Should You Use A Hybrid Club Or A Driving Iron

Should You Use A Hybrid Club Or A Driving Iron

What is a Hybrid Golf Club?

If you look up the word ‘hybrid‘ in the dictionary, it means something made by combining two different things.

So, a hybrid golf club is exactly that—a mix of a fairway wood and a long iron.

For a long time, golfers struggled with hitting the ball from tricky spots like the rough or getting it to stop quickly on the green from far away. But then, companies came up with a solution called the hybrid club.

Nowadays, many companies make sets of irons from 5-PW and include hybrid clubs to fill the gap.

The different hybrid clubs you find in the market can look and perform in various ways, depending on the type of golfer they’re designed for.

Here’s some information to help you understand what a hybrid club is and how to choose the right one for your game.

The Hybrid Golf Club

The most common type of hybrid looks like a wood-style club.

Sometimes it’s also called a Utility Club or a Rescue Club, like the first hybrid club made by TaylorMade in 2002.

The design of a hybrid club, with its long and hollow head, makes it easier to hit from tough spots compared to fairway woods or long irons.

The smaller head size means it won’t get stuck as much in taller grass, like the semi-rough.

That’s why hybrids are better for hitting from tricky lies than regular fairway woods or long irons.

Hybrid Club Design

In general, hybrids create less spin on the ball than fairway woods but more spin than irons because of their head design.

This means they’re more likely to stop the ball on the green when you’re approaching it than irons.

So, if you don’t have a fast swing speed, hybrids might give you better results than irons.

The design of the head also works well for certain lies around the green.

Hybrids are more forgiving than irons, so you can hit shots from the fringe with more control and also make the ball roll forwards, hopefully toward the hole.

Loft Options In Hybrid Clubs

Since hybrids are meant to replace long irons, their lofts are usually similar to those longer irons in your iron set.

Most hybrids have lofts between 18 and 27 degrees.

Some sets might have hybrids with higher lofts to replace the mid irons.

It’s important to know that a 21-degree hybrid won’t hit the ball as far as a 21-degree fairway wood or long iron.

The size and construction of the heads, along with the length of the shafts, make hybrids travel closer to the distance of a long iron than a fairway wood.

Shaft Options In Hybrid Clubs

The type of shaft and its length also affect how far the ball goes with a hybrid.

Most hybrids come with graphite shafts to make them lighter and help you hit the ball farther.

One interesting thing about hybrid clubs is their shaft length.

Unlike fairway woods, hybrid clubs are shorter and closer in length to long irons.

Usually, hybrids are around 2 to 3 inches shorter than fairway woods with the same loft.

Having a shorter club gives you more control over your shots

Adjustability Options In Hybrid Clubs

Just like drivers and fairway woods, some hybrids can be adjusted.

Most of the adjustments focus on changing the loft, so you can choose the right distance or trajectory for your shots.

They usually offer a range of 3 to 5 degrees.

Some hybrids also let you adjust the face angle, which changes how the club looks when you address the ball.

While not all hybrids have adjustable weights, some do have weights that you can switch around to change the center of gravity of the club.

What Are Driving Irons

A driving iron is exactly what it sounds like—a type of iron used mainly for driving the ball.

It’s designed to launch the ball low with less spin, which suits players with fast swing speeds, like low handicappers and professional golfers.

Players who are good iron players but struggle to hit their woods often try out driving irons, to get more distance than say the 4 or 5 iron they have in their bag…often with varying degrees of success.

Driving Iron Design

A driving iron is usually a larger and more forgiving version of a long iron.

It might have a cavity back design or a hollow head.

This kind of head shape and construction helps create a low-spinning shot that goes farther than an iron but flies lower.

It also helps with accuracy more than a wood-style hybrid.

That’s why driving irons are great for tee shots on hard, links-style courses or shorter, tight courses where hitting accurately off the tee is important.

However, they might not be the best choice if you want the ball to land softly on the green and stop quickly.

Loft Options In Driving Irons

Most driving irons have lofts ranging from 16 to 22 degrees, similar to traditional 1, 2, and 3 irons.

Some newer models even have 4 and 5 irons with driving iron features.

Shaft Options In Driving Irons

Unlike hybrids, most driving irons come with steel shafts as the standard option.

Steel shafts are stiffer and don’t flex as much, which means the ball should go straighter, although your swing path plays a big factor here too.

They work better with a faster swing speed and help with accuracy.

If you want to learn more about shafts, check out my Golf Shafts Guide

Should You Use A Hybrid Club Or A Driving Iron

With modern drivers and fairway woods becoming more powerful while irons stay consistent and focused on forgiveness and launching the ball, many golfers find there is a big gap in the distances covered by their clubs.

So, how do you fill that gap? Do you need a driving iron or a hybrid?

The choice depends on where and when you’ll use the club.

If you mainly want a club for tee shots and are comfortable hitting the ball a bit lower, then a driving iron is what you need.

Players with high swing speeds might also prefer driving irons for long shots into the green because they can make the ball stop.

On the other hand, if you want a club that’s easier to hit than a long iron and can be used to hit the ball onto the green, then a hybrid is a better option.

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