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Club Test: Should you carry a fairway wood, hybrid or long iron?

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I was teaching a lesson the other day and a student asked me what would be better for his game: long irons, hybrids or or higher-lofted fairway woods? While we discussed this, I defaulted back to the same answer that I usually give to my students based on their overall handicap level and swing speed when it comes to this dilemma.

It’s my belief that the high handicap players are better off with higher lofted fairway woods such as a 7, 9, or 11 woods, as those clubs tend to launch the ball higher in most cases and are a touch easier to hit. Mid-handicap players can go with either hybrids or fairway woods depending on their swing speeds, and single-digit handicap players should go through a “fitting” like we are going to discuss below to understand what their tendencies are with each of these clubs so they can mix and match long irons, hybrids and fairway woods based on the course conditions and other factors.

Therefore, I’d like to show you a sample fitting I did personally with my own 3 iron, 3 hybrid, and 5 wood on my Trackman. All clubs were set to the same loft and built to stock lengths. The only difference other than the head design was the shaft length, shaft type the overall weight of the shaft itself. Obviously this is not an apples-to-apples comparison, but the results are eye-opening. I hit 30 shots in this testing, each of which was hit off a mat with brand new golf balls. I chose to hit from a mat instead of the grass to reduce the flyer effect or any other variable turf issues.

TaylorMade MC 3 iron set at 18 degrees

  • Swing speed for the 3 iron ranged from 88.3 to 91.1 mph.
  • The spin rates were right around 4000 rpm, except for two I hit thin, which is understandable when hitting a 3 iron.
  • There were some distance issues with the two off-center shots I hit– 178 and 191 yards carry– which ended up short of the normal distance I usually carry my 3 iron.
  • The overall height was 51.3 feet, which is much flatter than the PGA Tour average of 90 feet. That gave me a flatter-than-desired landing angle of 25.2 degrees.
  • As shown, the “run-out” from this type of club with this type of height and spin rate would be almost 40 yards.
  • The dispersion pattern is pretty tight around my target except for the two thin, pulled shots I hit.
  • Overall, I’d grade these shots I hit as slightly above average due to the “mat effect,” which tends to reduce spin a little bit.

Adams Pro DHy Hybrid set at 18 degrees

Hybrid

  • Swing speed for the hybrid ranged from 95.8 to 98.2 mph.
  • The spin rates were right around 4000 rpm, except for the one funky shot I hit with 3488 rpm of spin.
  • There was a big difference in distance when I compared the pulled shot I hit at 235.8 yards versus the one I hit short right at 218.6 yards.
  • The overall height was 64.2 feet, however, there were some trajectory differences as some of my shots were as high as 73.1 and 76.5 feet and some were as low as 53.8 and 57.5 feet.
  • With my swing speed at 97 mph and my spin hovering around 4000 rpm, the landing angles are once again a touch flat at 28.6 degrees.
  • The dispersion pattern is pretty tight around my target, except for the pull and push I hit.
  • Overall, I’d grade these shots I hit as average and I am very surprised at the range of carry distance differences shown

TaylorMade SLDR 5 wood set at 18 degrees

5wood

  • Swing speed for the 5 wood ranged from 100.8 to 102 mph.
  • The spin rates were right around 4000 rpm, except for the one I hit at 3319 rpm.
  • The carry distances with the 5 wood are very consistent and even the one I pulled didn’t go too far past the others.
  • The overall height was MUCH higher at 90.4 feet, right around the PGA Tour Average. That helped raise my landing angle to 33.3 degrees, however, with a touch more spin I could get this landing angle up a touch more.
  • The overall heights didn’t change too much when the higher spinning shots occurred, except for one shot at 102 feet.
  • The dispersion pattern is pretty tight from a distance perspective around my target, which is nice to see at this yardage range.
  • Overall, I’d grade these shots I hit as average, but I would have thought the spin rate would have been a touch higher. TaylorMade’s SLDR drivers, fairway woods and hybrids are known for reducing spin rates and this is a great example of that.

