Since the hybrid revolution struck near the turn of the 21st century, golfers have removed irons from their bags to make room for hybrid clubs. Even many top professionals have made the switch, including 2009 PGA Championship winner Y.E. Yang, who told “Golf Digest” in 2010 that he uses three hybrid clubs in place of his long irons. For recreational golfers, hybrids are more tolerant of mishit shots and help players loft the ball in the air, so the shift from irons to hybrid clubs should be a smooth transition for most players.
Choose which iron or irons to replace with a hybrid. You can replace any iron, but most golfers replace only their long irons, such as the 3-iron through 5-iron. You may wish to replace a particular iron that you have trouble hitting or that you can’t loft in the air as much as you’d like. Alternatively, replace a club that you can hit for distance but with a trajectory that’s too low to hold the green on a typical approach shot. All else being equal, you’ll loft the ball higher with a hybrid than with its counterpart iron, and a lofted shot is more likely to remain on the green. If in doubt about which club to replace, begin with the longest iron you play regularly.
Locate the comparable hybrid club. Each hybrid iron is labeled to show which standard iron the club replaces or the degrees of loft. A 4-hybrid, for example, is designed to replace a 4-iron. Typically, though, amateur golfers tend to hit the hybrid better -- and, therefore, farther -- than the iron it is designed to replace.
Test the hybrid club to see how far you’ll hit the ball before you purchase the club. Borrow a friend's hybrid or go to a demo day at your golf club or local driving range, during which you can try out a clubs.