Many golfers struggle with long irons as they are notoriously hard to hit. As a result, many amateurs choose to shun them and give up after a few shots in a round. Luckily for them, recent golf technology developments may well have solved this problem. Let me introduce the hybrid, a.k.a utility, a.k.a recovery club. This club has been revolutionizing the game, and if you’ve ever seen a golfer without his or her long irons in their bag, then the chances are that they are using these instead. Let’s have a look at exactly what they are and how they can help you lower your scores.
The term hybrid comes from the fact that the club combines the design of both the fairway woods and the irons. The shaft length is similar to an iron, and the head is a cross between the fairway woods and the irons.
The key point to this club is that it is supposed to be easier to hit than a long iron without losing the distance. Does this sound good to you?
The design of the club head is such that there is a low center of gravity which in turn has the effect of helping to increase the height of the ball and reduces mishits. With the shaft being shorter than the fairway woods there is a greater element of control. However, you do get the benefit of forgiveness in the club similar to the woods, so you are still able to generate distances equal to or greater than the long irons. For example, a well-hit Hybrid 3 should play as long as a 2 iron. If you add in the fact that the hybrid shot tends to land softly, this all comes together to produce a fantastic weapon to have in your bag.
Within the hybrid club range, you also get two distinct types. One has a head which is more iron like, and the other has a head which is more like a fairway wood. These options cater to different types of players – it is widely accepted that the fairway wood-type head is more suited to the less advanced amateur. You can also choose between graphite or steel shafts. Steel tends to be cheaper and heavier. The weight of steel promotes greater control. The graphite shaft is lighter so is easier to generate club head speed making it advisable for newer players or those with slow swing speeds to use this type of shaft to help increase distance.
The Hybrid should be treated as if it is an iron so you should swing accordingly (i.e., hit down on the club in contrast to sweeping the ball as per a fairway wood/driver swing).
But it also has other uses. It holds its own off the tee, is a great option off the fairway for that long second shot (where you may have previously lost yardage by not using a long iron) and comes into its own in the rough or bad lies. The reason for this last point is that the sole of the club is fatter but has a narrow face which is ideal for skimming through grass without getting caught up. This fact alone could revolutionize a high handicapper’s game. It can even be used to chip around the green as the loft of the head varies between 15 to 21 degrees.
Ask around at your golf club, and you will be surprised at how many converts there are. It’s certainly the case that many now leave their 3, 4 and even 5 irons at home with a set of hybrids becomming their welcome replacement. Such are the many uses of the club that you may find yourself using it far more than any other club in your bag!
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