How to Choose the Best Golf Club, 15 Factors to Consider According to Science

Golf equipment doesn't come cheap.

Believe me, I wish it did. 

We are here to help you get the most bang for the buck with this detailed guide to how to choose the best golf club. Here are the 15 most important factors you should consider before buying one.

Forgiveness

Forgiveness is one of the most important aspects of a club to consider as you are looking to buy a new set. A forgiving clubface will allow you to get away with making less than perfect contact with the ball.

The goal, of course, is to stripe your shots in the center of the clubface. That is where the center of gravity is, so when you are able to get consistent contact in that region of the club you are pretty much guaranteed longer shots.

Most clubs say that they have forgiveness, and they can get away with it because technically they do (though it can sometimes be very little) but if you are struggling with your ball striking even a little bit you are probably going to get best possible results from what manufacturers refer to as a “game improvement club.”

Game improvement clubs are available all throughout the bag, in woods, golf wedges, irons wedges, and drivers. How each manufacturer ensures that their club is a “game improvement club”, varies. It could refer to the degree to which the club is offset, the depth of the cavity back, or how the club was forged. Usually, it will be a combination of all of the above.

Game improvement clubs may be seen by some as a golf club for beginners, but it is really more than that. Players at every level use them to lower scores and help guarantee more consistent results

You also have the option of using what manufacturers refer to as a “player’s club.” Very few golfers have the skill level to make the most out of a player’s club but it doesn’t stop many of them from trying.

The players club is of a more sleek, compact design, which is why many people favor them in the first place, but their elegance comes at the price of forgiveness. Besides being elegant they do also have the capacity to work the ball more than game improvement clubs do.

For those that do not know, to “work the ball,” means to intentionally alter the trajectory or flight pattern of your shots. Since game improvement clubs are designed to hit shots high and straight, it can be a little bit more difficult to do that with them than it is with player’s clubs.

If you are a good ball striker that consistently shoots in the seventies, players clubs could be for you. Otherwise, consider a set with a little bit more forgiveness.

Of course, it helps to learn as much as you can about equipment before you buy.

Style

A golf club could have all the forgiveness (or workability depending on your needs) in the world, but if you don’t like the way that it looks you shouldn’t buy it.

There are both fanciful and pragmatic reasons for why you should not buy a club whose appearance you are not fond of. On the fanciful side of the equation, you will be owning this piece of equipment for a long time. You don’t want to get stuck with an eye sore for years on end.


Choosing a club that you don’t care for the appearance of will do more than just bother the senses. It can also aversely affect the performance you are able to get from a club.

Of course, the components of how your equipment is manufactured is mostly what will determine the way they function, but appearance has also been statistically proven to inspire confidence which results in better shots.


Is it a placebo effect? It definitely is, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take advantage of it. Confidence can make or break a round of golf.

Playing with equipment that gives you confidence when you address the ball will help you maximize the potential of your mental game, which will, in turn, go a long way towards shedding some strokes.

Manufacturer

When it comes to selecting a manufacturer for your golf clubs, there are a few things to consider. Let’s take a look.

Name Brand: I’m not telling you to be snobby. Everyone knows that buying name brand means paying more money and if cereal is any indication the difference between the household name products and their budget friendly equivalents is minuscule, right?

Possibly. The truth is there are actually plenty of really good small-scale golf equipment manufacturers out there. There are even some benefits to choosing them over the bigger guys. Often times, the smaller brands are willing to work with you for a more personalized touch to your equipment than the big companies are able to offer.

The problem is that it can be hard to know what to expect going in. If you do decide to take the route of a smaller brand equipment manufacturer, do some research and see what people who already own the clubs have to say.

You will also want to make sure that they adhere to the USGA’s equipment rules and regulations. While generally speaking they should, there is also a large market of off-brand clubs that makes and fulfills too good to be true promises (add thirty yards to your drive) by straying pretty wildly from the USGA's rules.

If you want to play in any sort of competitive capacity you will need to make sure that your equipment adheres to the rules. You should be able to find out by contacting the company.

Expertise: One club company might make the best irons, while another might be known for their wedges, drivers, woods, putters. 

If you ever watch professional golf on television you will probably notice that the players usually only use equipment from one manufacturing company. They don’t do this because it is the best way to equip themselves with golf gear, they do it because their contracts mandate it.

In fact, when a player is in-between contracts you will often see them mix and match a little bit. You should do the same. Shop around for the best of everything, and don’t worry about coordinating your bag the way they do on the professional tours.

Age

It’s really not necessary to buy clubs right when they come out. In fact, unless money is truly no object, you probably should not do that. Let’s use a driver as an example. When a new driver from a big brand company comes out on the market, it is usually available for around five hundred dollars.

If you wait a year to buy it, you can get it for three hundred. If you are willing to buy it lightly used, you can probably get it for two hundred. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule.

If you really want to be thrifty, find a driver that you like, and then buy the model that came right before it. You will save a lot of money and you’ll be getting something very similar to the club that initially caught your eye in the first place.

In order to stay competitive, most major manufacturers release at least one new line of clubs a year. The problem? Technology really doesn’t change much, if at all, in that time. The 2018 driver is most likely going to be very similar, if not identical to its 2017 counter-part.

If you are looking for the latest in technology you should be careful how far you go back. For example, you might be safe even choosing the 2016 model, but if you opt for a 2015 or 2014, you may be losing out on some beneficial tech.

That said, if your clubs are currently a quarter of a century old, you may not mind so much. Just remember that, while buying older clubs can make for an excellent bargain, you may have to make some concessions if you want to get the best gear possible.

Adjustability

The adjustable club (a feature mostly present in woods, drivers, and hybrids for the time being) is one of the most popular features on the market right now. The adjustable club does more or less as its name suggests it will. Using either sliding weights or an adjustable hosel, you can manipulate the typical trajectory that shots take from the face of your club.

In other words, fixing your slice no longer requires a trip to the range.  You can do it from your garage using a wrench. Like any equipment innovation, there are some pros and cons to the adjustable club. Let’s take a look.

Pros:

  • Straighter: Obviously the big benefit here is that players who suffer consistently from the same miss can fix their problem without the need to put in a lot of work.
  • Longer: You can also add yards to your swing simply by setting the face of your club to “draw,” instead of fade. The draw shot goes farther than its fade counterpart because it both utilizes a lot of forward spin, and a boring trajectory that allows the ball to roll out much farther.

Historically, players have worked hard to develop a nice reliable draw into their swing, but now you can get yours with a wrench.

  • Endless Options: Of course, new misses sometimes find their way into our swings. We hate it, but it does happen. When the new, unexpected slice or snap hook shows up you can fix it quickly without lessons or practice.

