Golf is my favourite thing to do. I just love it, but I get that getting into this great game can be a bit intimidating. The world of golf can be overwhelming, especially when it comes to understanding all of the different types of clubs and their uses on the course. That's why we've put together this golf club guide for beginners to help you navigate the world of golf clubs and give you the confidence to choose the right equipment for your game. Whether you're just starting out or looking to improve your skills, this guide will provide you with the essential knowledge to get the most out of your golf game.
Simple golf club breakdown for beginners - What are the different clubs?
As a beginner golfer, it can be difficult to understand the different types of golf clubs and their uses on the course. But fear not, as we can break it down into the main types of clubs and their purposes.
Drivers are the longest clubs in the bag and are used to hit the ball the farthest distance off the tee. They have a low loft angle (usually between 8-13 degrees) which helps to lift the ball into the air and increase distance.
Fairway woods are similar to drivers, but with a smaller head and shorter shaft. They are designed to hit the ball long distances off the fairway, and can also be used off the tee if you need more accuracy. They have a higher loft angle than drivers (usually between 15-18 degrees) which makes them easier to hit higher shots.
Hybrids are a combination of a wood and an iron, designed to give you the best of both worlds. They have a larger head than irons and a shorter shaft than woods, making them easier to hit than long irons. Hybrids can be used for a variety of shots, including off the tee, from the fairway or rough, and even from around the green.
Irons are the most versatile clubs in your bag, and are used for a wide range of shots from the fairway, rough, and even around the green. Irons come in a variety of numbers, ranging from 3 to 9 (with higher numbers having more loft) and are designed to hit the ball at different distances and heights.
Wedges are short-range clubs designed to hit high, soft shots around the green or out of bunkers. They come in a variety of lofts, including pitching wedge (PW), sand wedge (SW), and lob wedge (LW), with the higher lofted wedges providing more height and less distance.
Putters are used on the green to roll the ball into the hole. There are a wide variety of putters available, with different head shapes, weights, and alignments to suit your personal preference and putting style.
Best Beginner Golf Club Sets
I've written a full article reviewing the best golf club sets for beginners. Check it out here.
How often should I replace my golf grips?
Golf grips are your way of being in direct contact with the golf club, so they're pretty important. Over time, golf grips can become worn out or lose their tackiness or grip, making it more difficult to hold onto the club and control your shots. So, how often should you replace your golf grips?
The general recommendation is to replace your golf grips every 40 rounds of play or once a year, whichever comes first. However, there are some signs that may indicate that you need to replace your grips sooner, such as cracks or tears in the rubber, visible wear or smoothness on the surface, or a loss of tackiness or grip.
If you play frequently or in humid conditions, you may need to replace your grips more often to maintain optimal performance. Additionally, if you tend to grip the club tightly or use gloves that cause excessive wear, you may need to replace your grips more often.
Ultimately, it's important to pay attention to the condition of your golf grips and replace them when necessary to ensure that you have the best possible grip and control over your shots. A new set of grips can make a big difference in your game and help you play with confidence.
Wedges: What's the difference?
Golf wedges are pretty complicated to understand so I've written a few articles on the main differences and key uses of these clubs. Check them out here:
- 50 vs 52 Degree Wedge – Which Gap Wedge is Best?
- When to Use a 56 Degree Wedge
- When To Use A 52 Degree Wedge – The Scoring Zone
- 58 vs 60 Degree Wedge – What Should I Use?
- When to Use a 60 Degree Lob Wedge
- Best Sand Wedge for Bunkers
- Sand Wedge Bounce: 10 Or 14? How Much is Best?
- How Far Should You Hit Your Wedges?
Why is a golf driver so hard to hit?
The golf driver is often considered one of the most challenging clubs to hit in the bag. There are several reasons why this is the case:
- Length: Drivers are the longest clubs in the bag, with shafts typically around 45 inches in length. This can make them more difficult to control and swing with consistency.
- Loft: Drivers have a low loft angle (usually between 8-13 degrees) which can make it more difficult to get the ball in the air and keep it on target.
- Head size: Driver heads are generally larger than other clubs, which can make them feel unwieldy and intimidating to some golfers.
