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Golf club types, components, and uses. a complete guide

Golf club types, components, and uses. a complete guide

First Published: May 23, 2020
Last updated: May 24, 2021

Are you planning to start playing golf, or are you a seasoned player preparing for your next game? If so, selecting the best golf clubs for beginners is essential to enhance your performance. By choosing the right golf club types, you can alter the way you play and get rid of any handicaps.

Wondering which golf club you should purchase? Not sure what factors you need to pay attention to? Whether you’re planning to get a full golf club set or one club, it can be an overwhelming task. This is due to the vast number of golf clubs selections available in the market. To make things easier, we have come up with some tips that will guide you in making a perfect choice.

What are the different Types Of Golf Clubs

Illustration depicting the different types of golf clubs and their uses

You will come across different types of clubs in the market. These are mainly designed to hit the ball at various distances. Hence you will find numerous degrees of loft to propel the ball forward into the air.

The standard golf clubs set consists of a combination of multiple clubs so that the golfer has a club for each shot he wishes to swing.

You will also find that these clubs have numbers on them. Wondering what do the numbers on golf clubs mean? The gears with lower numbers are for players to hit the ball towards longer distances when compared with the high numbered clubs.

Here is a video (10 minutes 18 seconds) from Clay Ballard explaining the difference and role of every type of golf clubs:

Golf clubs also have different shapes, weights, and sizes to cater to numerous situations and shots. You can also find cheap golf clubs to suit your wallet. Let’s have a look at each of these golf clubs different kinds:

See also: Best Golf Clubs For Kids and Juniors


Putters are the most useful and are the critical gear in your bag. It comes with the steel shaft and, at times, has a squared or flat grip to rest your thumbs. You will find that the clubface present on the putter is actually flat or almost flat, which makes it smaller than the rest of the clubs in your collection. You get to use the putter while on the green to roll your ball into the hole.t

Two types of head styles are available for the putter. It includes the blade putter and the mallet putter. The blade putter sports a small head style, which is the traditional and conventional style.

These are mainly used by players who are entirely accurate in their distance and direction while putting. The mallet putter has a larger head style and is suitable for all skill levels. This is a popular option as it’s capable of giving straight putts.

Fairway Woods

Fairway woods are also known as Metal Woods, or Fairway Metals contain 7-wood, 5-wood, and 3-wood clubs. The higher the number, the greater will be the loft of your clubhead, and this will impact your shot as well.

Most of the time, the drivers fairway woods are also available with graphite shafts. The heads present on the fairway woods are much smaller than the driver. As for the loft, it lies between 12 to 18°, whereas the driver lies between 7 to 13°. 

For beginner golfers, it’s advisable to have 17°. Golfers who find it hard to hit using a driver may opt for fairway woods instead of the drivers. It is because the extra loft present helps in hitting a straight shot.


Iron Wedges help strike the ball and make it fly into the air before it lands on the putting surface. They have a much higher loft when compared with the rest of the clubs.

These clubs have a loft of around 50°. Based on the different loft degrees, you will find three types of wedges. It includes the gap, sand, and lob wedges.

You will also find that based on the bounce angle, three types of wedges are available. It includes the standard bounce wedges, low bounce wedges, and high bounce wedges. The bounce angle is the curved portion present on the soles of the wedge. This keeps the club from snagging into the rough or sandy areas.

The Gap Wedge

Also known as the approach wedge. This gear is capable of bridging the gap of the distance that lies between the sand wedge and the pitching wedge.

You will also come across the fact that this club permits more distance than the rest of the edges. It also gives better accuracy for each shot and offers a loft that lies between 50 to 55°. This wedge is mainly used for hitting a shot with shorter as well as higher trajectory.

The Sand Wedge

The sand wedge, also is known as sand iron, is the most commonly used wedge for making sand bunker shots. You can also make many hits across the green to get the ball into the air and spin it after it hits the green.

This open-faced wedge has a wide sole that offers an enormous amount of bounce. This permits the clubhead to glide well through the sand without getting hindered by it. Even though it does not provide a long-distance hit, it is a useful tool in your bag. You can use it for bunker plays Since it has a loft of 54 to 58°.

The Lob Wedge

Also known as the L-Wedge or lofted wedge. It is usually used for making short-distance shots that are capable of spinning a lot and travelling quite high.

This gear allows the player to manipulate the ball across the greens using shots that can stop rapidly. Or else make higher shots that are capable of spinning back into the hole. These wedges have a loft that ranges between 60 to 64°.

Hybrid Golf Clubs

The hybrid Golf club is a crossbreed between an iron and a wood club. The best Hybrid clubs have the same shape as that of woods and have a more significant advantage of being able to hit easily.

You will find that they also have the length and loft of an iron club, making it easier to travel the same distance as that of an iron. 