Cons:

  • Too Many Options? One of the consistent complaints about the adjustable club is actually that there may be too many options. Unless you are an equipment expert you should be very cautious as you play with the adjustable settings on your club. You don’t want to get your new driver stuck on a setting that has you hitting the ball OB on every swing.
  • Slows (or even stops) Improvement: Getting good shots out of bad swings sounds nice, but unfortunately it does come with the side effect of halting your development as a player. If you are enjoying straight drives, for instance, you probably won’t realize that there is a slice creeping into your swing that will hurt you all throughout the bag.

Shot Shape Bias

Besides clubs that can be adjusted, there is also a wide selection of clubs out there that come with a shot shape preinstalled into the club. Generally, these clubs will have either a “draw,” or “fade,” bias.

What makes these clubs beneficial is obvious.

The problem?

Swings change. Hopefully, you won’t always have a slice in your swing and when the day comes that you don’t, you will probably end up with a hook thanks to the draw biased. Clubs without a shot shape bias open the door for more workability, and you won’t have to worry about replacing your clubs in the event that you get better, which is another big plus.

That said if you decide you want to go the route of the shot shape bias club there are a lot of good options out there.

Loft

Every golf club in the bag has its own loft. Loft plays a very important part in the game, so it is crucial that you make sure the loft on your clubs is appropriate to your swing. For this section, I will break down the importance of loft for each club, as they all have their own unique needs.

Wedges

Most players are aware that wedges come in different lots, but they may not know exactly what the lofts mean. Let’s break it down.

46-48-Degree Wedge: The 46-48-degree wedge is known by most as the pitching wedge. Virtually every set comes with one, so you won’t usually be buying them at the store.

49-52-Degree Wedge: The 49- 52-degree wedge is known as the gap wedge, as it gaps the distance between your pitching and sand wedges. While the gap wedge has not always enjoyed prominence, it has gained significant popularity in the past fifteen years or so.

53-57-Degree Wedge: The 53-57-degree wedge is what most people refer to as the sand wedge. The sand wedge is a long-standing staple of most bags as it works well from the fairway, the bunker, and the fringe.

58-64 Degree Wedge: The 58-64-degree wedge is known as the lob wedge. You can use it from the fairway, but it works best for shot around the green.

Many players struggle to figure out exactly what wedge configuration best suits their needs. While you may not need all of the above-listed wedges, you do want to make sure that your bag is equipped in a way that allows you to avoid half swings.

Whether you choose the lower or higher lofts for each wedge will depend mostly on the lofts of your irons. You want the lofts of your clubs to coordinate throughout the bag, which means that you must maintain a consistent gap.

Irons

The loft of your irons is an often-overlooked aspect of choosing clubs, as most sets come with standard settings. However, some manufacturers set their lofts a little bit differently. In general, higher lofts will help you hold greens a little bit better, while lower lofts will enjoy greater distance.

Woods

Most golfers keep a three wood and a five wood in their golf bag, but the loft can vary a little bit. When it comes to the loft of your woods, you don’t have to worry about maintaining the same sort of gap that you do with your irons.

What you are looking for with your woods is the ability to get height on your shots from the tee and the fairway.  What that means in terms of loft depends on your swing speed. For example, if you have a very fast swing speed, you might need a three wood with a loft of 14 degrees. If you have a slower swing speed, you might need something with a loft of eighteen degrees, to help you get the ball in the air a little bit quicker.

Driver

There are a lot of prevailing misconceptions about driver loft that are harmful to amateurs. Many people are under the impression that a lower lofted driver will help add distance to their tee shots but the truth of the matter is that higher lofted drivers will result in more distance for most amateurs.

Selecting the right driver can be difficult which is why it is important to work with a professional.

Shaft

Shaft specifications can play a really major role in how your club performs. Even if the head of your club is perfect, you can still suffer from less than stellar results if your shaft isn’t up to par.

The shaft is one of the most important aspects of the club. Without optimizing your shaft for your swing, you can’t count on getting the most out of your clubs. Optimization will depend both on the length and flexibility of your shaft.

Picking the right shaft depends on a lot of data that you can only get by going into a golf shop and utilizing their launch monitors. Most club shops will take data on your swing and make recommendations for free, and they will even create customized orders for a small fee.

If you don’t want to go through the process of a fitting (but really, you should) remember that slower swing speeds need flexible shafts, while faster swing speeds require stiffer shafts.

Many players like to opt for the stiff shaft because it is associated with long hitters, but unless your swing is fast enough it will only result in missed shots.

Grip

The good news is that choosing the right grip is largely a matter of personal preference, and it is also a relatively simple aspect of the golf club to alter. In other words, if you find your dream set, but hate the grips, it’s not a deal breaker. You can get them changed on the cheap, and if you are ordering a custom set, there might not even be an upcharge.

Length


The length of a set of clubs is another important aspect to consider as you set out to make a buying decision. Manufacturers have been gradually increasing the lengths of their clubs over the past couple of decades, because the longer the club, the further the ball will travel.

The problem? Longer clubs are also more difficult to control. If the club is too long, it will aversely affect your natural swing plane which will, in turn, lead to a plethora of unnecessary misses.

The best way to make sure that you end up with clubs that are the correct length is to go in for a fitting. It is only under the watchful eye of a professional that you can be positive you are getting the best possible results.

If you do not want to sit down with a professional at least take the time to set up to a few different sets of clubs and see which you are most comfortable with. If they force you to stand closer or further away from the ball than you are comfortable with, it means that the club length probably is not a good fit for you.

Technology

Of course, golf club technology changes constantly. Tech like adjustable weights or hosels (like we mentioned earlier) or more aerodynamic head designs may perform better, but they will also rack up the cost.

As you look into your new set of clubs you will have to decide what technology is important to you. Studies show that the benefits of state of the art technology vary. Yes, the latest and greatest may help you out a little bit, but only you can determine what the value of those benefits are.

Customizable

I’ve touched on the importance of club fitting several times throughout the course of this article, but the truth of the matter is that it may be the very most important consideration you can make as you set out to buy your new set.

When it comes to club customization, there is really no ambiguity concerning the benefits. It will add yards, straighten out your shots, and improve consistency. The very best way to maximize the potential of your new set is to get fit for it.

So Why Doesn’t Everyone Get Fit For Their Clubs?

That’s a good question. The ease with which players can get fit for their clubs is one of golf’s unintentionally kept secrets. There is an unfortunate prevailing assumption among many amateurs that club fittings are too expensive, and that even if they could afford them, their game isn’t good enough to justify it. Let’s dispel those myths.

First of all, getting fit for your clubs adds only a minimal upcharge, and if you go to the right place you can even get it done for free.

It is equally backwards to assume that you are not good enough to get your clubs fit. On the contrary, those struggling with their games are likely to enjoy more improvement from a club fitting than anyone else.

