It’s probably too late to ship anything to the golfer in your life for the holidays. But not too late for Amazon gift cards. They can email those things right up to the last minute.
In truth, a gift cared likely is the bet gift for a golfer anyway, unless you are absolutely sure about his or her preferences. A box of expensive golf balls seems like a good idea, but golf balls are not at all like jewelry. More expensive does not necessarily equate to better—and especially not better for individual golfers.
I have often gotten Pro V1 balls from well meaning relatives, friends and colleagues. They know I’m a golf fanatic, and the Pro V1 seems like a good idea. After all, the pros use it.
The Pro V1 is not, however, particularly well suited for my game. After much experimentation, I find I play better with a ball that has a lower compression, such as the Wilson Staff Duo Golf Balls or the 3UP 2S14. Those both have the advantage of not being particularly expensive. The low price, however, doesn’t make those balls particularly attractive for the well-meaning gift buyer.
Clubs are an even worse choice for a gift. There was perhaps a time when you could buy a club off the pro shop shelves and be reasonably assured that your golfer would appreciate it. Today, however, there are far too many manufacturers producing far too many clubs with far too many options. One size doesn’t even fit many, let along “most” or “all.” In fact, the best route for getting clubs that will help a golfer’s game is a custom fitting. My local shop offers the fittings, with the cost of the fitting coming off the club sale price.
The exception may be if your golfer has been to a fitting and knows exactly what they want, down to the model, shaft type, grip type, etc.
Finally, there’s the matter of clothes. It’s safe to buy a golf shirt, right? Maybe. I’ve found that a looser-fitting shirt fits feels better during a swing than a more “athletically cut” one. I’ve found that anything that binds across my shoulders throws off my swing. Others, however, have exactly the opposite feeling. A looser cut has too much fabric “getting in the way.”
Fabrics matter, too. Since I walk, I want a moisture wicking fabric. The cooler the better. On the other hand, I know people who don’t like the feel of those fabrics.
Shoes? Forget it. You need to know more than size. You’ve got to try on the actual pair you’re buying. Even shoes of the same make and model are slightly different.
Golf bags? There’s as much variety and personal preference with those as with clubs.
Tees? Better know your golfer’s preference: wood? plastic? length? cup or prongs?
Ball markers? Too much room for superstition there.
That takes us back to the gift card.