Most individuals have the affinity to replace their long irons like the 4-irons and 3-irons with the hybrid option. This is mainly done to enhance the forgiveness and ease of playability during off-center hits.

You May Also Like: Best Golf Clubs For Women

Although 4-irons and 3-irons are usually replaced, you can also replace the other irons with the hybrid clubs to hit easily.


The golf irons are capable of covering long, midrange, and short-range shots from the tee. Generally, they’re available in sets of 6 to 8 individual gears. The typical set contains 9-, 8-, 7-, 6-, 5-, 4- and 3-irons.

Iron clubs are available with graphite or steel shafts. You may also find the most forgiving irons 2020 while shopping for the golf iron sets.

Based on your weight requirements, different models are available. This includes Offset & draw weighted Irons and the Perimeter-weighted Irons.

You will also come across different types of irons while picking golf club iron sets. This includes Muscle Back or Cavity Muscle Back, Game Improvement Irons, and Max Game-Improvement Irons. Each of these types is uniquely designed to suit a specific skill level.


Drivers are traditionally known as the woods. This is because earlier, they were made using wooden material. However, in the modern era, you can find titanium, steel, and other material drivers.

Drivers come with the largest club head in the golf bag and are the long-distance clubs. They are mostly used for the initial shots on Par 4 or Par 5.

The driver's face has the largest hitting area when compared with the rest of the clubs. You can also find different clubhead sizes while selecting the drivers. The largest standard driver has a club head of 460cc. While purchasing, avoid going for cheap golf drivers.

Golf Club Components

Now that you are aware of what a complete club set includes, let’s find out the essential golf club Components.

Each golf club consists of four parts: the Shaft, clubhead, grip, and Hosel. A component golf club is the golf club that’s assembled by any independent club manufacturer. These club makers usually get the parts of the club from specialized vendors

Golf Club Components Graphic
Golf Club Components

The Shaft

The shaft is a cylindrical and tapered tube made of metal or graphite. It connects the hand of the player with the clubhead. As for the length of the shaft, it varies based on the club it’s installed in.

The longer the length of the shaft, the farther your hands will be from the ball. You will find that most of the long clubs are made using graphite shaft because Early do you live flexible in nature.

While selecting the shaft, you need to be aware of your swing speed as well. You can find this out through the fitting procedure while you purchase the club. Golfers who have a swinging speed of more than 100 mph must opt for an extra stiff or stiff shaft.

For swings speeds between 85-100 mph, a regular flex shaft is ideal. Swing speeds lower than 85 mph must go for flex shafts.

The Shaft Stiffness levels are usually labelled using various letters:

  • - L for ladies.
  • - M or A for seniors or amateurs.
  • - R for regulars.
  • - X for extra stiff.
  • - S for stiff.

The Clubhead

Wish to enjoy the most out of your golf club? Then you need to have different sized club heads in your bag. This is because it is the part of the golf club that you can hit the ball with.

Moreover, it controls the distance and the height that your ball may travel. Club heads are specially designed with unique technological attributes by the manufacturer. This gears it to suit each player’s ability to strike the ball accurately and make it properly forward.

Most of the specialized brands provide oversized, midsize, and standard heads for their clubs. Note that choosing the clubhead size is mainly based on your expertise level. The larger the size of your clubhead, you will have more forgiveness for your swings.

The Grip

Grip includes a rubber covering that goes over around the last 8 inches of your shaft. This enables you to hold or grip on to the club tightly. You may come across clubs that have jumbo or oversized, midsize, and standard grips.

The grip thickness can have a massive impact on each of your swings. Grips that are too thin may result in larger hand actions as you swing. Whereas grips that are too thick may restrict your hand movements, causing devastating results.

The right grip will allow you to hold the club with the help of your middle and ring fingers on your left hand with minimal contact of your thumb on the pad. In case your fingers do not touch the thumb, it shows that the grip is quite significant.

Grips are chosen depending on the size of the golfer's hand. You can also select based on the various textures, shades, and designs; however, remember that all these serve the same purpose.

The Hosel

Hosel is the part that connects the clubhead with the shaft and is capable of controlling the lie angle of the club. The lie angle is the angle between the shaft and the sole of the clubhead. At times, Golfers may have to adjust their lie angle depending on their swinging style, arm length, and height. In case you have to bend your shaft to increase the angle, it shows you have an upright lie. If you have to decrease the angle, then what you get is a flat lie.

An adjustable hosel does the same job at the hosel. However, here the golfers can adjust the lie angle and loft of the club. These adjustable hosels are available only recently and present in only fairway woods, hybrids, and drivers.

