The Footsteps of Legends

From 1906 to Major Championships

Rihachi Mizuno, a kimono shop worker from Osaka Japan, saw his first baseball game in Kyoto when he was 18 years old. He loved the game and in 1906 with his younger brother Rizo opened his own baseball equipment store selling western products. In 1913 the firm began to manufacture its own products in a quest to improve quality and performance.

Rihachi Mizuno rejected any baseballs that did not bounce to his eye level (4 feet and 5 inches) when dropped 16.5 feet.

Main: First Mizuno store, Osaka Japan.
Inset: Original Logo.

In 1933, Mizuno engaged in the manufacture of golf equipment – its first products named Starline. Mizuno opened a small factory based near Osaka, Japan, in 1934 for making baseball bats, balls, and uniforms, as well as for manufacturing golf clubs and skis. The company continued to expand into other areas of sports and began manufacturing tennis equipment in 1943. Mizuno’s international reputation for producing the finest quality sports equipment was established in the 1970s’ when it started to export its golf clubs to Europe.

Early Mizuno factory outside Osaka.

Mizuno All Star - 1974

At that time irons were usually forged from a single mould and would emerge rough-and-ready and in need of plenty of hand grinding – a process that created inconsistency. A tour pro might need to order ten sets to find nine irons he was happy to use.

Mizuno’s forging process, which used two moulds, was more precise and required only minimum hand grinding. Consistency was much greater from head to head, resulting in more predictable performance on the course.

Mizuno Staff

T-ZOID PRO-I

TN-87

300S II

Wood

T-ZOID

A young professional Nick Faldo was sent a batch of Mizuno iron heads from Japan and was so impressed with their consistency that he became a convert – going on to win each of his six majors with Mizuno irons in the bag.

"I still have every set of Mizuno irons that I won my majors with. I can walk past them every day in my house. They're my real trophies."

Sir Nick Faldo, six-time major winner

In the 1990’s the emergence of CAD design lead most manufacturers to switch to a casting process to manufacture its irons. Mizuno bucked the trend by investing further in its patented Grain Flow Forging process – aware that casting was inferior when it came to producing precise club heads.

MP-33

MP-33 - Mizuno’s first CAD designed blade.

Mizuno Yoro Factory

Mizuno Yoro Factory.

Forging Hammer

1000 ton Forging Hammer.

Whilst other manufacturers relied on the payment of players to use their equipment, Mizuno invested in precise manufacturing techniques to ensure that tour players would want to play its irons by choice. Mizuno irons were regularly the most played brand on both the US PGA and European Tours.

Still run by the Mizuno family, the manufacturer’s approach has created a reputation that outlasts any individual player

Tour Operations Manager Alex Thorne explains “Mizuno’s standard equipment is widely acknowledged to be of a quality that any tour player could use straight from the box. That's why so many players coming through the ranks and big names in-between sponsorship deals play Mizuno. These are the players whose equipment choices count most. We’ve had major winners playing Mizuno irons without payment – often in another manufacturer’s bag.”

Mizuno Tour players: Adam Schenk, Nicole Broch Larsen, Seth Fair, Jhonattan Vegas, Christian Braunig, Stacy Lewis

From top left to top right: Adam Schenk (US PGA Tour), Nicole Broch Larsen (LET Tour), Seth Fair (WEB.com)
From bottom left to bottom right: Jhonattan Vegas (US PGA Tour), Christian Braunig (Challenge Tour), Stacy Lewis (LPGA Tour)

One well-known player won on the PGA Tour with Mizuno irons bought at the local pro shop. Arguably the best player the game has ever seen played Mizuno irons through college and when winning his first major.

“When we do sign players to represent us – the key is the same authenticity and consistency Mizuno applies to everything else. Sir Nick Faldo won all six majors with Mizuno equipment, and Luke Donald played our irons from a very young age and throughout his college career. The heads they play come from the same production line that supplies our customers – so they could walk to their local pro shop and order an identical set. That’s what sets Mizuno apart from everyone else.”

Nothing Feels like A Mizuno
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Grain Flow Forged
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The Footsteps of Legends
From 1906 to major championships Arrow
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