- Swing speed: To get the most out of a driver, you need to generate high swing speeds, which can be difficult to achieve for some golfers.
- Mental pressure: Because the driver is typically used to start each hole, there can be a lot of pressure to hit a good shot and get off to a good start.
To overcome these challenges and hit the driver more consistently, it's important to work on developing a consistent swing and finding the right driver that suits your swing speed and skill level. Many golfers find it helpful to take lessons from a golf professional to improve their swing technique and get more comfortable with the driver. Additionally, practicing with the driver regularly and focusing on keeping a relaxed grip and swing can help to build confidence and improve performance over time.
Should I use one-length golf irons?
One-length golf irons are a type of golf club where all of the irons in the set have the same length and lie angle. This is in contrast to traditional irons, where the length and lie angle increase as the club number gets higher.
While one-length irons may seem like a good idea in theory, they may not be the best choice for everyone. Here are some things to consider when deciding whether or not to use one-length irons:
- Swing characteristics: One-length irons are designed to promote a consistent swing, but they may not work well for golfers who have a unique swing or swing characteristics that don't fit the standard mold.
- Shot distance: Because the length of the one-length irons is the same, there may be some loss of distance with longer irons compared to traditional irons.
- Comfort level: Some golfers may simply not feel comfortable with the one-length irons, especially if they are used to playing with traditional irons.
- Skill level: One-length irons may be more suited to golfers who are just starting out or who have a higher handicap, as they may provide more consistency and forgiveness on mishits.
Ultimately, the decision to use one-length irons should be based on your individual needs and preferences. It's a good idea to test out different types of clubs and get feedback from a professional fitter or instructor to determine what works best for you.
What is standard golf club length?
The standard golf club length can vary depending on the type of club, but here are the typical lengths for each club:
- Driver: 43 to 46 inches
- Fairway woods: 41 to 43 inches
- Hybrids: 39 to 41 inches
- Irons: 38 to 40 inches
- Wedges: 35 to 37 inches
- Putters: 33 to 35 inches
It's important to note that these lengths are just guidelines and can vary depending on individual preferences and needs. Many golfers may have their clubs customized to better fit their height, swing speed, and other factors. Additionally, some golfers may prefer longer or shorter clubs depending on their swing style and personal comfort level.
If you're unsure about the right club length for you, it's a good idea to consult with a professional club fitter or instructor who can help you find the right fit for your game. A properly fitted club can make a big difference in your performance on the course.
Should I Buy a Golf Set or Individual Clubs?
Whether to buy a golf set or individual clubs ultimately depends on your personal needs, preferences, and budget. Here are some things to consider:
- A golf set is a good choice for beginners or golfers who are looking for a complete set of clubs at a lower cost.
- Sets typically include a driver, fairway woods, hybrids, irons, wedges, and a putter, all with matching shafts, grips, and headcovers.
- Sets are generally designed to be forgiving and easy to use, which can be helpful for golfers who are still learning the game.
- However, sets may not be suitable for more advanced golfers who prefer to choose their own clubs and have more specialized needs.
- Buying individual clubs can give you more flexibility and control over your club selection, allowing you to choose clubs that best fit your game.
- This option is generally more expensive than buying a set, but it allows you to invest in high-quality clubs that can last a long time.
- Individual clubs also allow you to customize your club selection to fit your personal preferences and skill level.
- However, choosing individual clubs can be more time-consuming and require more knowledge about club specifications, which can be overwhelming for beginners.
Ultimately, the decision to buy a golf set or individual clubs will depend on your personal goals, preferences, and budget. It's a good idea to consult with a professional club fitter or instructor who can help you make an informed decision and find the best clubs for your game.
What Are Graphite Golf Shafts?
Graphite golf shafts are a type of shaft used in golf clubs, primarily in woods and irons. They are made from carbon fiber composite materials, which offer several advantages over traditional steel shafts.
Here are some key features and benefits of graphite golf shafts:
- Lightweight: Graphite shafts are significantly lighter than steel shafts. This lightness allows golfers to generate higher clubhead speeds, which can result in increased distance and potential for more power.
