Updated: Aug 18, 2021
I get this question all the time, “Which Golf Clubs Should I Buy?” It’s not an easy question to answer, so I’ve put together a quick 5-step list to help you make the best determination for you. Whether they are slicing, hooking, shanking or hacking, people tend to put more blame on their clubs than is due.
Let’s face it. We all have golfed with someone, or maybe you are that someone that says “These clubs stink!” Could be, or maybe it’s you. Golf clubs are just the tool, and if you try to make the club do more than it’s built to do, or if your swing is a mess, then it’s not the golf clubs’ fault… If you kept banging your finger every time you tried to drive a nail into board, would you blame the hammer, or would you eventually move your finger? It’s the same concept with golf clubs. With all that being said, there is no better feeling than selecting a brand-new set of clubs that are matched perfect to your game.
How Good Are you (Really)?
So, step 1 is the most important step in the whole process. You need to be truly honest with your skill level. If you tell me you’re a scratch golfer, but in actuality you are a 25 handicap, then this guide won’t help you. There are many types of golfers, but for this exercise let’s divide into three categories, beginner, intermediate and advanced. Beginners are golfers who have played a handful of times; intermediate, are the next step and shoot between 80 – 100, and finally advanced, are the golfers who break 80 and shoot to a single digit handicap on a consistent basis.
How many clubs do you need?
If you are a beginner you don’t need as many clubs in your bag as a golfer who is intermediate, or advanced. The better you are the more specialized you can get with your clubs because you can control the ball better, and you know the distance each club will give you. Beginners need only the basics, which include a driver, a 3-4 wood, and 3-9 irons. I would also include a PW or a SW to accompany your putter.
What type of shaft should I get?
With the advances in golf technology each set of clubs can have an option for the “flex” of the shaft. I know what you are thinking? What the heck is “flex”? Basically, “flex” is the ability of a golf club shaft to bend as forces are applied to the swing. The faster your swing velocity, and the father you hit the ball, the stiffer the shaft you should have. That does not mean get stiffer shaft because you swing like a crazy person. It means how fast and how far on a consistent basis. Shafts generally are made of stainless steel, graphite or titanium. To get the best fit for you, visit your local golf shop and have your swing speed analyzed, that way you will know which shaft will fit your game.
What is the Correct Shaft Length?
The rule of thumb is to measure from the top of the grip to the sole of the clubhead. The length of the shaft will affect the distance of your shot, accuracy and even your swing plane. Longer-shafted clubs will change the arc of your swing, so if you struggle to consistently repeat your solid swings, then a longer shaft will only frustrate your game more. The goal is to have the clubhead square at the point of impact, and if you are struggling to pull the club through the impact zone, then you are probably looping your swing and you need a shorter shaft.
For more advanced golfers who can repeat a smooth, and consistent swing, you could consider going with a longer shaft because the change in arc will add to the clubhead speed at impact and add distance to your shots. In either case, have your swing analyzed to have the clubs properly fitted.
What Type of Irons?
So, irons come in two basic types: forged and cast. I generally recommend cast irons for beginners, and sometimes for intermediate. Why you ask? Well, I’ll tell you! Typically, cast irons have a larger “sweet spot” on the clubface, which is a bit more forgiving and lessens your chances on mishitting the ball.
These are 5-steps are to help guide when making your purchase, and hopefully you feel a bit more confident when you do go to your local golf shop. If anything, you will have bit of the lingo when talking to the person analyzing your swing. Remember, golf clubs are investment, so take your time and make sure you get clubs that feel the best for you. It makes a world of difference when you feel confident with the right equipment.