What Golf Clubs are in a Golf Set?

If you are getting started in golf, it’s extremely difficult to master different aspects of the sport.  Beginners are confused about which golf club they should use because they don’t have prior knowledge of these clubs, and often struggle using them effectively on the course.

As a golfer, you must understand the difference between all kinds of golf clubs. Each golf club has certain features that make it ideal for a given situation. Regardless of whether you are using an iron or a driver, you can’t use the same golf club for every situation.

The fact that even the same kind of clubs can have different variations and customized alterations makes the matter even more confusing for beginners. In this article, we will describe each kind of golf club and explain what golf clubs to use for what distance.

golfer on course

What Clubs Does a Golf Set Typically Contain?

To start off, you must understand that the maximum amount of clubs you can carry in your bag is 14 clubs. This is one of the first golf rules you need to remember because breaking it results in a penalty of two strokes per hole.

This is why it’s important for golfers to know which golf clubs they will use the most. The majority of golfers carry at least 5 golf irons (irons 6 to 9, and pitching wedge), a 3-wood, a putter, and a driver or hybrid in their bag.You can choose the remaining 6 clubs, according to your level of skill or the kind of golf course you are playing on.

The Variation of Distances in Each Type of Golf Club

The distance a golf club covers can vary immensely, depending on the golfer using it. One person’s 3-iron average distance can be the same as another person’s 7-iron distance. There are numerous factors that affect the distance a certain golf club covers.

From the golfer’s skill level, their swing speed, the measure of forgiveness to the angle at which the ball was hit, everything contributes to the distance of the ball. This is why you must understand that there is no right or wrong golf club for the distance, as it can vary from person to person.

Nevertheless, there are estimates available that you can use a reference to get a general idea. Usually, female golfers hit the ball at a lesser distance than men. For this reason, the club composition for male and female golfers is clearly distinct.

Furthermore, since your skill level contributes to the distance gained by your golf club, an amateur will have a different golf club distance than an experienced golfer. Depending on your level of skill, you can be categorized as a short hitter, a medium hitter, or a long hitter. With that said, let us look at the distances achieved by different golf clubs in terms of yards.


Drivers are an integral part of your golf club set. Golfers usually use the driver when they are launching the ball of the tee. So it’s no surprise that it covers the greatest distance compared to all other golf clubs.

For male golfers, the driver can launch the ball for 200 yards for short hitters, 230 yards for medium hitters, whereas 260 yards for long hitters. On the other hand, female golfers can strike the ball to 150 yards if they are short hitters, 175 yards for medium hitters, and 200 yards for long hitters.

Fairway Woods

Woods golf clubs are similar to drivers in many ways and usually have a higher degree of loft. These clubs are available in two categories, namely 3-wood and 5-wood. Experienced golfers often use either of these woods for hitting shots from the fairway. With that said, beginners should avoid using them until they gain enough expertise in golf.

On average, male golfers can use the 3-wood to strike the ball for 180 yards, 215 yards or 235 yards, based on their skill level. Female golfers, in comparison, can use these clubs for covering a distance of 125 yards, 150 yards or 180 yards.

On the other hand, 5-wood can be used to clear the ball for 170, 195 or 210 yards. At the same time, female golfers can use it to launch the ball 105 for short hitters, 135 for medium, and 170 yards for long hitters.


Golf irons usually take the most space in a golf club bag. Golfers use irons to have greater control over their hits and land the ball more precisely. With that said, iron-play is one of the most difficult skills to master, not only for beginners but also for intermediate golfers.

There are multiple variations of irons available, which number up to 8 in total. These irons are further divided into three main categories, namely short irons (2 and 3 iron), mid-irons (irons 4, 5, and 6), and long irons (7, 8, and 9).

The loft of each club increases as you gradually move from a 2-iron to a 9-iron. It’s ideal for beginners and high handicappers to start practicing with mid and long irons, as they have a greater loft.

As mid and long irons have a greater loft, the ball does not roll off far away after landing. Therefore, beginners can play chip and pitch shots more effectively on the greens with these irons. On the other hand, experienced golfers prefer using 4, or 5-irons to gain extra distance over their hits.

Let us look at the average distance covered by each category of irons:

Short Irons

Since short irons have the least amount of loft, they cover the greatest distance among all other irons. Male golfers can use 2-irons to hit the ball for 170 yards, 195 yards or 210 yards, depending on how well they hit it. Female golfers, in comparison, can use these clubs hit the ball for 105, 135, or 170 yards.

Comparatively, 3-irons can cover a distance of 160, 180 and 200 yards for short, mid and long hitters, respectively. At the same time, female golfers can utilize these irons to launch the ball 100 for short hitters, 125 for medium, and 160 yards for long hitters.


Mid-irons are balanced and offer the best combination of loft and distance, but it takes a certain level of skill to use them effectively. Male golfers can strike the ball 150 yards, 170 yards or 185 yards. On the other hand, female golfers can hit the ball for 90, 120, or 150 yards while using these irons.

5-irons launch the ball at even fewer distances, ranging from 140 and 160 to 170 yards for male golfers. At the same time, female golfers can deposit the ball 80, 110, and 140 yards at the golf course while using the 5-iron.

Male golfers can use them to hit the ball to 130 yards, 150 yards, and 160 yards based on how well they make contact. Similarly, women can launch the ball to70yards, 100 yards, or130 yards.

Long Irons

Long irons are known for offering the highest loft among irons. Men can use 7-irons to hit the ball 120, 140, or 150 yards; 8-irons to launch it 110, 130, and 140 yards and lastly, 9-irons to deposit it 95, 115, and 130 yards, according to their level of skill.

Similarly, female golfers can utilize 7-irons for 65, 90, and 120 yards; 8-irons for 60, 80, and 110 yards and 9-irons 55, 70, and 95 yards. With that said, the purpose of these long irons is not to deposit the ball at great distances, but to hit it as accurately as possible.


Wedges are specialized irons that are meant to offer golfers the highest level of loft possible. These are usually used when golfers are trapped in a fairway bunker or when they are too close to a green and need to use a club with the high loft.

Usually, a complete set will include either a pitching wedge, a sand wedge or both. Pitching wedges are meant to be used close to the greens. On the other hand, a sand wedge is used for helping the golfer escape a bunker that’s filled with sand.

The pitching wedge may deposit the ball 80 yards, 105 yards, or 120 yards for men, depending on how clean their contact with the ball is. For women, these wedges have an even lesser distance, which is 50, 60 or 80 yards.

Since the purpose of sand wedges is to escape bunkers, the loft on these wedges is extremely high. Male golfers can launch the ball 60, 80 or 100 yards away from the bunker. Lastly, female golfers can hit the ball 40, 50, or 60 yards using the sand wedge.


Putters are used when on and near the green. They are flat clubs that do not have any loft and make the ball roll instead of fly up in the air when hit. Golfers carry just one putter to use when they have reached the green with their golf ball.

Our Final Thoughts

The distance covered by a golf club can vary from golfer to golfer. The moral of the story is not to compare yourself with professional golfers. The best way to find out how far certain golf clubs launch the ball is by practicing with them.

Even if you are a beginner, you can quickly understand if you are short hitter, mid-hitter or a long hitter, by just playing golf with other people and seeing how well you perform.

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