What happens when a golf shaft is too flexible? The results may vary by swing profile, but in general, shots will be inconsistent in contact and direction, and there may be a wide variation in distance…sometimes really long, and other times quite short. See more about what happens when shafts are not correct in our previous post.
I fit a female high school golfer that was playing with a set of standard Women’s golf clubs. I knew without even testing the clubs that the shafts were too soft or flexible for the strength of her swing. The driver in particular was an issue. Even though her swing direction was very straight, her misses were either a big hook or a push/slice. In addition, her smash factor was very low, 1.42, meaning she was getting very little out of the head and shaft combination and losing potential distance. I took a high-speed (360 frames per second) video and captured a couple of these still images to visually show you what happens and how we fixed it:
Notice how the shaft is drooping and bending slightly forward prior to impact. This shot could have been a hook if the face is too closed at impact.
Notice that the shaft is still bending slightly forward at impact and contact appears to be near the center to slightly towards the toe of the clubface. Now watch what happens after impact.
Notice how the shaft is now leaning BACKWARDS and actually has been distorted by impact! This shot actually ended up being a push/slice as the shaft was not strong enough to control the face of the club through impact. The smash factor on this shot was actually 1.40…WAY below what we need from a driver causing a BIG loss of distance.
So we ultimately ended up with a 50 gram, senior flex (4.4 FCM) mid-high trajectory and mid-high spin shaft as the final recommendation. Her shot dispersion decreased by 60% and she picked up 15 yards total distance during our testing.
We see this a lot in junior golfer and lady golfer fittings where they are playing standard, off-the-rack junior or women’s golf clubs. For men, it is usually in the irons where they are playing light weight steel shafts that are way to flexible causing inconsistent contact and wide shot dispersion.
So if this synopsis describes your shots, it is time to GET FIT! Sign up for a fitting today!