Among Feel Golf's new product introductions for 2012 are a putter grip with a reverse taper and non-conforming wedges that feature square grooves.
The putter grip, called the SBST (Straight Back Straight Through), is an offshoot of its Pro Release and Full Release grips and their reverse taper technology in which the thicker part of the grip accomodates the lower hand. Think turning the grip upside down.
"That reverse grip (on the SBST) allows the right-hand, the palm, to stay on line," Feel Golf CEO Lee Miller said. "It keeps the right hand in motion without it breaking down the left hand. In 2010, when Jim Furyk was winning, his dad had taken the putter grip and cut the end off and turned it upside down. He proceeded to putt well. In 2011, he went back to a traditional grip and nothing happened until he went back to his dad's grip in the Presidents Cup."
Miller said that the company sent out the prototype putter grip to as many as 40 players of varying handicaps, and that "60, 70 percent of them said 'we think you have something here.'"
The new SG wedges (for square grooves) feature grooves that don't conform to the new USGA groove rules.
"We decided a couple of years ago to keep some nonconforming wedges for recreational players, saying, 'hey, we're not tour players,'" Miller said. The company decided to manufacture noncomforming wedgeds after receiving the results of a survey of 200 or so of its individual customers, taken in early 2011. "Only a few said that if it's not conforming we won't buy it," Miller said. "Overall, they said we need all the help we can get. Our (groove) edges are going to be sharp with the surface roughness on the face as as max as we can get it."
The wedges will be available in lofts of 52, 56, 60, 64 and 73 degrees.
-- John Strege