{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Wife and I have been talking about learning to golf together. Want to get started with lessons / clubs as a Christmas gift. (Weather warms here by March). Any suggestions? Start with lessons? Clubs?", "post_id": "5a276f03e25db40013a6d1ab", "reply_count": 14, "vote_count": 1, "bowl_id": "552d1d24dc1c586b09d2d051", "bowl_name": "Consulting" }

Wife and I have been talking about learning to golf together. Want to get started with lessons / clubs as a Christmas gift. (Weather warms here by March). Any suggestions? Start with lessons? Clubs?

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I highly recommend that you start by going to a driving range (e.g., Top Golf) a few times and learn to hit your wedges and short irons. Concentrate on finding the center of the clubface and straightening out the ball’s trajectory. If in warm climates this winter, make sure you get a lot of putting and chipping in, focusing again on finding the center of the clubface and making sure that you can reasonably control distance. After 3-5 2 hour sessions, I would invest in a few coaching sessions. The coach will ideally teach you the basic mechanics (in particular, keeping your club on plane and keeping a square face at impact), hopefully within 4-6 1 hour lessons. Then, and only then, would I recommend buying clubs. You’ll find that your clubhead speed and ability to find the sweet spot will change quickly as you learn the basic mechanics; no need to invest in clubs while your swing is wildly in flux. Of course, you could always choose to quit out of frustration (like me). Source: former D1 varsity golfer

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I would start by going to a driving range and just hitting some balls, top golf, or indoor simulator if you have not already. You’ll obviously need clubs if you are still interested. Just buy a used set off of Craigslist/online after doing some research. Go to a par 3 course or something relatively easy/watch some YouTube videos online. And then start paying for lessons.

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Acn1: as someone who hit enough golf balls at a driving range to learn some seriously poor form and habits, is there a reason why you wouldn’t recommend getting some cursory lessons first? I feel like starting off right is better than course correcting down stream, no?

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Don’t buy clubs yet, you’ll need the money for marriage counseling if you are both trying to learn golf together!

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For example, I played college golf and have a high average swing speed for a woman, so I hit men’s graphite shafts. PwC2 is right that the correct shaft is critical when buying clubs so that you’re able to get the ball off of the ground and maximize your distance.

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Guys I think they just want to do a fun couples activity not be pro golfers

A1 had the same sentiment and was a D1 golfer so he probably knows more/actual reasoning. I’m just not a big fan of investing a bunch of money in something unless you give it a try first and I think there is a lot of natural hand eye coordination necessary to be remotely decent at golf without giving up after 3 months. Golf is a time commitment and no easy for the consulting lifestyle.

Thanks for reply, all. Wife and I want something to do together for most weekends (no kids). While we won’t ever be pros, learning how to play a decent game is our goal. I used to shoot sporting clays competitively (also an entirely mental game which relies on coordination, precise and repetitive body movement, and patience), and I could use another sport that lowers my self-esteem. Since golfing seems more common amongst corporate heads (and my wife) than shotguns these days.... golf it is!

Acn1 and A1, it’s good to hear you both say that. For shooting I’d recommend avoiding lessons or buying a shotgun until after some initial practice, too. That said, if someone was fairly confident they were going to stick with shooting, the only reason I’d still advise they avoid buying a gun for a bit is because there are so many options more than just fit and quality (gauge, barrel length, action, etc.). Are there big differences other than fit and quality for clubs? And if we enjoyed the initial outings, any reason to buy cheap craigslist clubs rather than going for a decent, mid-range set that would last us many years?

Having the right clubs makes a massive difference. Minimally you should get the right shafts

EY1 obviously doesn’t play golf...you do realize that most people can’t even make contact with the ball without taking some lessons, right? How would you plan to play golf without being able to even hit the ball consistently? Golf has a steep learning curve and you can’t just step out on the course and play without significant time invested in practice. Otherwise you’ll be holding up everyone on the course and not have any fun. Others have given the right message about holding off on buying clubs. You can get used golf clubs from authorized resellers that are nicer than “craigslist clubs” but still not new. My dad did this for my mom recently as she’s just picking up golf and at a very beginner level. She started off learning with one single club, a 7 iron. You should get advice on what clubs to buy from the teacher as there are a wide variety.

@OP, club stiffness, size of clubhead, and aesthetic feel are all things that I’d consider when buying a set of clubs. Usually, people use more flexible clubs with a larger face (more forgiveness on missed shots) to start with, then use stiffer clubs with a smaller face as they improve (to enhance control).

Ahhhh, got it. Ok, holding off on clubs then - looks like we’ll start with a gift certificate to a driving range

2 handicap here. Agree you don't need a full set to learn how to swing, but I don't think you should take any club you find on Craigslist to learn with. As I said before, the shaft is the most important part - getting the right flex for your swing speed will eliminate a lot of potential frustration. There are many other factors to consider as well, but I'd prioritize that. Even as a 2 handicap, if I play with clubs that have too soft of a flex for my swing I'm pretty terrible. Give yourself every advantage that you can, otherwise you may form bad habits to compensate for having the wrong equipment.

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