- Increased Flexibility: Graphite shafts are generally more flexible or have varying degrees of flex compared to steel shafts. This flex can help golfers achieve a higher launch angle, which can be beneficial for achieving longer distances and a higher trajectory on shots.
- Reduced Vibration: The carbon composite construction of graphite shafts helps to absorb and dampen vibrations caused by impact, resulting in a smoother feel during ball contact. This can enhance comfort and reduce the risk of strain or discomfort in the golfer's hands and arms.
- Shock Absorption: Graphite shafts have better shock-absorbing properties than steel shafts. They can absorb some of the shocks and vibrations that occur when the club strikes the ball or the ground. This can lead to a more comfortable experience, especially for golfers with joint issues or those seeking reduced strain on their bodies.
- Customization Options: Graphite shafts come in a wide range of flex options, allowing golfers to choose a shaft stiffness that suits their swing speed and playing style. The flexibility of graphite shafts makes it easier to match the shaft to an individual golfer's needs and preferences.
- Durable and Corrosion Resistant: Graphite shafts are generally resistant to rust and corrosion, unlike steel shafts. They also tend to be more resistant to dings, dents, and scratches, which can help maintain the appearance and performance of the club over time.
It's important to note that while graphite shafts offer numerous benefits, they may not be suitable for everyone. Some golfers prefer the feel and control provided by steel shafts, especially in their irons. It's recommended to try out different shaft types and seek professional advice to determine the best shaft material and flex for your game.
What size of driver Club head do I need?
The size of driver club head that you need will depend on your personal preferences, skill level, and swing speed. The most common driver club head sizes range from 440cc to 460cc. 460cc is the largest a driver head can be to still be legal for tournament use on the golf course.
Here are a few things to consider when selecting a driver club head size:
- Skill level: If you are a beginner or have a slower swing speed, you may benefit from a larger driver club head size, as it can provide a larger sweet spot and more forgiveness on off-center hits. However, if you have a faster swing speed and more advanced skill level, a smaller club head size may give you more control and precision.
- Comfort level: It's important to choose a driver club head size that feels comfortable and easy to swing for you. Some guys just like the way that a smaller clubhead looks behind the golf ball, so will choose a smaller 440cc driver.
The best way to determine the right driver club head size for you is to try out different sizes and models and consult with a professional club fitter or instructor who can provide personalized recommendations based on your individual needs and preferences.
What is a golf Putter?
A golf putter is a club that you mainly use on the putting green to roll the ball into the hole. Putters have a flat-faced club head and are designed to strike the ball with a low loft, which keeps the ball rolling along the ground.
Putters come in many different shapes and sizes, with varying degrees of toe hang, offset, and weight distribution. Some putters are blade-style putters, which have a traditional, compact design with a straight or slight curve hosel. Others are mallet-style putters, which have a larger, more rounded club head that can provide more forgiveness and stability on off-center hits.
The choice of putter is a personal one and depends on factors such as your putting style, preferences, and the conditions of the course. Some golfers prefer a heavier putter for better feel and control, while others prefer a lighter putter for increased speed and ease of use. DO NOT USE A PUTTER FROM A MINI GOLF COURSE. These are just the worst type of putter out there and should be completely avoided at all costs. Seriously, I will come after you.
Should I buy a fairway wood or a hybrid?
Whether to buy a fairway wood or a hybrid depends on your individual preferences and needs as a golfer. Here are a few things to consider:
- Purpose: Fairway woods and hybrids serve different purposes on the course. Fairway woods are typically used for longer shots off the fairway or tee, while hybrids are more versatile and can be used for a variety of shots, including from the rough and around the green.
- Difficulty: Hybrids are generally considered easier to hit than fairway woods, due to their shorter shafts and more forgiving club heads. If you struggle with consistent ball striking, a hybrid may be a better option for you.
- Loft: Fairway woods typically have lower lofts than hybrids, which can be an advantage for longer shots. However, hybrids can provide more versatility in terms of shot selection, as they can be used for a variety of shots with different degrees of loft.
- Swing speed: If you have a slower swing speed, a hybrid may be a better option, as it requires less speed to generate distance than a fairway wood.