But What If I get Better?

You certainly don’t want to have to buy new clubs every time your swing improves on your golf swing analyzer. The good news is that swing improvements don’t necessarily make your previous club fitting obsolete. While your specifications may change a little bit, your custom clubs will still ultimately be a closer fit for you than an off the rack set would be. There’s really no question about it: getting fit for your clubs is the best way to make sure you are getting the best possible results out of your purchase.

Price

Price. Of course, the perfect golf clubs aren’t going to be out of your price range, right? I won’t lie and say that shopping for golf clubs under a tight budget doesn’t limit your options, but it also doesn’t eliminate the possibility of picking up a set that you will be happy with.

The truth is, golf clubs come in a wide variety of price options. Just because a golf club is expensive doesn't mean it is superior.  We’ve gone over a few of the ways you can pick up good equipment on the cheap, but let’s reiterate, and expand

  • Off Brand: Again, there are plenty of really good off brand clubs out there. You’ll just have to do your research to make sure that you are getting a set of clubs with a reputation for quality.

If there is one significant draw back to buying off brand clubs it is that it makes customization a little bit more difficult. You may not have the opportunity to go into a shop to get fit for them, but you probably will be able to get your measurements taken by a professional, and then send them to the off-brand manufacturer.

  • Do you need all the tech?: A simpler club is going to be a little bit less expensive. The good news is that tech advancements aren’t necessarily here to stay. Some trends are just trends. The square headed driver is a good example.

Golf Goals

What are you trying to accomplish? Do you want more distance? Straighter shots? More spin? Less spin? Higher? Lower? You see what I mean. There are endless ways to play the game of golf, but your clubs definitely shape the approach you are able to take.

The possibilities are endless, and they are also very relative to the equipment that you are looking at, but let’s go over a few basics just to help you out.

Longer, Farther, Straighter: If you want to hit the ball longer, farther, and straighter, you will probably want to look for a game improvement club, which we talked about earlier. It’s definitely still possible to mishit a game improvement club, but your chances of striping it pure are much higher.

I’m sure you don’t need me to lay out the benefits of distance and accuracy, do I? I said it earlier, and I will say it again: Most players are going to benefit from a game improvement club coupled with a golf swing trainer.

Up, Down, Turnaround: The game’s elite players are able to control the shape and trajectory of their shots. This ability helps them to gain access to difficult to reach pins, as well as to get out of trouble spots. You may recall the Master’s tournament from a few years ago when Bubba Watson hit a fifty-yard hook out of the woods to find the green and ultimately, win the tournament. Shots like that are difficult, if not impossible to orchestrate with a game improvement clubs.

The problem is that the vast majority of players are entirely incapable of deliberately influencing their trajectory, let alone their shot shape.

If you can’t control your side spin, your side spin will control you. Without highly calibrated technique, the player’s clubs will simply accentuate the flaws of your swing.

New or Used

Buying used golf clubs is a great way to save money but there is also a degree of risk to the process.

With golf clubs (especially irons and wedges) the equipment is really only as good as the grooves. The grooves are what produces spin, which helps your shots land softly on the green, and, if you are really good, maybe even zip back towards to the hole a little bit.

As you hit shots with your clubs, the grooves gradually being to wear down. As they do, their performance begins to decrease slowly. It could be years before you notice any change at all, but eventually it will become impossible to deny that your clubs just don’t work the way that they used to.

When you buy a used club, the grooves have already taken a few poundings. That certainly doesn’t mean that you are going to get a lemon if you buy used, but the risk is certainly greater. If you do decide buy used, pay attention to the quality of the grooves. A good way to test them is to run your finger nails, or even a golf tee up and down the face of the club. If the grooves are dull, you will be able to feel it.

For that reason, it may be a bad idea to try and buy used wedges or irons online. In fact, many people will recommend not buying used wedges at all because their performance is so much predicated on the sharpness of their grooves that you want the highest possible quality.

If those are the cons of buying used, the pros of buying new are self-explanatory. You get guaranteed quality, and equipment that is at the peak of its potential. The biggest con for buying new is that you are paying much higher prices.

Try Before You Buy

One of the big pluses about buying golf equipment is that you always have the opportunity to try things out before you buy them. In fact, the tech available at most golf retail stores nowadays can give you real time feedback on data points like your clubhead speed, ball speed, swing plane, and more.

Perhaps more importantly, you also get to experience how a club feels. Data is one thing, but feel is entirely subjective. The same way the style and design of a club are important so too is the feel. ​A golf club for seniors may well be a great fit for you if you like the feel.

Remember that confidence is crucial in golf. If you like the way that your club looks and feels you will be able to step up to the tee with no hesitation each time.

If you have the chance to hit some balls on a launch monitor, take advantage of it. While it is no substitution for a fitting, it will still go a long way towards helping you pick a club that you can be sure is best for your swing.

If the club that you frequent sells a lot of equipment there is also the chance that they will let you sample some of their stuff on the course. If you can get that opportunity, take advantage of it. Launch monitors are one thing but there is nothing as telling as seeing how your clubs perform during an actual round.

Conclusion

Well, that is it! If you follow the above-listed steps you will be guaranteed to get the best possible clubs for your game, and what’s more, you will get them for a good deal. Buying golf equipment should be a fun and exciting experience, so my final tip is to relax as you browse what is available, and enjoy the shopping!

More...

Forgiveness

Forgiveness is one of the most important aspects of a club to consider as you are looking to buy a new set. A forgiving clubface will allow you to get away with making less than perfect contact with the ball.


Most clubs say that they have forgiveness, and they can get away with it because technically they do (though it can sometimes be very little) but if you are struggling with your ball striking even a little bit you are probably going to get best possible results from what manufacturers refer to as a “game improvement club.”

Game improvement clubs are available all throughout the bag, in woods, golf wedges, irons wedges, and drivers. How each manufacturer ensures that their club is a “game improvement club”, varies. It could refer to the degree to which the club is offset, the depth of the cavity back, or how the club was forged. Usually, it will be a combination of all of the above.

Game improvement clubs may be seen by some as a golf club for beginners, but it is really more than that. Players at every level use them to lower scores and help guarantee more consistent results


The players club is of a more sleek, compact design, which is why many people favor them in the first place, but their elegance comes at the price of forgiveness. Besides being elegant they do also have the capacity to work the ball more than game improvement clubs do.


If you are a good ball striker that consistently shoots in the seventies, players clubs could be for you. Otherwise, consider a set with a little bit more forgiveness.

Of course, it helps to learn as much as you can about equipment before you buy.

Style

A golf club could have all the forgiveness (or workability depending on your needs) in the world, but if you don’t like the way that it looks you shouldn’t buy it.


