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Team TaylorMade Junior sets: What you need to know

April 16, 2024
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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: TaylorMade launches its new Team TaylorMade Junior platform of starter sets for kids, which includes three options for boys and girls 12 and under. The three sets include a unique bag and three different unisex collections of four, five and seven clubs, respectively.

PRICE: Size 1 (ages 4-6, four clubs, $250); Size 2 (ages 7-9, five clubs, $400); Size 3 (ages 10-12, seven clubs, $500). Available April 19.

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3 COOL THINGS

  1. Right-sizing.In the past, TaylorMade’s junior club offerings have been limited to two sizing options, but the idea with the new Team TaylorMade Junior starter sets was to extend the reach. It was a two-year process to rethink what these beginning golfers need to get started in the game, said Chandler Carr, global product manager for TaylorMade.

“The thinking here was what can we do to help these young golfers create memories for a lifetime because that’s what I think about when I remember learning the game from my dad,” Carr said. “Of course, because I was playing clubs that were a hodgepodge of too long and too heavy, I probably developed swing flaws that I’m still fighting today. We wanted to help kids start with success early.

“They’re building memories with these clubs so let’s have them hit some more good golf shots.”

Not only are the clubs designed to work with junior boys or girls, the three size ranges can be seen in how the 36-degree 7-iron lengths change from 25 inches in Size 1, to 28.5 inches in Size 2 and 32.5 inches in Size 3. By comparison, TaylorMade’s Qi game-improvement irons standard length is 37.25 inches with a 28-degree loft. Note that while the sizes are defined by ages, parents should focus on the length specs to dial in the proper set for their child.

The total weights, shaft weights and flexes adjust accordingly—slightly heavier and stiffer as the lengths increase but still distinctly lighter and with more loft than prior junior sets in the company’s line. Carr explained that the irons are about 30 percent lighter than the most recent junior sets.

While a stock TaylorMade P-Series 7-iron is 270 grams, the lightest 7-iron spec in the Team TaylorMade Junior set (Size 1) is 205 grams. Even the Size 3 7-iron is 22 grams lighter than the stock spec. The grips also ware less than half the weight of a standard grip. On the blade putter that’s part of each set, the head weight is just 305 grams thanks to hollowed out sections of the sole. That compares to the standard head weight of 350 grams on the TaylorMade TP Collection putters.

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Despite the lighter weight (Carr said in some cases they were so light they wouldn’t even register on a traditional swing weight scale), TaylorMade brought in the strength of its engineering team to build a more effective design that includes a larger, more confidence-inspiring profile with a lower center of gravity for easier launch and a highly flexible face that gets as thin as 1.7 millimeters.

“So that was actually where some of the engineering took place from trying to figure out how do we have better CG properties with less weight to move around,” Carr said.

As for the driver, Carr again emphasized the need to get the right shaft flex and weight for the player. “Size 1, Size 2 and Size 3 each have their own unique specification when you are talking about sizes for the right kid, but we want to make sure the weight and flex is correct, as well.”

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He explained that while there are defined age groups for the three sizes, there also are specific height ranges, which actually are more definitive. Size 1 is for youngsters between 42 and 47 inches tall; the Size 2 range is 48-53 inches; and Size 3 is 54-59 inches tall.

2. Grown-up technology. The clubs also incorporate some of TaylorMade’s hallmark technologies, which include a big emphasis on flexible faces and lower center of gravity. On the driver and metalwoods, the clubs include a low and deep center-of-gravity design, including the distinct angled deep rear sole weight found on its most recent SIM, Stealth and Qi10 metalwoods. The driver, which is available on the Size 2 and Size 3 offerings, is a 400 cubic centimeter head made from titanium. Continuing the theme of offering significantly higher lofts than standard clubs, the 17-degree head comes in a 34-inch length on Size 2 and at 39 inches for Size 3. (The longest club in the four-club Size 1 set is a 28-inch, 21-degree fairway wood.)

On the cavity-back irons, which feature wider soles for a smoother glide through the turf, the face is enhanced with the company’s proven internal inverted cone shaping. That kind of variable thickness design aims to spread more potential ball speed across a wider area of the face. It’s been a core design philosophy behind TaylorMade clubs for over a quarter of a century.

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3. Team TaylorMade. TaylorMade is marketing this junior set by linking it directly to the company’s group of proven tour players, from Rory McIlroy and Tommy Fleetwood to Nelly Korda and Brooke Henderson. That connection includes the company’s exclusive Team TaylorMade content from the company’s staff of touring professionals, as well as social-media brand ambassadors Gabby Golf Girl, Grant Horvat and Chris Trott. Included with each bag is a membership card/bag tag and a QR code that provides access to that online content.

Even the bags themselves are individualized and made with kids (and parents) in mind. The pattern of the fabric on the bags is unique to each bag and it is stain-resistant. The blue and white color palette was chosen to appeal equally to boys and girls, and even the white headcovers are made from easy-to-clean material, in case grass stains or celebratory chocolate ice cream leave an unwanted mark.

“It gives not only the parent but also the junior the ability to get tips, tricks from the game’s biggest stars,” Carr said. “This really gets them the chance to get started right in this game because one of the things we’ve found out about the parents who often buy these types of sets of golf clubs is they don’t even golf. So we want to make sure that whether you’re an avid golfing family or you’re brand new to the game that you can get tips and tricks from the best staff on the planet.

"This idea of joining the team and that you're not doing this alone was a big factor in building this connection with our staff. Kids know who these players are, and they'll be excited to go work on a driving tip with Rory or a putting tip with Brooke Henderson."