Since the majority of clubs in your new bag will be irons, a new set will likely be the biggest investment you make when you’re buying golf equipment.
The last thing you want to do as a beginner is to make a big purchase of an iron set that will not improve your game.
Many irons are tailored to experienced golfers, so beginners will want to find a model that provides maximum forgiveness while they learn the game.
Luckily, our team tested 20 of the most recently introduced iron sets geared toward beginners to create a complete buying guide. Whether you’re looking to make a serious investment or get a solid but affordable starter set, we have information to help you make an informed choice.
Below you will find a quick summary table with our top beginner iron choices.
We then lay out game-changing info on how the right irons can help your game and provide our full rundown of the top beginner models.
Let’s jump in and find the perfect iron set for you.
Best Irons For Beginners Synopsis
Irons For Beginners Specification Table Comparison
|Iron Set Name||Callaway Big Bertha Irons||Cleveland Launcher HB Irons||Ping G400 Irons||Wilson D300 Irons|
|Our Rating||9.4/10 |
Best Hybrid Irons
Best Mid-Priced Iron For Beginners
|Pricing||Jump To Pricing Section||Jump To Pricing Section||Jump To Pricing Section||Jump To Pricing Section|
|Irons Included||4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, PW, SW||4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, PW||4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, PW||5, 6, 7, 8, 9, PW, GW|
|Iron Back||Hollow Cavity Back||Cavity Back||Cavity Back||Cavity|
|Shaft||True Temper SpeedStep 80 Steel / UST Recoil Graphite||True Temper Dynamic Gold 98 Steel / Miyazaki C. KUA Graphite||PING Alta CB / PING AWT 2.0 / True Temper Dynamic Gold / KBS Tour / Nippon N.S. Pro Modus 3 105 / Project X LS / True Temper Elevate MPH 95||KBS Tour 80 / Matrix Speed Rulz A-Type|
|Grip||Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360||Lamkin 360||Golf Pride Tour Velvet / Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord||Wilson Staff Tour Traction|
|Read Review||Jump To Callaway Big Bertha Review||Jump To Cleveland Launcher HB Review||Jump To Ping G400 Review||Jump To Wilson D300 Review|
Callaway Big Bertha Irons
Rating: 9.4 /10
- Suspended Energy Core bar and standing wave provides maximum forgiveness for beginners.
- Smooth light feel helps ball striking especially if player is rusty.
- Will help move down at least one club if not two with increased distance.
- Hits through rough easily due to large steel head.
- Best golf clubs for beginners in ratings by users.
- They’re pricey if you are just playing once or twice a year.
- Mainly designed for high handicappers, not as suitable for mid or low handicappers
Callaway has long led the way in game improvement golf clubs and that trend only continues with the Big Bertha irons.
Touted as the “easiest to launch distance irons” the company has ever made, the Big Bertha irons incorporate modern technology that helps you get the ball in the air with ease and provide unsurpassed distance.
The Suspended Energy Core is a tungsten bar encased with urethane in the bottom of the face. This bar lowers the center of gravity and maximizes the moment of inertia for maximum high launch and forgiveness across the entire face.
Even on thin shots, your ball flight will still be high and little distance will be lost.
Callaway’s 360 Face Cup Technology is a rim around the entire face that flexes at impact increasing ball speeds and distance as a result.
The Big Bertha iron sets are some of the sharpest looking out there as well. The smoked PVD finish and bottom two grooves that are painted white provide a contrast that reduces glare and gives you confidence.
Big Bertha irons are available in the Recoil ESX, Recoil ZT9 or KBS Max 90 shafts. Other shaft options may be available for an upcharge.Though they are one of the more expensive options on the market, these irons are a great option for any beginner looking for the latest technology that affords forgiveness and distance.
Cleveland Launcher HB Irons
Best Hybrid Irons
Rating: 9.2 /10
- Hybrid irons will help your striking from all terrain and improve distance with bigger sweet spot.
- Significant forgiveness with hybrid head.
- HiBore crown allows for higher launch.
- Reduced reverberation on misshits.
- Ideal for beginners if you have the budget
- Expensive for the casual golder.
- Hybrids provide minimal feel when close to the green.
- Can take a bit of time to get used to lightness of graphite shafts
Having long been touted as a maker of great short-game golf clubs, Cleveland has emerged as a major player in the game improvement category with the release of the Launcher HB irons. These irons are all “hybrid-irons” and are great for any player looking for ultimate forgiveness and distance.
The Launcher irons have one of the thinnest faces on the market. Made of HT 1770 steel, the face helps increase distance for high handicappers.
The HiBore crown moves the center of gravity low and deep for a higher launch than traditional irons. If you have trouble stopping the ball on the green, this is a great feature.
One of the complaints that many beginners have is the vibration felt in the hands and wrists on mishits. The Launcher HB irons have internal ribs strategically located in the head to reduce reverberation and improve sound.
If you’re a player that prefers the look of a traditional iron and the feedback provided on both solid shots and mishits, the Launcher HB irons might take some getting used to.
For those looking to increase distance and who have the budget to do so, this golf club set could be your best bet.
Ping G400 Irons
Rating: 9.1 /10
- Clubhead speed maximised with Hydropeal Chrome finish.
- Weight technology allows for greater speed and stability for fogiveness.
- Among the best golf brands for quality
- Premium technology reflected in premium price.
- Coating on golf club is prone to chipping and scratching
Ping has been a trusted name for equipment for beginners for decades. The family owned company truly has catered for the high handicapper throughout their history. The Ping G400 irons are no exception.
If you choose to purchase a set of Ping G400 irons from a certified Ping club fitter, they will ensure to tailor them to your swing. Ping’s fitting system sets the industry standard and is easy to understand, even for beginning players.