Choosing a club that you don’t care for the appearance of will do more than just bother the senses. It can also aversely affect the performance you are able to get from a club.


Is it a placebo effect? It definitely is, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take advantage of it. Confidence can make or break a round of golf.


Manufacturer

When it comes to selecting a manufacturer for your golf clubs, there are a few things to consider. Let’s take a look.

Name Brand: I’m not telling you to be snobby. Everyone knows that buying name brand means paying more money and if cereal is any indication the difference between the household name products and their budget friendly equivalents is minuscule, right?

Possibly. The truth is there are actually plenty of really good small-scale golf equipment manufacturers out there. There are even some benefits to choosing them over the bigger guys. Often times, the smaller brands are willing to work with you for a more personalized touch to your equipment than the big companies are able to offer.

The problem is that it can be hard to know what to expect going in. If you do decide to take the route of a smaller brand equipment manufacturer, do some research and see what people who already own the clubs have to say.

You will also want to make sure that they adhere to the USGA’s equipment rules and regulations. While generally speaking they should, there is also a large market of off-brand clubs that makes and fulfills too good to be true promises (add thirty yards to your drive) by straying pretty wildly from the USGA's rules.

If you want to play in any sort of competitive capacity you will need to make sure that your equipment adheres to the rules. You should be able to find out by contacting the company.

Expertise: One club company might make the best irons, while another might be known for their wedges, drivers, woods, putters. 

If you ever watch professional golf on television you will probably notice that the players usually only use equipment from one manufacturing company. They don’t do this because it is the best way to equip themselves with golf gear, they do it because their contracts mandate it.

In fact, when a player is in-between contracts you will often see them mix and match a little bit. You should do the same. Shop around for the best of everything, and don’t worry about coordinating your bag the way they do on the professional tours.

Age

It’s really not necessary to buy clubs right when they come out. In fact, unless money is truly no object, you probably should not do that. Let’s use a driver as an example. When a new driver from a big brand company comes out on the market, it is usually available for around five hundred dollars.

If you wait a year to buy it, you can get it for three hundred. If you are willing to buy it lightly used, you can probably get it for two hundred. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule.

If you really want to be thrifty, find a driver that you like, and then buy the model that came right before it. You will save a lot of money and you’ll be getting something very similar to the club that initially caught your eye in the first place.

In order to stay competitive, most major manufacturers release at least one new line of clubs a year. The problem? Technology really doesn’t change much, if at all, in that time. The 2018 driver is most likely going to be very similar, if not identical to its 2017 counter-part.

If you are looking for the latest in technology you should be careful how far you go back. For example, you might be safe even choosing the 2016 model, but if you opt for a 2015 or 2014, you may be losing out on some beneficial tech.

That said, if your clubs are currently a quarter of a century old, you may not mind so much. Just remember that, while buying older clubs can make for an excellent bargain, you may have to make some concessions if you want to get the best gear possible.

Adjustability

The adjustable club (a feature mostly present in woods, drivers, and hybrids for the time being) is one of the most popular features on the market right now. The adjustable club does more or less as its name suggests it will. Using either sliding weights or an adjustable hosel, you can manipulate the typical trajectory that shots take from the face of your club.

In other words, fixing your slice no longer requires a trip to the range.  You can do it from your garage using a wrench. Like any equipment innovation, there are some pros and cons to the adjustable club. Let’s take a look.

Pros:

  • Straighter: Obviously the big benefit here is that players who suffer consistently from the same miss can fix their problem without the need to put in a lot of work.
  • Longer: You can also add yards to your swing simply by setting the face of your club to “draw,” instead of fade. The draw shot goes farther than its fade counterpart because it both utilizes a lot of forward spin, and a boring trajectory that allows the ball to roll out much farther.

Historically, players have worked hard to develop a nice reliable draw into their swing, but now you can get yours with a wrench.

  • Endless Options: Of course, new misses sometimes find their way into our swings. We hate it, but it does happen. When the new, unexpected slice or snap hook shows up you can fix it quickly without lessons or practice.

Cons:

  • Too Many Options? One of the consistent complaints about the adjustable club is actually that there may be too many options. Unless you are an equipment expert you should be very cautious as you play with the adjustable settings on your club. You don’t want to get your new driver stuck on a setting that has you hitting the ball OB on every swing.
  • Slows (or even stops) Improvement: Getting good shots out of bad swings sounds nice, but unfortunately it does come with the side effect of halting your development as a player. If you are enjoying straight drives, for instance, you probably won’t realize that there is a slice creeping into your swing that will hurt you all throughout the bag.

Shot Shape Bias

Besides clubs that can be adjusted, there is also a wide selection of clubs out there that come with a shot shape preinstalled into the club. Generally, these clubs will have either a “draw,” or “fade,” bias.

What makes these clubs beneficial is obvious.

The problem?

Swings change. Hopefully, you won’t always have a slice in your swing and when the day comes that you don’t, you will probably end up with a hook thanks to the draw biased. Clubs without a shot shape bias open the door for more workability, and you won’t have to worry about replacing your clubs in the event that you get better, which is another big plus.

That said if you decide you want to go the route of the shot shape bias club there are a lot of good options out there.

Loft

Every golf club in the bag has its own loft. Loft plays a very important part in the game, so it is crucial that you make sure the loft on your clubs is appropriate to your swing. For this section, I will break down the importance of loft for each club, as they all have their own unique needs.

Wedges

Most players are aware that wedges come in different lots, but they may not know exactly what the lofts mean. Let’s break it down.

46-48-Degree Wedge: The 46-48-degree wedge is known by most as the pitching wedge. Virtually every set comes with one, so you won’t usually be buying them at the store.

49-52-Degree Wedge: The 49- 52-degree wedge is known as the gap wedge, as it gaps the distance between your pitching and sand wedges. While the gap wedge has not always enjoyed prominence, it has gained significant popularity in the past fifteen years or so.

53-57-Degree Wedge: The 53-57-degree wedge is what most people refer to as the sand wedge. The sand wedge is a long-standing staple of most bags as it works well from the fairway, the bunker, and the fringe.

58-64 Degree Wedge: The 58-64-degree wedge is known as the lob wedge. You can use it from the fairway, but it works best for shot around the green.

Many players struggle to figure out exactly what wedge configuration best suits their needs. While you may not need all of the above-listed wedges, you do want to make sure that your bag is equipped in a way that allows you to avoid half swings.

Whether you choose the lower or higher lofts for each wedge will depend mostly on the lofts of your irons. You want the lofts of your clubs to coordinate throughout the bag, which means that you must maintain a consistent gap.

Irons

The loft of your irons is an often-overlooked aspect of choosing clubs, as most sets come with standard settings. However, some manufacturers set their lofts a little bit differently. In general, higher lofts will help you hold greens a little bit better, while lower lofts will enjoy greater distance.

