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Buying Guide: How to Choose the Right Fairway Woods

Buying fairway woods is at least as tricky as buying a new car. While it’s tempting to look at aesthetics, it’s best to take them for a spin before spending a lot for them. They may lack the drivers’ glamour, hybrids’ novelty, and putters’ significance, but right fairway woods can be an indispensable addition to your golf club set.  

The primary purpose of fairway woods is to hit long-distance shots from the fairway. You can treat them as the “middle child” of the clubs since they fill the gap between drivers and hybrids. Fairway woods share similar characteristics to drivers, but they differ in other aspects. For instance, drivers have larger clubheads of 440cc or more compared to the 140-180cc of fairway woods. 

Moreover, fairway woods are great alternatives to long irons. You can easily hit and get more airborne with it than traditional long irons. So if you’re struggling with long approach shots, you may want to replace your 3- and 4-irons with fairway woods. But with the plethora of fairway wood options available in the market today, it becomes difficult to choose the best.

When Should You Use Fairway Wood

Some golfers add a fairway wood to their collection to hit off the tee. Since it has more loft compared to other clubs, you may find it easier to hit. Fairway woods might not go as far as drivers, but the right player can get impressive distance from a 3-wood.

The best time to use a fairway wood is on long par 3s or on approach shots where the club will reach the distance to the center of the green. You can also use it when escaping rough because the round shape of a fairway wood head won’t tangle like a sharper iron blade. 

On Course: How to Choose the Right Fairway Woods

If you want to add some distance to your game, fairway woods can be the right addition to your golf bag. Golfers use fairway woods off the tee to gain control or from the fairways for long approach shots. But before you cover some significant distance on the course, you need to find the right fairway wood to suit your game.

Here are some questions you should ask:

  • Are you picking up the right shaft?

The shaft is crucial in any club, but even more so on fairway woods. Moreover, most fairway woods have longer shafts to allow fast clubhead speed and more distance. However, it also means that it is harder to control. So if control is your main concern, go for club heads with shorter shafts. 

  • Is the loft adjustable?

Loft controls the trajectory of the golf ball and is a factor in deciding the distance of your hit. Opt for fairway woods that can adjust the loft by at least five degrees. When you change to lower loft, you can hit better off the tees, while adjusting to the higher loft will work well when hitting into the fairway on par 5s.  

  • Did you consider the head design?

Clubhead plays a crucial role in every fairway wood since it is the only part that directly contacts the ball. If you prefer to launch balls off the tee, a fairway wood with a broad face should be in your bag. Shallow-faced club heads are better when hitting from the rough and fairway, while heads with rounded edges can cut through rough effortlessly. Lastly, a fairway wood with flat edges allows good hits from tight lies.  

  • Are you a low, mid, or high handicapper?

Before buying any golf club, you need to consider your golf handicap since your performance will depend on it. If you’re a high handicapper, you need to look for a fairway wood with a higher loft degree (3-woods) to make solid, accurate hits. But for low and mid handicappers, opt for one with a lower loft degree. Whichever wood you pick, make sure that it is easy to hit and comfortable as well. 

  • Do you have a budget?

A quality fairway wood is a worthwhile investment since it can last for several years, but the cost can add up. A custom fitting can keep you from buying more than you need.

There are many different fairway woods today that can benefit both beginners and high handicappers. If you want to reap the benefits of right fairway woods, our master fitter at Tour Quality Golf can help you find one that suits your gameplay and tailor it to benefit your game. By adding the right fairway woods to your bag, you’ll be ready to cover more ground as you hit the fairways. Call us at (918) 221-7096 today!