7 Tips for Buying Golf Clubs
Knowing how to buy golf clubs is about knowing your golf game. All the golf clubs you see in a golf store are designed by people who know golf, so there’s not a “bad golf club” in the store. Sure, some golf clubs are better than others. But different golf clubs are designed for different players, so a club that’s right for you might not be right for the next golfer to come along. Golfers who know how to buy golf clubs will end up with the better golf bag, and those who don’t will get frustrated with their poor set of golf clubs.
Factors you should look at when buying golf clubs include the length of the club, what stage of golf playing you’re at, the type of courses where you play and (if you’re a good enough golfer that it matters) the strengths of your game. Some novices may not carry a full bag of golf clubs to begin with. If one plays at a smaller course, if one can’t control their tee shots using a 1-wood and if one wants to save a little money, a new golf player might only carry one “wood” in his or her bag. Traditionally, this golfer won’t buy a 5-wood or a 1-wood, but instead use a 3-wood to begin with.
The point being, every golfer has different needs and club preferences. Here are the factors you need to consider when deciding which golf clubs to buy.
- Test Your Golf Clubs – Try out golf clubs extensively before you buy a set. Rent a similar set at your local golf course and play a round using them. Do the same with several sets, testing length and brands especially. If you have a friend who has a set you think you might like, ask to borrow the clubs (or a sample of clubs) to play with. Some golf stores also have their own driving net in the store, where you can test out the clubs you have your eye on.
- Try Them on For Size – The most important factor when buying golf clubs is getting the right size clubs. If you buy clubs that are too short or too long, you’ll end up compensating for the difference in your golf stance. Since playing consistent golf is almost always about having good mechanics in your golf swing, a golf club set that’s not the right fit for you is going to lead to inconsistency. These clubs will also be uncomfortable. When buying clubs, ask the golf shop salesperson to help you fit you with the right shaft length. Test out the clubs they suggest and let them know your thoughts. Very tall golfers have trouble finding the right clubs, so if you are very tall, you might eventually have to customize golf clubs for you. Smaller golfers have similar problems, though there are clubs made specifically for children.
- Learn the Club Sizes – Iron – Learn the golf club sizes you need and when each club is supposed to be used. You’ll buy a set of irons and a set of woods, possibly separately. Golf irons tend to be a matching set, and you’ll need a 3-iron, 4-iron, 5-iron, 6-iron, 7-iron, 8-iron, 9-iron and pitching wedge. You might also purchase a sand wedge. The irons and wedges each has the club iron face at a different angle. If you use the same mechanics on each shot, using these different clubs will regulate the distance of your shot properly.
- Learn the Club Sized – Woods – Woods are purchased separately. Golf woods can be purchased as a set, consisting of a 5-wood, a 3-wood and a 1-wood (often called a “driver”). The driver is the “biggest” club you will have in the bag. It will hit the ball further than any other club, and is often used to tee off on longer holes and longer courses. All the woods knock the balls further than irons, though it’s harder to control the straightness and accuracy of the woods.
- Get the Right Putter – Finally, the putter is purchased separately than the other clubs. It is very different than all other club, because the putter is not meant to produce “loft”. Putters hit the golf ball across the smoother surface of the green, and will be the club used on the final strokes during most of your golf holes. This makes finding the right putter the most important club choice in the bag.
- Select Clubs for Your Skill Level – There are golf clubs designed for beginners and golf clubs designed for experts. Novice golf players should select clubs with a larger hitting area. This gives the player more room for error and cuts down the chances you inadvertently slice or pull the ball. Golf club designs for skillful players are more “bladed”, so they have less sweet spot, but generate more power. Ask the golf store personnel which clubs are designed for your level of play.
- Don’t Waste Money on Your First Set – If you aren’t particularly skilled at golf, don’t waste a bunch of money on your first set of golf clubs. Buy a solid set of clubs that are your size and learn the game. Getting top line clubs won’t help you much, if you haven’t mastered the basics. When you have improved your game, a more expensive bag of golf clubs will make more of a difference. Also, you’ll know more about the kind of golf clubs you want to add to your bag.
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