Overall Dispersion Charted via Distance

3iron

  • The 3 iron had the most issues when it came to distance control from the carry side.
  • The hybrid gave me the best overall dispersion pattern around the target.
  • The 5 wood gave me the best consistency as it pertains to carry distance.
  • Interestingly, the spin rates for the three clubs are basically the same: right around 4000 rpm. The heights and landing angles went up as the clubhead speed went up.
  • Shaft length, material and weight obviously had a big impact on my overall clubhead speeds. They ranged from 90 mph with the 3 iron to 101.5 mph with the 5 wood.

Trajectory Differences per Club Used

trajectories

As we look at the heights of the three clubs, you can easily see how the 3 iron was the flattest (white lines), the hybrid was in the middle (yellow lines), and the 5 wood was the highest (purple lines)

Conclusion

  • When it comes to my ability at the scratch level, I know I do not have enough clubhead speed or spin to get the 3 iron up in the air high enough to stop on the greens, thus my head design and shaft choice for my 3 iron must aid my ability to hit the ball up in the air if I am to use this club with any success.
  • The 3 iron is great for me when it comes to windy conditions and a course with large greens, such as links type of courses, but unless I’m at Bandon Dunes etc., there is not a big reason for me to have a three iron in my bag. Sorry ego.
  • My hybrid gave me the best chance to carry the ball a very solid distance with great control so it’s easy to see why I have the Adams DHy hybrid in my bag.
  • After seeing this, I would also like to chart my success with a 4 iron iron versus a 4 hybrid (with a loft of about 21 or 22 degrees) to see if it indeed necessitates a change as well. It’s very easy to see if you should switch or not if you run through this type of shot testing with a Trackman or FlightScope.
  • One note on hybrids: You must, at the better levels, get a hybrid that works with your game. Some tend to spin more than others and they all tend to have a leftward bias, which is is why I use a TaylorMade SLDR. It comes out flatter because of its low-spin design and that makes it better in windy conditions. I could put it in my club bender and flatten the lie angle so it does not trend left for me.
  • The 5 wood is an unreal club for me; I’ve never had one until two months ago! I had always had a 2 and 3 iron because that’s what I have always done (a creature of habit), but after seeing the results on Trackman, it’s very apparent that there was a HUGE gap between the carry distances of my 3 wood and my 2 iron that was hampering my game
  • What I could not see from 200+ yards was the fact that the longer irons were running up to the total distances I wanted them to go, but were not even coming close to the carry distances or landing angles I needed.
  • If you look at your own game and what conditions you tend to play, you can easily see what type of club is best for your game.  I play golf courses that are carry dependent yet are in windy parts of the world, so I can’t use a 3 iron. With a hybrid, however, that I can maneuver the ball higher or lower, which is the key for me.
  • Finally, if you have the “room” in your bag, I’d suggest that better players having a club that goes between your 3 wood and your longest hybrid or you will have a gap that will fight you as you hit into the longer par 4’s and par 5’s that you typically try to hit in two.

Have some fun with your next club fitting!

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Tom F. Stickney II, is a specialist in Biomechanics for Golf, Physiology, and 3d Motion Analysis. He has a degree in Exercise and Fitness and has been a Director of Instruction for almost 30 years at resorts and clubs such as- The Four Seasons Punta Mita, BIGHORN Golf Club, The Club at Cordillera, The Promontory Club, and the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. His past and present instructional awards include the following: Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher, Golf Digest Top 50 International Instructor, Golf Tips Top 25 Instructor, Best in State (Florida, Colorado, and California,) Top 20 Teachers Under 40, Best Young Teachers and many more. Tom is a Trackman University Master/Partner, a distinction held by less than 25 people in the world. Tom is TPI Certified- Level 1, Golf Level 2, Level 2- Power, and Level 2- Fitness and believes that you cannot reach your maximum potential as a player with out some focus on your physiology. You can reach him at [email protected] and he welcomes any questions you may have.

