One Length Vs. Standard Length Irons – Pros & Cons And Who Should Use Them?
The One Length iron concept is a reasonably new idea in the world of golf. One-length irons have become very popular very quickly. Some golfers will try and have golf clubs cut to length and adjusted to make them a one length set. The technology behind the one length irons is unique and exciting. In this guide, we will explain everything you need to know about the one length irons and whether or not they are the right choice for your golf game.
Theory Behind The One Length Irons
A standard set of golf irons has clubs of all different lengths. The shorter irons are the wedges, nine iron, and 8 iron. Then you have mid-length irons and then finally long irons like the five, four, and three iron. As you move up in the set, the irons get quite a bit longer.
The problem that this has caused for golfers is that the longer irons are sometimes too long and too difficult to swing. Many golfers find that as their clubs get longer, their game gets a lot less consistent. This is because the longer clubs have less loft and a longer shaft.
This combination of low loft and long shafts takes quite a bit of swing speed to be able to hit solidly. In addition to being more difficult to hit, the ball position from one swing to the next ends up changing. With all the variables there are in the game, players are enjoying the fact that they won’t have to change their setup from one club to the next with the one length irons.
What Length Are One Length Irons
Most one length irons are going to be the same length as the seven iron. Some sets are made with all clubs the same length as the eight or six iron, but the seven iron is the most popular. You will still need to make sure you get your clubs fitted adequately for you; in fact, it is more important with the one length than with variable length.
Pros Of One Length Irons
There are lots of reasons to switch to a one-length iron. Depending on what the issues are in your golf game, the one length irons can make a big difference.
Your setup with the one length irons should be the same from one club to the next. Not having to worry about your ball position is the exact position that it should be is going to help golfers of all levels develop more confidence.
The last thing you want to think before you take the club back is whether or not the golf ball is in the right spot. With the one length irons, you won’t have to worry about this, and you can be confident that you have the club in the right spot.
Some people worry about losing distance when switching to a one-length iron. For some of the longer irons, this can be true (more on that in the next section); however, when it comes to the shorter irons, you may gain some extra distance.
Since the shorter irons are probably going to be a bit longer than they are in a standard set, you could end up getting a few extra yards out of them. This wouldn’t be the reason that we would switch to the One length; it is merely a benefit.
Controlling your long irons is a problem with the variable Length long irons. When your four iron is considerably longer than your nine iron, there are quite a few adjustments that need to be made to help you gain the control and feel that you need to hit this club solid.
With the one length irons, your four iron will be the same length as your seven iron. You can control it in the same way you can control a seven iron. Although you could potentially sacrifice a few yards, the control you get will make it well worth it.
Cons Of One Length Irons
Of course, like most things in life, there are some downsides to the one length irons as well. Even though they help you gain control, some people say that they also cost you the distance. The only time we have seen a loss of distance in the long irons is with very highly skilled players.
These players have enough distance to hit the long irons solidly, to begin with, and they don’t need the added control of the one length. For most amateur golfers, the long irons sit in the bag because they are afraid to use them.
If that describes you, then distance should not be a concern when switching to the one length irons. If you could hit one four iron 190 yards out of ten swings, is that a club you can rely on? Now let’s say you can hit your four iron 182 yards 9/10. Most golfers would take those odds any day.
Can I Convert My Irons To Be One Length
With all the hype surrounding the one length irons, many golfers wonder if they can convert their current set into a one-length set. This is not very easy to do. When you try and cut your irons all to be the same length, you are going to throw off the lie angles, and the lofts could be off as well.
The best way to get a set of one length irons is to order them directly from a manufacturer. Now, that being said, if you struggle with your long irons, you may want to consider cutting them down a little bit to accommodate your needs.
Who Are One Length Irons Going To Suit?
One length irons can be a good fit for all different handicap levels. It doesn’t matter if you are a low or high handicapper you can switch to one length irons and still see some benefits. One of the groups of players that sees the most benefit from the one length irons is beginners.
Beginners have not yet adjusted to variable-length irons, so they won’t feel a tremendous difference when they make the switch to the single length. In addition, keeping the stance the same for all golf clubs will make a big difference to the overwhelmed beginning golfer.
When you first start the game, the number of variables involved makes it somewhat confusing and quite challenging to keep everything consistent. If you don’t have to think about ball position and you can leave it in the middle of your stance, you can progress faster as a new golfer.
One length golf clubs are not only for beginners. You will find that some lower handicap players that are adamant about precision and accuracy will enjoy the one length clubs. Bryson Dechambeau, a professional golfer on the PGA Tour, loves his one-length clubs because he says it makes golf simpler.
DeChambeaus Tips For Hitting One Length Irons
Bryson Dechambeau is the most well-known player on tour that uses the one length irons. The thing is he is not the first professional ever to try this technology. It has been studied, and people have realized that even as far back as Bobby Jones, some golfers were shortening their longer irons to match closer to the five or six iron.
Bryson gives some great advice about switching to the one length irons. He knows that this is an adjustment for most people, and he suggests that you stay patient. The results that you are getting are certainly going to be a change for your game, but you need to be patient.
