Do You Actually Need Women's-Specific Golf Clubs?

Published on 11/28/2023 · 6 min readUncover the importance of women's-specific golf clubs with our in-depth exploration. Find out if they are a necessity for your golf game and how they can impact your performance!
Adam Ditcher, Golf Expert
By Golf Expert Adam Ditcher

Photo by Otmar W.

People get into the game of golf in all types of ways. Often, someone in their life is a big fan of the sport and encourages them to pick up the game. For me, this was my father. For others, it’s a grandparent, co-worker, in-law, or any number of other people in their lives. It’s a wonderful game, and you can spend all kinds of quality time with others on the course.

One downside for beginners is that golf can be expensive. Fortunately, the people responsible for getting new players into the game can often help with those expenses. Many beginners play a set that they receive as a hand-me-down. This minimizes the barrier to entry cost and allows people to decide if they enjoy playing the game for a low financial commitment.

Why Are There So Many Types of Equipment?

Photo by Orest Drozda

Once players go to shop for golf gear for the first time, they learn just how many options are out there. Clubs come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and flexes.

As a Golf Expert on Curated, I often receive questions about playing clubs that are a fit for my customer’s golf game. Frequently, new women to the game of golf have a hand-me-down set from someone. A good amount of the time, this hand-me-down set isn’t always a women’s set. As new female golfers learn to love the game and think about playing better golf, they start thinking about how the clubs that they’re playing fit their swing.

There is certainly something to be said for playing a set that fits your swing. While you can certainly take whatever clubs you have to the course, I would say that there’s definitely value to women playing a set of clubs that are made to fit them. Let’s dig into some details to learn exactly why that’s the case.

Golf Shaft Flex: The Details

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In the game of golf, there are a variety of golf shafts. While we can dive into really specific details about weight, material, and a variety of other factors, the easiest place to understand golf shafts is with the five main labels that are used to identify different flexes: ladies, senior, regular, stiff, and extra stiff. Across various brands and manufacturers, players will see these five categories consistently labeled on the clubs they’re looking at.

While each manufacturer can label their own equipment, and there is variety from one manufacturer to another, these labels help to create five main categories into which golfers can fall. Extra-stiff golf shafts are made for players who have the fastest swing speeds and need the least amount of lag in their golf shaft on the downswing. Stiff shafts are made for players with slightly slower swing speeds than extra stiff. We have an excellent article that goes into further detail on this topic.

When fitting a player for golf clubs, swing speed is a key data point that we use to make sure that the club is going to perform optimally for the player’s existing swing. Many players, especially newer players, do not use equipment that is suited for them. This can create additional challenges on the course, including losing distance, struggling with accuracy (especially with the driver and woods), and establishing a consistent short game.

Ladies, Ladies, Ladies

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So why is there a whole flex called “ladies,” and should all ladies be playing it? Well, let’s unpack that.

Most women, especially beginners, aren’t going to have the type of swing speed that requires some of the more stiff flexes. The issue with using clubs that are too stiff is that they cause the player to lose distance. Ladies’ flex golf clubs are generally lighter and the shaft is generally quite flexible, which helps to create a lag between the player’s hands and the golf ball in the downswing. The lagging clubhead reaches the bottom of the downswing and hits its kick point, which helps to create additional clubhead speed.

By using a lighter, more flexible club shaft, players with lower swing speeds can actually gain distance. Most amateur female golfers would benefit from the extra distance that ladies' flex clubs can help provide compared to a hand-me-down set of regular flex clubs.

However, there are exceptions. Certainly, female professional golfers aren’t playing ladies flex. Some amateur female golfers would be better off playing a senior flex shaft because they do generate enough clubhead speed to warrant a move into something a little more rigid.

The fact is that the five main category labels for club flexes were created awhile ago and the category names pigeonholing players into “ladies” for female golfers or “senior” for older golfers are a bit limiting. There is a case to be made for overhauling these labels, similar to how many courses no longer refer to their shortest set of tees as “ladies” tees or their second-shortest set as “senior” tees.

How to Upgrade

So you’ve read this far and realized that you’d like to move from your hand-me-down regular flex set to a ladies’ set built more for you. That’s great! There’s some additional good news as well: Moving into a full set of ladies’ clubs doesn’t have to cost thousands of dollars.

There are a wide variety of beginner sets on the market that are tailored specifically towards women. Name brands from Callaway to Wilson all have full sets for women beginners that are under $500. These clubs are lighter and come with the correct flex shafts to help maximize distance. In addition, these sets often are very forgiving and have clubs that are designed to help maximize the launch angle of the golf ball. By making sure that the club helps the ball get into the air at the optimal trajectory, beginners can maximize the distance that they’re getting across all their clubs.

Some more expensive full women’s sets could be great beginner sets for new golfers with higher budgets or a great first upgrade for new female golfers. A couple of examples are the Cobra Women’s Fly-XL Complete Set or the Callaway REVA 8-Piece Complete Set.

These days, there are a mix of club options for women. Some are more or less the same model that the manufacturer launches for men, although generally with a slightly lighter clubhead and some additional loft. One example of this is the Cobra Women’s LTDx Max driver, which mirrors the Men’s LTDx Max driver put out by Cobra. Others are club models that are specifically created just for women. An example of this would be the Callaway Big Bertha REVA series, which is only available in ladies' specs.

How to Choose

Photo by Udom Pinyo

The fact is that there are a lot more options on the market for women’s clubs than there ever used to be. This is great for helping to get properly fit clubs into the hands of female golfers across the globe, but it does make things even more confusing for newer players who are overwhelmed by all the choices that are on the market. Luckily, my fellow Curated Golf Experts and I are here to help. We would be happy to assist you with getting into some clubs that are more tailored for you. The difference will definitely be noticeable and will make playing golf that much more enjoyable!

Curated experts can help

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