Ultimately, the choice between a fairway wood or a hybrid comes down to your individual needs and preferences. It's a good idea to try out both types of clubs and see which one feels more comfortable and effective for your game. You may also want to consult with a professional club fitter or instructor who can provide personalized recommendations based on your swing and playing style.
What's included in a beginner golf club set?
A beginner golf club set typically includes the following clubs and accessories:
- Driver: This is the club used for long-distance shots off the tee. It usually has the largest clubhead and a long shaft.
- Fairway Woods: These clubs are designed for shots from the fairway or rough and are used for longer shots when the ball is on the ground.
- Irons: Irons are used for a variety of shots, including approach shots to the green and shots from the fairway. A typical beginner set may include irons numbered from 3 to 9. The lower-numbered irons have less loft and are used for longer shots, while the higher-numbered irons have more loft and are used for shorter shots.
- Pitching Wedge: This club has a high loft and is used for shots close to the green when you need the ball to go up in the air quickly and land softly.
- Sand Wedge: This club has a high loft and is designed for shots out of bunkers or sand traps. It helps the ball get out of the sand and onto the green.
- Putter: The putter is used on the green to roll the ball into the hole. It has a flat face and is designed to provide accuracy and control.
- Golf Bag: A beginner set often includes a golf bag to carry and organize the clubs. The bag typically has compartments and pockets for storing golf balls, tees, and other accessories.
Additionally, some beginner sets may include a hybrid club, which combines the characteristics of a wood and an iron. Hybrids are generally easier to hit than long irons and can be useful for beginners.
It's worth noting that the specific clubs included in a beginner set may vary depending on the brand and manufacturer. Some sets may also include additional accessories like golf balls, tees, and a glove. It's always a good idea to check the contents of a particular set before purchasing to ensure it meets your needs.
FAQ when buying beginner golf clubs
How much should you spend on your first set of golf clubs?
The amount you should spend on your first set of golf clubs can vary depending on your budget and commitment to the game. Generally, beginner golf club sets range in price from around $200 to $500.
At the lower end of the price range, you can find basic sets that offer decent quality clubs suitable for beginners. These sets often include all the essential clubs you'll need to get started. While they may not have the latest technology or premium materials, they can still serve you well as you develop your skills.
As you move up in price, you'll find sets that offer better quality materials, improved club designs, and potentially additional clubs or accessories. These sets may offer more forgiveness, which can be beneficial for beginners who are still working on consistent ball-striking.
If you have a higher budget or are more committed to the game, you may consider investing in individual clubs rather than a complete set. This way, you can select clubs that match your specific needs and preferences. However, it's worth noting that individual clubs can be more expensive, and it can be beneficial to gain some experience and understanding of your game before making more significant investments.
Ultimately, the amount you spend should align with your budget, level of commitment, and long-term goals in golf. If you're unsure, it can be helpful to visit a local golf shop or consult with a golf professional who can provide personalized advice based on your needs and budget.
Should I Buy New or Used Golf Clubs?
The decision to buy new or used golf clubs depends on several factors, including your budget, personal preferences, and the specific condition of the used clubs available to you. Here are some considerations to help you make an informed decision:
- Budget: Used golf clubs are generally more affordable than new ones. If you have a limited budget, buying used clubs can allow you to get higher-quality clubs or a complete set for a lower price. However, if budget isn't a significant constraint, purchasing new clubs may provide you with the latest technology and performance features.
- Condition: When buying used clubs, it's important to assess their condition carefully. Look for signs of wear, such as worn clubface grooves, dents, or significant scratches. Minor cosmetic imperfections may not affect performance significantly, but excessive wear can impact the club's playability and durability.
- Technology and Innovation: Golf club manufacturers continually introduce new technologies and design innovations that can enhance performance. If staying up-to-date with the latest advancements is important to you, buying new clubs gives you access to these features. However, if you're not concerned about having the latest technology, used clubs can still perform well.
- Customization: If you have specific preferences regarding club specifications (such as shaft flex, grip size, or lie angle), buying new clubs allows you to customize them to your exact needs. With used clubs, customization options may be limited unless you find a set that already matches your requirements.
- Warranty and Return Policies: New clubs usually come with warranties from the manufacturer, offering protection against defects and performance issues. Additionally, reputable retailers often provide return or exchange policies for new clubs. With used clubs, these benefits may not be available, so it's essential to thoroughly inspect the clubs and be comfortable with the purchase.
