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Golf Sets

Golf Sets: The answers you need before buying a set of golf clubs. With thousands of different golf sets to choose from, it's hard to know what to buy. However, with this information, you'll have no trouble narrowing the field.

    It seems like every few months golf club manufacturers are unveiling something new. How can anyone even keep track of and understand all the latest technological advancements or have the time to study all the options to make an informed buying decision. Thankfully, you don't have to study every type of golf club to make a good purchase. But you will have to study yourself and your golf game. Here is what you should consider when buying golf sets.

How Serious are you About Golf?

    That may sound like an overly simple question, but it's very important to gauge your level of commitment before you pay a good sum of money for a set of golf clubs. Your level of commitment will dictate how much effort and time you should put into searching for golf sets. If you aren't sure about how serious you are about golf, that's important to know, too.
    If you are a serious golfer who plays several rounds a week, you'll want to put much more effort into evaluating golf sets because your clubs are a big part of your life. However, if you are a beginner or play infrequently, don't obsess about which clubs to get. It's more important that you spend your time learning how to play and gaining experience rather than getting hung up on the equipment. If you aren't sure how serious you are about golf, you shouldn't be looking at golf sets. The best option if you are trying to get into golf is to rent clubs at the driving ranges and courses you go to. If you still like the game after a couple trips to a driving range and a round or two, then start looking at golf sets.

How Many Clubs do you Really Need?

    The Rules of Golf allow you to carry 14 clubs with you out on the course, but how many clubs you need in your set should depend on your skill level rather than the rules. Advanced golfer need to carry 14 clubs because they have specialized skills and practiced techniques that utilize the nuances of each club. However, if you are just getting into golf, you can start out with as few as four clubs because, until you improve, you won't benefit from the small differences between clubs(Davis). Just get a 5- or 7-wood, a 6- or 7-iron, a pitching wedge or sand wedge, and a putter. Those clubs will allow you get the hang of the game. You can add more clubs as you get better.
    If you already know that golf is for you and you have some experience, a starter set of 12 clubs is one option to consider. Starter sets usually have a three woods -- driver, 3-wood and 5-wood -- eight irons -- 3- through 9-iron and pitching wedge -- and a putter. Golf experts disagree about whether starter sets are a good idea. Some say avoiding them because they are often lower-quality clubs (Puett). However, others believe that starter sets are great because they allow beginners to play golf without spending thousands of dollars, and once players improve, they can trade the clubs in for a better set (Wright). You should go with what you budget allows, but don't go overboard.

Can you Handle Long Irons?

    Golfers always talk about how hard it is to hit well with the low lofted, long irons. The term "long irons" usually refers to the three, four and five irons because they are taller than the other iron clubs and are used to hit longer shots (Wright). They are hard to use because they have low loft angles, which means they don't hit the ball high into the air.
    The point is that if you can't make solid shots nine out of 10 swings with long irons, you shouldn't buy golf sets that include them. You'll be wasting your money. You can easily substitute utility woods or hybrid clubs for the long irons. If you want to go with utility woods, switch out your 3-, 4- and 5-irons for 5-, 7- and 9-woods (Wright). Hybrid clubs that replace 3-, 4- and 5-irons are usually labeled as 3,4 and 5 hybrids.

    Whenever you are buying golf sets, be aware that most top-name clubs aren't sold as full sets. Drivers and putters are often sold by themselves. Iron sets are sold as stand-alone groups, and fairway woods, utility woods and hybrids are sold in small stand-alone groups. Most full golf sets you'll find on the market are made for beginner golfers rather than advanced players. With that in mind along with the newly gained insight about your own golf game, you should have no problem finding the right composition of clubs for your golf set.


Davis, Susan Comolli. Golf: A Woman's Guide. (Ohio: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2001), 32.

Puett, Barbara and Jim Apfelbaum. Golf Etiquette. (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2003), 153.

Wright, Nick. Women's Golf. (New York: Sterling Publishing, Inc., 2002), 16-18.