A guide for the beginners to start their journey as a golfer
Did you know that you are one of the 30+ millions of American golfers who have decided to pursue this great game? Yes, you are! And it is well-known that it is a game which can be played at any age and you can make it a life-long activity.
So, we are here to guide you to begin this long journey. Since you are yet to inaugurate yourself on a golf course, you should prepare your golf bag properly. The most important equipment you will carry with this bag is several types of the golf club along with other comparatively smaller yet necessary things.
In this article, we will introduce you to different types of golf clubs, a brief comparison, and their uses. Hopefully, you will get an overview of the function of the various types of clubs.
Different Types of golf clubs
Generally, when you talk about golf club types, you will find that there are six different categories of golf clubs available. These are:
- Fairway Woods
Each of the clubs is manufactured for a specific type of shots and specific use; very few of them have multiple uses.
The driver, also called 1-wood, is the primary and most common club- it got the name from its purpose of use, which is to drive your golf ball off the tee. The driver is the longest club but it has the lowest loft (between 7 degrees to 11 degrees). The driver is used exclusively for tee shots, in order to make the straight ball flight with maximum height and distance.
Different sizes of drivers are available from 18 inches to 60 inches, and some companies even offer the 6-foot driver. However, according to the rules of Golf, the length of Driver should not exceed 48 inches. The standard driver length of man golf driver is 43-inch to 45-inch range, which is user-friendly.
As a beginner, to buy the best golf driver for you; see driver reviews from different manufacturers and go for the buy.
Just a tip; it is always effective for you to use new driver rather than used driver!!
An iron club is made with solid, metal head; which is used for hitting shots from the fairway approaching the green. When you are less than 200 yards from the green, your go-to-clubs are Iron clubs.
Irons are actually sets of different numbers. Most widely used golf iron sets consists of 3-iron, 4-iron, 5-iron, 6-iron, 7-iron, 8-iron, and 9-iron. The higher the number, the more loft increases, and the shaft length decrease. The increased loft allows you to hit high but cover a shorter distance.
The usual length of golf iron is 36-40 inches and loft range are 16 to 60 degrees.
Some golfer uses 1-iron & 2-iron, but these are used by few skilled golfers only. Not everyone is #TigerWoods, so don’t beat yourself up for not using that!
Despite the name ‘fairway woods’, it is not made of wood; rather these clubs are made of stainless still. Unlike the drives, it has smaller heads and shaft.
Some experts suggest beginners should use fairway woods since it is easier to control the swing than the driver. From the fairway to Tee-off, this club is appropriate because the bigger lofts allow you to hit your shot more easily and with more control.
If you are playing into the wind then fairway woods is effective than the drives to get the ball higher up into the air.
Wedges, who have a higher degree of lofts, ranges from 45 to 64 degrees, are of four categories:
- Pitching wedge
- Gap wedge
- Sand wedge
- Lob wedge
Pitching wedge, abbreviated PW, also known as 10-iron, is one of the most common wedges in the wedge family. Almost every pro and beginner carry this wedge club. A Typical Pitching wedge generally lofts from 45 to 48 degrees, which is the lowest of the wedge sets. You should use this golf wedge for a shorter distance which is between 120 yards to 140 yards.
Gap wedge, known as approach wedge or attack wedge, is a relatively recent addition to golf clubs. The gap wedge is meant to fill the gap between a Pitching wedge and Sand wedge. A gap wedge generally lofts between 50 to 54 degrees. The gap wedge is designed to take a full swing shot and the distance it can cover is about 110 yards. It is common for pro players to carry this club.
Sand wedge or SW has between 56-58 degrees of loft, which is more than a gap wedge, but less than a lob wedge. If you want to hit the ball out of the sand bunker, mud or soggy ground more easily, your right club is a sand wedge. A golfer uses this wedge to cover 90 yards or so.The lob wedge is used to hit the ball high but for shorter distance i.e. 70 yards. Lob wedge has the most loft among all the golf clubs and it has between 60 to 64 degrees of loft. If you want to throw the ball high in the air quickly with a full swing, then lob wedge are apt. However, this wedge can be challenging sometimes for a beginner golfer. This club is sold separately, not with standard golf set.
Putters are another type of club which you would use the most. The purpose of this club is to roll the ball around the green and towards the hole. Putters have only 4 degrees of loft so that the ball doesn’t bounce high when you hit it. As they are used to put the ball into the hole, you don’t need much loft. Different sizes of putters are available; the standard putter size is about 34-35 inches tall. The face of putters is flat and made of plastic or soft metal.
Hybrid or utility club is another golf club type, which is a cross between long irons and fairway woods. Its manufacturing and design make the maneuverability so easy that many golfers have replaced their longs irons with this utility club. Many regular golfers say that it is easier to hit with a hybrid golf club. That is why it became so popular among recreational golfers and beginners. Hybrid became the choice for both high and low handicappers.
Hybrids and irons have the same lofts by number i.e. 3-hybrid golf club and 3-iron will have the same loft.
Comparison Between Different Golf Clubs
Actually, there is no such thing as ‘the best’ across the board. Difference clubs have different shots and different purposes, and you’ll be needing them in different conditions. However, the preferences may vary based on the club material, players’ experience, and your ability to buy and using the clubs.
Still, golfers don’t refrain themselves from comparing because of the build qualities and different size and shape. After all, it is them who are using and putting the golf balls on the hole.
If you check between 5-wood vs 3-hybrid, you see 5-wood is longer and 3-hybrid is more accurate. 5-wood allows you to swing faster and cover a longer distance. On the other hand, 3-hybrid is for slow and controlled swing, which delivers less distance but give you much accuracy.
Some of the golfers may prefer 5 iron in a 5 iron vs hybrid scenario because iron is generally cheaper than a hybrid. On the contrary, throughout your long journey of golfing, the forgiving hybrid will yield more results for you.
If you are really willing to get into this golf course this season- don't delay. A long yet exciting journey is ahead of you. Stick to your plan, be patient and learn. Golf is all about concentration and mental strength, so beef up your confidence and courage before starting your journey. And don’t forget the most important rule of all, ENJOY THE GAME!