Woods

Most golfers keep a three wood and a five wood in their golf bag, but the loft can vary a little bit. When it comes to the loft of your woods, you don’t have to worry about maintaining the same sort of gap that you do with your irons.

What you are looking for with your woods is the ability to get height on your shots from the tee and the fairway.  What that means in terms of loft depends on your swing speed. For example, if you have a very fast swing speed, you might need a three wood with a loft of 14 degrees. If you have a slower swing speed, you might need something with a loft of eighteen degrees, to help you get the ball in the air a little bit quicker.

Driver

There are a lot of prevailing misconceptions about driver loft that are harmful to amateurs. Many people are under the impression that a lower lofted driver will help add distance to their tee shots but the truth of the matter is that higher lofted drivers will result in more distance for most amateurs.

Selecting the right driver can be difficult which is why it is important to work with a professional.

Shaft

Shaft specifications can play a really major role in how your club performs. Even if the head of your club is perfect, you can still suffer from less than stellar results if your shaft isn’t up to par.

The shaft is one of the most important aspects of the club. Without optimizing your shaft for your swing, you can’t count on getting the most out of your clubs. Optimization will depend both on the length and flexibility of your shaft.

Picking the right shaft depends on a lot of data that you can only get by going into a golf shop and utilizing their launch monitors. Most club shops will take data on your swing and make recommendations for free, and they will even create customized orders for a small fee.

If you don’t want to go through the process of a fitting (but really, you should) remember that slower swing speeds need flexible shafts, while faster swing speeds require stiffer shafts.

Many players like to opt for the stiff shaft because it is associated with long hitters, but unless your swing is fast enough it will only result in missed shots.

Grip

The good news is that choosing the right grip is largely a matter of personal preference, and it is also a relatively simple aspect of the golf club to alter. In other words, if you find your dream set, but hate the grips, it’s not a deal breaker. You can get them changed on the cheap, and if you are ordering a custom set, there might not even be an upcharge.

Length


The length of a set of clubs is another important aspect to consider as you set out to make a buying decision. Manufacturers have been gradually increasing the lengths of their clubs over the past couple of decades, because the longer the club, the further the ball will travel.

The problem? Longer clubs are also more difficult to control. If the club is too long, it will aversely affect your natural swing plane which will, in turn, lead to a plethora of unnecessary misses.

The best way to make sure that you end up with clubs that are the correct length is to go in for a fitting. It is only under the watchful eye of a professional that you can be positive you are getting the best possible results.

If you do not want to sit down with a professional at least take the time to set up to a few different sets of clubs and see which you are most comfortable with. If they force you to stand closer or further away from the ball than you are comfortable with, it means that the club length probably is not a good fit for you.

Technology

Of course, golf club technology changes constantly. Tech like adjustable weights or hosels (like we mentioned earlier) or more aerodynamic head designs may perform better, but they will also rack up the cost.

As you look into your new set of clubs you will have to decide what technology is important to you. Studies show that the benefits of state of the art technology vary. Yes, the latest and greatest may help you out a little bit, but only you can determine what the value of those benefits are.

Customizable

I’ve touched on the importance of club fitting several times throughout the course of this article, but the truth of the matter is that it may be the very most important consideration you can make as you set out to buy your new set.

When it comes to club customization, there is really no ambiguity concerning the benefits. It will add yards, straighten out your shots, and improve consistency. The very best way to maximize the potential of your new set is to get fit for it.

So Why Doesn’t Everyone Get Fit For Their Clubs?

That’s a good question. The ease with which players can get fit for their clubs is one of golf’s unintentionally kept secrets. There is an unfortunate prevailing assumption among many amateurs that club fittings are too expensive, and that even if they could afford them, their game isn’t good enough to justify it. Let’s dispel those myths.

First of all, getting fit for your clubs adds only a minimal upcharge, and if you go to the right place you can even get it done for free.

It is equally backwards to assume that you are not good enough to get your clubs fit. On the contrary, those struggling with their games are likely to enjoy more improvement from a club fitting than anyone else.

But What If I get Better?

You certainly don’t want to have to buy new clubs every time your swing improves on your golf swing analyzer. The good news is that swing improvements don’t necessarily make your previous club fitting obsolete. While your specifications may change a little bit, your custom clubs will still ultimately be a closer fit for you than an off the rack set would be. There’s really no question about it: getting fit for your clubs is the best way to make sure you are getting the best possible results out of your purchase.

Price

Price. Of course, the perfect golf clubs aren’t going to be out of your price range, right? I won’t lie and say that shopping for golf clubs under a tight budget doesn’t limit your options, but it also doesn’t eliminate the possibility of picking up a set that you will be happy with.

The truth is, golf clubs come in a wide variety of price options. Just because a golf club is expensive doesn't mean it is superior.  We’ve gone over a few of the ways you can pick up good equipment on the cheap, but let’s reiterate, and expand

  • Off Brand: Again, there are plenty of really good off brand clubs out there. You’ll just have to do your research to make sure that you are getting a set of clubs with a reputation for quality.

If there is one significant draw back to buying off brand clubs it is that it makes customization a little bit more difficult. You may not have the opportunity to go into a shop to get fit for them, but you probably will be able to get your measurements taken by a professional, and then send them to the off-brand manufacturer.

  • Do you need all the tech?: A simpler club is going to be a little bit less expensive. The good news is that tech advancements aren’t necessarily here to stay. Some trends are just trends. The square headed driver is a good example.

Golf Goals

What are you trying to accomplish? Do you want more distance? Straighter shots? More spin? Less spin? Higher? Lower? You see what I mean. There are endless ways to play the game of golf, but your clubs definitely shape the approach you are able to take.

The possibilities are endless, and they are also very relative to the equipment that you are looking at, but let’s go over a few basics just to help you out.

Longer, Farther, Straighter: If you want to hit the ball longer, farther, and straighter, you will probably want to look for a game improvement club, which we talked about earlier. It’s definitely still possible to mishit a game improvement club, but your chances of striping it pure are much higher.

I’m sure you don’t need me to lay out the benefits of distance and accuracy, do I? I said it earlier, and I will say it again: Most players are going to benefit from a game improvement club coupled with a golf swing trainer.

Up, Down, Turnaround: The game’s elite players are able to control the shape and trajectory of their shots. This ability helps them to gain access to difficult to reach pins, as well as to get out of trouble spots. You may recall the Master’s tournament from a few years ago when Bubba Watson hit a fifty-yard hook out of the woods to find the green and ultimately, win the tournament. Shots like that are difficult, if not impossible to orchestrate with a game improvement clubs.

