Do Tour Pros Actually Get Custom Fitted Like Us?

Anthony Kim's caddy revealed that he hasn’t been fitted for his Titleist clubs yet, but is that actually unusual?

Do Tour Pros Actually Get Custom Fitted Like Us?
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Despite Abraham Ancer's victory, Anthony Kim was arguably the story of the final day at the LIV Golf Hong Kong 2024 event. Kim carded an excellent 5 under par round which was one of the lowest of the day and gave real hope to those rooting for Kim's return to professional golf to be more than just a gimmick.

Maybe even more interesting, however, was his caddie's admission to Flushing It Golf, that Kim hadn’t been fitted for his equipment at all upon his return to the game.

In a post, Flushing It said: "Just spoke with Anthony Kim’s caddie and he still hasn’t been [fitted] for equipment, so they have no idea what his consistent numbers are yet.

"There's huge potential for improvement there and they’re looking to do it before his return to the US at Doral."

As someone who has not only played a couple of events on the DP World Tour but also worked on equipment choices with numerous tour professionals, this really caught my attention. 

The reason I use the phrase “worked on equipment choices” rather than “fitted”, is because in my experience tour professionals don’t actually get custom fitted at all, at least not in the sense you may have experienced. Generally speaking, when a tour player is testing equipment or looking to make a change, the process is very different from what the average retail consumer might go through, and as someone who has ‘custom fit’ players from complete novices to Ryder Cup players I feel I can speak with authority on the topic.

The main difference for me, is about the dynamics of who is leading the session. For example, in a standard consumer fitting, the fitter is generally in charge. Armed with all the knowledge and training, they will very much lead the session, telling the client what they should be looking for and what is going to work best for them. In a tour player session, this is very different, so much so that they are referred to as ‘tour reps’ rather than ‘tour fitters’.

Whilst the tour reps are the best of the best at what they do in terms of launch monitor data and product knowledge, the player is usually very much in charge of the session. These guys and girls, have exceptional hands and know exactly what they want to see and feel from their equipment, and the tour rep is very much there just to facilitate that. In a driver fitting for example, a tour player will have a very detailed picture of the trajectory they need to see, whether that is a ball falling one way or another out of the sky or the window they want to see the ball coming out of height-wise, and they will work with their rep through trial and error to achieve that.

Anthony Kim hits a drive

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The data and ball flight are also only one part of the puzzle. Feel and looks are incredibly important to tour players and are often the deciding factor as to whether a club makes it into a bag or not. I have seen many a seemingly great-performing driver discarded because the face angle isn’t quite what the player wants to see or the acoustic isn’t hitting the right notes. Here in lies another point of difference. The level of customization on tour is almost limitless, if a player doesn’t quite like the sound or feel of an otherwise well-performing driver, the technicians can simply inject hot melt glue into the head to achieve the perfect pitch!

Photo of Tommy Fleetwood and a tour rep on course

TaylorMade Senior Manager for Tour, Adrian Rietveld, on course with Tommy Fleetwood

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Furthermore, a tour player ‘custom fitting’ is very rarely a one-session thing. Before committing to a new tool in the bag, tour players will almost always take the potential new addition out onto the course, often in a variety of conditions as they need to see how the club performs in different winds, grass types, and multiple other variables. This can often take several weeks or even months of back and forth with their equipment rep to get right. For example, I was once part of a fitting session with Tyrrell Hatton early in his career, where TaylorMade were trying to get him into the M1 driver. Upon speaking with the tour rep leading the session, it became apparent that this was around the seventh or eighth range session, on top of three or four other course sessions to try and dial in the final specifications. Ultimately, the driver didn’t even make it into his bag!

With so much money on the line at the top level, these players are very much the boss when it comes to their equipment choices. As CEOs of their own brand, they will listen and take expert advice, but they know better than anyone what their own game needs and the buck stops with them.

Photo of Anthony Kim hitting a bunker shot

(Image credit: LIV Golf)

Like so much of his return to professional golf, it isn’t clear how Anthony Kim found himself in the Titleist clubs that he has now, but my hunch would be a bit of personal trial and error, observing ball flights and simply going with what he liked the feel of. However, if the Titleist tour reps can dial his gear in anymore, then there may be even more to come from the mercurial American.

Joe Ferguson
Staff Writer


Joe has worked in the golf industry for nearly 20 years in a variety of roles. After a successful amateur career being involved in England squads at every age group, Joe completed his PGA degree qualification in 2014 as one of the top ten graduates in his training year and subsequently went on to become Head PGA Professional at Ryder Cup venue The Celtic Manor Resort. Equipment has always been a huge passion of Joe’s, and during his time at Celtic Manor, he headed up the National Fitting Centres for both Titleist and Taylormade.  He’s excited to bring his knowledge of hardware to Golf Monthly in the form of equipment reviews and buying advice. 

Joe lives in North Devon and still plays sporadically on the PGA West region circuit. His best round in recent years came earlier in 2023 where he managed a 9 under par 63 at Trevose GC in a Devon & Cornwall PGA Tournament.

Joe's current What's In The Bag? 

Driver: Ping G430 Max 10K 9 degree - Fujikura Ventus Red 6X 45.75"

Fairway wood: TaylorMade Qi10 Tour - Mitsubishi Tensei 1K Pro White shaft 70TX 43.25"

Irons: Callaway Apex CB 24'  3-11 - Project X LS 6.5 shafts

Wedges: PXG Sugar Daddy 54 and 60 degree - Project X LS 6.0 shafts

Putter: Odyssey Toe Up #9

Ball: TaylorMade 2024 TP5x