The face on the G400 irons is 40% thinner than the faces of its competitors. The results is 18% more flex in the face at impact and an 18% tighter dispersion on mishits. This is made possible through CORE-Eye Technology and a top rail undercut.
The Hydropearl Chrome finish decreases friction with the ground at impact by 40% so you’ll maximize clubhead speed while also generating bigger launch, increased spin and more distance.
While not all players may not like the pronounced offset in this golf club set, the technology behind this set of irons can suit beginners lerning the game.
Wilson D300 Irons
Best Mid-Priced Iron For Beginners
Rating: 8.9 /10
- Power holes filled with TE031 urethane provide more distance and astriking boost at impact.
- Big sweet spot for high handicappers.
- Head toe weighting gives increased MOI.
- Mid range price for a good distance/forgiveness combo
- Don’t have an especially great feel.
- Untraditional look to this iron may not suit some.
- Only aimed for high and mid handicappers
Building on the success of the C200 irons, the new Wilson D300 irons are all about power and forgiveness.
FLX Face Technology enables 76% of the face to be disconnected from the body of the club. Power Holes filled with TE031 urethane surround the thin face creating a trampoline effect at impact that launches the ball high and straight.
By distributing weight to the perimeter of the club face, the size of the sweet spot is larger than that of less forgiving irons.
Wilson is a reputable manufacturer with a history including 61 major championship victories and lengthy contracts with some of the games’ greats like Arnold Palmer.
Though they might not be the most recognized brand in the modern market, Wilson and it’s D300 irons shouldn’t be overlooked at this mid range price.
What’s the Difference Between Long, Mid and Short Irons?
Irons collectively make up the clubs numbered three through nine or pitching wedge in your bag. Low numbered clubs are longer and have less loft meaning they are meant to go farther.
As the number on the iron increases, the clubs become shorter in length, have more loft and travel shorter distances.
Long irons collectively are your three and four irons. These golf clubs are usually the most difficult to hit for beginners and can be replaced with more forgiving hybrids.
Mid irons are numbered five through seven and are shorter in length than long irons. If you have trouble hitting your five and six irons consistently, you can also replace these with hybrids.
Short irons are eight iron, nine iron and pitching wedge. These golf clubs have the most loft and are generally the easiest to hit out of all the irons.
What to Look For When Choosing Your Irons as a Beginner
Golf Irons for beginning golfers have some common characteristics that set them apart from other types of irons.
Knowing what features to look for will help ensure you choose the right iron set for your swing.
Beginner irons have club heads that are larger than irons made for more experienced players. Larger club heads give you a larger surface area with which to strike the ball and are therefore more forgiving.
Larger clubheads are also heavier which helps you get the ball in the air and hit it farther.
If you find yourself struggling with any irons numbered five or lower, it might be worth considering replacing them with hybrids. Hybrids are designed to be more forgiving and promote getting the ball in the air.
Some iron sets come with hybrids as part of the package so doing some research ahead of time can go a long way.
Irons come with either graphite or steel shafts and in different flexes ranging from ladies’ flex to extra stiff. Knowing what shaft material and flex is right for your swing is paramount.
Graphite vs. Steel Golf Club
Graphite is more expensive to produce and that cost is passed down to the consumer.
The advantages of graphite shafts are that they are lighter and reduce the reverberation felt at impact on miss-hits.
Graphite is a great choice for players with slower swing speeds, that are looking for increased distance and need help hitting the ball high.
Steel is cheaper than graphite but also heavier. These shafts are a good choice for players that rely on feedback at impact to know if they’ve hit a shot solid or not.
If you’re not as worried about distance or you’re on a budget, steel shafts are a great choice.
What Shaft Flex is Best for You?
Your swing speed should dictate what flex is best for you. If you swing the club slowly, a shaft with more flex is probably optimal.
Senior flex, ladies’ flex or regular flex are probably your best options. If your swing speed is faster than average, you may want to consider stiff flex.
Extra stiff is rarely used by beginners because it is meant for the ultra-fast swings of Tour players.
When contemplating shaft flex, it’s important to remember that the same flex in steel is going to be different than in graphite.
The Importance of Getting a Proper Fitting
While having a base of knowledge of what features to evaluate when choosing a set of irons can help you narrow your search, getting a proper fitting from a PGA Professional is important to find the right set of irons.
During a fitting, you’ll have the opportunity to learn your proper measurements, hit a multitude of different clubs and customize a set that is tailored to you.
The person doing the fitting is there to answer any questions you might have so don’t be afraid to ask and take all the time you need.
Always remember the decision is yours and no one else’. The irons you buy should fit your eye, instil confidence and feel good.
If you’re serious about getting into the game of golf, then making the investment in the right set of irons goes a long way. With so many different features, technologies and designs to choose from there is certainly one that fits your game.
From our list,our editors choice, the Callaway Big Bertha’s, will provide you with the right level of forgiveness without losing that all important distance or feel. Have you found other irons that have improved your game? Let us know in the comments section.
What irons should a beginner use?
Beginners should use a set of irons that have cavity backs. Cavity backs make clubs more forgiving and move the center of gravity lower and in the central part of the face. This promotes a large sweet spot and desirable outcomes on slight mishits.
Should a beginner golfer use blades?
No, a beginner golfer should not use blades. Blades are very thin and do not have cavity backs. They are not forgiving and must be struck right in the center of the sweet spot “on the screws”.
How do you know if your golf clubs are forgiving?
You’ll know a club is forgiving if slight mishits still produce normal results. Forgiving clubs usually have a low center of gravity, large sweet spots and are lightweight. Forgiving clubs are great for beginners and mid-handicappers.