Welcome to another edition of Fully equipped mail bagGOLF.com, an interactive series in which we answer challenging equipment questions.
What should I add to my off-season bag so I’m ready to go when the weather warms up?
For most of you, the 2023 golf season hasn’t even started yet. And unless you live somewhere warm like Florida or the Southwest, the dead of winter isn’t exactly the time of year when you’re going to be spending a lot of time outside. Justify.
If you’re facing a bitter cold in the off-season, why not take advantage of the downtime and ensure your golf bag is stocked with all the things you need to play your best, look your best and perhaps most importantly – have your best time when your golf season begins Within a few short months.
Here are some of our favorites to start 2023 off on the right foot, and for good measure, here’s a short list of things you definitely shouldn’t bother with, it’s time to start playing the game.
Must Have: Try a new ball
If you’re stuck using the same ball for more than two consecutive seasons, chances are you miss the last iteration of your favorite model. Consider upgrading to something new, which may involve trying a different color ball to see if it suits your eye. Case in point, if Srixon Q Star or Z-Star IIt is the ball you choose, what harm do you make trying one of the double balls Q-Star or Z-Star Divide golf balls? Hint: no harm at all.
Never mind: Leave any old golf balls
If you’ve been carrying around old, battered, yellow golf balls from a decade earlier, it may be time to let them go in favor of golf balls that will definitely perform better and fly longer. Transfer those old balls to a hair bag and use them for practice.
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MUST HAVE: Get new gloves
Depending on how you store your golf gloves (more on that in a second), golf gloves will likely degrade over time, and will wear down faster if left in a cool, damp garage or storage shed. The dirtier and greasy your hands, the more they seep into the leather causing tearing or abrasion, so consider buying 2-3 gloves at a time and throwing away the old ones. Speaking of which, keep the gloves in sealed packaging for as long as possible—or carry a spare in a Ziploc bag to keep them dry and clean. Tour pros often do this and so should you. And when your glove gets wet or sweaty, allow it to air dry before putting it in your bag.
Never mind: wash your gloves
We’ve seen it and tried it. A quick wash can sometimes help remove dirt, but we’ve found that washing your gloves with soap and water (we’ve even seen some suggest putting them in the washing machine) dries them out too much and the leather loses its elasticity. Your results may vary, but we’re just saying. It didn’t work out for us in the long run.
Must Have: Don’t make fun of the training tools
The off-season is a great time to consider a training aid to remedy any fault you may have with your swing. There are many coaching aids out there, including some great players and coaches who have developed them together. Take Sean Foley, for example. He is regularly one of the most popular educators in the US and Canada, and for the first time endorsed a training aid with his friend David Woods called ProSendr. The point is, training tools are more legitimate now than they ever have been, and better players are using them more than ever.
Never mind: You probably don’t need the most expensive launch screen money can buy
Suppose you could if you wanted to ravely compliment your club mates, but why? Launch screens, including FlightScope Mevo+ and Rapsodo Mobile, are much more affordable and work wonders for helping golfers determine their courses and spin rates. Five-digit launch screens and motion capture systems are best reserved for those who need them to do what they do for a living—the golf coaches.
Your Must Have: A logical new wedge at the start of the season
It’s not like we’re trying to encourage you to buy a new wedge every season, but let’s just say that a fresh face of sharp grooves would definitely make a difference. Pegs take more abuse than any stick in the bag, taking up dirt, grass, sand, rocks—hey, pegs take gnawing through just about everything. If your wedge has a hole from a rock, or the face has a large footprint in it, the effects on your ability to hit consistent shots may be greater than you think, causing inconsistent spin rates and a lack of control. Or, if your grooves are totally worn out, you know it’s time. for example, New ZipCore RTX6 ZipCore wedges from Cleveland It comes with all-new HydraZip technology which includes laser milled patterns on the face that combine with UltiZip grooves making the wedge incredibly firm and consistent.
Never mind: Homemade mods are probably a no-go
We know it’s tempting, but owning golf tools and making clubs only makes sense if you know what you’re doing. Lie setters, head refinishers, blowtorches – they’re all good stuff (except for those darn groove sharpeners that make your wedges misaligned in a hurry) if you have a smidgen of aptitude. It’s easy to mess up your clubs in a hurry trying to modify something, which includes simple things like changing rings or something. Other than grip changes (which you should definitely do yourself), leave club installation and club modification/building to the experts.
MUST HAVE: A good speaker will make your tour more enjoyable
We’ve reached the age of golf fitness where tees are not only accepted, they’re becoming incredibly popular everywhere. And while we can listen to music on the golf course too, it sounds terrible coming from a bad phone or speaker. Think of something better like Rokform’s G-ROK speaker This is made for golf and comes with crazy strong magnets to keep it secure. And in case you were wondering what that looks like, it’s surprisingly good.
Never mind: blast your new megaphone so loudly that other groups can hear it.
Speakers are a good thing, but they’re also an easy thing to get caught up in. Be respectful of your group and the groups around you. This includes both size and content. If gangsta rap or an NBA game broadcast happens to distract others in your group, know when to say when to put the speaker away. If your quad is into it, adding music or sports podcasts makes any 5-hour tour more fun to endure.
The 2023 golf season is just around the corner for most of the country — and the Masters is less than 80 days away. Stay warm and it’s time to nail it before you know it.
Want to fix your bag for 2023? Find a suitable location near you at the GOLF affiliate True Golf spec. For more on the latest gear-related news and information, check out our latest fully geared podcast below.