Always be thinking about the person who will be using the club. It took me some time to learn the importance of this statement.
Do you embrace the wabi-sabi aesthetic, and if so how does it present itself in your clubs?
Yes and it is within the club where you can't see it physically. I use the same steel as all other manufacturers but the treatment that is given to each individual club makes the inside of the club special.
The Japanese media has described you as having the "hands of God," and reviewers have likened your clubs to fancy sports cars, and beautiful works or art—but to you personally what compliment that you have received is the most fulfilling?
When someone tells me that they will buy a set of Miura irons, I cannot imagine any feeling being better than that.
When you were starting out did you ever receive what proved to valuable criticism (maybe a bad review or something like that) that motivated you to improve upon your clubs?
The most valuable lesson learned was that the grass is not always greener on the other side. I have made many mistakes along the way and found out through mistakes that it was best for me to do what I knew best. Dedicate myself to making the best golf clubs possible.
It has absolutely become a challenge primarily because the golfer has become more educated and informed. The availability of specific data creates a challenge for Miura Golf to make the type of club that each individual golfer is looking for. In saying that, there is a danger in relying solely on that data or the new technologies to manufacture irons. We must remember that each golfer is an individual thus manufacturing the “perfect” set of irons has to take into account the “imperfections” we all possess. My feeling is that choosing a golf club will, one day, reflect a step back in time. You will pick up a variety of clubs, hit with them. When you find the one that feels the best for you, it will be the one you will want. My feeling is that if you trust your feel, the data will confirm your choice. This is why I am developing a new system for finding what club is best suited for that particular individual.
Are there any designers or artists outside the world of golf who inspire you?
I have become the oldest club maker now and really didn't have much help or someone to look up to when I first started. One reason I went on my own was because I was conflicted with the way things were being done in the golf club making industry. I always believed and have thankfully my sons have embraced the belief that when you are thinking of making a new model, don't look at other manufacturers clubs and do not look at pictures in golf magazines. Trust your skills and always use your own image thinking.
Golf clubs have advanced a great deal in the last few decades, do you foresee the advancements in the art and science of clubmaking evolving at the same rapid clip or will change from here on in be more incremental in nature?
Some club makers will continue in the advancement in the art and science but not all. I believe things will return to the old system because we are dealing with human beings and they are the ones who will decide what is best for them. So it is important that this aspect is not forgotten when clubs are being made. Always remember that humans are the ones playing the clubs not machines, so it is important that the human aspect is taken into consideration when making a club.