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by Craig Blake
The wide variety of golf bags stems from the fact that all golfers have a slightly different style and level of play. If you are looking for golf bags that fit you perfectly, you might find the large selection a bit overwhelming. This golf bag buying guide is designed to make it just a little easier.
Modern golf bags: Almost all modern golf bags are made from lightweight synthetic fabric and have club dividers and a few extra pockets. After those similarities, golf bags are specialized for each kind of golfer. Most fall into one of three categories: Golf stand bags are lightweight for those golfers who walk the course; golf cart bags are designed to fit easily on a golf cart; and staff bags are used by professionals who need lots of space for their gear. Women need not worry about bag size because all styles come as ladies golf bags as well. Each type of golf bag has important, unique elements you should know about before you buy.
Stand bags: Golf stand bags have built-in legs that allow them to stand on the ground while you tee up. It is made to be carried, which means it needs to be lightweight. A good golf stand bag will weigh 5 pounds or less. That allows you to walk from hole to hole without wearing yourself out. Most golf stand bags today are made of a Nylon blend with backing. Some lightweight bags will not have any backing to cut more weight, but that means they probably won't last as long. Another important feature on a golf stand bag is its shoulder strap. A wide, comfortable strap makes the bag much easier to carry. You might find that a golf stand bag with two straps is better, as it more evenly distributes weight like a backpack would.
Cart bags: For those who drive from tee to tee, golf cart bags are more practical. Some of these golf bags also have stands so they can be carried, but they usually weigh more than a golf stand bag and are generally designed to stay on the cart. That extra weight is a result of the bigger, more numerous pockets golf cart bags have. With pockets being so important to golf cart bags, you need to make sure you select a bag with pockets that face away from the golf cart. That ensures that you have easy access to all your gear. Many new golf cart bags have features like removable coolers. These are the types of accessories you take advantage of if you are in the market for a golf cart bag.
Staff bag: Staff bags are big enough to hold everything a pro would need. In fact, they are usually designed after the custom golf bags pros use, so they are larger and heavier than regular golf stand bags. Staff bags are often made of leather and have large pockets. They have space for a full set of 14 golf clubs. With all that gear, a staff bag can get pretty heavy, so you might want to consider finding a good friend who is willing to be your caddy. Still, these are some of the best golf bags available.
Expensive golf bags: You get what you pay for in a golf bag. Often, the small details make all the difference in both price and quality. Good zippers, quality construction, comfortable shoulder straps and well-placed accessories all contribute to the cost, but they also ensure your golf bags will last longer. If price is an important factor, you can often find quality discount golf bags.
Golf bags and travel: If you plan on traveling a lot, make sure to look at golf bags with travel hoods. You should also consider getting a golf travel bag that will fit over your entire stand bag or cart bag. These golf travel bags would allow you to check your bag onto the plane.
Golf bag care: Store your golf bag in a cool dry place, away from the sun. Too much exposure to sunlight will make the nylon weak and brittle. Also, it might be wise to purchase a golf umbrella to protect your bag during those unexpected storms.
Before you select the right golf bag for you, make sure you make a long-term decision. Do you enjoy walking the course? Then avoid heavier golf bags. Do you value additional storage space for extra clubs and odds and ends? Do you travel from golf course to golf course? Whatever kind of golfer you are, make sure to pick a bag that fits your golfing habits.