The problem is that the vast majority of players are entirely incapable of deliberately influencing their trajectory, let alone their shot shape.

If you can’t control your side spin, your side spin will control you. Without highly calibrated technique, the player’s clubs will simply accentuate the flaws of your swing.

New or Used

Buying used golf clubs is a great way to save money but there is also a degree of risk to the process.

With golf clubs (especially irons and wedges) the equipment is really only as good as the grooves. The grooves are what produces spin, which helps your shots land softly on the green, and, if you are really good, maybe even zip back towards to the hole a little bit.

As you hit shots with your clubs, the grooves gradually being to wear down. As they do, their performance begins to decrease slowly. It could be years before you notice any change at all, but eventually it will become impossible to deny that your clubs just don’t work the way that they used to.

When you buy a used club, the grooves have already taken a few poundings. That certainly doesn’t mean that you are going to get a lemon if you buy used, but the risk is certainly greater. If you do decide buy used, pay attention to the quality of the grooves. A good way to test them is to run your finger nails, or even a golf tee up and down the face of the club. If the grooves are dull, you will be able to feel it.

For that reason, it may be a bad idea to try and buy used wedges or irons online. In fact, many people will recommend not buying used wedges at all because their performance is so much predicated on the sharpness of their grooves that you want the highest possible quality.

If those are the cons of buying used, the pros of buying new are self-explanatory. You get guaranteed quality, and equipment that is at the peak of its potential. The biggest con for buying new is that you are paying much higher prices.

Try Before You Buy

One of the big pluses about buying golf equipment is that you always have the opportunity to try things out before you buy them. In fact, the tech available at most golf retail stores nowadays can give you real time feedback on data points like your clubhead speed, ball speed, swing plane, and more.

Perhaps more importantly, you also get to experience how a club feels. Data is one thing, but feel is entirely subjective. The same way the style and design of a club are important so too is the feel. ​A golf club for seniors may well be a great fit for you if you like the feel.

Remember that confidence is crucial in golf. If you like the way that your club looks and feels you will be able to step up to the tee with no hesitation each time.

If you have the chance to hit some balls on a launch monitor, take advantage of it. While it is no substitution for a fitting, it will still go a long way towards helping you pick a club that you can be sure is best for your swing.

If the club that you frequent sells a lot of equipment there is also the chance that they will let you sample some of their stuff on the course. If you can get that opportunity, take advantage of it. Launch monitors are one thing but there is nothing as telling as seeing how your clubs perform during an actual round.

Conclusion

Well, that is it! If you follow the above-listed steps you will be guaranteed to get the best possible clubs for your game, and what’s more, you will get them for a good deal. Buying golf equipment should be a fun and exciting experience, so my final tip is to relax as you browse what is available, and enjoy the shopping!

Forgiveness

Forgiveness is one of the most important aspects of a club to consider as you are looking to buy a new set. A forgiving clubface will allow you to get away with making less than perfect contact with the ball.


Most clubs say that they have forgiveness, and they can get away with it because technically they do (though it can sometimes be very little) but if you are struggling with your ball striking even a little bit you are probably going to get best possible results from what manufacturers refer to as a “game improvement club.”

Game improvement clubs are available all throughout the bag, in woods, golf wedges, irons wedges, and drivers. How each manufacturer ensures that their club is a “game improvement club”, varies. It could refer to the degree to which the club is offset, the depth of the cavity back, or how the club was forged. Usually, it will be a combination of all of the above.

Game improvement clubs may be seen by some as a golf club for beginners, but it is really more than that. Players at every level use them to lower scores and help guarantee more consistent results


The players club is of a more sleek, compact design, which is why many people favor them in the first place, but their elegance comes at the price of forgiveness. Besides being elegant they do also have the capacity to work the ball more than game improvement clubs do.


If you are a good ball striker that consistently shoots in the seventies, players clubs could be for you. Otherwise, consider a set with a little bit more forgiveness.

Of course, it helps to learn as much as you can about equipment before you buy.

Style

A golf club could have all the forgiveness (or workability depending on your needs) in the world, but if you don’t like the way that it looks you shouldn’t buy it.


Choosing a club that you don’t care for the appearance of will do more than just bother the senses. It can also aversely affect the performance you are able to get from a club.


Is it a placebo effect? It definitely is, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take advantage of it. Confidence can make or break a round of golf.


Manufacturer

When it comes to selecting a manufacturer for your golf clubs, there are a few things to consider. Let’s take a look.

Name Brand: I’m not telling you to be snobby. Everyone knows that buying name brand means paying more money and if cereal is any indication the difference between the household name products and their budget friendly equivalents is minuscule, right?

Possibly. The truth is there are actually plenty of really good small-scale golf equipment manufacturers out there. There are even some benefits to choosing them over the bigger guys. Often times, the smaller brands are willing to work with you for a more personalized touch to your equipment than the big companies are able to offer.

The problem is that it can be hard to know what to expect going in. If you do decide to take the route of a smaller brand equipment manufacturer, do some research and see what people who already own the clubs have to say.

You will also want to make sure that they adhere to the USGA’s equipment rules and regulations. While generally speaking they should, there is also a large market of off-brand clubs that makes and fulfills too good to be true promises (add thirty yards to your drive) by straying pretty wildly from the USGA's rules.

If you want to play in any sort of competitive capacity you will need to make sure that your equipment adheres to the rules. You should be able to find out by contacting the company.

Expertise: One club company might make the best irons, while another might be known for their wedges, drivers, woods, putters. 

If you ever watch professional golf on television you will probably notice that the players usually only use equipment from one manufacturing company. They don’t do this because it is the best way to equip themselves with golf gear, they do it because their contracts mandate it.

In fact, when a player is in-between contracts you will often see them mix and match a little bit. You should do the same. Shop around for the best of everything, and don’t worry about coordinating your bag the way they do on the professional tours.

Age

It’s really not necessary to buy clubs right when they come out. In fact, unless money is truly no object, you probably should not do that. Let’s use a driver as an example. When a new driver from a big brand company comes out on the market, it is usually available for around five hundred dollars.

If you wait a year to buy it, you can get it for three hundred. If you are willing to buy it lightly used, you can probably get it for two hundred. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule.

If you really want to be thrifty, find a driver that you like, and then buy the model that came right before it. You will save a lot of money and you’ll be getting something very similar to the club that initially caught your eye in the first place.

In order to stay competitive, most major manufacturers release at least one new line of clubs a year. The problem? Technology really doesn’t change much, if at all, in that time. The 2018 driver is most likely going to be very similar, if not identical to its 2017 counter-part.

If you are looking for the latest in technology you should be careful how far you go back. For example, you might be safe even choosing the 2016 model, but if you opt for a 2015 or 2014, you may be losing out on some beneficial tech.

