Golf Long Irons are Not really So Difficult
Many golfers ignore the golf long irons because they lack confidence in their ability to use them. This is unfortunate because the skills involved in practice with the irons can help other phases of the golfer’s game.
The long irons are the victims of a vicious circle. Beginners at first have trouble hitting the ball in the air with the woods. So they become proficient with the irons and leave the woods alone until they develop rhythm, tempo and know-how. Suddenly, they have little irons are neglected.
Worst part about it is they won’t even practice with the long irons.
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There are 14 clubs in the bag and every one of them comes in handy at the proper time. That’s part of the game, to be able to determine which club is best for the occasion and to be able to get the most out of it.
The long irons are not really so difficult. As a matter of fact, they have been very helpful to me in a corrective way. When I feel that my tempo is off, I go to the practice tee and work with my 2 –iron. I know that if I can hit with it, my rhythm has returned. The long irons require perfect balance and the swing must be smooth. Any attempt to rush the swing for more distance is fatal.
When thinking of the golf long irons, I believe it would be beneficial for the player to envision a sweeping motion like the one used with a fairway wood. Too many high handicap players feel that that have to use a descending blow with the long irons. When this happens, the player inevitably hits too hard with the right hand, causing a deep short divot rather than a sweeping and consistent divot.
Perhaps this helps to give the picture of the long-iron swing. If any club requires a picture swing, it is the 2-iron or the 1-iron.
If you fear the long irons, I suggest an analysis of your game as outline in Mental Dozen N0 9. You will see clever use of them might save two or three strokes a round.
Practice Can Overcome Fear.
Long Irons Demand Proper Form
In the long iron category are the 1,2 and 3 –irons.
The 1-iron dosen’t comes in the ordinary set of golf clubs. It has to be ordered special and perhaps that’s the way it should be. It is the hardest club in the bag to control. I wouldn’t recommend its use to the high handicapper or beginner. They should wait until they have developed smooth swing and rhythm.
No clubs are more demanding of the correct golf form than the long iron. The head must be kept down. The swig need not be as long as it is with the wood clubs but it must go off without a hitch.
The hands must be ahead of the club head and the movement must be down and through the ball.
While it might not seem important, inasmuch as the ball has already been hit, the follow-through is vital. The hands must finish high.
Weight, as in the use of the woods, should be kept on the inside of the heels; the grip is the same as with the woods except a little more firm, and the swing never should be hurried.
Proper use of the long irons calls for the utmost in positive thinking. The player shouldn’t think about what he might do wrong. Instead, he should think of where he wants the ball to go. It wouldn’t hurt to think how gracefully a similar shot was played in the Masters, the P, G.A or the Open.
The average player can hit a 1 – iron from 200 to 210 yards, a 2 – iron from 185 to 200 and a 3-iron from 175 to 185 yards. Distances vary widely but one thing is sure among golfers of all classes: it is not wise to try to hit harder for greater distance than the club’s potential. This upset the rhythm and leads to disaster.
Most players have a tendency to under club themselves. They also think they have to scoop the ball up in order to send it on the right trajectory. They don’t realize that the club’s face is built to send the ball into the air if the manufacturer has done the right job.
On the tour, the 1-iron is a popular club when it is windy. Usually it is substituted for the 4-wood to make the 14-club limit. A well-hit 1-iron is also “trouble” club. It is a handy gadget to keep the ball low under over-hanging limbs and yet get enough force to clear trouble.
The 2-iron is employed off the tee on short par four holes where accuracy is more important than distance. Such a hole is no. 3 340 yard hole, the fairway tightens up at 275 yards out and comes uphill to a well-trapped green that slopes tee ward.
Although the budding tournament player should practice until he has learned faultless technique in use of the golf long irons. I would suggest that the older player become proficient and less power. Consequently, they are less disturbing to the rhythm.