Senior Shaft vs Regular Shaft: Which Is Best For Senior Men?

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Do you struggle to consistently launch your golf ball and achieve the optimal carry distance? Have you tried different game improvement clubs to fix the challenge but have yet to be successful?

Your shaft may be ineffective for your swing. In this post, I analyze the differences between a senior shaft vs regular shaft.

I will explain how golf shaft flex impacts your launch, spin, ball speed and accuracy, and methods you can use to find the right design. With the most shafts on your golf clubs, you stand a greater chance of optimizing your launch and landing angles.

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Is Flex Important In A Golf Shaft?

Yes, flex is fundamental in a golf shaft as it impacts your clubhead speed, ball speed, launch, flight, and accuracy. If your golf shaft is too stiff for your swing, you may deliver less velocity on the downswing, prompting slower ball speed, restricted spin, and low launch. 

Although additional aspects impact your golf shot, you will struggle to produce adequate results with the incorrect shaft stiffness.

How Does Shaft Flex Impact Your Performance?

There are four main areas to determine if this is a factor: golf club head speed, golf ball speed, launch, and path. Let’s dig in a little deeper.

Beautiful day on the golf course with four senior golfers finishing their final putts.  Article discusses senior shafts vs regular shafts.
How Does Shaft Flex Impact Your Performance on the Golf Course?

Golf Club Head Speed

Shaft flex impacts your clubhead speed, as stiffer shafts carry extra weight compared to their lighter counterparts. The heavier the shaft is, the more it impacts your clubhead speed, which is why the average golfer is better off with a lighter, flexible construction.

Higher swing speeds are best equipped to handle heavier stiff and extra stiff shafts, as they require limited assistance. Golf Digest suggests that the incorrect shaft can rob you of 1 to 1.5 mph of swing speed, which is 2 to 4 yards of distance.

Golf Ball Speed

Lighter, flexible golf shafts provide aggressive whip on the downswing, catapulting the clubface towards the golf ball. This helps the average golfer produce accelerated ball speed for a consistent launch. 

Contrarily, senior golfers operating with stiffer shafts receive limited flex into the golf ball at contact requiring a price strike and rapid swing speed.

Launch

The flex of your golf shaft is integral in the launch of your golf ball. In my experience, stiff and extra-stiff shafts launch lower for moderate and slow swing speeds. Conversely, flexible golf shafts are built to blast higher for regular and slow-swing-speed golfers.

Kick Point

The kick point of your shaft is another factor that impacts your launch angle. A low kick point shaft prompts a high launch, which suits golfers looking for an enhanced apex on all shots. On the contrary, a high kick point shaft produces a lower, controlled launch for greater roll and total distance.

Club Path

Golf Digest reports that an additional 10 grams of weight promote an inside-out club path to reduce the risk of a slice. On the contrary, a lighter, flexible golf shaft causes players to often swing along an outside-in, setting you up to slice your shot. 

How To Choose The Correct Shaft For Your Swing?

The best way to identify the correct shaft for your swing is to get fitted by a professional to understand your perfect setup better. However, if a fitting is missing from your to-do list, you can use your golf swing speed, launch, and club path to determine the best option.

Swing Speed

The easiest tip is to use your swing speed as a guideline. Golfers swinging above 105 mph consider an extra stiff shaft, and a velocity below 72 mph fits ladies’ flex shafts.

In addition, 72 to 83 mph swing speeds are best equipped for senior flex shafts, and 84 to 96 mph swingers suit regular flex shafts.

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Launch

The loft and angle of your clubface, with your shaft stiffness, impact your launch angle. If you launch the golf ball consistently low and lose carry distance and control, consider a flexible construction. 

Conversely, a stiffer flex works for golfers who balloon their shots and seek a lower, controlled ball flight.

Golf Club Path

Following the advice from Golf Digest, you know that a heavier shaft helps you produce an inside-to-out swing path for straighter results. I recommend seniors struggling with hooks consider this option for improved accuracy.

However, if you are a serial slicer, look at a lighter golf shaft that promotes an outside-in swing path for a right-to-left shape.

What Is The Difference Between a Senior Flex vs Regular Flex?

Flexibility

Naturally, senior and regular golf shafts carry varying degrees of flex for different swing speeds. The senior flex delivered a greater whip into the ball at impact to enhance your coefficient of restitution (COR) for rampant ball speed and a high launch.

On the other hand, a regular flex produces less whip on the downswing, providing reduced ball speed assistance. 

Material

Senior flex shafts are generally produced using graphite material which enables greater flex compared to steel constructions. Although you find regular flex in graphite shafts, they are also an option on standard steel shafts.

Weight

In my experience, regular flex golf shafts carry a higher mass than the lighter, senior designs. The added weight of the regular flex means slower swingers may produce less club head speed than with a senior construction.

On the contrary, higher swing speeds may find the light, flexible golf shafts produce excess whip and spin, leading to ballooned strikes.