- Personal Preference: Some golfers simply prefer the experience of owning new clubs. There's a certain satisfaction in unboxing and playing with a brand-new set of clubs that has never been used before. If this is important to you and you can afford it, buying new clubs may be the way to go.
The decision between new and used clubs depends on your priorities, budget, and the specific options available to you. It can be beneficial to try out different clubs, seek advice from golf professionals, and consider your long-term goals in golf before making a final decision.
Do golf clubs make a difference for beginners?
Yes, golf clubs can make a difference for beginner golfers. If you just want to play golf, you might think that any old clubs will do. Yeah you can hack it round with grandpas old blades for the 19690's but let me tell you now, unless you're the new Tiger Woods, that not going to be a very fun experience. Here's why golf clubs matter for beginners:
- Forgiveness: Beginner-friendly clubs often have features that enhance forgiveness. This means they have larger clubheads, wider soles, and more perimeter weighting to help minimize the impact of mishits. Forgiving clubs can help beginners achieve more consistent and straighter shots, even on off-center hits. Blades look great, but they're not forgiving!
- Distance and Launch: Different clubs are designed to achieve specific distances and launch angles. For example, drivers have larger clubheads and longer shafts, enabling beginners to generate more distance off the tee. Irons designed with higher lofts and cavity-back designs can help beginners achieve higher launch angles, allowing for longer carry distances.
- Clubhead Design: The design of the clubhead affects how the club interacts with the ball. Certain designs can help beginners get the ball airborne more easily or reduce the likelihood of slicing or hooking shots. Beginner clubs often incorporate design features to assist with these aspects of the swing, making it easier for beginners to achieve desired results.
- Shaft Flex: The flex of the club shaft affects the way the clubhead behaves during the swing. Beginner clubs typically have more flexible shafts, which can help compensate for slower swing speeds and promote a higher trajectory. This can result in more distance and improved consistency for beginners.
- Confidence and Enjoyment: Using clubs that are suited to your skill level can increase your confidence on the course. When you feel comfortable with your equipment, it can positively impact your overall enjoyment of the game. Beginner-friendly clubs can instill confidence in your swing and encourage you to continue practicing and improving.
While it's important to say that technique and practice are important things in developing your golf skills, having the right clubs can certainly speed up your progress as a beginner. As you gain experience and refine your swing, you may eventually consider upgrading to clubs that better match your golf game.
What are the best golf club brands for beginners?
here are several golf club brands that offer great options for beginners. Here are some reputable brands known for their beginner-friendly clubs:
- Callaway: Callaway is a well-respected brand known for its forgiving and game-improvement clubs. They offer a range of options suitable for beginners, including complete sets and individual clubs with features designed to enhance forgiveness and help golfers achieve better results.
- TaylorMade: TaylorMade is another popular brand that provides a wide selection of clubs suitable for beginners. They offer forgiving drivers, irons, and complete sets that cater to players seeking distance, forgiveness, and ease of use.
- Cobra: Cobra Golf is known for producing clubs that prioritize forgiveness and game improvement. They offer a variety of options for beginners, including complete sets and individual clubs designed to help golfers hit the ball straighter and with more consistency.
- Wilson: Wilson has a long history in the golf industry and offers beginner-friendly clubs that provide good value for the price. They have complete sets and individual clubs with forgiving designs, making them a popular choice for beginners looking for quality equipment at an affordable price point.
- Ping: Ping is renowned for its high-quality and forgiving clubs. While they are known for catering to players of all skill levels, they have options specifically designed for beginners. Ping's clubs often provide forgiveness, consistency, and a focus on improving the golfer's game.
There are loads of other golf club manufacturers in the market offering complete golf sets for beginners to start playing golf with. When selecting clubs as a beginner, Remember that your golf swing will be very raw when you start so don't pick a brand because you think you will swing it like Rory McIlroy or Tiger Woods. Your golfing journey is going to be hard but fun so take you time and pick a brand of golf equipment which works for you.
I've written loads of articles on this subject opt help you make the right choice. Check them out here.