Why use a hybrid over a long iron? This is a question I get asked alot when im in the shop, on the range, or teaching! When you watch the PGA Tour pros hit 2, 3, or 4 irons, you can see that these players have the swing technique to hit their conventional long irons almost as high as regular golfers hit their wedges. Average handicap golfers cannot generate enough height with their long irons because they have a much lower swing speed than pros or low handicappers, and the recreational golfer does not have the technique to consistently hit down and through the ball, and keep their head behind the ball at impact with low lofted irons.

So how does this relate to yourself you may ask? Well, PGA Master Professional Dennis Clarke has devised the following guideline:

  • If you hit a 7-iron 140 yards or less, a 6 iron should be your longest iron. The 3, 4 and 5 should be hybrids.
  • If you can hit your 7-iron 150-160 yards, think about nothing longer than a 5 iron and look at 3 and 4 hybrids.
  • If you can hit your 7-iron 160-170 yards, think about swapping your 3-iron for a hybrid.
  • If you can hit a 7-iron more than 170 yards, you can use any set make up you choose.


Properly designed hybrid clubs that have the same loft as their long iron counterparts make it much easier to get the ball up in the air to fly, because hybrids are much thicker than conventional long irons. This greater face-to-back dimension of the hybrid replacement heads allows the centre of gravity to be positioned much further back from the face. This, in turn, results in a much higher trajectory for a shot off a hybrid club compared to a traditional long iron of the same loft. In other words, at equal lofts, the hybrid with its centre of gravity farther back from the clubface, will help the golfer get the ball up into the air on a higher trajectory than a long iron.

Please feel free to pop up and try some hybrids on the range and see how much easier hybrids are to hit than long irons. Alternatively, book in for a lesson with me on Trackman, and see the difference in numbers, and how your game can be improved by knowing the correct set make up for yourself going forward. Thank you for reading my blog and I hope to see you soon.


Christopher Reed

PGA Professional

Westridge Golf Centre