The most important things to consider are length, lie angle, loft, shaft flex, and swing weight.
Navigating the world of junior golf equipment can be tricky. Juniors are constantly growing up and out of their old clubs and bags. Luckily, Northern California Director of Performance Mike Duhamel recently broke down the 5 most important things to consider in junior clubs.
When looking for the right length, check the standing height and the wrist-to-floor measurement. The most common mistake Mike sees is parents getting a club that is too long for the junior. If the club is too long, your junior will have to stand further away from the club, impacting several of the other important factors.
The second thing to look at is the lie angle, or how the club sits in reference to the ground. If the club is too long, it will lower the handle and make the head more upright. When the club is the right length, the club is more level to the ground and shots fly straighter. If you see your junior hitting to the left too often, the lie angle may be the problem.
Loft comes into play with a junior’s irons, woods, and the wedges—the higher the loft, the higher the ball will go into the air. If you notice your junior is hitting too low with their irons, they may have the wrong loft. The best way to make sure you have the proper loft is to work with a fitting professional, like in the Haggin Oaks Player Performance Studio.
Essentially, shaft flex is how much the shaft can bend while being swung. Most junior equipment comes with a graphite shaft, which is perfect because it provides more flex. However, if your junior has a higher swing speed, they may benefit more from a stiffer, steel shaft. Again, working with a fitting professional is the easiest way to determine if your junior has the right shaft.
Swing weight is the sum of all parts of the club: the club head, the shaft, and the grip. If the swing weight is too heavy, your junior might swing lower and hit less far. Too light, and your junior may have difficulty controlling their club through their swing. Be aware that adding an adult grip instead of a junior grip can have minor differences in weight, which can change your entire swing weight.
Length, lie angle, loft, shaft flex, and swing weight—keep them all in mind! PING, TaylorMade, and US Kids are brands that have great junior club options. But if you really want to find the right clubs for your junior, we highly suggest you schedule a fitting. A talented club fitter will make sure your junior gets the right equipment to love the game and play their best!
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