Golf brands come out with new club models every year, regularly claiming to have made significant upgrades from last year’s model. While nothing truly dramatic happens year-to-year, it is indisputable that over time golf equipment gradually progresses forward and your equipment will breakdown.
Due to the ever-changing nature of golf clubs and your swing, it is necessary to replace what’s in your bag every few years to maintain peak performance. Additionally, one of the most important aspects of upgrading tour clubs is that what was been beneficial to your swing three seasons prior, might not be what’s best for you now.
Changes in your swing that require the replacing of clubs show themselves through noticeable rises and drops on the scorecard and physical things such as an increase or decrease in distance and swing speed.
Forgiveness is integral to performing up to personal expectations in golf regardless of skill level. Because of this, it is important to find golf clubs that maximize our abilities and reduce our big mistakes to slightly smaller ones. Below, we take a look at what’s new on the market for 2020 and why they’re a good fit for golfers that want to get the most out of every swing.
Some of the easiest golf clubs to hit are:
1. Callaway Golf 2020 Mavrik Hybrid Iron Combo Set
New for 2020, the MAVRIK line is just the latest development in Callaway’s pursuit of infusing technology into their golf equipment. As a hybrid iron combo set, you’ll be getting a combination of hybrids, irons and wedges.
Callaway offers the MAVRIK Hybrid Iron set in five different combos, making it so you can pair this new set with the clubs already in your bag without any trouble. Besides the irons, each set comes with one or two hybrids so that you’ll be able to easily get your hands on matching clubs that will carry longer distances. This avoids the trouble of going back to square one when trying to decide what’s best for you with metals.
Thanks to a tungsten energy core in each club, Callaway has been able to pinpoint and expand center of gravity. With this precise level of balance, you’ll maintain ball speed and be promoting an ideal launch angle with each individual club. Recognizing that this position varies with each iron, the weights are not the same across the board so you’ll be able to get the desired ball flight path with each shot you take.
2. TaylorMade SIM MAX Irons
There’s a reason guys like Dustin Johnson, John Rahm and Jason Day are part of the TaylorMade team; their products are good, really good. For more than three decades, TaylorMade has been on the cutting edge of golf technology, foraging for ways to stay ahead of the competition. These efforts have not been in vain and for years they have sat amongst the top brands thanks to their superior drivers, with irons not far behind.
The TalyorMade SIM MAX irons are yet another chapter in the book of how to produce high-quality golf clubs that work not just for golfers, but with the person swinging them. The ECHO damping system eliminates vibrations produced from contact with the ground allowing you to make better contact without sacrificing feel or distance.
Engineered incorporating aspects of geometry and all things aerodynamic, inverted cone technology has been added to each iron to enlarge the sweet spot and pull back on the ill-effects of not hitting the ball perfectly square. The cone tech has been made possible by thinning the club face down to just 1.5mm. With such a thin face your swing speed will increase, as will ball speed.
3. Cleveland Golf Launcher UHX Iron Set
When people think of Cleveland Golf, they think wedges. (I think of former world #1 Vijay Singh and current people’s golfer, Keegan Bradley, but that’s just me.) Nowadays Cleveland is expanding their offerings beyond wedges into all types of golf clubs. If the Launch UHX set is any indication of how things are going to progress for Cleveland, let’s just say that you’re going to be hearing a lot more about them.
The club face is comprised of high-strength steel which encourages explosive ball speed regardless of where the ball comes off the club. Even with a slight miss off the center of the club, you will not be sacrificing a ton of distance. One thing to watch out for is that losing distance with an errant shot can sometimes be a benefit since it won’t be travelling as wide. With the UHX, the added distance on a miss could land you in a bit of trouble.
Despite the strong club face, those in need of regular forgiveness do not need to worry thanks to the hollow and cavity back design of the UHX irons. This setup promotes deeper weight distribution and increased control. Additionally, the V-shaped sole reduces problems caused through contact with the ground at impact, allowing you to maintain optimal swing speed for getting max distance out of each shot.
4. 2020 Tour Edge Exotics EXS 220 Iron Set RH 6-PW, AW Graph Reg
Golf startups come and go. They burst on to the scene with a premier club and are quickly bought up by a major manufacturer or they never replicate the success of their first model and fizzle out. Tour Edge is an anomaly in that regard. Since the 1980s, they have been operating independent of major backing, but manage to stick around thanks to the continuous and consistent production of top-quality products. You’re even starting to see a growing presence for Tour Edge across the various PGA Tours, including brand ambassador Scott McCarron, the world #1 on the Champions Tour in 2019.
The Tour Edge Exotics EXS 200 iron set has one of the largest sweet spots around. This is thanks to spiderweb VFT tech, a design which covers the club face (internally) like a web, enhancing the sweet spot from center up, down, left and right. Furthermore, a tungsten toe weight also helps the sweet spot to cover more of the club face than older models.
For when you make contact, there is a polymer coating that combines with an advanced performance gel that will prevent some loss of energy caused by hitting the ground, transferring it back onto your forward momentum propelling the ball further. To help you even more, the ramped sole prevents the heel and toe of these clubs from catching on the ground as easily.
5. Cobra Golf 2020 Speedzone One Length Iron Set
You can’t mention one-length irons, or even Cobra golf without mentioning Bryson Dechambeau. A pioneer of this style, Dechambeau didn’t get the nickname “The Scientist” by accident. In addition to majoring in Physics at Southern Methodist University, anyone who follows pro golf regularly sees articles and stories about him being able to incorporate the principles of math into his approach on the links.
Having made the single-length concept famous, it is worth noting that Dechambeau is one of the few professionals using this style. In this type of set, every club measures the traditional length of a 7-iron and has the same weight for a consistent feel, regardless of what club is in your hand. The idea behind this is to maintain the same exact swing and setup with each club, or more commonly known as not trying to take a different swing with every club.
