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If you want to play your best golf, you need to use irons that are best suited to you. I highly recommend getting properly fitted by an experienced fitter at any Drummond Golf store. That way you’ll gain expert equipment advice and be able to try before you buy.
There are so many different irons available that selecting a brand/style can be overwhelming. In this article, I will try and simplify the many complicated terms used in golf equipment language to make it easier for you to confidently acquire your next set of irons.
Is there a difference between men’s and women’s clubs? Definitely! First, men’s clubs are usually longer, and heavier, and the golf shaft is often much stiffer in its flexibility. All these components help to get the ball in the air and go longer. But if you are playing with the incorrect club, golf becomes so much harder.
We will start with the clubhead. Manufacturers normally produce two or three different types of heads, the first being a clubhead designed to make golf easier and the second, a head that is smaller and less forgiving but more workable (meaning working the ball from left to right or right to left) and this is normally used by lower handicap players who might hit the middle of the club more often.
The bigger the club head, the bigger the sweet spot. You might see a reference to higher MOI (this stands for moment of inertia). What the golf manufacturers are saying is if you hit an off centre shot there is less twisting of the club face at impact because of the placement of weights in the head. These weights minimise the movement of the club and therefore make it easier to hit longer, straighter shots when the ball does not come out of the middle of the clubface.
Here are a few examples of brands and types of clubs available in 2022.
The Titleist brand is well known in golf and is used by many professional tour players today. Titleist also has irons that are suitable for the beginner golfer. The T400 is known as a super game improvement club and the T300, Titleist’s biggest selling iron, is in the game improvement category. Both are very forgiving and contain elements of technology and design to make the ball go higher and further. Both the T300 and T400 heads are bigger than the T100 and T200 and the soles are slightly wider. Both clubs have quite strong lofts (as opposed to the average specifications of standard irons) which helps you get the ball flying further.
The Titleist T100 and T200 range fall into the players irons. These both have smaller heads, which gives the irons precision control and greater feel. These irons have a look about them that many professional players love looking down at.
The Rogue Max OS iron is Callaway’s super game improvement iron. Callaway has used artificial intelligence to ensure it has one of the most forgiving irons on the market today, They have used varying thicknesses in each iron; ‘cupface’ technology to get the most bounce off the face out of each iron and 60 grams of tungsten weight placed low inside the clubhead to create a lower centre of gravity. The result? A ball that launches significantly higher than most other irons.
Callaway’s Apex iron, its players/distance iron, has been manufactured with mid to low-range handicappers in mind. That doesn’t mean if you have a higher handicap, you shouldn’t use this club because you might really like the look and feel of the club. This club has a slightly smaller head and is a little less forgiving than the Rogue Max ST OS.
The Apex iron also has Callaway’s signature ‘cupface’ technology for achieving extra distance off the face. The face wraps around part of the sole and topline creating a mini trampoline effect to get the ball bouncing off the face. The forgiveness in this club comes from Callaway’s positioning of tungsten weights enclosed in urethane, which really improves shots struck off the heel and toe as well as shots coming off low on the face.
Again, you can see Mizuno Pro iron has a smaller head than the JPX 921 hot metal iron. The Mizuno Pro head is grain flow forged in Japan and has a soft copper underlay for a very soft feel at impact. The muscle back design and shape is well-liked by many professional golfers and low handicappers and, although it is a less forgiving iron, it looks sensational.
The JPX 921 hot metal iron is made for all golfers being that it is Mizuno’s most forgiving iron. Mizuno has used a unique metal called Chromoly to build this clubhead. Chromoly is a form of steel containing chromium and molybdenum, used to make strong, lightweight components such as bicycle frames.
Note: all golf equipment companies use cutting-edge materials to improve their products each year. It’s fair to say if you’re using 20-year-old clubs today, you will likely be sacrificing both distance and accuracy.
Tour Edge has just released new irons for 2022 including the E522 and the C522. You can see that the E522 looks more like a hybrid and in fact, this set is a hybrid-like set. The Houdini sole makes it the easiest club you will ever hit. This sole, together with its hollow body and offset design has all the ingredients to make you love playing golf even more.
The Tour Edge C522 is a more traditional cavity iron shape but contains very strong lofts and perimeter weighting to get your golf ball going long and straight.
Taylor Made’s new Stealth family includes some very cool new technology. The speed slot has been improved for increased ball speed off the face and the echo dampening system has been added to reduce vibration felt at impact. Taylor Made has always produced stainless steel irons that are very forgiving!
The other Taylor Made model, the P790, has a slightly smaller head, thinner construction (which appeals to the eye), and features a forged L-face, which gives the iron a very soft feel off the face. The P790 is specifically made for mid to low handicappers. Keep in mind that Taylor Made’s P790 contains many of the benefits that the Stealth range offers, which ultimately gives this iron as much forgiveness as possible.
Shafts are very important as well. The length that you require is determined by your height and your arm’s reach to the ground. This can be measured at any Drummond Golf store or via your local PGA professional.
The shaft flex is the next area that needs to be discussed. You can purchase shafts in many different flex types and weights. Men’s clubs are available in the regular shaft, soft regular (which is also known as senior flex), stiff flex and extra stiff flex. The faster the person’s swing speed the stiffer the shaft needs to be. While the majority of women will use ladies shaft flex, there are also quite a few women who have stronger swings that will be better suited to the soft regular or the regular shaft. Again, the faster the swing speed the stiffer the shaft needs to be.
It is important that your clubhead speed is checked as this will determine which shaft is better suited to you.
Another decision that needs to be made is what irons are best in relation to the makeup of the set. For example, should I be purchasing a 4 iron to SW, or should I purchase a couple of hybrids and then irons from 6-SW? This is a very personal choice, and it really comes down to personal preference.
To help you decide I would recommend having at least one hybrid in your set. For most female players, hybrids seem to be a lot more forgiving in the longer clubs and are normally used to replace a 3 or a 4 iron.
If you struggle with hitting a longer iron, then a hybrid model can really help. There is actually no hard and fast rule as to how many irons and hybrids needed in a golf bag. If you love hybrids, go for it! There is no reason why your set makeup cannot include a 4, 5 and 6 hybrid complemented by 7, 8, 9, PW and SW irons. However, if you dislike hitting a hybrid, run with a full set of irons. It is really up to you and your personal choice.
Words: Jacqui Brownson, Franchisee of Drummond Golf, Taren Point, NSW.