When golfers talk about a club being ‘forgiving’ what they really mean is that the club can help compensate for some minor swing errors and still produce a decent shot. These swing errors can fall into a range of different categories, but in general a swing error is anything that a player does during his or her swing that results in the club face making less-than-ideal contact with the golf ball. The more ‘forgiving’ a club, the ‘less perfect’ that contact between the club face and the ball has to be to still produce a reasonable shot.
Since many players – especially beginners – seem to have difficulty when learning how to properly hit their irons finding and playing the most forgiving irons on the market is something that can help many beginning golfers improve their game immediately. Let’s take a deeper look at what it is exactly that can make one type of golf iron more forgiving than another. Then we’ll look at some specific irons that have been designed with this ‘forgiveness technology’ in mind to see if any of these clubs may be right for you.
What Makes One Iron More Forgiving than Another?
This all boils down to the technological advances in golf club design that have been implemented to overcome the exact swing flaws that the majority of players exhibit. Lets look at some common flaws that beginning iron players make and then we’ll talk about the specific advances in golf iron design that have been implemented to overcome those flaws. The first ‘flaw’ that some beginners have when learning to hit their irons better is a club head speed that is too slow to create the lofting arc associated with a good iron shot. Simply, if the player does not generate a fast enough club head speed, it is going to be more difficult to get the ball in the air and to get the proper distance. To combat this, some companies are now producing irons with a very low center of gravity (CG). These irons are weighted more heavily in the bottom portion (or sole) to assist the club head coming through the golf ball. This lower CG helps produce a more penetrating (i.e. read ‘better”) trajectory – even at slower swing speeds.
The next problem to tackle was that of ‘off-center’ hits. Many different clubs are said to have a sweet spot – the area on the club face that when it comes in contact with the golf ball produces the straightest, truest, most consistent golf shots. Beginners and intermediate players don’t necessarily make the most consistent ball contact from swing to swing. As a result, recent innovations in golf club design have called for irons to be designed with an undercut cavity. This undercut cavity is basically an area of empty space behind the clubface. This ‘cavity’ improves club head stability on off-center hits so that the ball will still travel in the direction the player was aiming – even with less-than-perfect ball contact – even when the player does not find the sweet spot.
Since beginners tend to produce slower swing speeds, the most forgiving irons have also incorporated design changes to the face of these clubs. Thin, energy-efficient faces increase ball speeds – even at slower club head speeds. One of the most forgiving iron designs on the market today is the state-of-the-art design of the
Diablo Forged Irons by Callaway. These irons incorporate all of the latest innovations in golf club design discussed above to counteract the most common issues beginning and intermediate iron players face. Click here to watch a short video explaining how this iron design produces the most forgiving irons available today.
What else can beginners do to improve their iron play?
While using golf irons that incorporate the latest in ‘forgiveness technology’ is certainly one way beginners can improve their iron game, there are some less expensive ways beginning golfers can help mid-range game, as well. As mentioned above, one flaw that these new iron designs help to overcome is a slower club head speed. Learning how to increase club head speed is one way to improve the results a player can get when using his or her irons.
Another educational tool beginning iron players should take advantage of is an e-course called How to Master the Golf Irons, which is a complete course that focuses on just about every aspect of iron play, including the best swing to use with golf irons, how to address the ball when using one of the irons, and the proper stance, grip, and feel for optimizing iron play from the long irons all the way down to the short game.
So when evaluating irons to determine forgiveness, make sure to examine the weighting (i.e. center of gravity (CG) ), stability of the club head throughout the swing, and club face material. One thing we haven’t addressed is the shaft construction and material since these aspects will require an entirely separate article. Rest assured, however that the most forgiving irons from Callaway have incorporated the optimum shaft design to overcome any inconsistencies in the beginner’s golf swing and produce more consistent ball flights and results.