How Important Is Golf Club Length – What Length Clubs Should I Be Using?
You may have noticed that people are getting more and more serious about custom club fitting. Rarely, a person does not know their “specs” now if they are serious about their golf game. Some people wonder if all of this customization is worth it. Does it make sense to spend the extra money to get golf clubs that are ¼ of an inch short?
In this guide, we will help fill you in on when the length of the club matters and when it just doesn’t. There are times that the standard golf club length can work correctly for a player, and custom fitting is not at all necessary.
Before we get into some more detailed information about how golf club length works and why it is crucial, we thought we would share a little story with you. As a golf teaching professional, you get to see many different players of all different sizes and abilities. One afternoon a new man signed up for a lesson and said that this would be his first time playing golf.
When I arrived at the driving range, I saw him there as he was easy to spot, he was the 6’5″ tall man bending almost entirely over playing with a brand new $900 complete set of golf clubs. This brand new set was the better part of two inches too short for him.
When it comes to golf club length, the first part of the process is to be aware as to if you may not fit into a standard length golf club. Most people know if they are short, average, or tall. If you are a shorter person, accept the fact that your clubs will need to be cut down. If you are a taller person, you need custom clubs quite a bit longer. This brand new golfer on the range was less than thrilled when he heard his equipment was entirely wrong for his game. Have some self-awareness, so this doesn’t happen to you!
Why Golf Club Length Is So Important
A stock golf club is not made to fit every height. If you swing with a standard length golf club, but you are not “standard” height, you are going to struggle with everything from tempo to ball flight to control of the ball.
Not having a club of the proper length in your hand is going to cause problems right from the start of your swing. With a club that is too long or too short, your stance and setup will be off. As soon as these things are off, your takeaway and swing plane will follow. Once the swing plane or path is affected, now you will have to worry about club face angle and impact and tempo and timing. As you can see, the ripple effect is going to be quite detrimental to your golf game.
Dynamic Vs. Static Measurement
There is more than one factor that goes into determining the proper golf club length. Most people will base the length of the club that they need on their height, and this is an excellent indicator. However, other factors go into the equation.
A static measurement is the height of the player and the wrist to the floor-length. These measurements are taking when a golfer is standing still, and most of the time, when they don’t even have a golf club in their hand.
A dynamic measurement is when a golfer is fitted using a system that will analyze their club speed, ball speed, spin rates, and more. These factors are all put into formulas where individual length golf clubs are recommended to get a golfer the exact length they need to perform to the highest of their abilities.
What Is The Standard Shaft Length Of Driver, Irons, Wedges, Putter
When determining if your golf clubs are too long or too short for you, it can help to know what the standard length of golf clubs are. Here is some information that will give you a general idea of what standard looks like. This will vary based on the manufacturer, and you should always check the specifications of the clubs before you purchase them. There are the standard lengths for men’s graphite woods and steel irons.
Table On How Much To Adjust Based On Different Heights
If you are between 5’7″ and 6’1″ then you should be fine playing with a standard length golf club. If your wrist to floor measurements are way off, then you may still need something custom, but most people in this range will do very well with the standard length golf clubs. If you are outside of this range, here are the measurements that your clubs most likely need to be adjusted to. (This is for Men’s Golf Clubs)
Should I Get A Fitting To Find My Ideal Lengths
If you are new to this fitting game, you may be wondering why everyone doesn’t just go and get fitted for a set of golf clubs. The reason is that fittings cost money. If you are going to get a complete fitting, it could cost anywhere from $50-$150 or more.
If you purchase a brand new set of golf clubs, sometimes your fitting costs will be credited, but that is not always the case. If you are outside of the height range of normal range or have been struggling tremendously with standard length golf clubs, it does make sense to go for a fitting.
How Can I Measure My Clubs Myself (Static)
Measuring yourself for golf clubs can be a little tricky. When it comes to the wrist to floor-length, it does help to have someone with you to help you get this measurement. You will need a tape measure to complete this. A golfer should just stand with normal good posture, upright without a club in the hands.
Measure the total height from the top of the head down to the ground. Then measure the height from the wrist to the floor. The combination of these two measurements will give you what you need to make sure you are getting a great static measurement length for your clubs.
