What is Offset in Golf Clubs: The Pro’s & Con’s

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I’m convinced that golfers have struggled with a slice since the beginning of time. Club companies actually developed tweaks in the 1800s to help players hit straighter shots.

So if you’ve struggled with a slice (or still struggling) just know that you are not alone. For centuries, fellow golfers have attempted to overcome this problem.

While there is a lot of new technology coming out to help you hit it straighter, don’t forget about an older method – offset golf clubs. These clubs are made for slicers and those who need extra help to hit the golf ball straight.

This design started in the late 1800s thanks to Willie Smith but didn’t catch on until the 1960s. This design was a crucial piece of equipment for golfers after it was added to the irons by Ping engineers. 

Continue reading to find out more about offset drivers and golf irons. 

Offset Golf Club 101

Before getting into the pros and cons of offset golf clubs, let’s discuss the design first. 

If you look down at address, the offset is simply the position where the leading edge of a club face is behind the hosel. The distance between the leading edge of the club face and the front of a hosel is called offset.

Despite the helpful design, Willie Smith’s idea didn’t catch fire until a century later and now basically all club makers include some amount of offset in clubs. You’ll even find a minimal amount of offset in some sets of blade irons designed for the very best players.

The leading edge of offset golf club clubs sits back from your shaft. 

The club is actually behind and not directly in line to the shaft like many golf clubs. Offset golf clubs come in wedges and irons as well as woods and hybrids. 

This might not look as strange with irons as most sets have some offset characteristics but it’s very noticeable in drivers. Because of this design, some drivers are 5-7 degrees close at address in order to help players hit it straighter. 

Iron heads have an offset that can be adjusted to help with launch angle, swing rhythm, and keeping the clubhead square.

Let’s get into how these clubs can help your game and see if they’re right for your swing. 


The pros and cons of offset golf clubs

The first benefit to offset clubs are that they help you hit straighter shots.

These clubs make it easier for you to square your face at impact because of the position of the hosel relative to the shaft. 

Many golfers struggle to find a slice, but these clubs can help.Without grip or swing changes). You might even be able to hit a draw, which could have many benefits. 

They can also increase the angle of your launch to land softly and thus provide more distance.

The design of the ball makes it easier to hit it higher and farther. This is especially important when hitting longer and harder clubs. 

These clubs are designed to help you avoid the slice, hit it straighter, and hit more shots. Many golfers will benefit from maximum forgiveness in the split second before contact, which results in better ball striking.

Cons of Offset Golf Clubs 

While there are some benefits to playing offset clubs there are also some downsides.

First, the look of them at address position is vastly different if you’ve been playing clubs without offset thus far in your career. It can take some time to get used to the look of these clubs on the course. If they help you hit better shots, its possible to overcome this problem.

The second problem with offset clubs is that it is harder to shape shots in both direction. It is difficult to hit the ball in any direction or alter the flight because of the hosel position. 

The design can also lead you to hook shots because of the draw. Over-fixing the issue is also known as over fixing the problem and can be just as frustrating as a slice. 

According to the old saying, “You can talk to a cut but you can’t talk to a hook.” Due to the side spin, once these balls start left they tend to just keep going left. 


The Best Offset Irons

Most clubs have progressive offset to aid in straight ball flight. Higher handicap golfers will have more offset iron sets as this is a game-improvement feature.

Here are some top clubmakers recommendations:

  • TaylorMade SIM Max IronsThese game improvement irons make a great choice for right-handed golfers. The large head allows you to swing faster, increase ball speed, and square your club face at impact.
  • Cobra Golf F Max: The Cobra F-Max Airspeed irons help turn the ball over and square the club face thanks to the unique design.

Click here to read the best irons for high handicappers

FAQs About Offset Golf Clubs

Do you have more questions about offset golf clubs to see if they can help your golf swing? If so, keep scrolling to learn the frequently asked questions and answers.

What does offset do to a golf club?

Offset changes the look and feel of a golf club due to the hosel position. An offset design forces your hands more ahead of the clubhead in order to square the face at impact.The particular benefits of these clubs are great for beginners and those who struggle with slices. 

Are professionals using offset irons for their work?

In general, most professionals and skilled amateurs will use non-offset or minimal offset golf clubs. The best players will switch from a MB (muscle back) to a cavity back head if they need more forgiveness. They might also play different clubs or shafts with long irons to increase their reliability. 

While irons without offset look great at address, they’re not a good fit for 99% of players. This quote comes from Golf.comIt was perfect.

“Eliminating offset from an iron is akin to bowling on a lane that’s half as wide without the bumpers. If you’re good enough to keep it on the wood, life is good. However, a slight over rotation is likely sending your ball towards the gutter.”

Clubs without offset make it more difficult to play a challenging game. Minimizing offset makes it easier to shape shots but it’s also harder to hit it in the sweet spot too. To achieve consistency in your iron game, leave this type of setup to the pros and instead use clubs with some offset. 

Is it harder to hit irons with less offset? 

Non offset clubs, which are harder to hit and require more consistency in swing, have less or no offset. This is why PGA Tour players prefer irons that have minimal offset. 

Who should play offset Irons? 

For beginners and those who struggle with slices, offset irons work best. They aren’t a great choice for mid-handicap golfers or better who want to work the ball. Modern offset sets can provide you with shorter irons as well as longer irons.

Are they offset drivers? 

Yes, offset irons and offset woods are made by golf companies. These are the best offset woods (offset drivers) to help you hit the ball straighter.

  • Pinemeadow Golf Equipment Offset: PGX Clubs (a clever knockoff from PXG) are designed for beginners. This low-cost driver features 10.5 degrees of loft and antislice technology to help make your shots straighter and last longer. If you’re a brand-new golfer and don’t want to spend a fortune on clubs, this is a great driver to help your tee box game. You can also get matching offset fairway woods.  
  • Orlimar Slice Killer: The name says it all – if you want to kill that pesky slice, this is a great club. It’s made for beginners and has higher loft options (10.5 or 12.5) for proper launch conditions and a 7-degree closed face to hit it straighter. It is available in either a regular or senior-flex shaft to match your swing speed. 
  • Cobra F Max Driver: If you’re a serious player and want a high-quality offset driver opt for this one from Cobra. The F-Max looks stunning thanks to its all-black design with blue accents. Its not just beautiful, but it also has a lightweight shaft and head that will help you swing faster. The offset hosel allows for ball flight correction, so you can find more fairways. 

A lot of drivers can interchangeable weights, making it easier to draw or hit the golf ball straighter. Make sure you read the These are the best drivers for slicers. 

Can offset clubs create a hook?

The design of these clubs can lead to a hook. While it’s not as likely to happen in shorter clubs, it can happen in clubs where the shaft length is longer.

The more club length, the more difficult it is to square the face at contact. This is why fairway woods and drivers are often used to make more missed shots.

Final Thoughts about Offset Clubs

The offset club is a classic tool that can help you hit your golf balls farther and more accurately. Although most golfers can play an offset driver, the majority of irons have an offset lead edge. A progressive offset is a great way to square your club face at impact and hit it towards your target line.

An offset club is a great option if you struggle to hit your driver. Without changing your swing. But it’s more of a band-aid fix than a long-term solution to a faulty golf swing. 

That being said, if you don’t have time or change your swing, playing more offset golf clubs can help with a straighter ball flight. If you want to improve your swing without spending more money on clubs, Click here to find 10 ways to stop cutting the golf ball.

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