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  Get the Most From Your Equipment  by Jack Moorehouse
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Jack Moorehouse is the author of the best-selling book "How To Break 80 And Shoot Like The Pros ." He is NOT a golf pro, rather a working man that has helped thousands of golfers from all seven continents lower their handicap immediately. He has a free weekly newsletter with the latest golf lessons and golf instruction.
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Professional golfers take meticulous care of their equipment. That's how important they feel it is to their games. Playing for prize money instead of a golf handicap, the pros can't afford to have their clubs-or any of their equipment-working poorly or not at all. With hundreds of thousands of dollars at stake, their equipment must be in good working order or it could cost them big time.

What about you? How important is equipment to a weekend golfer? It's more important than you probably think. While you're not playing for thousands, your equipment is still critical. Feel is a big part of golf. That's why your equipment must feel good and be in good working order. Poorly functioning equipment makes shots harder and destroys self confidence. And that in turn hurts scores. Below are five golf tips to enhance your equipment's performance and yours.

1. Shorten Your Putter Shaft

Experts agree that at address your eyes must be directly over the ball and your arms should hang directly underneath your shoulders. This provides the best stance to judge your line and move your putter on the correct path. Most putters have shafts in the 35-inch range, making this setup difficult. Trim your putter shaft to about 32 inches and see if that helps your putting.

2. Put More Life in Your Putter

The solution to better putting may lie in your club's grips, not your stroke. You must find a grip that suits your stroke. Thicker grips limit the influence of your hands on the putter, so if you find yourself getting too "handsy" with your putts, try thicker grips. Thinner grips encourage a wrist-driven stroke, so if you feel you're not getting enough of your hands in your putting stroke, try thinner grips.

3. Experiment With Grips

These thicker/thinner grip guidelines apply to your other clubs, too. If you find yourself needing new grips on your clubs, which you should change every year or so, follow those guidelines as well. All other things being equal, larger grips limit hand action. Smaller grips enhance it. Experimenting with different size grips within your set of clubs. Use thinner grips with the long irons and woods, which require more hand action to rotate the club face through the hitting area to produce square contact. Use thicker grips with the short irons and wedges, which require less hand action to prevent pulling short shots.

4. Get Your Groove On

If you play with debris-filled grooves, you limit your ability to control shots. You'll have a harder time stopping your shot on pitches, approaches, and chips. To spin a golf ball, you need clean groves. The ball must "climb up" the face of the club to create spin, requiring the grabbing ability of clean, deep grooves. Use a groove cleaning tool, a tee, or even an ice pick to clean your groves, but clean those grooves. It will help you cut strokes off your score.

5. Counterbalance Your Clubs

This tip is a little controversial but worth considering. When a club feels right, you hit the ball better. We all know the feeling. Golfing great Jack Nicklaus used to counterbalance his clubs. Counterbalancing is the act of adding weight to the grip area to offset clubhead weight. Nicklaus used lead tape. But today you can find alternatives that provide more precise weight measures. Not everyone advocates counterbalancing your clubs, though. Some experts think it's a waste of time. That's certainly a valid opinion. Nevertheless, counterbalancing your clubs gives them a different feel.

So much of golf has to do with feel. That's why it's critical your clubs feel right to you. It's also critical that your equipment is in good working order. Equipment in good working order helps you make better shots and instills confidence. The more confident you are in your ability, the better you'll play. And the more strokes you'll chop off that golf handicap. You don't need a golf instruction session to tell you that.

Copyright (c) 2007 Jack Moorehouse