Effects Of Using Clubs That Are Too Long
There are a few signs that you will see if you are playing with golf clubs that are too long for you. Here are a few of the most obvious ones that you may come across.
- Standing too far from the ball, looking as though you are reaching to the golf ball
- Hitting the ball off the toe of the golf club
- Struggling to release the shot and come into impact with a square face
- Seeing a lot of golf shots that are blocked out to the right
- A takeaway that comes too far outside, to begin with
- Poor posture and standing too upright leads to inadequate weight distribution
- Balance trouble both at setup and through impact as well
Effects Of Using Clubs That Are Too Short
If your golf clubs are too short for you, it will have impacts on your golf game and how the golf ball travels. Here are a few standard things you will see when people play with clubs that are too short.
- The takeaway is quick and inside
- The tempo of the golf swing gets too quick
- Distance could be lacking on shots
- Standing too bent over at the setup position
- Poor posture and spine angle
- Weight distribution too close to the toes causing an unbalanced swing
- A tendency to pull a shot
Can I Increase The Length Of My Clubs
There are two ways to increase the length of your golf clubs. You can add length to them, or you can replace the shaft with a longer one. This type of work on a golf club will take a certified club fitter to help you. When you adjust the length, you are going to change the weight, the feel, and the lie angle of the golf clubs.
If these things are not accounted for, you may end up making the golf club more difficult to hit while you are working towards getting it to be the right length for you. This will undoubtedly defeat the purpose of customization.
Can I Cut Down Irons To Be Make Less Long?
Yes, golf clubs can be cut down; in fact, it is sometimes easier to cut down a club then it is to extend it. You need to make sure that when you cut down a golf club, you are not changing any of the other components of the club. The lie angle will likely change, and the weighting will change as well; these are things that could have an impact on a golfers game.
Effect of Shaft Length On Flex
Generally speaking, a golf club with a longer shaft is going to hit the ball further than that same club with a shorter shaft. The entire diameter of the swing is going to be larger and, therefore, able to produce more speed. With that being said, this does not mean that golfers should play with the longest golf club they can find. At some point, the length is not effective if the golfer is not able to swing with the proper mechanics and timing.
How Can I Measure My Club Speed
To measure your club speed, you will have to use a launch monitor or fitting system. These machines can use things such as sound, video, and lasers to get lots of information about your ball speed, clubhead speed, spin rates, and more. Knowing what your club speed is can be important when choosing a shaft flex. You should get speed for a driver and a seven iron, so you have the information you need to select a golf club that works for you.
Why Do Some Golfers Use All Irons The Same Length? Worth Doing
Some golfers play with what are called one length irons. All of these irons are going to be the same length as the seven iron. The lofts and lies are adjusted on each club to help them perform as the six iron, eight iron, etc. Even with the club is the same length, the distances will vary significantly between each of the clubs.
If you are playing one length irons, you will still need to make sure that the one length fits you correctly. For instance, if you are a 5’2″ golfer, you will need one length golf clubs that are shortened. You could not play with the standard one length golf clubs. Even though the long irons may fit you better than standard, the short irons would be much too long to handle.
Can I Get My Current Clubs Fitted
Most golf clubs can be adjusted and fitted even if you have been playing them for years. The problem with this process is that it is going to cost money. If you are playing without date technology and you start investing a lot of money into it to be custom-fitted, it may not be worth it.
At some point, it will make more sense to sell those clubs as they are and put the money towards a properly fitted set of golf clubs. If you are purchasing the latest model from a manufacturer, most of the fitting adjustments will be free of charge, except for shaft and grip upgrades.
Custom fitting is essential but it is not a necessity for every golfer. If you are a great player that can feel the difference between a few grams in a shaft, then you should spend the money to get fitted. If you fall way outside the average height range for a standard golf club, then you should get fitted. Golf club length is essential and it will have a tremendous impact on your golf game; however, not everybody that plays golf needs to worry about the length of their golf clubs.
Hi, I am Matthew, a mid handicap golfer who likes to play as much as possible. I love trying out new gear and this blog is where you can find all the gear I have tested over the years!