Golf Club Components: The Clubhead
Of the three basic components of a golf club, — grip, shaft and clubhead — the clubhead is what changes most noticeably from club type to club type, and within each club type, as well.
From the heads of metalwoods, which have greatly changed in size and materials since the 1990s, to those of irons and wedges, which have stayed around the same size and shape for many decades, manufacturers spend by far the most time on researching, designing, testing and promoting their yearly changes and improvements in clubhead technology. Each clubhead is made up of several component parts, the majority of which are common between woods and irons:
The face, or clubface, is the area of the clubhead that is intended to strike the ball. For irons, the face includes grooves, or small channels within the face that impart spin on the ball.
A golf club’s toe is the area of the face furthest from the shaft and hosel of the clubhead.
The heel is the area of the face nearest to the shaft and hosel of the clubhead.
The sole of the golf club is located at the bottom of the clubhead and interacts with the turf or playing surface before, during and after the club makes contact with the ball.
The club’s hosel is the cylindrical portion that connects the rest of the clubhead with the shaft. The hosel is typically hollow, allowing the tip section of the shaft to fit inside.
The ferrule is an optional piece of the clubhead that covers the connection between hosel and shaft. The hosel is tapered to blend the shaft and hosel into a more seamless look at address.
Depending on whether the iron is designed as a blade or a cavity-back, the portion of the clubhead directly behind the face will contain a hollowed out area — possibly filled in with a cavity badge or vibration-dampening polymer — or solid metal, often called an insert today. Sometimes they just are left empty to be more forgiving, particularly on miss-hits.
An iron with the full back of the clubhead in place, unlike a cavity back.
The topline is the area on irons and wedges just above the face. The thickness of the top line is a good indication of whether the club is designed for forgiveness or for workability.
For woods (i.e drivers, fairway woods and hybrids), the topline of the head is much broader than an iron and is properly termed the crown. The other parts of a metalwood follow closely with those of an iron or wedge:
The head of each golf club is crafted using different sizes, shapes, materials and processes, all of which help determine how skilled a player should be in order to use that club.
To find out what the right clubhead style is for your game, you can continue to learn about golf on the 2ndswing.com, or consult one of our expert fitters through our Live Chat feature, a phone call to our customer service line, or a trip to one of our retail locations in the Twin Cities, which have both been named one of the Top 100 Fitters in America by Golf Digest.