You may be wondering why there is a difference in club length between irons and woods. The answer lies in their respective design functions. An iron is designed to pinch the ball against the turf using a descending swing arc requiring a more upright swing plane (hitting down on the ball). A wood is designed to sweep the ball from the turf which requires a flatter swing plane. Consequently, in order to facilitate these two different swing planes the length of these golf clubs must be adjusted accordingly, the woods being longer than the irons. It is also to be noted that irons are designed as scoring golf clubs, being inherently more accurate, whereas woods are primarily designed for distance.
The Fairway Woods. As was noted before, woods are designed primarily for distance. The design of the club head produces a high trajectory for maximum carry distance and soft landings. Due to the low effective center of gravity of the club head a wood will get the ball up and into the air much more quickly than an iron with an equivalent loft angle. This offers several advantages for golfers:
- Since a swing speed of 75+mph is required in order to effectively play a low lofted iron, those golfers with slower swing speeds can effectively replace the #3 and #4 irons with #5 and #7 woods.The woods will maximize their trajectory and distance potential.
- Also due to the low effective center of gravity of a wood club head, they outperform an iron club head when hitting out of the rough.
It is of interest that the golf industry touts the benefits of hybrid or utility woods. Our 1 Iron single-length fairway woods are a cross between conventional fairway woods and hybrid woods in that they incorporate the lowest center of gravity of any fairway wood or hybrid on the market today and are designed to produce the increased distance of a fairway wood coupled with the accuracy of a hybrid wood.