How to Know Which Golf Club to Use And When

Well, You have all the tools you need to produce a successful shot. But understanding which golf club to use in which situation can be a challenge. Most golf clubs are designed for particular sorts of shots, although some have multiple uses.
Do you go with a wood or a hybrid? Which iron will help you perform your best shot? Which wedge will help you land on the green?
To decide which golf club to use for a specific shot, you need to identify each golf club's average distance in your set. Then, you choose the golf club that meets the length you want to achieve.

Watch this short video about the uses of each club and what they do (5 minutes 46 seconds):


The driver will usually be the primary club you start with during the round. Drivers are specially meant to give you the maximum length away from the tee. They usually are the longest clubs in your bag and will have the lowest angle of your clubface that affects your shot's distance and trajectory.


Hybrids are a mixture of fairway woods and irons, producing the best aspects of both. Hybrids are utilized to replace some of the more difficult long irons and replicate those distances. Hybrids may also be used to help increase your shot control without taking away distance or trajectory.


The irons are explicitly used for hitting balls from the fairway to the green. Shots from large and medium irons move farther, while short-iron shots fly higher but for a smaller distance, and their stop can be controlled easily. Your iron set may start with the 5-iron (a loft of about 30 degrees). The pitching wedge is the shortest iron, and it has a loft of about 46 degrees.

Golf Irons Average Distance Chart
Golf Irons Average Distance Chart

Fairway Woods

Despite their name, which refers to wood, these clubs are made of stainless steel. The shaft is set off-center in the large head, and the grounded bottom lets the head slide over the grass. Most golfers use them beyond the range of irons when they want more control of the ball. You can use a fairway wood from the fairway or a good lie in the rough or off the tee if you struggle with the driver.


The iron Wedges help produce shots of varying distances and get you out of difficult situations. You can use gap, sand, and lob wedges for short pitches from the drivers fairway and getting out of sand traps, for example.

Golfers usually carry various wedges with different lofts and bounce angles for multiple distances and lie conditions.


Once you are on the green, it's time to use them to put the surface surrounding the hole. As the purpose is to make relatively short and low-speed strokes, putters have flat faces with only about 4 degrees of loft to keep the ball from bouncing up when you strike it. Many putters have plastic, or soft metal face inserts to roll the ball more smoothly.

What Is A Complete Golf Club Set?

young man holding golf club

The golf club is mainly used for hitting the golf ball while playing golf. Each club consists of a shaft with a club head, hosel, and grip. In complete golf sets, you will find different club types, woods, irons, hybrid golf clubs, drivers, putters, and wedges.

Legally each player can carry only a limited number of golf clubs as per the USGA regulations. That is a standard set contains 14 golf clubs, and traditional combinations are available as matched sets from retailers.

Players have the freedom to make use of combinations from 14 to fewer clubs. However, maintain a balance with the clubs as you will need it for all events, whether on the greens or the fairways.

Though 14 is the maximum number of clubs you can carry, it’s quite unlikely that a novice player would require a complete set. The best number of clubs needed for a game ranges between 8 - 14.

Remember always to carry a driver, putter, and a minimum of 2 irons. Later on, based on your skill and experience, you can include wedges, fairway woods, and few hybrids to your collection.

Best Golf Clubs Brands

Best golf club brands
Best golf club brands

As a beginner or pro golfer, deciding on golf club brands may seem like a random guess. We are living in a society that’s becoming increasingly brand-conscious these days. Hence, there exists a tendency for most individuals to get golf clubs that everyone purchases.

Callaway, Adams, Yonex, Wilson, Titleist, Ping, Spaulding, Taylor Made, and Mizuno are some of the top golf club brands that you can choose from. When selecting your golf clubs, you must have an accurate idea of the different types and uses of each club. By using the right club, you can improve your golfing skills dramatically.

Caring For Your Golf Clubs

After a vigorous game of chipping, swinging and putting, your clubs may be full of dirt. If you want your golf clubs to serve you better and last longer with a fresh look, you need to maintain them in good condition.

Cleaning them right after the game in the proper manner will retain the ebb and flow of golf. Follow the below steps as you care for your new golf clubs.

  • After hitting the balls at the driving range, remember to clean the clubs.
  • Carry a towel along with you as your play so that you can cleanse the clubface after each shot.
  • It’s advisable to clean the grips using mild soap mixed in warm water to avoid the formation of slicks.
  • At the golf course, you can utilize the tee to cleanse the groove areas that are not accessible while using a towel.

Watch this video from Michael Harris offering some of the tips and tricks to help you keep your clubs in the best shape possible (7 minutes 27 seconds):

Frequently Asked Questions

Based on where you are in the game, it can be quite difficult to access which types of golf clubs you should use on the course. As a beginner, you may have many queries like when is the best time to buy golf clubs, how to choose from the varying different kinds of clubs, and so on. Through this section, we will try to address those lingering questions you have in your mind.

How To Measure Golf Club Length?

