Little things that make a difference

@jon was talking about socks on twitter today… I’ve mentioned the shoes I wear in my journal… and I’ve been thinking about this…

We talk about golf as a place of incremental gains, and I’ve been thinking about taking a step back and seeing if there are some “one time” incremental gains that can be made… basically ideas that help you play marginally better, but not things that can be constantly iterated on…

I think the big obvious first step is building a bag and getting fit throughout the set… there are a number of threads dealing with equipment, but basically, once you get the RIGHT equipment, you aren’t going to make any more gains… so where else can we find the RIGHT stuff?

I’ve recently respiked my main golf shoes… I want more traction, and the course has been sloppy of late. I don’t think it’s a huge difference, but that’s not the point her. I think it make a difference, and thus I spent the time and money to replace my old spikes with ones that give me more traction.

I also put more thought into my shoes, and basically retired two pair. One due to wear and one because I think it’s giving me too much mobility in my swing (FootJoy FlexFit)… I have a pair of Sketchers BOA and a pair of FootJoy Classics that I’m going to wear as my “gamer” shoes.

Golf ball… I’ve decided to try to commit to one golf ball next season and buy it it bulk when it’s on discount at the beginning of the season. I still need to try the Srixon ball, but I really like the Bridgestone B X. Once again, playing the same ball isn’t going to make a huge difference, but why give up the marginal advantage.

I haven’t put much thought into my golf glove, but could probably be convinced I need to at least play one consistently (probably the MG, as I need XXL and those are cheap).

I’ve got new grips on everything, because I have new clubs… but it’s something I pay attention to (I also spent some time making sure I was playing the correct grips… I like my lower hand built up in my woods)…

Anyone else have small things that most people don’t pay attention to?


Not just your shoes, which obviously are important, but what you wear - especially in extra hot or extra cold weather - can make a difference; eg. if you’re more comfortable and not restricted … hopefully … you’re able to swing freely.

And your glove … I can’t seem to find one that I’m completely comfortable with … and it’s becoming a more important piece of gear as I age and the fingers (especially in my left, the glove, hand) don’t work as well anymore… :frowning:


It’s funny, Justin Leonard’s dad was a member at my parents club in Texas and basically said he got all the free gloves he wanted because Justin would reject anything that didn’t fit perfectly and just give them to his dad… They have the luxury of that, we obviously don’t.

Have you tried any of the non-leather options?

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Have one, a Claw Daddy - which does not fit great either but is really good in hot, humid weather!

Tried a Bionic glove in the past … not sure which model … may experiment with one of those again.

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I’m not crazy, I’m just big boned.


I think shoes are really important especially if you’re a walker…obviously. My pro suggested having 2 pairs of the same shoe. I know guys that have a spiked leather waterproof pair for Spring & Fall wetter days and then knit spikeless for those hot summer days, but the pro feels you shouldn’t have completely different shoes any more than you should change the model ball. That’s a bit nit picky for me, but he has a point.

In my advancing years I like what I like and don’t want to use whatever is cheapest. I love Kentwool socks as they are super comfy and long lasting. They cost a lot more, but they last and I don’t want to wear anything else for golf.

I like certain shirts more than others and I won’t wear the 100% polyester ones, but want nice soft cotton/poly or poly/elastane blends.

I shave my head and I’m picky about the hats now too. My club finally got some ones I like this year and I will probably stock up for next year.

I wear glasses for distance and I only like playing golf in my Oakleys. It needs to be really dark and rainy for me to take them off lol. They actually have Fuse lenses and they are better for me than Oakley or other lenses I’ve tried.

I did read an interesting article a few years back about a team (cycling?) where the coach tried to improve every area of their training times by at least 1%. It was right down to them traveling with their favorite pillows for better sleep. Really small gains, but in all areas and their overall performance improved significantly. I guess you could apply that for any area of your life.


I wonder where the maxima lies in the relationship? Might a 2 inch, or 3 inch tee do even better? I’ve personally just been trying to be consistent with the tees I have, always setting it to the same height, and seeing what that does.

I come from a competitive smallbore shooting background in thinking about golf, and absolutely consistent positioning is key in that game. There is One True Way to set yourself, the rifle, and your rest, to where deviations are instantly noticeable and fixed. Once properly slung up and stable, one easy test is setting up on target, then relaxing, closing your eyes, reopening them, and the sight picture shouldn’t have moved.

Golf is a lot more dynamic. The relationship between ball, ground, and body changes from shot to shot. I’m looking for the same kinesthetic cues to let me know my address position is ideal, and it’s a lot tougher. The ‘eyes closed then open’ address test works a bit here too though.

As far as kit, given the usually ridiculous climate down here, I like having extra towels, additional gloves, and a Gunga Din’s worth of fluid in or on the bag. Makes a difference managing sweat, and still being able to.

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I don’t usually have an issue with the shoes, and have never even heard of or considered matching socks with shoes as @jon mentioned. But as @cksurfdude said my clothes have a huge impact on how I feel which equates to how I play. It is especially true during the winter months when more layers are added.

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If you ask Faldo…Sqairz …will just about place the ball in the middle of the fairway 300yds…I’ve read the early independent reviews…alot of people want Faldo to show them how that actually works… :rofl:

I’m not at 1.5" actually just a titch under…like 1.25-1.3"…I mark my tees with a sharpie…(LOLOL) but YES, YES and YES especially hitting 460cc Drivers with +45" shafts. Not so much on the FW% but definitely alot less in the forest. Distance for me isn’t 270 but it is 250-265. That launch angle is everything.

If I tee it that high I sky it

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James Clear wrote about this. I’m pretty sure it was on his site, and I know it was in his book, Atomic Habits.

Definitely a good example of how incremental, nominal improvements can lead to significant gains.


I’ve been a fan of James Clear since he started his original blog. I think he offers some of the best actionable advice.