Single length irons have become increasingly popular among a specific section of the golfing community. Bryson Dechambeau is their undisputed leader as he is the most eminent professional golfer who plays with single-length irons. He has witnessed remarkable success throughout his career with a set of single-length irons in his golf bag.
Surprisingly, single-length or one-length irons are not an innovation of the 21st century. In fact, you can trace their origins to the 1920s, making these irons nearly a century old. One of the legendary golfers of the 1920s, Bobby Jones, won several major and amateur tournaments playing with single-length irons.
After reading all the success stories of single-length irons, many of you might be considering switching to them already. However, before you put on your shopping shoes, we’d recommend you to hold your horses for a while.
Single-length irons have undoubtedly proven successful for a few golfers, but that doesn’t mean you should expect the same for yourself. There’s also a possibility that switching over to single-length irons affects your game negatively.
So, are single-length irons worth the switch? Before answering that question, you should first know what exactly single-length irons are. In this article, we’ll answer any other questions you might have single-length irons, stay tuned.
What Are Single Length Irons?
The name single-length iron tells you everything about it. As per the name, the entire irons set, including the wedges, has the same length. The only aspect that is different in each club is the loft.
A typical iron set has 7 or 9 golf clubs, usually ranging from the 3-iron to the pitching wedge (PW) or 5-iron to the gap wedge (GW). All of these clubs have variable lengths and are divided into three categories, short irons, mid irons, and long irons.
The number assigned to the iron and its loft is directly proportional to one another. Meaning, as you go from a smaller number to a higher numbered iron, you’ll see an increase in the loft.
In contrast, the number assigned to a particular iron and its length are inversely proportional to each other. This means that lower-numbered irons are shorter and vice versa. Due to the different lengths, these irons sets are called variable-length irons.
However, single length irons don’t follow this pattern, and all the irons have identical lengths, typically of a 7 or 8-iron. As mentioned above, single-length irons also have variable lofts that increase as you move from a lower-numbered iron to a higher one.
The concept of the entire iron set having the same length might baffle many of you, and you might be wary of switching. In the next section, we’ll explain how single-length irons can be helpful for certain playing styles.
Why You Should Choose Single Length Irons
In my golf experience, I have come across numerous golfers who struggle with their swing technique. Consistency is a severe issue for some of these golfers. No matter how hard they try, they fail to maintain a regular swing pattern.
Furthermore, playing with a variable-length iron set can aggravate your swing problems. This is because of the different lengths of these irons that require you to modify your swing for each iron. That is why many golfers are stuck in an endless loop when they cope with an irregular swing technique.
If all of this sounds familiar to you, single-length irons might turn out to be a lifesaver for you. This identical length of these irons eliminates the need to alter your swing for different irons, so you mainly use a single swing technique for all irons.
Moreover, single-length irons can be helpful for players who struggle with their long irons. Due to their length, long irons are often viewed as the most challenging golf clubs to hit. As all the irons have identical measurements, long irons are shorter than usual in single-length iron sets, making them relatively easy to hit.
Drawbacks of Single Length Irons
Many of you might be convinced of all the positives of single-length irons. However, that is not the complete story. There’s another aspect that you shouldn’t ignore, and that is their disadvantages.
We’ll suggest you have realistic expectations about improvements in your swing technique. It won’t be an overnight success, and many of you might even hate yourself for making the switch.
As you’ve played with variable-length irons for your entire golfing career, playing single-length irons will take some serious getting used to. Undoubtedly, the first few weeks of the switch will be a challenge. The change will be worse for you if your swing patterns vary significantly.
Single Length Irons: Should You Switch
If you’ve made it here, chances are you have arrived at a decision about switching to single-length irons. There’s no denying the proven benefits of single length irons and how they can improve your swing irregularities.
However, your transition to single-length irons might not be a smooth one as it could take months for you to get adjusted to them. Moreover, there’s a high possibility that you might not even see the positive results for months more.