Planning to play a professional game of golf? Then you may have to conform to the standard club length size of 48 inches or below. Not sure how to measure golf club length? Well, it's quite easy. You can measure the golf club length, using the golf club measurement apparatus or a tape measure:  
Using the Measuring Apparatus:  Calibrate the measuring apparatus and place your club into the apparatus. Next, move the grip support until it comes in contact with the grip ends. Now step back and read the digital value on the scale to find the length.
Using the Tape Measure:  Place the golf club on a horizontal surface and make sure that the sole stays at a 60° angle from the surface. Next measure from the sole ends to the end of the grip to get the club length.

How To Arrange Golf Clubs In The Bag?

A golf bag is a must for any player who wishes to play golf. They are well-designed to hold everything you require to play the 18 holes. Now here comes a question, how to arrange golf clubs in the bag? Is it essential to spend time organizing the clubs properly? If you do not want to damage your expensive equipment, follow the tips mentioned below:
1. Understand the golf bag you have, as it comes with partitions ranging from 2 to 6 or above.
2. Remember to arrange your clubs from the left side to the right.
3. Place the longest clubs at the back end of the bag as it's near to the strap. In the next row, place your irons. If there exists a special place for holding the putter, well and good.
4. Most bags have ball and tee pockets on the front side for easy access. The additional pockets on the right side are mostly used for carrying clothing.
5. After taking a club for swinging, remember to replace it in the same position to avoid any mess.

Where To purchase Golf Clubs?

Some of the top spots you can get better golf clubs for the money are the following:
TGW: Offers the best inventory.
Callaway Golf Preowned: Has clubs with conditional guarantee and certificate of authenticity. 
Golf Galaxy: Comes with lots of variety, including custom-made options.
Dick’s Sporting Goods: Budget-friendly with the best golf club value in the market.
Worldwide Golf Shops: Provides the most robust package sets.
True Fit Clubs: Has customized options that suit each player's requirements.
PGA Tour Superstore: Great for seasoned players looking for branded options.
Rock Bottom Golf: Has the best discount golf clubs.
Golf Avenue: One of the largest retailers for pre-owned clubs.

What Golf Clubs Does Tiger Woods Use?

Tiger Woods hardly changes his clubs quite often, especially about wedges and iron. However, the 15 times major winner recently changed his setup to the TaylorMade brand after Nike stopped creating the equipment. Let's have a look at what Woods has in his golf bag:
Driver – TaylorMade M5 9 degrees with Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 60 TX shaft.
Driver – TaylorMade SIM 9 degrees with Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 60 TX shaft.
5-wood – TaylorMade M3 19 degrees with Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 80 TX shaft.
3-wood –TaylorMade SIM Max Rocket 3 14 degrees with Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 70 TX shaft.
3-wood – TaylorMade M5 15 degrees with Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 70 TX shaft.
Wedges – TaylorMade MG 2 "Tiger MT Grind" 56-12, 60-11 degrees with True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shaft.
Irons – TaylorMade P7TW 3-PW with True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 shaft.
Putter – Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS with Ping PP58 Blackout grip.
Grips – Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord.
Golf ball – Bridgestone Tour B XS.

Should A Beginner Get Fitted For Golf Clubs?

Whether you are an amateur or professional golfer, you need to get the right set up to play the game well. From Srixon custom fitted clubs to Mizuno’s custom fitted golf clubs, numerous brands have top-quality equipment that can be custom-made to suit your preference. The custom fitted golf clubs are not just for pro golfers but also holds significant benefits for even the beginners. As a novice player, you may have lots of consistency while playing the game. For instance, as all players are not of the same height using the wrong club length can impact your progress.

What Is The complete Golf Club Set For Me?

You must be aware of the fact that all golf clubs are not the same. The club used by a professional golfer will be entirely different from the one a novice player uses. Now you must be wondering how to get the golf clubs that cater to my requirements? For this, you have to consider the following variables to choose the best option:
1. Are you serious about playing golf and advancing to the next level?
2. What exactly is your skill and expertise level?
3. Do you have a sufficient budget to afford nice clubs?
4. What are your height and age?
5. What is your swing speed? It can affect your shaft stiffness and shaft type.
Based on the above variables, you can streamline your options in choosing the best club.


Purchasing golf clubs is not the same as doing grocery shopping. Golf clubs require meticulous precision, as it can impact your performance on the greens or fairways. To enhance your golfing experience, you need to hunt for the top golfing clubs.

Not sure what golf club to use for each shot? For this, you need to understand your capability and use the gear that suits your level as various skill levels require different clubs. Also, never get gears based on advertisements and celebrity endorsements. Making use of the fitting procedure from a professional club fitter will help you understand the game better.

Hope this post helped you select the right golf clubs for your next golfing trip. For more queries, feel free to contact us!

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