Technical Tips

June 2011

Performance Based Fitting vs. Prescription Based Fitting

By Tom Wishon of TWGT

Without question, professionally custom fit golf clubs will out-perform golf clubs bought standard off the rack in a retail golf store or through an on line golf retailer. In the process of fitting golfers, there are two basic ways fitting has been performed – performance based versus prescription based.

What is the difference between performance and prescription based clubfitting?

Prescription based clubfitting consists of determining the golfer's fitting recommendation strictly from information obtained from the golfer, without the use of test clubs to verify the performance of the recommended fitting specifications. For example, when golfers fill out a fitting information questionnaire form on line and receive a fitting in return with the list of recommended fitting specifications on the clubs, this is best described as a "prescription based fitting." In other words, "we think these golf clubs should fit you based on your information."

If compiled by a competent, knowledgeable clubfitter, and if the breadth and depth of the fitting information about the golfer is detailed and accurate, there is no question a prescription based fitting is better for a golfer than buying standard made clubs off the rack in a pro shop, golf store or on line. But in terms of truly nailing down the golfer's very best custom fitting specifications to ensure maximum performance, a prescription based fitting can fall short of a performance based fitting system.

In a performance based system, once the fitting information about the golfer is known and the golfer's fitting analysis is complete, test clubs are created for the golfer to hit to observe the results of the fitting recommendations. By observing the shot performance results and making further adjustments in the test clubs, a final fitting recommendation is then determined which can be said to be proven from hitting the test clubs to be the right combination to custom build for the golfer to purchase.

There is no question performance based fitting is better than prescription based fitting to finalize the best combination of fitting specifications for the golfer. Performance based fitting is also great for PROVING to the golfer that the new custom fit clubs will allow him or her to gain shotmaking improvement to be able to play better golf.

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