Mizuno irons & the left handed issue

MPX

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Apr 7, 2009
HCP
12
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UK
Irons
MP-H5 4-PW (C Taper Lite stiff), R-Series wedges (52/56)
Driver
JPX EZ 10.5 driver, JPX EZ 3 & 5 wood.
#1
Just wrote another apology / explanation to a left hander. Thought it might be a good idea to write something we could point to that sits in a public place.

Everyone at Mizuno would love to offer every iron model in leftie. Unfortunately there aren't enough left hand golfers (just 5 -10% of all players) to spread across 6 models. So we offer 3 of those 6 models in left handed. Last year we chose MP-18 SC as our leftie offering - a very similar player segment to the 919 Tour, hence the reason for offering the 919 Forged and 919 Hot Metal in leftie this time.

The MP-18 SC picked up just about every award by the golfing media as the 'players iron' of 2018 - so hopefully that was a good choice.

The leftie situation gets even tougher at the low hcp end of the player spectrum. We have 2 challenges - less than 30% of regular golfers play off a single digit hcp (taking that group down to a max of 3% of the golfing population) and the Mizuno #grainflowforged process is vastly more expensive to set up than other manufacturers cast process. There's a minimum number of sets we'd need to produce / distribute to meet a similar cost / price as the right handed option.

Gives us 3 options - to sell the left handed players models at a much higher price (which seems plain unfair)), attempt to select an offering to cover most golfing needs (MP-18 SC, JPX919 Forged, JPX919 Hot Metal), or raise the price of right handed irons to cover the increased production costs of offering all models left handed (we think they are already expensive enough).

We realise neither of these are perfect scenarios - picking 3 models from within the 6, without an overload of low hcp offerings appears to be the most balanced approach. There’s a very good leftie (or rightie) range of irons in those 3 models.

Hope that at least demonstrates that we're not 'anti-leftie'. Not a scenario we're 100% happy with - as we know it's leaving some people disappointed. Constant discussion as to which models we should select as the leftie options.
 
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RobCH

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 1, 2013
Location
London, England
HCP
20
Local club/country
Nomadic
Irons
JPX 900 Forged 5-PW, JPX EZ FliHi 4, T7 50, 54 wedges, MP R12 58. Odyssey Tank putter
Driver
GT180, JPX EZ 3 and 5 wood, JPX EZ 3 Hybrid
#2
Good idea, MPX, and a very clear and reasonable explanation. I'm not sure it will convince the hard-line "Mizuno hates lefties" brigade, though, because it's dealing with rational argument rather than the emotional. Have you ever thought about setting up a "you choose" poll /discussion group for lefties as part of your NPD process, to push the choice of LH clubs (and the later fallout) more onto the users?
 

MrK20

New Member
Joined
Sep 4, 2018
Local club/country
Germany
Irons
Mizuno / 2016 JPX EZ Forged, S5, MP T-4 / 4-PW, 50°, 54°+60°
Driver
Mizuno / JPX 900 / 9.5°, 14°, 18°, Fujikura Speeder Evo II 757 X
#3
I think this is a very good explaination as to why there is a limited offering. Being a righty, it really makes you appreciate the choices that you have.
I still think though, that whilst having a GI Option for lefties is good, maybe there should be more of a Focus on the better Player that is a lefty. For example having the 919 HM as the GI Option and then 919 Tour/MP 18 MMC + MP 18 MB would be a Option to cater more towards the better Player. But I guess that would make many People who would game the 919 Forged upset.
It is probably a very hard decision that lots of market Research goes into. I'm just happy that I'm not the one who has to make that decision.
 

PaulBoy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2012
HCP
4.5
Local club/country
Guildford GC & New Forest GC
Irons
MP4 4-PW PX6.0
Driver
M3 c/w MRC Tensei Orange 50s
#4
MPX, I also agree with the posts that your post is very clear & explains the situation perfectly - I can still remember my father telling me that when he was at school left-handed people were basically forced to change from left-handed - This was a bit of a shock to me & my brother, who are both left-handed - When it came to golf however, we obviously copied my dad & played right-handed (allegedly ideal in terms of swing mechanics etc)
Back to the Mizuno position: Do you know what the situation is in Asia? - Mizuno there has different ranges of clubs for sale, do they only offer a similar number of clubs in lefty, or are you offered more (or less) in lefty in Asia / away from Europe?
 

