How does the USGA & LDA Measure the Length Of Golf Clubs?
1: USGA Method
The USGA limits club length to 48 inches. The measurement method would likewise be made with the club in a 60-degree lie angle. Putters would be the only clubs excluded from this length limitation.
The diagram above shows how the USGA stipulates to measure club length. The Long Drivers Competition goes by a different method to measure club length, not by the USGA standard method.
The LDA measures a club at a 90-degree angle from the ground.
LDA stands for The Long Drivers of America, It will limit the length of clubs permitted for use in LDA-sanctioned long drive competitions to fifty (50) inches.
In addition, because the LDA believes golf clubs have for years been measured incorrectly — generally by having clubs at the address position and placing a measuring device under the heel of the club to the top of the grip — the LDA has devised a new procedure to determine club length.
The LDA’s method will be to place clubs on the floor perpendicularly and measure from the floor to the top of the grip cap. In other words, the LDA will measure clubs to determine their suitability for use in competition just like everything else in life gets measured, from the ground up.
What the LDA has found by using this method of measurement is that most golf clubs are approximately 2″ longer than their advertised length. What are the practical implications for LDA members and other long drive competitors?
That drivers golfers refer to as being 50″ are likely to be at least 52″. And drivers thought to be 51″ and longer are at least 53″ or longer — clearly too long to meet LDA’s new 50″ rule.