the my problem is more a mental or focus issue that a club issue. IMHO, a sub 5 index can shoot a good round with any clubs - if his mental game is on.

 

Just read it! Very interesting. Turns conventional wisdom on it's head. The first time I saw my handicap drop under 5 was when I shelfed my 981s for some MP33s. And frankly, the clubs I like the best in my combo set are the 8-PW. I know some of that has to do with the fact that short irons are easier to hit anyway, but they just feel, well, better.

Thanks for the link!

 

It sounds to me that you did your best with the MP33s. Maybe you should go back to them. With all of the new technology the average handicap hasn't changed very much at all and it doesn't get any better than the MP33s. :lol:

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I was just thinking about this today. I've gotten my hands on a set of X-20's to try out -- about the most forgiving irons made (according to Maltby, using MOI, COG and other measures). People say you can't shape shots with such forgiving clubs.

 

What a bunch of horsehockey. I hit (by design) three beautiful draws that rose to a nice height, broke left and dropped nicely down. A 4i, a 6i and a 9i -- parred three par 3's. I hit a low fade 5i (slice, really) to get back down the fairway after a wayward drive on another hole. I've never played any irons that were any more "workable" than these, and my other sets are MP67 and Wishon 500c.

 

Frankly, I didn't notice they were terribly "forgiving" either -- I blasted a thin PW 140y and over the green, and a fat 8i bounced to a stop 20y short of another green. As always, I still have to hit the stinkin' ball.

 

This whole "foregiving versus workable" is just a big red herring thrown at us by manufacturers to differentiate the market and squeeze more money out of us. What a bunch of malarkey.

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diablojoe, I think you've got it wrong and that your opinion is very biased.

Biased in what way? I own blades, cavity-back forged, and game improvement irons. I find them all equally challenging and equally foregiving -- and equally "workable." I'll give the X-20's back to the guy I borrowed them from because I didn't like them any better than my Wishon irons. No worse; no better.

 

My point is that the Canon of Golf Knowledge states that one cannot shape shots with GI clubs like one can with "player's" irons. I think that particular assertion is patently false.

 

I was at the range not long ago watching some guys ogle a new FT-i. Naturally, one of them said, "Yeah, but you can't work the ball with that driver." A PGA instructor standing there laughed, took the FT-i out of their hands and hit two long draws and then two long fades and handed it back.

 

And here's the ridiculous part: Moments later, they were still talking about how you can't work the club. It's as if the little demonstration never happened. Once people get a particular notion in their heads, they won't let go of it despite all evidence to the contrary. Galileo ran into such people.

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The last time I checked, the whole idea behind CB irons was to increase forgiveness on off center hits and to help get the ball up in the air. You don't work the ball by using off center hits. You might have a harder time hitting knock down shots with a CD versus a blade, but I see no reason why a CB would hurt your ability to purposed fad or draw a ball.

 

Scott

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I was just thinking about this today. I've gotten my hands on a set of X-20's to try out -- about the most forgiving irons made (according to Maltby, using MOI, COG and other measures). People say you can't shape shots with such forgiving clubs.

 

What a bunch of horsehockey. I hit (by design) three beautiful draws that rose to a nice height, broke left and dropped nicely down. A 4i, a 6i and a 9i -- parred three par 3's. I hit a low fade 5i (slice, really) to get back down the fairway after a wayward drive on another hole. I've never played any irons that were any more "workable" than these, and my other sets are MP67 and Wishon 500c.

 

Frankly, I didn't notice they were terribly "forgiving" either -- I blasted a thin PW 140y and over the green, and a fat 8i bounced to a stop 20y short of another green. As always, I still have to hit the stinkin' ball.

 

This whole "foregiving versus workable" is just a big red herring thrown at us by manufacturers to differentiate the market and squeeze more money out of us. What a bunch of malarkey.

 

Alright, I've a got a set of the worst irons ever. They have about, not joking, over an inch of width on the sole, with a topline a centimeter thick and nearly a full shaft offset. I can easily work these both ways, but they are also very forgiving on mishit shots. The problem with them is knock-down shots and that they don't hit consistent cuts and draws. The difference u'll find between blades and player's CB's against GI irons is that player's clubs, when mishit will not go as far a GI iron would. It's just a simple fact, no red herring, no nothing fact that blades are meant to be hit in the sweet spot and only the sweet spot, and GI irons can be hit nearly anywhere in the clubface and go pretty close to a pured shot distance.

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When I was younger (much younger) about the only thing out there to play were blade irons...my first set of golf clubs were Wilson's and they were impossible (looking back compared to now) to hit. Over the years I kept playing blades, including Muirfields, and others. The day came when I finally "accepted" CB's and to be quite honest, they probably were okay for most, but simply they were not okay for me. I tried Pings, Titleist 690 CB's, Callaways, back to Pings (I5, S59) Mizuno MP32's and then back to Pings (S58) and finally bit the bullet and bought Titleist 695MB's. I couldn't be happier. I usually shoot in the mid 70's for most of my rounds, and the return to blades has been a good move for me. Yes, I will hit errand shots here and there, and yes, you pay for those (but not like I did with blades from 20+ years ago), but the fact is that I find my iron shots to be much more accurate using blades than they were with CB type irons. I did like the Mizuno's, and in fact still have those, but the Titleist, at least for me is a better club to play with. Maybe is it just me but playing the irons I do forces me to focus on my swing, because I know if I don't put a good swing on it, I will pay for a mis-hit.

 

What amazes me is the equipment reviews in the 2 large golf publications eschewing blades as "not able to recommend" because they are "too hard to play with". Sure...if you can't break 90 with the reason being your iron play, I would say you probably shouldn't be playing pure blades, but that is a personal choice (and certainly my personal opinion) on the player's part. On the other hand...to not review those clubs simply because there are irons with more forgiveness? Sounds pretty assumptive to me.

 

Yes, I know (at least according to the magazines) that most of the PGA tour pros are not playing pure blades. Well, frankly I am not a tour pro, will never be a tour pro, and really don't care whether or not they play blades or CB's. I play what works for me in terms of playability, appearance (yes, that DOES count), what I have confidence in, and what serves MY game the best.

 

Quite honestly, and again this is a personal opinion, the average player would improve their games beyond their expectations if they could:

Keep the ball in the fairway consistently

Hit the green 85%+ from inside 150 yards and 95%+ from 100 yards

Be able to get out of a bunker with 1 shot, (greenside bunkers out in 1 and on the green ANYWHERE)

Be able to consistently chip to within 5 feet of the hole, and

Do NOT 3 putt!

 

I played a new course Friday afternoon, and for the first time in the last 15 times I have played, I shot an 80, which is usually around 4-5 strokes high for me. It would be easy to say that it "was the first time on the course" and that I would have played a couple of holes differently, and I would have, but the fact is I missed the green 3 times inside 150 yards, chunked a chip shot, and had a 3 putt green. That was the difference...not the course, and certainly not the clubs I was using.

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