5 Questions With Adam Sheldon Brand Manager, Cleveland Golf
1 Why did you choose squares on the Smart Square putter?
Our goal with the Smart Square putter was to improve on putter alignment. We looked at some of the most successful putter models of the past and set out to improve the alignment feature that some models had. We tested numerous alignment concepts and realized that designing an alignment feature that showed the intended line of the putt in conjunction with a feature that showed when the face is open or closed was the key. These intersecting lines formed the square feature of the Smart Square.
2 How much does length matter when it comes to putting alignment?
Length is very important. Your posture and height really dictate the best length for you. If you have an upright posture, then generally you'll need a length and lie angle that allows you to keep your eyes as close to the intended target line as possible. If you don't have your eyes over the intended line of the putt, visual misperceptions can occur.
3 The Smart Square not only looks great, it feels great, too. Why the face insert?
The face insert is designed to feel soft using a copolymer, which allows us to dial in the most responsive feel without losing the feedback generated when the ball is struck. The material is a low-density material, which allows us to take weight directly out of the face of the putter and move that weight to the perimeter of the putterhead. This, in turn, gives us an increase in MOI that stops the putter from twisting on off-center hits.
4 Do you think we'll ever see alignment aids more prominent in other clubs? Woods and drivers maybe?
Alignment is key in all equipment, although not as prominent as you've seen in putting. Most woods these days have subtle alignment aids, from marking on the crown to score line patterns that help you address the ball in the middle of the face. As we push the boundaries in club design, I definitely think you'll see alignment become more prominent.
5 Might we see a Smart Square in more colors down the road?
We're continually working on new concepts, and colors are always in our thoughts. Certain colors, or lack thereof, force focus, so designing using color is key to make sure the eye is focused on the visual alignment aspects of the putter.