Amateur or professional, longtime enthusiast or an amateur newcomer, no matter who you are, certain activities require the use of one and the same tools in order for them to be done. There is the same need for the right tools by the pros and the newbies no matter how you spin it.
The same is of course true for the traditional, widely played, and beloved sport of golf. Golf has been around for centuries and not a lot has changed in all that time. The general premise has remained the same where balls need to be put in holes by hitting them with clubs.
What this means is that there is no winning or even doing it right unless the clubs are right. Golf clubs are essential tools for playing the sport and they are specifically made to do it in the right way. They are designed to help golfers hit the ball as accurately and as far as possible.
However, this is also not enough because not every shot and not every situation is made the same. Because of this, there are several different types of clubs to be included in the golfing bag. As a golfer, you have to have at least a few of each if you mean to be productive on the course.
Components of Golf Clubs:
All golf clubs have three main components that make them what they are. These include the head, the shaft, and the grip. All three are crucial and the differences between them give various types of clubs.
The head is the part that comes in direct contact with the ball. It is made of metal with its shape and size determining the further characteristics of the club, like its overall weight as well as the loft.
The shaft is the long, thin part of the club, the stick bit if you will. It connects the head with the grip and is usually made of steel or graphite. The main characteristic of the shaft is the length which helps determine the type of club. Its flexibility also matters as it affects the swing.
Lastly, the grip is the part the golfer holds onto while taking a swing at the ball. It is most often made of rubber or synthetic materials and it too varies in size and texture. This does not however influence the type of the club but rather the golfer’s preferences with comfort and hand size.
Types of Golf Clubs
There are three main types of clubs each designed for a specific hit and situation. These include woods, irons, and putters and they are equally important in a game of 18-hole golf.
Woods are the longest clubs in the bag, they have the biggest heads, and are used exclusively to hit the ball at long distances. As such, they need to be big and strong because the swings also need to be stronger and harder. Woods are traditionally made from wood with many modern varieties also incorporating lightweight metals like titanium. Woods are classified from 1 to 5, the 1 being the longest and lowest lofted.
Irons are the most versatile type of all because they are used for a variety of different shots. They are classified with numbers 3 to 9, with the lowest number having less loft and long distance and the highest having more loft and shorter distance. Their heads are usually made of metal and the shafts are either steel or graphite.
Finally, the main type for this article is the putters. A putter club is used on the putting green and is supposed to help the golfer with getting the ball into the hole. They are made to roll the ball into the hole accurately and precisely. Putters are the shortest clubs of all bags and have flat faces.
How Clubs Are Used
Golfers have to use a combination of clubs throughout a round of golf if they mean to perform well. Depending on the distance and the conditions of each shot, they must pick and choose before the aforementioned varieties to get the best results with each swing.
The goal is to hit the ball as accurately and as far as they can, at the same time avoiding obstacles and hazards like sandy bits, bushes and trees, and the water.
Golfers usually start a hole with a tee shot with a wood club hitting the ball as far as possible. Depending on how well they do, they can either switch to iron or continue with the woods, or go between them. When they approach the green, it is time for the putter to roll the ball into the hole and move on to the next.
Types of Putters: Blade VS Mallet
When it comes to putters, there are two main types to be distinguished, blade putters and mallet putters. Both types have their own unique features and benefits and they are not really interchangeable. The golfer needs to think about what they reach for depending on the scenario.
Blade putters are the traditional variety with a simple design. It features a thin and flat blade-like head with either a straight or a slightly curved shaft. Blade putters have a very small sweet spot which makes them tricky to use. They require a high degree of accuracy and precision if the golfer means to use them effectively.
Therefore, the blade type is preferred by golfers who like a classic look and feel as well as those who prefer putters with a more delicate touch. If your putting stroke is straight-back-and-through, you will definitely want a blade.
The second type of putter you should know about is the mallet. Mallet putters have a more complex design that features a larger, more rounded, or squarish head. Their sweet spot is larger which makes them more forgiving, making them the perfect choice for golfers who are still somewhat struggling with their putting accuracy. Hence, the right option for newcomers and amateur golfers.
Mallets are also more stable than blades thanks to different weight distributions. You will want to make it your go-to putter club if you prefer the arced putting stroke. Some mallets also have alignment aids like lines or dots on the top that help with aiming more accurately. Some sizes and shapes of mallets include square-back, center-shafted, and heel-toe.
It will always come down to personal preference, skill, experience, and the putting stroke when choosing the putter type. Blades are traditional with a classic look and feel, while mallets are modern with more forgiveness and stability. Try out different types to find the one that works best for you and you will be a better golfer for it.