This post was most recently updated on January 20th, 2022
Knowing the flex that is right for you is an important part of golf that often is overlooked. If the flex of your shaft is off, the club head may be in the wrong position at the point of impact, affecting the overall flight path of the ball.
With the right flex, the head is more likely to sit at the correct angle and contact position for your swing speed.
What Is A Flex Golf Shaft
Flex in a golf shaft determines the amount the shaft will bend during the swing and at impact. Higher flex shafts, such as those on ladies or senior clubs will be extra flexible for slower swing speeds.
Pros or low handicap golfers, on the other hand, generally use stiffer shafts. This is to adjust to the faster swing speeds of stronger golfers to ensure that the clubhead is in the exact position it needs to be at the point of contact.
Generally, shafts will fall into categories such as stiff, regular, ladies, or senior.
Impact Of Shaft Flex On Your Game
The golf flex of your shaft has an immense effect on the outcome of your game as a whole. From your driver to high irons and wedges, you’ll want to make sure each one has the correct flex for accuracy, trajectory, and distance.
If you’re a golfer with high swing speed and you’re using a shaft with too much flex, it will cause the clubhead to lag behind where it should be at the point of impact. This may cause the clubface to come around too late and cause a drastic hook.
It also may cause the clubface to have too much loft at the point of impact. Too much loft may raise the trajectory too much and cut down on the distance and roll of your shot.
Comparatively, if your a golfer with a slower swing speed using a shaft that is too stiff, your clubface angle may be too abrupt at the point of impact, causing the ball to be pushed slightly too early.
This may also result in hitting the ball too low. If you’re unable to pop the ball up at all, especially with your mid-range irons, you may not get the spin and carry you want on the ball.
It can also be hard to stop the ball on the green without enough height.
Golf is a game of millimeters. If your clubhead is off by just a tiny bit, the ball could fly way off your desired path.
Another essential factor to consider is the difference in flex between your various clubs. Just because you want a more flexible driver shaft doesn’t mean you want the same wedge flex.
It will come down to the overall feel and consistency of each of your clubs. Most golfers swing for the bleachers with their driver, whereas the pitching wedge may enjoy a more relaxed swing speed.
To know the perfect shaft flex for you, it is best to get fitted by a professional. Professional club fitters use swing speed analysis to determine the proper flex for you. Then they can tell you what would be the best flex for each of your clubs.
Without a filter, you’re mostly going off of the feel of the club, which isn’t the end of the world, given that the comfort and feel of your swing are massively impactful to your game.
It is highly likely that the correct flex for you is also the one that feels the best.
Golf Swing Speeds And Shaft Flex
Determining your swing speed is something a professional club fitter can do using swing analysis technology. Here is a general breakdown to give you a little insight into which shaft flex is right for swing speeds.
- Below 75 mph – Ladies or Senior
- 75 to 95 mph – Regular
- 95 to 110 mph – Stiff
- 110 mph and up – Stiff or Extra Stiff
These are basic guidelines for you to follow. If you’re able to figure out your swing speed without the help of a professional, then you may be able to find the right shaft flex for you.
What Do Shaft Flex Numbers Mean
The shaft flex is sometimes displayed as numbers instead of clearly stating the flex in words. From brand to brand, the figures may vary slightly. A 5.5 flex on a Callaway shaft may be somewhat different than a 5.5 on a Taylor Made shaft.
As a basic guideline, the lower the number, the more flexible the shaft. Meaning, the higher the number, the stiffer the shaft. Usually, the numbers will be between 5.0 and 7.0.
What Shaft Flex Should I Use For My Driver
The driver shaft flex may need to be the stiffest in your bag. The driver is often the club that has the highest swing speed, given its length and weight.
It is also the club that you want the most accurate shaft flex. Since it carries the highest swing speed and the furthest distance of any club in your bag, you want to be exact. A shaft that is too stiff may push the ball onto the next fairway, whereas a shaft that is too flexible may cause a pop-up or a nasty hook.
However, to accurately diagnose the correct shaft flex for your driver, it is best to get a club-fitter to determine your swing speed. Then you can discuss your options and pick the most suitable shaft flex.
Golf Club Shaft Flex Chart
Here is a golf shaft stiffness chart that breaks down swing speeds and the appropriate flex for each that you can use as a guide.
Getting the right shaft flex can make a massive difference if you have some frustrations on the course. If you have any questions or comments about finding the correct shaft flex for you, please leave them in the comments section below.
The Editorial Staff at Golfible is a team of golfing geeks and enthusiasts led by founder Alec Rose. All have the same obsession with golf tech, equipment updates and avoiding rain on the course.