62 Comments

62 Comments

  1. Eric Williamsone

    Jul 4, 2017 at 3:00 am

    I think something else that gets some amateur golfers confused is when a hybrid based wood, such as the Super S Adams hybrid is iron length. Would that still make it be considered a wood based hybrid or an iron based hybrid?

  2. Shin

    Sep 30, 2014 at 1:51 am

    keep it up mate, swing looks a little? long and it looks like your comnig over the top. but a solid starting point, get a few lessons and practice your arse off, but mostly enjoy your golf!

  3. Joshzilla

    Jul 17, 2014 at 8:33 am

    Tom,

    Great article and very informative. My only question is about the use of DHy in the comparison. To my understanding…which could be wrong…is that the DHy in being a driving iron/hybrid would be a lower launching hybrid than typical. Would something like Adams Pro/SLDR/BioCell be a better competitor to the 5 wood in your opinion?

    Thanks,
    The Almighty Joshzilla

  4. Chris

    Jul 14, 2014 at 10:42 am

    I recently was fitted for irons and I went with 4-PW. I used to have a hybrid 4 but after the fitting I am crushing my 4 iron with less snap hooks than I had with the hybrid. My misses with both the 3-4 hybrid were pretty bad, with the 4 iron I just end up short not in the woods. I am now contemplating going to the 3 iron that is properly fitted. I am willing to give up distance for control. I am a 8 handicap and my penalty ball seems to be the biggest problem with my game. It sneaks up on me once in awhile causing a double or worse. My hesitation is so many people saying that switching to a 3 iron from a hybrid is crazy. I think I will try it though and see how it goes.

  5. MJ

    Jul 11, 2014 at 11:12 pm

    I enjoyed the article. I have been on a trackman many times and find them to be extremely accurate. You are 100% correct in that you should really only pay attention to the carry distance. It is cool to see the roll out though.

    You have me wanting to try a 5 wood now. Not really from a distance standpoint, but really from a height standpoint. I hit my 3 wood on avg. 245-250 carry, 20 degree adams 220 and my 4 iron about 200. I try to play in all of the big amateur events (state am, open, etc.), so I am playing in longer courses and these are important clubs a lot of the time into longer holes.

    Are these gaps pretty decent on these clubs or do I need to tighten them up? Thanks!

  6. Richard Youden

    Jul 8, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Tom, what would be interesting is to see the difference between ‘clean’ grooves and ‘dirty’ grooves. We all know that we should clean our clubs properly but the number of guys I see rock up on a Saturday morning and blame the green because they can’t stop a wedge even when it is full of mud! It’d be great to see some real world figures?

    If you don’t fancy doing it I’ll happily borrow your TM 😉

  7. bradford

    Jul 8, 2014 at 3:35 pm

    I put a SLDR-s 5HL in my bag this year, and so for it’s a dream. For me, it’s a drop and stop 220 club, which pairs up nicely with the target courses around me.

  8. Roger

    Jul 4, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Tom, i read this article 3 mornings ago.
    Who would have guessed Adams Super S 19 hybrids
    are at half price locally ……….
    Arrived yesterday, and being mid winter here… it is very accurate,
    mid hi, and with a huge cross wind and rain…its easy to use today!! So thanks for another great insiteful read that improves
    my game.Cheers, Roger

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 5, 2014 at 12:40 am

      It’s post like these that make my job a $1,000,000,000 per year deal! All the best…

  9. Derek

    Jul 3, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    Very informative article. It has me rethinking my bag composition. If you end up doing a comparison between your 4 iron and 4 hybrid, let me know. I’d be curious to see the results.

    • tom stickney

      Jul 3, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      Thanks…I would say that the four hybrid is always a better choice for 99% of the players in the world.

