What Golf Clubs Are Used For What – Let’s Break It Down

Golf clubs are available in different types that it can become challenging to know what golf clubs are used for what.

What Golf Clubs Are Used For What - Let's Break It Down
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What Golf Clubs Are Used For What

A typical golf club sets contain three woods (driver, 3,5), a minimum of 1 hybrid, seven irons (4,5,6,7,8,9, and pitching wedges), and the putter, making a total of 12 clubs.

The golf governing bodies set out a rule that restricts golfers from carrying more than 14 clubs in a bag, so most players would candidly add an extra wedge.

After all, having more tools improves the chances of making a game easier.

That said, what is each golf club used for? Let’s check that out.

  • Woods

Golfers need woods when there’s a need to hit long shots. For example, if the distance from the golf hole to the green is around 450 yards, I suggest hitting the club off the tee with a wood.

Woods are a type of golf club with a hollow body and large head when it comes to what golf clubs are used for what.

It’s important to note that the best time to use your wood is when you’re away from the green with at least 175 yards.

The 1 wood (also known as the driver) is the golf club with the lowest loft.

The loft is the angle of the club that determines the distance and trajectory of a shot. Between 7-12° are the lofts of most drivers.

The more experienced golfers typically go for drivers with low loft (around 10°), as they require some professionalism to hit, unlike those with a higher loft.

As opposed to the previous use of lower loft by skilled golfers, many experienced golfers are beginning to switch over to the higher lofted drivers.

They claimed to achieve better drives after combining higher lofts with lower spins.

This is a dramatic change as opposed to previous years. During golf tournaments around the 1990s, many golfers hit the club at an average of 7 degrees.

But hitting these shots was a pain in the neck for professional golfers, which led to several spins. Ball flight analysts found that the best drives are achieved when the high loft meets with low spin.

However, there were no low spins at those times. Clubs with higher loft delivers a high launch angle.

Many golfers now use drivers with an 8.5-10 degree loft. Average to amateur golfers should stick to 10°

degree loft. However, when you’re looking for what golf clubs are used for, the general rule of thumb is to seek professional advice.

That way, it will be easier to know what works for you and what doesn’t.

The 3 and 5 woods are also common among golfers. You can expect between 15-18 degree lofts in 3-wood, while the loft of a 5-wood is between 20-22 degrees.

The loft of a club increases with the golf club number. Also, golf clubs with higher numbers tend to have shorter club shaft lengths.

The 3 and 5-wood are generally known as fairway woods. And that’s because they are not used until the second round of play when a player is usually in the fairway of the hole.

Woods with higher lofts (7,9,12, and more) are usually called the utility woods. Drivers are generally a 1/2 inch longer than 3-woods. So you should go for woods with a higher length.

That’s because the shorter the length of a club, the smaller the arc of the swing. The lower arc will produce a lower speed of the strike, and the less the distance traveled (you don’t want that, do you?)

While 5-woods are pretty short, the 7 and 9 woods are great options with excellent forgiving features.

Any hope for the 2 and 4 woods? Yes, but that was 20 years ago!

While these woods still exist, it topped the list of golfer’s preferences about two decades ago. Newer technology is around, and golfers have developed better wood options.

Today, the 7 and 9 woods sits right on the top priority list of many golfers.

The trend favors more of higher-numbered woods, leaving behind its lower-numbered counterparts (especially among irons). We’ll delve more into this when we discuss irons.

Why are woods made of metals and not wood? Woods were formally made of wood not until the 1980s when metals changed the wheels.

This was specifically because of the dramatic change in golf design technology. Today, metal is ahead of wood.

For example, low center of gravity and perimeter weighting are the two most crucial features every beginner always watch out for.

Luckily (not for woods), this can only be achieved with a metal material. This design technology is the reason metal woods have better forgiveness than wooden woods.

Perimeter weighting improves the surface area of the sweet spot, which is a big plus for a better hit.

The LCG (low center of gravity) increases the ball’s launch height right up the club to minimize mishit.

  • Hybrids

In your search for ‘what golf clubs are for what,’ you might want to know more about what hybrids are used for.

As aforementioned, a recent development in golf equipment over the past decade has cut across the different aspects of clubs, including the introduction of hybrids.

Hybrids combine the best of fairway woods with irons. The combination is noticeable in the iron length shaft and the fairway wood head design.

Long irons have, for long, been a difficult club to hit.

Lee Trevino, a popular golfer, once said, “if you found yourself in the middle of a storm during a golf match, just hold on to your 1-iron, and you’re safe – not even a storm can hit the iron.”

The point is long irons are painstakingly difficult to hit. Hybrids successfully garnered the reputation of “being the best of both the iron and Fairwood worlds.”

