And in that vein, golf manufacturers have relentlessly continued to produce a vast array of putters for the millions of golfers in constant search for a new best friend.
The old, classic flatstick itself has seemed to have recently become involved in the whole BALCO scandal. Walk into any golf retail shop these days and what youll see in the putter section is a collection of science projects that look like something has gone horribly wrong.
The success of Callaways two-ball putter has spawned a myriad of shapes and sizes that would shock most players who have for the past 25 years been using a simple blade putter design.
But for every player there is a putter, no matter the size, look or feel. And although there are many things to consider when choosing a putter, many people will tell you that the most important aspect is that you are comfortable with how it feels in your hands and ultimately if you are happy in its appearance.
The PGA Merchandise Show, of course, is offering up enough new shapes and sizes and colors to make your head spin. A sampling of some of the latest:
ODYSSEY -- Odyssey introduced a new version of the widely popular White Hot putters, using what is called Dual Insert Technology that results in the new White Steel. In addition to the white urethane insert, theyve added a milled stainless steel insert that promises extra precision and greater feedback due to the enhanced sound.
One company representative described it as, 'When steel meets feel. You now have the best of both worlds.'
The new innovation can be found in the very recognizable Two-Ball putter as well as the companys normal White Hot line of putters.
ASERTA -- Aserta is one of the leaders in inverted mass technology, which brings the weight to the top of the putter. They introduced The Monster at this year's show and boast the fact that by raising the center of gravity behind the putter face, it will impart topspin instead of backspin on your putts, thus creating a truer roll and more putts being holed.
HEAVY PUTTER -- Just like the name says, these are very heavy putters indeed. About twice the actual weight of other putters, you would swear it's three or four times the weight if you picked one up. By placing weights on the heel and toe of the putters the company says the added weight reduces twisting on the backstroke, keeps the putter face on line through impact and, perhaps most importantly, can wipeout the dreaded yips the have befallen many golfers.
SEEMORE -- With the incredible reception given to Taylor Made's r7 driver that features screws that can be manipulated to enhance each golfers own swing characteristics, you obviously knew it wouldn't take long for the idea to catch fire in putters.
SeeMore has introduced the Money putter, which incorporates removable fitted steel plugs that lie just behind the putter face.
By distributing the weight from the face through the back of the club head, we made a putter that is extremely balanced, said SeeMore consultant Rick Hamilton. For golfers, that means smoother more stable putts. This putter gives golfers the ability to adjust head weight via the interchangeable inserts.
TIGER SHARK -- Somewhat like the folks at See More, but using a different method, Tiger Sharks new Great White Greenspeed putter also uses an adjustable weighting system. With three different weights to choose from, the company says that you can adjust to different green speeds by inserting either the 5g(ram), 10g or 15g weights. The lighter weight is said to be used on faster greens while the heavy weight comes into play on slower greens.
NICKENT -- The company welcomed the patent-pending PIPE putter to the show with most of the emphases on alignment. What looks like an old army barrack coming out from behind the putter face, the PIPE instantly reminds you of the Odyssey Two-Ball putter. But with its 3-D shape, it offers perhaps a better visual on the roll of your putt.