  10. Foz

    Jul 2, 2014 at 8:25 am

    I recently changed out my bag and am now gaming:

    Cobra Bio Cell Driver, set to 9.5* neutral; Bio Cell 3W set to 14.5* neutral; Bio Cell 5W, set to 18* netral & Bio Cell 2H set to 17.5* neutral.

    This yields:

    Driver 200-230
    3W 180-205
    5W 170-180
    2H 180-205

    There is a duplication in yardage between the 3W & 2H. I use the 2H when I have a narrow field and as my utility club getting out from under trees.

  11. Joe Golfer

    Jul 2, 2014 at 1:49 am

    Great article, Tom.
    I could never hit a 3 iron even in the old days of the 1980’s when lofts were one club weaker than today’s irons, and I’ve since replaced the four iron as well, though I typically shoot around 90, so I’m not really in your league as far as skill is concerned.
    I see that nowadays a lot of companies are coming out with a “driving iron”, something akin to a club that is between a thick iron and a hybrid in appearance. They remind me of the old Mizuno Fli-Hi clubs.
    My old Sonartec MD Hybrids still work great for me.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 2, 2014 at 9:08 am

      Loved the sonartec

      • Brian

        May 24, 2016 at 2:02 am

        My go to club is a Sonartec MD (the doctor) 19*
        It replaced my 3wood off the tee and fairway.
        Always looking for more of these clubs although I do have a very good Adams a12 OS 4 hybrid and an SLDR S 5 hybrid

  12. Scott

    Jul 2, 2014 at 12:52 am

    Great article, and really interesting stuff. I’m a high single digit (8), who learned a few years ago to leave the ego behind and embrace reality – I play a 5h,4h, 2h, and 3w. This change has done two important things: first, it created equal distance gaps throughout my bag, and second, it’s enabled me to lower my handicap by 4 strokes in 3 years. This now allows me to handle any distance for my approach shots with the confidence necessary to hit greens from anywhere inside 210 yards. The 5 wood data is interesting, and I am considering testing the SLDR 5 wood vs my 2 hybrid. You did us all a favor with this informative piece.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 2, 2014 at 9:10 am

      Thanks; I am always hopeful people can gain something from my thoughts.

  13. Anonymous

    Jul 1, 2014 at 9:28 pm

    Can I just point out that my club pro said I shouldn’t be needing a refit for my driver. I play in Australia for a pretty prestigious club on the scale of things. So I got fitted for the 910D2 9.5° with the blue Diamana Kai’il 65g shaft…3-4years ago. Now I don’t think there would be any problems with that, except for the fact that a) I was playing off an 8hcap, b) I was 13 at the time and c) I’m now playing off a 1hcap. If someone was to ask me what my worst club in my bag is, I wouldn’t hesitate to say the driver, by far the most inconsistent and confidence lacking club in my bag, and I play with the 712MB irons 3-Pw. My 3wood is also a 910F 15° with the blue Diamana Kai’il 75g Shaft but I hit that on most occasions more consistent than the driver and only lose maybe 10-15m tops, I’m hitting my 3wood the same length as my mates are hitting their drives, which on average is about 230-240 but obviously not using the driver to be getting that little bit extra distance off the tee because of the lack of consistency. I’m thinking I should get fitted for the 915 series when they are released hopefully later this year, but my clubs head pro thinks what I have now is fine?

    Basically through my set:
    Driver: 910D2 9.5° Blue Diamana Kai’il 65g Stiff
    3wood: 910F 15° Blue Diamana Kai’il 75g Stiff
    Irons: 712MB 3iron – PW S300 Shafts
    Wedges: SM4 52° S300, 56° S300, 60° Wedge
    Putter: 2010 Ping Scotsdale Anser 2

    I’m thinking about replacing the driver and 3wood and resting around 5 shafts while being fitted by someone other than my clubs pro, also adding a 712U 2iron and replacing my wedge set with a 54° instead of the 52°/56°
    I find I’m more confident standing over my MB 3iron knowing I can hit it the way I want, over addressing my 910…are these changes understandable or am I just overthinking too much?

