Now Playing: Cleveland VP Putters When it comes to putting, nothing is more important than proper alignment. If you're misaligned, your likelihood of sinking a putt greatly diminishes, no matter how smooth and repetitive your stroke may be. According to Cleveland Golf, the key to becoming proficient at aligning putts first requires that your eyes be directly above the ball, thus helping to better see the intended target line. The company's new VP (Visual Performance) Putters ($109-$119) are designed with key features specifically to help golfers see whether or not their eyes are properly aligned over the ball before every putt.
_Ê The VP Putters use what's called Dual Axis Alignment technology, which consists of carefully considered alignment indicators that, unless aligned perfectly, become visible so the golfer can immediately correct any misaligned eye or hand positions while set up over the ball. Other features designed to foster proper alignment include three options of models, hosel styles and lengths, as well as three variations of lie angle. Each VP Putter also features a Winn grip and a soft elastomer insert for a responsive feel. (VP 2 and VP 3 pictured.)
Hot Features: _â" Dual Axis Alignment Each VP Putter features an alignment aid that not only helps line up putts, but corrects the setup position as well. _â" Elastomer Face Insert Designed to provide a more responsive feel, the Elastomer insert makes distance control a breeze. It also displaces weight from the center of the face. _â" Fitting Options_Ê Golfers can choose between three models, three lie angles and three shaft lengths.
For a complete listing of the VP Putters from Cleveland Golf, log on to www.clevelandgolf.com._Ê_Ê
Weather Man Whether it's playing overseas on the windswept links courses of the UK and Ireland or toughing it out long after most golfers have put their clubs away for the season, recent advances in clothing technology have made playing golf in inclement weather easier than ever.
New materials like those in Sun Mountain's Rainflex Pants keep golfers warm while providing plenty of room for a free-flowing swing. Not only are shoes waterproof, but so, too, are gloves. It seems that with the developments in apparel and accessories, the only thing that can keep golfers off the course is a good nor'easter. Then again, people are golfing across glaciers in Greenland.
PING Sport Stripe Hat This 100-percent acrylic hat features the PING logo on the front. One size fits all, comes in three colors.
TaylorMade 32-Degree Cold Weather Glove A dual-faced microfiber fleece back stretches to conform to an individual's hand shape. Comes in pairs._Ê_Ê
Fidra V-Neck Sweater This light V-Neck sweater features the FIDRA shield; a signature look that's sure to pop up on the company's latest offerings._Ê_Ê
Zero Restriction Waterproof Reversible Half Sleeve Features a waterproof breathable shell and Expansion Back Pleats that remove restriction from the back and shoulders.
Sun Mountain Rainflex Pants Waterproof zippers and stretch-taped seams keep your legs dry. Plus, the Rainflex Pants slip on easily and fit comfortably over your trousers. Comes with a two-year waterproof guarantee.
FootJoy Flextability FJ's newest offering features an aluminized fiberglass TPU stability bridge for midfoot support and seven TPU PODS for superior ground support.
Can You Dig It? If you're looking for a training device that will help you hit the ball before the ground, the Impact Whiz ($95) is the one. Designed as a 7-iron with a "Scoop Guard" that protrudes out from behind the heel of the club, the Impact Whiz makes it impossible to scoop and hit the ball with an upward blow. Fat shots are out of the question, since the Scoop Guard will catch the turf and provide instant feedback. In addition to curing fat shots, the Impact Whiz claims to help golfers improve their followthrough and clubhead rotation, both to hit the ball farther and with less slice spin. For the whole scoop, log on to www.impactwhiz.com.
Flexible Power No matter how advanced golf equipment gets, nothing is better than having a stronger, more technically sound golf swing. The new PowerSwing Trainer from GOLFGYM ($69) is a tool used for developing key areas of the body to help improve strength and muscle memory. Starting with a form-fit grip handle, interchangeable PowerCords and a manual with easy-to-learn exercises, the PowerSwing Trainer is a fun and simple way to get you and your golf game back in shape. As a bonus, the kit also contains an interview and golf tips from one of GT's contributing instructors, Dr. David Wright. For more information, visit www.golfgym.com.
Zen And Now Dubbed the first putter to double as a training aid, the Zen Oracle is back in the shape of the new RDE Mallet ($325). The RDE Mallet features the same training aperture as its predecessors, but also includes the new RDE (Reduced Dimple Error) face technology, which uses micro ridges that are milled onto the face to improve impact dispersion by as much as 50 percent. Translation? The RDE Mallet provides more surface area upon impact, helping to keep the ball on the right line without the dimples affecting direction. Milled from stainless steel and composite materials, the RDE Mallet is also available in custom-fit options. www.zenoracle.com
Bigger Is Better Yup, this is the grip K.J. Choi used to win Tiger's tourney at Congressional. Seems the oversized grip isn't just for late-night infomercial watchers, as many of the world's best players have begun experimenting with this technology, many of whom have used it in professional play. The SuperStroke ($39) is an oversized grip that reduces grip tension to help prevent the yips and also assists in keeping the putterhead square at impact. Perhaps the most ingenious feature is the easy, screw-on installation that requires no glue or tape. Simply tighten the screws, and you're good to go. www.superstrokegrip.com
Cut It Out
If you're the type of player who likes the Mizuno Cut Muscle design, but doesn't want to give up cavity-back forgiveness, you're in luck. The new MP-57 ($1,000, 3-PW) features both. The result of combining the Cut Muscle design with a cavity-back shape is an enhanced sweet spot with optimal perimeter weighting and a touch of shotmaking capabilities. Translation: It's the ideal set of irons for the player looking for the right mix of forgiveness and ball maneuverability. Stock shafts include True Temper Dynamic Gold steel. Custom shaft and fitting options are also available. www.mizunousa.com
Set, Load And Explode
Hitting the golf ball with more power and precision requires some serious effort, and the LeaderBoard ($250) has helped several of the world's best players get the job done. The LeaderBoard helps strengthen the body and encourage the proper weight shift throughout the swing. The design features two foot plates, with the rear plate sliding in a lateral motion. Varying degrees of resistance can be applied to it, a feature that doesn't just make this a swing trainer, but a muscle trainer as well. www.leaderboard.tv
Slippery When Wet_â"Not!
Heading overseas, the last thing you want to do is be unprepared for a four-hour round in unpredictable weather. Luckily, one of the GT editors got a hold of a pair of MacWet weather gloves on his last visit and avoided such a nuisance. The MacWet gloves are made with Aquatech technology to wick away moisture and provide a secure grip in virtually any type of weather. And, the MacWet gloves are made to be durable—make that four or five times more durable than other brands. They're also an excellent choice for those who struggle with sweaty palms during hot and humid playing conditions. www.macwet.com