If you hit a few shots with your one length and decide that this is not for you, you did not give it a good enough effort. Bryson also suggests that you may still need to play with your ball position to make sure you can hit these accurately.
One the longer irons if you feel as though its best to move the ball slightly up in the stance, that is perfectly acceptable to do.
Lastly, Bryson addresses the fact that the shorter irons are going to feel a little different than they do in your current set. If you are playing with variable length irons, your wedge and nine iron are typically some of the shorter clubs in your golf bag. Playing with a pitching wedge the same length as your seven iron does feel a bit awkward at first.
Bryson ensures golfers that when you get used to the new concept, you will feel as though you have much more control over the golf ball and especially the ball flight. You can hit shots higher and lower and work the ball much more than you can with the pitching wedge that is shorter in length.
Do You Need A Fitting For One Length Clubs?
One of the factors that can become a problem for people is making sure that the one length irons are built to fit you. Just because the irons are all the same length as the seven iron does not mean this is the right length for your height and your golf stance.
Golfers that choose one length irons should make sure that they are in the recommended height range for this club. If you are taller than 6’0 and shorter than 5’6″ you should look at a custom fitting for the one length.
Within this range, then you should be fine to stick with the standard one length golf clubs.
Best Single Length Irons
Single length irons have not taken off across all manufacturers. Some companies are not making single length clubs. Some players are custom ordering sets to try and get them to be the same length, but this is not quite the same as ordering a true one length set.
Best Choice – Pinhawk SL Single Length Iron Set
Although Pinhawk is not one of the top golf club manufacturers, this one length iron set is a great option. In addition to it being high performing, the pricing is excellent as well. These Pinhawk come with Mitsubishi Bassara graphite shafts in the Stiff Flex.
Each of these clubs has the same shaft length, shaft weight, head weight, and lie angle. When you put each one of these in your hands, you can swing with that same consistent golf swing you are used to.
Each club is 37″ long so that it will be the exact length of a seven iron, but you can order these in custom lengths as well. If you want your golf game to get a bit simpler, the Pinhawk is an excellent choice.
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Best Premium – 2018 Cobra Golf Men’s King F8 One Length Iron Set
Cobra is the most well-known manufacturer of the single length iron set. These are the clubs that Bryson helped contribute to and explain to Cobra why these irons would make such a difference in the lives of the amateur golfers.
These F8 irons are the first set that Cobra introduced in the one length, and they have since made them in the F9 and the Speedzone as well. The F8 has a very thin face that allows for faster ball speeds and great launch as well.
The irons are overall very lightweight as they have carbon feel technology with the carbon fiber medallion. The F8 irons also have the U Grooves on the shorter iron. The U Grooves will help to increase spin around the greens and help you get more control and precision on your shorter shots.
Although this golf set is priced higher than some other choices on the market, you get a lot of technology and feel with these F8 irons. This is a set that will last you for quite some time.
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Best Budget – MAZEL Single Length Golf Club Irons Set
If you have been considering the one length golf irons, but you are worried that you may not like them, the Mazel budget-priced one length set could be a great choice. This set of irons is very low priced, and it has everything that you need to give the one length concept a shot.
Each of these golf clubs is 37.5 inches long, and they all have the same swing weight. The 431 stainless design helps the Mazel irons be very forgiving and have decent feel as well. Overall these are not going to be the highest performing irons you have ever hit, but they will undoubtedly do the trick to get the job done.
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Do you lose distance with one length irons?
The one primary concern of golfers who switch to one length irons is the fear of losing distance. Nobody wants to lose distance, and this is because the distance is such a strong determining factor in the scores that a golfer can shoot.
Luckily swinging with a one-length iron set should not make you lose distance. You may see a few yards difference with your long irons, but your short irons will likely end up going a few yards further. Sometimes the longer length on the short irons gives them a bit more distance, but it won’t be significant.
Higher handicappers will not see much of a difference in the distance they can get from their long irons, but they will see increased consistency.
Do You Need Different Shafts/Flex With One Length?
As we mentioned, getting fitted for a one-length set of irons is quite essential. The shafts that are in the one length clubs will be very similar to shafts that you use in variable length clubs. The most important factor when you go for a fitting for single length golf clubs is going to be the length of the shaft.
If you end up getting a set that is a little too long for you, the short game is an area where you will struggle. Adjusting to hitting a pitching wedge and a nine-iron that are the same length as the seven iron can be a bit difficult. However, conforming to hitting these clubs when the iron truly does not fit your height, maybe impossible.
Conclusions – Who Are One Length Irons For?
The one-length iron sets are not for every player. These clubs take a bit of getting used to, but then once you do, your game should become quite a bit more dependent and reliable. Golf is a complicated game with many moving parts; anytime you can decrease the complexity of the sport, it is positive.
When you switch to the one length irons, take the time to make sure you fit in the range for the recommended heights for that club. Give yourself a few weeks to get used to these irons and the new setup and swing that you will have with each club in your hand. There is certainly an adjustment period, but when things click, you will know it.
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!