    Thanks, and sorry for the essay, got a habit of doing that with almost everything! Haha

    • tom stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 11:20 pm

      Appreciate your thoughts…I don’t think you are over-thinking it…just find a quality fitter with a launch monitor and you will have the answers to all your questions! The launch monitor is the key…

  14. YJ

    Jul 1, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    You carried the 18* iron 14 yards less than PGA Tour average of a normal 3 iron, which I can understand since your swing speed was 8 mph lower, but you carried your 5 wood 28 yards farther with a swing speed that was only 1.5 mph lower. How would you explain that?

    • tom stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 8:25 pm

      3 iron had a flatter ball flight; thus I had less carry…while the 5 wood was higher and there was a slight tailwind

  15. Rob

    Jul 1, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    Thank you, I look forward for your articles. And now, I can show myself because I carry Driver and then 2-6 hybrids. I can hit them low or high and can control them much better than FW…

  16. Rob

    Jul 1, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    Thank you again Tom, I look forward for your articles. And now, I do not feel bad for having 2-6 hybrids in the bag. Driver avg 270, 2h avg 245. I agree on hard fairways with wind a low hybrid does the trick and the ability to hit it high.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:19 pm

      You’re correct. All about conditions

  17. Andy

    Jul 1, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    A great article Tom, I have beenw ondering about whether to add a 5 wood for a while now and this has certainly provided with a few key thoughts as I move forward.

  18. steve

    Jul 1, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    288yds with a 18* hybrid? I have never seen anyone hit it that long. Why carry a 3 wood then. I play a 21* hybrid for a 3 iron replacement, always thought that was correct. Have to start working out harder. I live in south florida and have played with some d1 golfers and some middle of pack tour pros and caddys. And I never seen a 288 hybrid on average. Honestly most hit their driver that long, maybe a tad longer. No internet muscle involved

    • wcavanau

      Jul 1, 2014 at 12:58 pm

      Steve, the 288 # is for the 5-wood I believe. The hybrid averaged 227 yds of carry and 262 total. Must have had pretty firm fairways!! I’ve noticed that some of these tracking machines add quite a bit of roll to the overall numbers.

      • Tom Stickney

        Jul 1, 2014 at 1:02 pm

        Tm based on 10 years of average PGA tour fairway carry/roll distances. I only focus on carry.

        • wcavanau

          Jul 1, 2014 at 1:37 pm

          Tom, I’ve used the tracking devices in Golfsmith and Golf Galaxy. Why do the add so much roll? Is this something the retailer sets to help sell clubs?

          • Joe Golfer

            Jul 2, 2014 at 2:12 am

            @wcavanau: I think Tom answered it in his immediately prior post of July 1 at 1:02 pm.
            He noted that Tm (Trackman) bases their stats on 10 years of average PGA tour fairway Carry/Roll distances.
            Personally, I have found that I get much less roll.
            Why? Several reasons. First off, I’ve walked on pro courses as a spectator at tournaments.
            Those fairways are groomed so short that it is like walking on a carpet. No wonder the ball rolls so far.
            Most of the public courses I play do not have that carpet like fairway, so I get less roll out by far, especially on bluegrass fairways.
            Also consider that in the PGA, they measure the longest drives on only a couple of holes per round, generally two holes where a guy can really attempt to bomb it, a wide open par five with a generous fairway that tempts birdies. So if most of those PGA guys are swinging from the heels and probably hitting a draw for distance on those holes, they are going to get lots of roll.
            So if Trackman (Tom refers to as “Tm”) is measuring based on that, then they are going to list a lot more roll out than many of us are accustomed to seeing.
            If you are I were playing a pro course with a super smooth fairway, we’d get more roll too.
            Also, if we could swing like a pro with super-customized equipment to give us that high launch and low spin for optimum distance, and we were only being measured on the holes where we absolutely bomb it with a draw spin, we’d show more roll out also.
            These factors make the Trackman stats on Roll rather unreliable as it relates to the vast majority of golfers.
            It’s only relative for pro skilled golfers who are swinging all out on the “bomb it” holes, playing on carpet-like fairways, more often with a draw swing.
            Trackman is a great tool, but as Tom Stickney says, he goes only with the Carry stat, as he also probably finds that roll out to be unrealistic because of the way Trackman bases their amount of roll via PGA stats, though he didn’t explain all the reasoning behind why PGA stats may not be applicable to your Roll distances.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 1:01 pm