MPX

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 7, 2009
HCP
12
Local club/country
UK
Irons
MP-H5 4-PW (C Taper Lite stiff), R-Series wedges (52/56)
Driver
JPX EZ 10.5 driver, JPX EZ 3 & 5 wood.
#5
MPX, I also agree with the posts that your post is very clear & explains the situation perfectly - I can still remember my father telling me that when he was at school left-handed people were basically forced to change from left-handed - This was a bit of a shock to me & my brother, who are both left-handed - When it came to golf however, we obviously copied my dad & played right-handed (allegedly ideal in terms of swing mechanics etc)
Back to the Mizuno position: Do you know what the situation is in Asia? - Mizuno there has different ranges of clubs for sale, do they only offer a similar number of clubs in lefty, or are you offered more (or less) in lefty in Asia / away from Europe?
Asia seems to break up in lots of different ways from a golf market perspective - some follows the Japan line up, other parts seem more influenced by the western range. From my limited experience, 'leftie' never seems as big an issue in the Japan market. I couldn't tell you why.
 

LOS

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Joined
Dec 3, 2015
Local club/country
England
#6
From my limited experience, 'leftie' never seems as big an issue in the Japan market. I couldn't tell you why.

Histoically most lefties in Japan were coerced into using their right hand so there probably was never a "problem. However this has been changing and we will probably find that there will be an increase in the number of Japanese requiring left handed cluns.

https://japantoday.com/category/features/kuchikomi/lefties-finally-getting-their-due

"
For more than 40 years, August 13 has been observed as International Left-handers Day, a day meant to promote awareness of the inconveniences faced by left-handers in a predominantly right-handed world. This year, reported the Nikkei Marketing Journal (Sept 18), Twitter was abuzz with comments about how hidari-kiki no hito (southpaws) -- who constitute an estimated 10% of Japan's population -- are finally getting their due.


It wasn’t always that way. In fact, a survey found that a shockingly high percentage of both males and females in Japan were subjected to efforts to “correct” them of the habit during childhood. As many as 80% of male respondents between the ages of 40 through 79 said that they had experienced efforts to change their behavior. It was only from about 40 years ago that parents gradually became more tolerant. From 1989, the start of the Heisei Era, the percentage of children undergoing correction steadily began to drop -- although still around 60%. Still, old habits die hard and even around 30% of male respondents in the 15 to 19 age bracket said they had been on the receiving end of attempts to coerce them into favoring their right hand; the figure for females, around 50%, was even higher.


The happy news is that of late, more companies have begun waking up to the potentials of marketing to left-handed customers, with a range of new products that run the gamut of everything from office supplies and stationery to musical instruments, sports equipment and even vending machines."
 

MPX

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 7, 2009
HCP
12
Local club/country
UK
Irons
MP-H5 4-PW (C Taper Lite stiff), R-Series wedges (52/56)
Driver
JPX EZ 10.5 driver, JPX EZ 3 & 5 wood.
#7
Histoically most lefties in Japan were coerced into using their right hand so there probably was never a "problem. However this has been changing and we will probably find that there will be an increase in the number of Japanese requiring left handed cluns.

https://japantoday.com/category/features/kuchikomi/lefties-finally-getting-their-due

"
For more than 40 years, August 13 has been observed as International Left-handers Day, a day meant to promote awareness of the inconveniences faced by left-handers in a predominantly right-handed world. This year, reported the Nikkei Marketing Journal (Sept 18), Twitter was abuzz with comments about how hidari-kiki no hito (southpaws) -- who constitute an estimated 10% of Japan's population -- are finally getting their due.


It wasn’t always that way. In fact, a survey found that a shockingly high percentage of both males and females in Japan were subjected to efforts to “correct” them of the habit during childhood. As many as 80% of male respondents between the ages of 40 through 79 said that they had experienced efforts to change their behavior. It was only from about 40 years ago that parents gradually became more tolerant. From 1989, the start of the Heisei Era, the percentage of children undergoing correction steadily began to drop -- although still around 60%. Still, old habits die hard and even around 30% of male respondents in the 15 to 19 age bracket said they had been on the receiving end of attempts to coerce them into favoring their right hand; the figure for females, around 50%, was even higher.


The happy news is that of late, more companies have begun waking up to the potentials of marketing to left-handed customers, with a range of new products that run the gamut of everything from office supplies and stationery to musical instruments, sports equipment and even vending machines."
I guess that explains it.
 
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