Launch Angle

The final difference I find between these shafts is the launch angle. The senior flex golf shaft produces a high launch to get slower swing speeds airborne for optimal carry distance. However, a regular flex delivers mid to high-ball flight for consistent trajectory. 

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Advantages Of A Senior Flex Golf Shaft?

Accelerated Club Head Speed

The added flex and reduced weight of a senior flex golf shaft encourage accelerated club velocity for slower swing speeds. It elevates your chances of delivering a mighty strike for a high, long shot.

High Launch

The combination of fast golf club speed and added whip on the downswing helps slower-swinging golfers produce a consistently high launch. As a result, you generate consistent carry yards in your long game and a soft landing on approach.

What are the Disadvantages of a Senior Flex Golf Shaft?

Ballooned Shots

A flexible and light composition of a senior flex golf shaft is dangerous for faster swing speeds. Players may balloon their shots, leading to a loss of carry and total distance.

Hooks

The senior flex leaves players exposed to hooking their shots when rhythm and tempo are off. You may find the flexible construction nature of the golf shaft causes you to swing from outside in, leading to an open face at contact and a sliced shot. 

What are the Advantages of a Regular Flex Golf Shaft?

golf ball photo on a golf tee
Golf Ball Controlled Flight

Controlled Golf Ball Flight

Contrary to the high flight of a senior flex golf shaft, a regular flex design delivers a mid-to-high launch for greater control. It prevents moderate swing speeds from ballooning shots, resulting in greater control and distance.

Increased Roll

The lower ball flight induced by a regular golf shaft helps you generate increased roll upon landing, giving you added yards on the ground. Although lighter golf shafts are easy to launch and produce ample carry distance, they cause a softer landing-restricting roll.

Accurate Club Path

A heavier shaft helps you deliver an inside-out swing path to prompt a slight draw for superb accuracy when hitting the ball. In addition, following this swing path helps limit the risk of leaving your clubface open at impact and slicing your shot.

What are the Disadvantages Of a Regular Flex Golf Shaft?

Reduced Club Head Speed

The added weight and reduced flex of regular golf shafts may lead to reduced clubhead speed on the downswing. This weakens your strike and prompts a lower launch and a loss of carry distance.

Slices

Even though the heavier flex encourages an inside-out swing path, slower swingers struggle to square the clubface with this setup. A slower swing does fail to bring the clubhead level in time for contact due to the added mass and reduced flex.

While a flexible light shaft runs the risk of snapping the clubface closed, it gives slower swing speeds the best chance of squaring up the clubface.

Which Shaft Is Best For Slow Swing Speed?

The best shaft for the slow swing speed of a senior golfer is a seniors flex. The lighter mass and added whip on the downswing help you accelerate on the downswing and get your clubface square for consistent distance and accuracy.

Which Shaft Is Best For Medium Swing Speed?

A regular flex is best for medium swing speed, as it produces a mid-to-high launch and encourages a precise club path. Unlike a senior flex shaft, you lower the risk of skying your shots and losing carry and total distance.

Can I get new shafts on my clubs or do I need new golf clubs?

Yes, having your golf clubs refurbished with new shafts is certainly an option. But sometimes re-shafting golf clubs can get quite expensive, and purchasing new clubs can be more cost-effective.

Plus, you’ll benefit from the newest technological advances to improve your golf game. However, if you love your golf clubs, then this may be the best course of action.

FAQs on Senior Shaft vs Regular Shaft

Do senior golf shafts make a difference?

Yes. Senior golf shafts make a difference because they are lighter and more flexible for slow swing speeds to boost clubhead velocity and keep the face square. This leads to a powerful high launch with improved accuracy from tee to green.

What happens if you use a senior flex shaft?

When playing with a senior flex shaft, you produce increased swing speed, a high launch, and a soft landing. It is ideal for slow swing speeds searching for a golf shaft to help them achieve consistent ball flight.

Does shaft flex affect the trajectory?

Yes, shaft flex and your clubface loft impact your trajectory. For example, a regular flex shaft generates a mid to high launch, while a senior and ladies flex prompt high ball flight.

Final Thoughts: Senior Shaft vs Regular Shaft

After analyzing the features and benefits of senior shaft vs regular shaft, the former ticks the boxes for most senior men golfers.

For starters, the lighter, flexible shaft construction enables slow swinging to accelerate club head speed on the downswing en route to a powerful strike.

Besides the added speed, my experience showed the senior flex shaft delivering a high launch for consistent carry distance. Finally, I noticed the added whip of the shaft leading into impact made it easier for me to square the golf club face for a straight shot.

Overall, if you are a senior golfer searching for an option to make life easier for yourself, consider a senior flex golf shaft.

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AUTHOR

Matt Callcott-Stevens has lived and breathed golf since he was four. As a junior, he played competitively, until he discovered his talents were better suited to writing about the game. Matt holds a Postgraduate in Sports Marketing through the Johan Cruyff Institute in Barcelona and has provided golf game improvement tips to seniors and the average golfer for seven years.

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