Ladies’ golf is the fastest growing niche in the sport today, primarily due to the television coverage of LPGA and Ladies’ European Tour Events. This has lead to higher demand for women’s clubs and increased sales.
When buying ladies’ clubs for a beginner, there are a few aspects to consider before settling on a final decision. You need to consider the player type, the budget, whether you need a complete set or not, and testing clubs before buying them.
While many clubs, from drivers to irons and hybrids, make it easier, there is more to this than simply choosing your set and playing. Let’s look at the various elements to consider when buying lady’s clubs for a beginner.
What Type Of Player Are You?
As a beginner, you have been to the range and hit a few balls and got bitten by the golf bug there, or you may have seen ladies’ golf on TV and decided you want to try this game for yourself.
Well, good on you! And there’s more good news too! The development of specialized lady’s clubs and equipment over the past few decades has grown immensely, making it easier than ever to find a great set of beginner clubs.
The explosion in te growth of women’s golf has spurred many of the main brands to develop ranges parallel to the men’s game and cater for ladies of every age, size and skill level.
Are you going to play and practice every week or only play occasionally with a few sporadic ranges sessions in between? Depending on your answer to this question will determine what kind of clubs and the investment required.
There is no point in going to spend $1000 on a set of clubs if you only intend to play a few times a year, whereas if you are playing every week and looking to work at your game and improve- then a better set of clubs would be a wise plan.
Once you know how often you want to play and your game ambitions, it’s time to get into the club options.
Be Clear And Disciplined With Your Budget
Golf can be an expensive game to start, with clubs being your most considerable expense. When buying a set of clubs, stick to your budget as adding drivers and other clubs that don’t come with the set can quickly add up!
New drivers can set you back $500, and depending on your budget; this could be a sizable CHUNK gone on one club! There are ways to get really good value sets within your budget, and one of those is to look at golf sets that are a few years old.
A new 2-3-year-old set of clubs will be much less than the same brand new set, and often golf manufacturers and retailers have them marked at discounted rates as it is older stock.
Take advantage of this, and you could find yourself with a great set of clubs and some change to get some balls, gloves, shoes, and even some apparel!
Another way is to shop around for used sets of clubs in good condition. It often happens where a golfer has elected to upgrade to a newer set, and the older set is being sold to offset the cost of the new one.
There are also some ‘bonus features’ to buying used sets as they may often include balls, gloves, the bag, tees, and other accessories, so you get the whole nine yards! Another plus is that should you decide down the line to stop playing, you can resell them and recover some money, and you haven’t laid out a fortune to start with.
If budget is not a consideration, it would be great to go for the latest set with all the trimmings and walk away fully equipped with brand new gear! A word of caution here, though.
Be certain in your mind about your commitment to playing and practicing, as spending $1000 or $1500 on a complete set with all the accessories is easy. Still, if you have any misgivings that you may not want to continue or want to try, it would be prudent to look at secondhand options or older sets.
Like your mobile phone, if you start to enjoy it and want to upgrade, then you can go for its guns blazing!
Your Height Makes A Difference To Your Club Choice
Ladies are shorter than men, and golf club manufacturers build clubs in a range to cover the average height and taller and shorter women. The standard lady’s golf set is made to cover heights between 5’6″ and 5’9″.
If you are shorter than 5’6″, you can opt for the petite sets, and if you are taller than 5’9″, you’d need to look at men’s senior clubs as these will be at a similar height and the shaft flex will be right as well.
What To Look For When Choosing A Set Of Women’s Clubs
The PGA has determined that a golfer may only have 14 clubs in their bag, including the putter. So this means that you can select which ones you want based on your height and your swing rather than simply taking a guess.
The good news is that you don’t have to get all 14 at once as a beginner. The standard women’s golf set consists of the putter, three wedges, seven irons, and three woods to make up the complete set.
Those irons are from three- to nine-iron, a pitching wedge, sand wedge, and either a gap wedge or lob wedge, and the woods are the driver, 3-wood, and 5-wood. It’s recommended that your irons match as this will give you a consistent distance for each iron from the set.
The wedges and putter usually match the set as well, but you can, of course, pick separate wedges and a putter if you choose to. Many ladies often prefer to switch the longer irons (three and four iron) for hybrids as these are easier to swing and hit.
Remember that you are shopping for a set that FEELS good to you when you swing and the ones that you make good contact on the ball with. They may not necessarily be the BEST looking ones, but if you feel good when using them, that’s a good start!
