As any golfer knows, choosing the right clubs makes a big difference when it comes time to play. This is especially true for kids. Young players need clubs of the right size and weight for their needs. Equipment that is ill-fitted can create bad habits and swing problems that can be difficult to unlearn later. Children may also get frustrated with the difficulty of the game or their results and not want to keep playing due to ill-fitted equipment.
Why Kid-Specific Clubs Are a Good Idea
Before golfing equipment for children became widely available, it was common for parents to modify adult clubs for their kids. However, simply cutting down the shaft isn’t enough. Adult clubs have heavier heads and stronger lofts, which can make it difficult for kids to achieve a good swing and get the ball airborne. Clubs made for kids are more lightweight, flexible and lofted.
What to Look for in Children’s Golf Clubs
Height and weight can vary significantly between children of the same age group, which is why clubs should be purchased based on your child’s individual size rather than age. Athleticism, height and weight should all be taken into account when choosing clubs.
Length is the most important factor when it comes to choosing golf clubs.
Typically, golf clubs are sold with recommended height ranges. You should aim for your child to be within the middle of the range. If your child is barely within the height recommendations for the club you’re looking at, you may want to consider a different club that provides some room to grow without being much too large.
Because golf clubs can be expensive, you may wish to buy a set of clubs your child can “grow into” over time, saving you from needing to buy new clubs with every growth spurt. You can usually get by with a club that’s approximately 1.5 inches longer than necessary; this provides some room for adjustments for hand positioning on the grip as the child grows without affecting the swing technique too much.
When buying clubs, it might be a good idea to buy them in-person rather than order them online. Bring your child to the store to try out various clubs and see how they feel. This will give you the best idea of how the club will fit and whether the swing will be comfortable.
Other Considerations When Buying Golf Equipment for Kids
Younger golfers do not need a full set of clubs. When they’re just beginning to learn the game, three clubs should suffice: a putter, a wood and a 5-7 iron. Additional clubs can be added as the child gains proficiency with the game, but avoid any of the lower lofted clubs as a child may struggle to get the ball air-lofted. Your goal in teaching a child should be to ensure success and minimize frustrations that might discourage the child from continuing to practice and play.
Although clubs are important, ball selection will also help to set your child up for success. For the best results, you’ll want to buy a ball with low compression. The compression rating you choose should be based on your child’s average swing speed, which can be measured at the course. Low-compression balls are more likely to be hit straight at low speeds, which makes them ideal for kids.
You can buy golf balls made with children in mind from most manufacturers. When choosing a ball, you may want to pick one with high visibility to make it easier and more fun for your child to keep track of his or her ball on the course.