Hybrid has gained popularity over the years that many golfers abandoned their 3 and 4 irons for a hybrid club.

One of the pros of hybrid clubs that you should know when it comes to what golf clubs are used for is that it offers better distances than the typical 3,4-irons.

I’ve seen many holders replace their 5 and 7 woods with 2 and 3 hybrids.

Most manufacturers typically match up the hybrids number to its corresponding irons for distance checks. However, it is important to note that the loft is the best determinant of distance.

Most 3 iron and 3 hybrids typically match up in the loft. Even at that, hybrids will outweigh irons in terms of forgiveness and distance.

  • Irons

When looking for what golf clubs are used for what, it’s important to know when to use an iron.

The best situation to use irons is when the distance between you and the green is not more than 200 yards.

The farther you are from the green, the shorter the iron you’ll need. A standard iron set contains 3, 4,5,6,7,8,9, and PW).

Both the 3 and 4 irons are usually difficult to hit compared to other numbers.

With that, most golfers, most especially women and seniors are switching to a more comfortable like the 7 and 9 woods (since they already have higher loft)

I believe this trend is worthy of emulation and something every beginner should take into consideration.

Unlike the 3 and 4 woods, woods with higher lofts, such as the 7 and 9 woods are easy to hit.

  • Wedges

When talking about what golf clubs are used for what, we can’t but include the wedges.

Wedges are simply a special type of iron. A pitching wedge is the first wedge with between 46-48 degree loft. They usually have a loft increment of 4 degrees.

For example, you can only find wedges in the loft variation of 48, 52, 56, 60, and 64 degrees.

The pitching wedges have the highest lofts among standard irons while they are the lowest in the wedge categories.

After the pitching wedge is the sand wedge, lob wedge, high lob wedge, and the approach wedge. There’s also a unique wedge known as the last wedge, and it comes with a 68-degree loft.

The importance of wedges to your game cannot be underestimated, but most golfers only have a few of these clubs.

Wedges are called “blade clubs.” That’s because they are always needed when you’re close to the green.

  • Putters

This golf club is designed with a unique purpose – to have the ball rolled into the hole.

Putters are generally used on the green. They are available in many styles, including the belly, long, short, bent, mallet, heel-toe, center-hosel, and more.

When looking for what golf clubs are used for what, make sure you learn more about different varieties of available putters.

Any chart for golf club selection?

When it comes to selecting a golf club, there’s no manual or an exact rule to follow.

However, as a general rule of thumb, you should know your hitting range before choosing a club. And can be achieved by understanding what golf clubs are used for what.

Then you can take it over from there.

While a lot of factors come into play when looking for the best golf clubs, the key here is experimenting with different clubs. The more you try, the better it gets.

After knowing what golf clubs are used for what, here are some other helpful tips.

Keep track of the distance between your hit and where it landed. This will help you know how farther other clubs can help with your hit.

So, let’s say, your 8 iron covered roughly 130 yards, then your 7 iron should go between 149-145 yards.

  • Take lessons

Many people are stubborn and always want to do things their way. The best advice is, don’t be one!

You might not be able to know everything about what golf clubs are used for what (even if you read the best instructional books).

You’ll need the help of a professional golfer to guide you through the basics of what golf clubs are for what

  • Don’t underestimate the power of putting

Many golfers become obsessed with their drivers, hitting hundreds of yards. While this is helpful, it shouldn’t be at the detriment of your putters.

Remember, putts take over 50% of your strokes in each round, so why not spend 50% of your time practicing the putters.

  • Take your grip seriously

The hand is a crucial part of the body used for playing golf, so you need to take your grip seriously.

Seek expert’s help regarding the grip. Grips are mainly in three types: the Vardon, interlocking, and baseball.

Learning a proper grip can be challenging and could chunk off a lot of time. So, patience is needed here.

  • Avoid peer pressure

You don’t have to feel pressured by the fellow golfer as long as you’re getting it right with learning what golf clubs are used for what.

If you’re comfortable with pausing to have them pass by when playing, then that’s fine. But you don’t have to. Everyone started as a beginner.

Lastly, golf’s 19th hole experience can be fun – always save some bucks to be a part. This is the clubhouse where the golfer can meet, have fun, share a drink, and some golf ideas.

The 19th holes experience is a great opportunity to know different golf tips, including what golf clubs are for what.

Final Thoughts

Especially for beginner golfers, knowing what golf clubs are used for what can be a pain in the neck.

Differentiating between the 3 and 5 woods or the difference between the wedge and the long iron can be difficult.

You’ll need the help of a professional golfer to guide you through the basics of the uses of the clubs in a golf bag.

We hope this article has done justice to your questions.

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Last Updated on March 2, 2023 by Paul Roger Steinberg