      Altitude baby! 7500 here in Park City. 🙂

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:21 pm

      Steve. Altitude here is 7500. Not normal. All thin air

      • steve

        Jul 1, 2014 at 3:03 pm

        those are big numbers, not doubting you in anyway. You have the resume, so I don’t think the numbers are fudged. As someone else pointed out it was the 5 wood numbers, but still 288 is a large 5 wood. What are the course lengths there, 8500? and since I got your ear why is a 5 wood a 3 iron replacement? Maybe i am old school but it was either 5 wood or 2 iron. I took a 2 iron out years ago and put a 5 wood 19* or 18* degree hybrid in.

  19. Keith

    Jul 1, 2014 at 10:48 am

    I’m trying to decide if I should if I should pull out a wedge and put something in the bag to fill the gap between my hybrid and my 4i. I have SLDR 3w set at 17′ and SLDR 19′ hybrid set at 20.5′ and then the 4i. I play the 3w about 250, the hybrid about 230 and my 4i is right at 200, maybe 205 maxed out. I carry 51, 55, 59 but am thinking about dropping the 55 and bending the other two a degree to have 52, 58.

    First try is going to be a 712U 4i that I’m going to bend a degree or two stronger, if that doesn’t work I may try the Adams pro dhy 23′.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:21 pm

      All good club choices. Depends on your spin rate.

  20. Chris

    Jul 1, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Was there a tail wind that day? It seems hard to believe that a 5W could have an average total distance of 287 with a club speed of 101mph and 4000rpm spin.

    • wcavanau

      Jul 1, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      It seems like these tracking devices add quite a bit of roll to shots. I’ve noticed that in our local Golfsmith store. The carry distance is what matters. Roll is dependent on conditions.

      • Tom Stickney

        Jul 1, 2014 at 2:23 pm

        Tm based on its PGA tour roll data comprised from over ten years on tour. Other machines I’m not sure. I only focus in carry mostly.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:22 pm

      Altitude and a touch downhill

  21. hotbacon

    Jul 1, 2014 at 10:45 am

    I wish I could find a place where I could get on a launch monitor and do tests like this! Another great article Tom, keep it up!

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Thx. Find a fitter with a launch monitor. Golf digest top 100 clubfitters is a good place to start.

  22. Puddin

    Jul 1, 2014 at 10:40 am

    Great article. I’ve been in need of something between my 4I and 3W. After reading all the articles on Hybrids and Fairway woods. It looks like the TM SLDR. I’m a TM die hard. (speedblades) Thanks for helping me make my decision.

  23. No one method

    Jul 1, 2014 at 10:39 am

    An 18* 3 iron!?! Shouldn’t a 3 iron be more like 22*???
    With that loft set up don’t you have issues in the short game with big gaps and needing to choke down to fill those gaps?

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Was bent down for the articles sake only

      • jmiller065

        Jul 2, 2014 at 11:41 am

        I was going to ask the same thing. I thought that 3i/3h loft was roughly 20-22*. For me when I see 17-19* I’m thinking 2i/2h/5w as the comparison. I guess I’m just old school in my loft thinking 🙂

  24. Chris5825

    Jul 1, 2014 at 9:07 am

    What about something like soft stepping a 3 iron to help get the ball flight up?

