Should a club fitting also include a lesson? | Firsthand with a Fitter

Golf Top 100 Teachers

There is a big difference between a club fitting and a lesson and they shouldn't happen at the same time.


Welcome to GOLF’s newest series “Firsthand with a Fitter,” where we dive into some of the most common questions golfers have about club fitting, issues they struggle with on the course and how properly fit equipment can help fix those issues and make the game easier.

This week we are going to dive into a common question golfers often ask: Should a lesson be part of the fitting process? Or should the time spent during the session be focused on finding the right clubs for the way you swing without trying to make any changes for performance gains?

true spec
A look inside a True Spec Golf fitting bay. GOLF

There are always going to be two ways to look at this topic and there could be instances where a golfer might ask a fitter why something is happening in their swing. But just like a proper custom fitting for a bespoke piece of clothing — think a suit or dress — the end goal should be to find the right piece of gear without making swing changes on the fly.

Pardon the analogy but, in the same way, I don’t want to be fit for a suit that looks good after I lose 15 pounds, you shouldn’t be trying to change your swing to fit your new clubs for improved results in the fitting environment.

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The purpose of a club fitting

There is no doubt that when you combine a proper lesson plan with a club fitting, you should start to see improvements to your golf game. But unless you are working with a coach who is also a highly skilled fitter or vice-versa, you should only ever be focusing on one thing at a time to eliminate variables.

“When working with a golfer, I’m never going to make a comment on their swing to make a piece of equipment work,” said Kris McCormack, VP of Tour and Education at True Spec Golf. “The whole premise of a proper custom club fitting is to custom fit a golf club or a set of clubs to their natural swing movements and delivery into the ball and help create the most reliable and optimized ball flight for them.”

Ian kinsler fitting TSG
You should leave a fit confident in the clubs you were recommended. GOLF

Eliminating variables is the entire purpose of a professional club fitting and at no point should a fitter be recommending even small changes to your swing or your setup unless there is a glaring issue that is being caused by the fitting environment – not your swing.

“If I ever say anything to a golfer about their swing, it is only ever a question about their tendencies, in regards to setup or alignment that look out of place or unnatural in the fitting environment,” McCormack said. “These types of adjustments are almost always caused by the golfer’s spatial awareness and visual perception in a fitting bay compared to being outside on the course, but I am by no means trying to change the way a golfer is naturally swinging the club.”

Create proper expectations

With so many new golfers getting fit for clubs for the first time, it’s important to create a proper distinction between the role of a fitter and the role of a teacher or coach. Regardless of your skillset, a fitter’s focus should be fitting you to the right clubs for your swing at that point in time, not for the swing you could have.

Too many golfers make the mistake of buying clubs that will work for them once they reach a certain skill level or handicap, but the biggest problem with this tactic is that it can lead to compensations in your swing in an attempt to make those clubs work which down the line actually makes improvements much tougher.

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On the flip side, even as a beginner, there is a point where you should put a small focus on making sure you have the right clubs when starting out, even if that means getting checked for the basics of length, lie, loft, and grip size.

So whether you’re looking for a club fitting or a lesson, make sure you take the time to separate both of those steps on the way to improving your game, and you will be on the road to better golfer faster and with more confidence.

Looking to work firsthand with your own club-fitting expert to dial in your equipment and play better golf? Book a fitting with the industry experts at True Spec Golf. With more than 40 locations, it’s easy to find a location near you.

For more on the latest gear news and information, check out our latest Fully Equipped podcast.

Ryan Barath Editor

Ryan Barath is GOLF Magazine and’s senior editor for equipment. He has an extensive club-fitting and -building background with more than 20 years of experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour players. Before joining the staff, he was the lead content strategist for Tour Experience Golf, in Toronto, Canada.