Men's Golf Clubs vs. Women's Golf Clubs

by David W. Berner
    Golf clubs are designed specifically for men and women because of differences in height, weight distribution and strength.

    Golf clubs are designed specifically for men and women because of differences in height, weight distribution and strength.

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    Both men and women golfers are looking for consistent swings that create solid contact with the ball. But men and women have different body types and mechanics and require different kinds of clubs to accomplish the same goal. Just as golfers have a variety of clubs for many different kinds of shots, men and women have very different club styles and designs to help each play their best.

    Length

    According to major golf club manufacturers such as Callaway and Ping, ladies clubs are generally as much as 2 inches shorter than men's. For instance, most drivers for men are 45 to 45 1/2 inches long. Most women's standard drivers measure 44 inches. This length difference applies to all the clubs in the bag. Most manufacturers produce women's clubs for females with an average height of about 5-foot-7; they produce clubs for men with an average height of 5-foot-9. The proper club length for your body type, length of arms and strength is important in helping you maximize swing power and ball control.

    Clubheads

    The clubheads used for women's clubs - driver through pitching wedge - are usually slightly larger and lighter in weight than clubheads used in men's clubs, according to Callaway Golf. This allows for a larger impact area, more forgiving contact and a club that is easier to swing for women who generally tend to have less muscle strength and slower swing speeds than men.

    Shafts

    The majority of golf clubs for women have graphite shafts. Graphite allows for more flex in the club shaft without giving up durability. This permits the player to get more power at impact and to generate more torque without having to swing harder or faster. Although men's club shafts can also be made of graphite, most are steel. Graphite shafts are generally recommended for older men or juniors with slower swing speeds. For the player who can generate more club speed, steel shafts offer the best control.

    Grips

    Most women's hands are smaller than men's, and this means the club grips must be different. The grips on women's clubs are generally smaller in length and in diameter. Men's grips tend to be thicker and longer. Proper grip size allows the golfer to take a firm hold on the club.

    Weight

    A golf club's weight is measured in grams. Most men's clubs are designed to be heavier than women's because, in general, men have more muscle mass and strength. For example, a driver head is usually smaller and lighter in a women's club. Even the bigger heads on women's drivers are made of material that allows the weight to be scaled back from the weight of the head on a men's club. The shafts on women's clubs, often made of graphite, are also lighter in weight.

    About the Author

    David W. Berner is an award-winning journalist, writer and broadcaster. HIs memoir, "Accidental Lessons," was released in February 2009. His audio documentary, "Pebble Beach Stories," celebrates the ties between golfers and famed California golf links. Berner has covered stories as diverse as the 2008 presidential election to coyote sightings in Chicago's Lincoln Park.

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