    I did this with my 4 iron and it has helped immensely with more consistent ball height around 100ft.

  25. Martin

    Jul 1, 2014 at 9:02 am

    I really like these articles, but clearly from your SS and carry distance it’s not really much use to me.

    I play driver, 3w, 3H, 4H then 5i down. These articles would be of more value if you found a decent player with a more normal SS. I’ve only met a few people that can carry a driver 258 yards, much less a 5 wood. As I get older, I really have to pay attention to my gaps as the tend to bunch up at the top of my bag.

    Next time, find a good ball striking 50+ year old with a driver SS of 95mph and run the tests side by side.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 9:35 am

      While that would be nice? I’m afraid I don’t have the time to recruit people for every article I do. The article showed you that there were issues; it’s up to you to find a TrackMan and do the same thing with your clubs. You’ll play better.

  26. paul

    Jun 30, 2014 at 11:57 pm

    I play a 4i, 3i, 3hybrid, and 3 wood. I have been noticing that my 3i and hybrid are very close together in distance. And I have a good size gap between my 3 wood and 3 hybrid. Might be time for a 5 wood or 2 hybrid. And leave the 3i at home.

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 12:06 am

      It is eye-opening to see what really happens with your clubs vs what you think you do with them. I did this and saw I had NO chance to hit a three iron and hold a green. Bye bye 3 iron.

      • No one method

        Jul 1, 2014 at 10:41 am

        But your three iron is more like a one iron!!!

  27. Pingback: What should be in your bag: A Long Iron, Hybrid, or Fairway Wood? | Spacetimeandi.com

  28. nikkyd

    Jun 30, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    I just went through this little test this spring. My 3 iron was wholly unglamorous and my 3 hybrid went TOO far. I finally broke down and bought a new cobra amp cell 4-5 hybrid. Couldnt hit for beans because of the draw bias, but i finally figured it out and its a good club when you are in a bind

    • Tom Stickney

      Jul 1, 2014 at 12:08 am

      Agree on the left-bias for most hybrids. That’s why I have the Adams pro dhy in my bag it’s one of the few you can bend without denting the crown…I bent it flatter so NO hooks for me.

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The address position is the easiest part to change in the golf swing. If an adjustment can be made that will influence the rest of the swing, it should be made here. The set-up is a static position, so you have full control over it. If concepts are understood with feedback given (a mirror or video) it can easily be corrected and monitored. Once the club is in motion, a change becomes much more difficult.

Most faults in the swing originate in the set-up. All to often players go directly to the part they want to change in the middle of their swing, not understating their is an origin to what they do. When the origin isn’t fixed, trying to directly change the part in the middle is difficult and will often leave the player frustrated. Even worse, the part they are looking to fix may actually be a “match-up” move by the brain and body. These match-up moves actually counter -balance a previous move to try and make the swing work.

An example of not fixing the origin and understanding the importance of the set-up is when players are trying to shallow the club on the downswing (a common theme on social media). They see the steep shaft from down-the-line and directly try and fix this with different shallowing motions. More times then not, the origin to this is actually in the set-up and/or direction the body turns back in the backswing. If the body is out of position to start and turns back “tilty”, a more difficult match-up is required to shallow the shaft.

Another simple simple set-up position that is often over-looked is the angle of the feet. For efficiency, the lead foot should be slightly flared and the trail foot flared out as well (the trail more flared then the lead). When the trail foot is straight or even worse pointed inwards, a player will often shift their lower in the backswing rather then coil around in the groin and glutes. Trying to get a better lower half coil is almost impossible with poor foot work.

The golf swing is hard to change, so work on the things that are simple and what you have control over. You may not be able to swing it like a world class player, but with proper training you can at least the address the ball like one. When making a swing change, look to fix the origin first to facilitate the change.

*Part two of this article will be focusing on what you can control on the golf course, a key to better performance

http://www.kelleygolf.com

Twitter: KKelley_golf

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