On the club head, Cobra uses their PowerShell technology to increase the pocket of where you want to make contact and helps along launch angle thanks to a deeper undercut. If you’re someone who tends to blade the ball, you’re going to love hearing this. This Speedzone set spreads the weight of the head lowering the center of gravity and as a result, the sweet spot.
6. Mizuno JPX919 Hot Metal Golf Iron Set
When you see Mizuno, your mind probably jumps to their apparel, shoes or even baseball and softball gear. If you don’t immediately think of golf, you’re not alone, but those who keep an eye on all things golf know that in recent years Mizuno has been gearing up for a big rise. They’ve consistently produced quality irons for some time now, but are also moving into the world of drivers and woods; see players like Chris Kirk and Luke Donald adding Mizuno’s to their bag. Even more notably, Keith Mitchell won the 2019 Honda Classic with Mizuno in the bag.
Mizuno JPX919 Hot Metal irons are made of a Chromoly 4140M, a material that can be molded to have more than one level of thickness throughout the club head, meaning that weight can be distributed in a way that aids ball speed. To take it a step further, Mizuno uses what they call a stability frame, a feature which keeps the club open at the heel to enhance stability and improve launch.
As a result of the optimal face thickness, Mizuno has been able to maximize COR area. For those of you wondering, COR is an abbreviation for Coefficient of Restitution. A quick google search will get into more detail about what this means, but what it boils down to is the technology used by Mizuno makes it so that your club doesn’t slow down as much when contact is made with the ball or ground.
7. HONMA XP-1 Iron Set 2020 Right 5-11 Vizard 63 Graphite Regular
A relative unknown to North American consumers, Honma is more well-known across Europe and Asia, with a growing audience. While it does not have the roster of major golf brands, Justin Rose made the switch to Honma for the 2019 season and won on the PGA Tour using their clubs, a first for the brand. Outside of professional golfers, the most notable figure to tote a Honma product is US President Donald Trump, who received a Beres line driver from the Prime Minister of Japan shortly after his inauguration.
The Honma XP-1 irons are billed as game improvement irons in part thanks to their thick sole and fast face which helps you gain distance and have increased launch angles. Unlike most brands who offer different combinations of shafts, Honma produces their graphite shafts specifically based on the head they will be paired with, creating a more unified club.
One area where the Honma XP-1’s are different than most other brands is that the club head makeup varies based on club. Long irons come with a tungsten sole weight and have more of a hollow head. On the other hand, short irons have a deep cavity for more pitched shots. By taking an “every club is different approach,” Honma is hoping that you will be able to get the most out of every club.
How to Choose the easiest irons to hit?
A huge thing to consider when picking out your irons is shaft flex. Even with the best club that is the best fit for you, if the flex is off, it won’t matter. Having the correct stiffness means that your club head won’t be too far ahead, or behind, at the ideal point of contact.
The handy chart below, produced by TaylorMade Pre-owned, will help you to determine the correct flex by gauging swing speed and distance. While swing speed is almost impossible to measure without the assistance of machinery not regularly available to most, distance is a bit easier.
Once you have the right flex picked out, you can go ahead and start thinking about the aspects of various iron sets you like and what will be the right set to take your game to the next level.
|Shaft Flex Selection (6 Iron Carry Distance)|
|Carry Distance||Swing Speed||Flex|
|Under 100 yards||Under 60 mph||Ladies|
|100 to 130 yards||60 to 70 mph||Senior/A/M|
|130 to 155 yards||70 to 80 mph||Regular|
|155 to 175 yards||80 to 90 mph||Stiff/Firm|
|Over 175+ yards||Over 90+ mph||Tour (Extra) Stiff|
What irons to get
In golf, you can legally carry fourteen clubs and you’re going to want use up every single one of those available slots. Right off the bat, driver and putter take up two of those slots, those are completely non-negotiable.
Most iron sets will come with about eight clubs, give or take one or two. This article isn’t to tell you how to entirely fill your bag out, but given that you’ll likely add a couple of woods or hybrids and wedges at each end of the yardage spectrum, it’s important to not overbuy on number of clubs as it could turn into a costly endeavor solely due to lack of planning.
If you have a wedge set or 3-wood that you like, stick with them. These clubs see less action than most of your irons and therefore won’t need to be replaced as frequently. 3-woods are one of the least used clubs, and when they are used, it is in ideal conditions such as the tee or a fairway on a par 5. For wedges, you’re not always looking for max distance, but instead feel. Since pitch and chip shots rely more on placement, it won’t matter if you’ve lost a bit of yardage on a full swing.
Clubs and other equipment can only take you so far and there is no substitute for on-course experience. Even if you go out and buy new clubs every year on the promise of dropping your handicap by five, you won’t stand a chance unless you get comfortable with who you are as a golfer and what you need to do in order to improve.
Be honest with yourself. If your swing speed has been slowing down, make the move to a more flexible shaft and maximize your distance without having to overswing. If you find yourself feeling like you’re overpowering the club and seeing shots regularly go errant despite a good swing, go for something stiffer.
Here’s my cardinal rule, don’t buy blades unless you’re a scratch golfer. There is no rationale out there that will make me believe someone with a 10-handicap is better off hitting a blade than something with a more pronounced cavity back. The benefits to hitting non-blades are too valuable to pass up for something that is seen by most (and it is) as an ego trip.
Now that the blades rant is out of my system, I’ll leave you with this: shop around, educate yourself and don’t buy the first set of irons you see. Buying golf clubs is an expensive investment and unless you’re willing to put in the leg work, you’re doing yourself a disservice by not exploring all of your options.
Finally, hope you can find your easiest golf clubs to hit!