Tip: before you buy a club, go and spend some time at a store that offers fitting and testing- this will give you a good choice of clubs to try out and get a feel for which brands and types of clubs feel better for you.
Choosing Your Woods Is All About Swing Speed
The standard set clubs will be fine for beginners, irons, hybrids, putters, and wedges, so you don’t need to test individual and different irons from different brands to finalize those.
However, choosing the right clubs for you becomes a little more complicated when it comes to woods. This is because woods are designed to be customizable for every player, from the clubhead weight and setup to the shaft length, shaft flex, and grip thickness.
This is so that you can get clubs that match your swing technique and swing speed, and swing speed is probably the most critical factor when picking out a set of woods.
If you don’t know your swing speed, take a driver and hit a few balls on the in-store testing range. The launch monitors there will tell you your swing speed, the ball speed off the clubface, club path attack angles, and more.
While most of this is inconsequential at this period of your golf game, the swing speed is vital because it will determine what kind of driver you need to suit your swing. Ladies have a slower swing speed than men due to physical anatomical factors like weight and muscle strength.
If you have a swing speed of 70mph and higher, you will be able to hit a driver and the 3 and 5 woods and possibly even a 7-wood in your set.
If your swing speed is around 60mph or lower, you’ll need to pick a driver that matches your speed and consider other clubs like a 5-, 7- and 9- woods instead of the 3-wood.
At a slower swing speed, these will be easier to control and to hit.
Picking Irons, Hybrids & Wedges For A Lady Beginner
Your shorter irons have more loft, and this is about getting the ball in the air. The shorter irons are easier to swing and control. For your irons, you can easily take from 6- iron to 9-iron or even from 7-iron to 9-iron and replace the 6,5,4 and 3 irons with hybrid clubs.
While you can have 14 clubs, you may not need to have all 14 when buying your first set, as you can always add to them later. An ideal option for a lady beginner is to go with 11 clubs.
That set would consist of the driver, 5-wood, 4-hybrid, 5-iron pitching wedge, approach or gap wedge, and sand wedge. This leaves you with three open spaces to fill in your bag further down the line.
The scoring shots in golf are the ones played from inside 100 yards, and for this, you can always consider adding a lob wedge to your bag. This is a steeply lofted club designed to get the ball high in the air and land softly on the green.
It’s handy from around the green where you need to chip over hazards or when putting from off the green isn’t possible. Now you have four wedges for the shorter shot options.
What Are Hybrid Clubs And Why You Should Consider Them?
Hybrid clubs are designed to be easier to swing, more forgiving, and a higher launching clubs than the equivalent irons. While the shorter irons are pretty easy to hit, the longer ones can be a challenge at the beginner level, so why make the game unnecessarily difficult?
While on the testing range, take a 4- or 5- iron and try and hit that, then get the same in a hybrid and see how it feels and the results you get. Golf is about getting the ball straight and as far as you can, so if the hybrid works, then use it!
It’s all about what feels good to you, and since, as a beginner, you don’t have that much experience, it’s better to try out a selection of clubs and see what works for you. Having clubs, you are confident with makes playing the game more accessible and more fun!
Shop Around And Do Research Before You Buy
Investing in a set of clubs, whether new, older or secondhand, is a big decision as the clubs you choose will directly affect your game and your ability to play it. While it may seem an easy choice, you need to take your time and shop around a bit.
Go to different stores and see what deals you can get, try different brands, and chat to other people you know about where they may have got their clubs and which ones they bought.
An even better idea is to see if you can play a bit with clubs that your friends may use and get a feel for those at a driving range.
Take Some Swing Lessons Before You Buy
Golf is all about the golf swing, and how you swing will considerably impact the type of clubs you choose to buy. Ball striking and swing speed are all part of the fundamentals of golf and without a swing, buying any set of clubs becomes a moot point.
If you don’t have clubs how can you swing and if you don’t have a swing, it’s difficult to choose the right clubs. Being able to swing even as a beginner will indicate your swing speed and setup, and these will all influence what clubs would best suit you.
Besides the clubs themselves, some technical elements like the lie angle and shaft flex based on your swing and setup should be considered when you buy your set of clubs.
Having these elements matched to your swing makes the game that much easier and anything you can do to make this game more accessible for yourself is worth doing!
As a beginner, buying your first set of clubs is exciting but should be done with diligence and patience so that you don’t end up running back and forth, changing out clubs or the set because, after a few rounds out, you find they don’t suit you.
Getting this right the first time will make your first golf outing and the ones after that a lot more fun, and after all, if you aren’t going to enjoy your golf and have fun, then there’s no real point to playing.