That said, if your clubs are currently a quarter of a century old, you may not mind so much. Just remember that, while buying older clubs can make for an excellent bargain, you may have to make some concessions if you want to get the best gear possible.

Adjustability

The adjustable club (a feature mostly present in woods, drivers, and hybrids for the time being) is one of the most popular features on the market right now. The adjustable club does more or less as its name suggests it will. Using either sliding weights or an adjustable hosel, you can manipulate the typical trajectory that shots take from the face of your club.

In other words, fixing your slice no longer requires a trip to the range.  You can do it from your garage using a wrench. Like any equipment innovation, there are some pros and cons to the adjustable club. Let’s take a look.

Pros:

  • Straighter: Obviously the big benefit here is that players who suffer consistently from the same miss can fix their problem without the need to put in a lot of work.
  • Longer: You can also add yards to your swing simply by setting the face of your club to “draw,” instead of fade. The draw shot goes farther than its fade counterpart because it both utilizes a lot of forward spin, and a boring trajectory that allows the ball to roll out much farther.

Historically, players have worked hard to develop a nice reliable draw into their swing, but now you can get yours with a wrench.

  • Endless Options: Of course, new misses sometimes find their way into our swings. We hate it, but it does happen. When the new, unexpected slice or snap hook shows up you can fix it quickly without lessons or practice.

Cons:

  • Too Many Options? One of the consistent complaints about the adjustable club is actually that there may be too many options. Unless you are an equipment expert you should be very cautious as you play with the adjustable settings on your club. You don’t want to get your new driver stuck on a setting that has you hitting the ball OB on every swing.
  • Slows (or even stops) Improvement: Getting good shots out of bad swings sounds nice, but unfortunately it does come with the side effect of halting your development as a player. If you are enjoying straight drives, for instance, you probably won’t realize that there is a slice creeping into your swing that will hurt you all throughout the bag.

Shot Shape Bias

Besides clubs that can be adjusted, there is also a wide selection of clubs out there that come with a shot shape preinstalled into the club. Generally, these clubs will have either a “draw,” or “fade,” bias.

What makes these clubs beneficial is obvious.

The problem?

Swings change. Hopefully, you won’t always have a slice in your swing and when the day comes that you don’t, you will probably end up with a hook thanks to the draw biased. Clubs without a shot shape bias open the door for more workability, and you won’t have to worry about replacing your clubs in the event that you get better, which is another big plus.

That said if you decide you want to go the route of the shot shape bias club there are a lot of good options out there.

Loft

Every golf club in the bag has its own loft. Loft plays a very important part in the game, so it is crucial that you make sure the loft on your clubs is appropriate to your swing. For this section, I will break down the importance of loft for each club, as they all have their own unique needs.

Wedges

Most players are aware that wedges come in different lots, but they may not know exactly what the lofts mean. Let’s break it down.

46-48-Degree Wedge: The 46-48-degree wedge is known by most as the pitching wedge. Virtually every set comes with one, so you won’t usually be buying them at the store.

49-52-Degree Wedge: The 49- 52-degree wedge is known as the gap wedge, as it gaps the distance between your pitching and sand wedges. While the gap wedge has not always enjoyed prominence, it has gained significant popularity in the past fifteen years or so.

53-57-Degree Wedge: The 53-57-degree wedge is what most people refer to as the sand wedge. The sand wedge is a long-standing staple of most bags as it works well from the fairway, the bunker, and the fringe.

58-64 Degree Wedge: The 58-64-degree wedge is known as the lob wedge. You can use it from the fairway, but it works best for shot around the green.

Many players struggle to figure out exactly what wedge configuration best suits their needs. While you may not need all of the above-listed wedges, you do want to make sure that your bag is equipped in a way that allows you to avoid half swings.

Whether you choose the lower or higher lofts for each wedge will depend mostly on the lofts of your irons. You want the lofts of your clubs to coordinate throughout the bag, which means that you must maintain a consistent gap.

Irons

The loft of your irons is an often-overlooked aspect of choosing clubs, as most sets come with standard settings. However, some manufacturers set their lofts a little bit differently. In general, higher lofts will help you hold greens a little bit better, while lower lofts will enjoy greater distance.

Woods

Most golfers keep a three wood and a five wood in their golf bag, but the loft can vary a little bit. When it comes to the loft of your woods, you don’t have to worry about maintaining the same sort of gap that you do with your irons.

What you are looking for with your woods is the ability to get height on your shots from the tee and the fairway.  What that means in terms of loft depends on your swing speed. For example, if you have a very fast swing speed, you might need a three wood with a loft of 14 degrees. If you have a slower swing speed, you might need something with a loft of eighteen degrees, to help you get the ball in the air a little bit quicker.

Driver

There are a lot of prevailing misconceptions about driver loft that are harmful to amateurs. Many people are under the impression that a lower lofted driver will help add distance to their tee shots but the truth of the matter is that higher lofted drivers will result in more distance for most amateurs.

Selecting the right driver can be difficult which is why it is important to work with a professional.

Shaft

Shaft specifications can play a really major role in how your club performs. Even if the head of your club is perfect, you can still suffer from less than stellar results if your shaft isn’t up to par.

The shaft is one of the most important aspects of the club. Without optimizing your shaft for your swing, you can’t count on getting the most out of your clubs. Optimization will depend both on the length and flexibility of your shaft.

Picking the right shaft depends on a lot of data that you can only get by going into a golf shop and utilizing their launch monitors. Most club shops will take data on your swing and make recommendations for free, and they will even create customized orders for a small fee.

If you don’t want to go through the process of a fitting (but really, you should) remember that slower swing speeds need flexible shafts, while faster swing speeds require stiffer shafts.

Many players like to opt for the stiff shaft because it is associated with long hitters, but unless your swing is fast enough it will only result in missed shots.

Grip

The good news is that choosing the right grip is largely a matter of personal preference, and it is also a relatively simple aspect of the golf club to alter. In other words, if you find your dream set, but hate the grips, it’s not a deal breaker. You can get them changed on the cheap, and if you are ordering a custom set, there might not even be an upcharge.

Length


The length of a set of clubs is another important aspect to consider as you set out to make a buying decision. Manufacturers have been gradually increasing the lengths of their clubs over the past couple of decades, because the longer the club, the further the ball will travel.

The problem? Longer clubs are also more difficult to control. If the club is too long, it will aversely affect your natural swing plane which will, in turn, lead to a plethora of unnecessary misses.

The best way to make sure that you end up with clubs that are the correct length is to go in for a fitting. It is only under the watchful eye of a professional that you can be positive you are getting the best possible results.

If you do not want to sit down with a professional at least take the time to set up to a few different sets of clubs and see which you are most comfortable with. If they force you to stand closer or further away from the ball than you are comfortable with, it means that the club length probably is not a good fit for you.

