How to choose the proper Shaft
The shaft is a key component of every golf club. Golf club shafts are manufactured from two materials - steel and graphite. Steel shafts are stronger, heavier, and more durable than graphite shafts. They provide more control on shots but require more swing speed to generate the same distance as a club with a graphite shaft. Steel shafts are recommended for stronger players who need extra control. Graphite shafts are lighter and less durable than steel shafts. The graphite absorbs the shock of impact in a swing. Their lighter weight allows players to generate higher swing speeds for more power. They're harder to control than clubs with stainless steel shafts. Other materials are sometimes added to graphite shafts to make them stronger and more durable.
Shaft flex is a key factor. Flex is the amount of "bend" in a shaft. Shafts come in one of five flex levels: L (or Ladies), A (or Senior), R (or Regular), S (or Stiff), X (or Extra Stiff). A shaft with more flex provides more distance than a shaft with less flex but less control. A shaft with less flex provides less distance than a shaft with more flex, but is easier to control. In general, a shaft's flex needs to match a golfer's swing speed. Beginners and players with less powerful swings benefit most from a more flexible shaft. Players with a swing speed of 75-90 mph benefit most from a regular shaft. Players with powerful swings - in the 90 -110 mph range - benefit most from a stiff shaft, which provides better control.
If your flex is too stiff:
- You will likely get a lower and shorter shot that desired for any given loft.
- The ball may go off course, to the right, for right-handed players because the clubface is tougher to get square at impact. It tends to get too open.
- Even if you hit square and make good contact, the shot will simply feel less solid.
- The ball might fly higher for any given loft.
- For the right-handed golfer there is a tendency for the ball to go left, because of hitting with too closed a clubface.
- Even average or badly hit shots could feel more solid than they actually are.