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New lighter shafts helped both Tiger Woods and Rickie Fowler—but in different ways

June 2, 2019

Every equipment change Tiger Woods has ever made has been hyper-analyzed. That’s part of the gig when you’re the most recognizable golfer on the planet. His latest gear tweak is no different.

In the run-up to his win at the Masters, Woods opted for lighter Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White Board shafts in his TaylorMade M5 driver (73 to 64 grams) and 3-wood (83 to 73 grams).

Prior to the change, Woods’ measured clubhead speed on the PGA Tour had dropped almost 2 mph from last year. For someone who’s trying to get faster—and maintain a surgically repaired back—reducing shaft weight is one way to strategically gain speed.

Et tu, Rickie? Following Tiger‘s lead, Rickie Fowler replaced the shafts in his irons prior to Augusta. But Fowler wasn’t looking for more speed. Having switched to TM’s TP5x golf ball at the beginning of the year, Fowler felt he needed a touch more spin with his irons.

There are plenty of ways to achieve more spin, but in Fowler’s case, he found the best fit in a set of soft-stepped True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts—the same profile he plays in his wedges.

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