Technology

Of course, golf club technology changes constantly. Tech like adjustable weights or hosels (like we mentioned earlier) or more aerodynamic head designs may perform better, but they will also rack up the cost.

As you look into your new set of clubs you will have to decide what technology is important to you. Studies show that the benefits of state of the art technology vary. Yes, the latest and greatest may help you out a little bit, but only you can determine what the value of those benefits are.

Customizable

I’ve touched on the importance of club fitting several times throughout the course of this article, but the truth of the matter is that it may be the very most important consideration you can make as you set out to buy your new set.

When it comes to club customization, there is really no ambiguity concerning the benefits. It will add yards, straighten out your shots, and improve consistency. The very best way to maximize the potential of your new set is to get fit for it.

So Why Doesn’t Everyone Get Fit For Their Clubs?

That’s a good question. The ease with which players can get fit for their clubs is one of golf’s unintentionally kept secrets. There is an unfortunate prevailing assumption among many amateurs that club fittings are too expensive, and that even if they could afford them, their game isn’t good enough to justify it. Let’s dispel those myths.

First of all, getting fit for your clubs adds only a minimal upcharge, and if you go to the right place you can even get it done for free.

It is equally backwards to assume that you are not good enough to get your clubs fit. On the contrary, those struggling with their games are likely to enjoy more improvement from a club fitting than anyone else.

But What If I get Better?

You certainly don’t want to have to buy new clubs every time your swing improves on your golf swing analyzer. The good news is that swing improvements don’t necessarily make your previous club fitting obsolete. While your specifications may change a little bit, your custom clubs will still ultimately be a closer fit for you than an off the rack set would be. There’s really no question about it: getting fit for your clubs is the best way to make sure you are getting the best possible results out of your purchase.

Price

Price. Of course, the perfect golf clubs aren’t going to be out of your price range, right? I won’t lie and say that shopping for golf clubs under a tight budget doesn’t limit your options, but it also doesn’t eliminate the possibility of picking up a set that you will be happy with.

The truth is, golf clubs come in a wide variety of price options. Just because a golf club is expensive doesn't mean it is superior.  We’ve gone over a few of the ways you can pick up good equipment on the cheap, but let’s reiterate, and expand

  • Off Brand: Again, there are plenty of really good off brand clubs out there. You’ll just have to do your research to make sure that you are getting a set of clubs with a reputation for quality.

If there is one significant draw back to buying off brand clubs it is that it makes customization a little bit more difficult. You may not have the opportunity to go into a shop to get fit for them, but you probably will be able to get your measurements taken by a professional, and then send them to the off-brand manufacturer.

  • Do you need all the tech?: A simpler club is going to be a little bit less expensive. The good news is that tech advancements aren’t necessarily here to stay. Some trends are just trends. The square headed driver is a good example.

Golf Goals

What are you trying to accomplish? Do you want more distance? Straighter shots? More spin? Less spin? Higher? Lower? You see what I mean. There are endless ways to play the game of golf, but your clubs definitely shape the approach you are able to take.

The possibilities are endless, and they are also very relative to the equipment that you are looking at, but let’s go over a few basics just to help you out.

Longer, Farther, Straighter: If you want to hit the ball longer, farther, and straighter, you will probably want to look for a game improvement club, which we talked about earlier. It’s definitely still possible to mishit a game improvement club, but your chances of striping it pure are much higher.

I’m sure you don’t need me to lay out the benefits of distance and accuracy, do I? I said it earlier, and I will say it again: Most players are going to benefit from a game improvement club coupled with a golf swing trainer.

Up, Down, Turnaround: The game’s elite players are able to control the shape and trajectory of their shots. This ability helps them to gain access to difficult to reach pins, as well as to get out of trouble spots. You may recall the Master’s tournament from a few years ago when Bubba Watson hit a fifty-yard hook out of the woods to find the green and ultimately, win the tournament. Shots like that are difficult, if not impossible to orchestrate with a game improvement clubs.

The problem is that the vast majority of players are entirely incapable of deliberately influencing their trajectory, let alone their shot shape.

If you can’t control your side spin, your side spin will control you. Without highly calibrated technique, the player’s clubs will simply accentuate the flaws of your swing.

New or Used

Buying used golf clubs is a great way to save money but there is also a degree of risk to the process.

With golf clubs (especially irons and wedges) the equipment is really only as good as the grooves. The grooves are what produces spin, which helps your shots land softly on the green, and, if you are really good, maybe even zip back towards to the hole a little bit.

As you hit shots with your clubs, the grooves gradually being to wear down. As they do, their performance begins to decrease slowly. It could be years before you notice any change at all, but eventually it will become impossible to deny that your clubs just don’t work the way that they used to.

When you buy a used club, the grooves have already taken a few poundings. That certainly doesn’t mean that you are going to get a lemon if you buy used, but the risk is certainly greater. If you do decide buy used, pay attention to the quality of the grooves. A good way to test them is to run your finger nails, or even a golf tee up and down the face of the club. If the grooves are dull, you will be able to feel it.

For that reason, it may be a bad idea to try and buy used wedges or irons online. In fact, many people will recommend not buying used wedges at all because their performance is so much predicated on the sharpness of their grooves that you want the highest possible quality.

If those are the cons of buying used, the pros of buying new are self-explanatory. You get guaranteed quality, and equipment that is at the peak of its potential. The biggest con for buying new is that you are paying much higher prices.

Try Before You Buy

One of the big pluses about buying golf equipment is that you always have the opportunity to try things out before you buy them. In fact, the tech available at most golf retail stores nowadays can give you real time feedback on data points like your clubhead speed, ball speed, swing plane, and more.

Perhaps more importantly, you also get to experience how a club feels. Data is one thing, but feel is entirely subjective. The same way the style and design of a club are important so too is the feel. ​A golf club for seniors may well be a great fit for you if you like the feel.

Remember that confidence is crucial in golf. If you like the way that your club looks and feels you will be able to step up to the tee with no hesitation each time.

If you have the chance to hit some balls on a launch monitor, take advantage of it. While it is no substitution for a fitting, it will still go a long way towards helping you pick a club that you can be sure is best for your swing.

If the club that you frequent sells a lot of equipment there is also the chance that they will let you sample some of their stuff on the course. If you can get that opportunity, take advantage of it. Launch monitors are one thing but there is nothing as telling as seeing how your clubs perform during an actual round.

Conclusion

Well, that is it! If you follow the above-listed steps you will be guaranteed to get the best possible clubs for your game, and what’s more, you will get them for a good deal. Buying golf equipment should be a fun and exciting experience, so my final tip is to relax as you browse what is available, and enjoy the shopping!

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