How To Choose Golf Clubs For Beginners

A selection of our top tips on how to choose golf clubs for beginners

How to choose golf clubs for beginners
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So, you've made the decision to take up golf, perhaps for the occasional bit of fun, or maybe you've got more serious plans to take the game by storm. Have you been into a golf store yet? Pretty crowded, aren't they. Fear not, because this guide on how to choose golf clubs for beginners is going to help you to narrow down your search, and ensure you're matched up with the correct equipment.

Once you have given this entire piece a read, we also recommend checking out some of our beginner golf guides - such as the best golf drivers for beginners, most forgiving irons (opens in new tab), and the best putters for beginners (opens in new tab).

PXG 0211 Z Golf Club Set

(Image credit: Future)

Golf is hard, especially when you're starting out. You may well have seen the pros on the TV seemingly control that little white ball on a piece of string. But it's not easy to get the ball airborne and hit it 300 yards-plus straight down the middle of the fairway, not at first anyway.

And that's why beginner sets offer plenty of forgiveness; they're manufactured in a way that means even when you don't strike the ball perfectly, you can still get the ball up in the air and shift it a good distance. This is important, because the more shots you get airborne, and the more shots you strike well, the greater your enjoyment levels will be. As such, check out our most forgiving drivers (opens in new tab).

How To Choose Golf Clubs For Beginners: The Clubs

You're allowed to use a maximum of 14 clubs on the golf course, but if you're a beginner, it's not essential to get all the gear at the start of your golfing journey. If you're starting on a par-3 course, or short nine-holer, for example, there's no harm in getting a half set, which tend to be comprised of four or five irons, a wood and a putter.

How to choose golf clubs for beginners

You're allowed up to 14 clubs but beginner sets often come with less

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

As for the type of clubs themselves, the best golf club sets for beginners will offer plenty of forgiveness and help to get the ball airborne. This applies to the driver, fairway woods, hybrids and irons, which tend to have larger faces and larger sweet-spots.

Most of the big brands have a model in the range that will suit beginners - driver, fairway woods (opens in new tab), hybrid and irons. They're often referred to as a 'game improvement' model, or even a 'super game-improver'. Our advice: avoid buying the same beautiful set of blades (opens in new tab) as your friend, who's been playing for 20 years and has a handicap of two - you can always upgrade as your game improves.

Custom Fitting

A custom fitting ensures the equipment you buy works in unison with key factors such as height, swing speed, and technique. If you're going to play regularly, this is the way to go, otherwise you can start adapting the way you swing and get yourself into bad habits - which can be hard to get rid of.

How to choose golf clubs for beginners

A custom fitting is the best way to make sure your clubs perform optimally for you

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Many of the big high street golf stores have qualified PGA professionals on hand to advise on this and help you get fitted with the right clubs. Another option is to visit your nearby course. Most club professionals have the tools to custom fit players of all levels and will be only too happy to talk you through the options available. It's not a huge expense, either, and often there's no cost at all, with the custom fitting price being waived when you buy a set of clubs.

Off The Shelf Purchases

Lots of beginners will buy online or straight off the shelf without going through a custom fitting. If you're at the very beginning of your golf journey, there's no harm in this - just be mindful that a custom fitting is going to help you get the best out of your equipment and enhance your enjoyment of the game.

Price

Golf can be an expensive sport to take up, and if you're a beginner, there's a fair chance you won't want to spend a large amount of money, especially if you're not 100 per cent sure you're going to stick at it, or play regularly enough to justify the expense. However, you can buy beginner sets for as little as $200, or, as mentioned, start off with a half set. Speaking of which, we recommend checking out our guides on the best golf club sets, best women's golf sets, and the best golf club sets for beginners.

Of course, if price is no barrier, and you're determined to buy the best on the market, you can spend ten times that amount - and more. Happy shopping.

Tom Clarke
Senior Content Editor


Tom Clarke joined Golf Monthly as a sub editor in 2009 being promoted to content editor in 2012 and then senior content editor in 2014, before becoming Sports Digital Editor for the Sport Vertical within Future in 2022. Tom currently looks after all the digital products that Golf Monthly produce including Strategy and Content Planning for the website and social media - Tom also assists the Cycling, Football, Rugby and Marine titles at Future. Tom plays off 18 and lists Augusta National (name drop), Old Head and Le Touessrok as the favourite courses he has played. Tom is an avid viewer of all golf content with a particularly in depth knowledge of the pro tour.

With contributions from