In golf, the unique situations that you can encounter means most players will carry a set of clubs that vary in size and shape. Does Bryson DeChambeau do the same?
Unlike other golfers, Bryson DeChambeau’s clubs, specifically his irons and wedges, are all the same length. Each one of the clubs he carries is a uniform 37-1/2- inch in size.
Standout golfing talent Bryson DeChambeau has often been referred to by his nickname, “The Mad Scientist”. The nickname isn’t for nothing, what with DeChambeau being rumored to employ strange strategies, such as the fact that all his clubs are not only the same length but also have the same weight of the head.
Even if you’re new to golf, you’ve likely seen it being played. Aside from the game and sport itself, images of carts roaming around the green packed with bags, those bags stuffed with clubs, will come quickly to mind.
If you’re unfamiliar, you might be questioning why a golfer carries so many clubs and why it’s significant that DeChambeau’s are all of the same lengths.
To get a better understanding of why DeChambeau’s club setup is so strange, we should have a little look into the reasons you could potentially have for wanting irons of varying sizes in your bag.
It’s a bit more complicated than just a long-standing historical tradition. The rough idea of the science behind the different lengths is that you’ll be able to get a bit more swing speed with a longer iron and have finer control and precision with a short iron.
The argument for a same-length set of clubs is that it will create consistency between shots since you no longer have to adjust to the deviation in club sizes. How much of a difference does this make though, is there a method to DeChambeau’s madness?
Testing the Theory
Since DeChambeau has assumed a sort of poster boy role for the idea of single-length clubs, owing in no small part to the successes that he has been having with the setup. It’s not a new idea, but he has been helping to put it on the map with his performances.
Putting it to the test is a study that was conducted, comparing the golfing performance of normal players. The tests showed that not only were they a perfectly viable option but that some players – especially newer ones – found it far easier to use the single-length clubs and are happy to sacrifice a little bit of performance for ease-of-use.
At least from charting the DeChambeau has been progressing, it conveys the impression that this may become a valid new strategy, backed up by independent tests. Unfortunately for players that have spent time attaining proficiency with the conventional style, they will be expected to have a noticeably harder time adjusting.
The Mad Scientist
Not just named the mad scientist for a fondness of unusual golf club setups, DeChambeau has the moniker “mad scientist” because of the fact that he has a physics degree in addition to being a skilled golfer.
You might think that it could be hard to combine the two interests, but not only does DeChambeau do it, it’s also actually what led to his love affair with the same-length clubs that he now uses. This moment, one that came to define a large part of his game, arrived very early.
Not even out of high school yet, the physics ace turned golfer had already engineered a prototype for his ideal same-length clubs. This wasn’t just the start of a golfing career that was merely “good”, it was the birth of a style that would put him on a short-list of high achievers such as Tiger Woods.
Continuing a trend for the strange, DeChambeau also employed a bizarre new putter, seemingly an invention of his own devising. It met with success, proving DeChambeau’s scientific approach to the game to be incredibly effective.
In the case of the alien new putter, it was a little too effective, gaining a fair bit of attention and a ban from the tournament. He’s had a few other scrapes with regulatory bodies during his games, such as his usage of a compass that straddled the line somewhere between rules, before ultimately being deemed against them.