What is offset on a golf club? You are familiar with offset golf clubs if you are a high-handicap golfer whose primary concerns are hooks and slices.
An offset golf club is a design feature for straighter shots by reducing the spin on the ball. It is implemented on golf clubs where the face of the club is positioned behind the shaft, especially on irons.
Offset also helps to keep the clubhead square and gets a higher launch and a better swing. In 1800 Willie Smith added offset in putters first. Later, it is implemented in irons, woods, wedges, and even hybrids.
In this article, you can find all information on what is offset on a golf club, including its basics, types, role, benefits and drawbacks.
Let’s dive in
What is Offset on a Golf Club – The Basics
Offset is a way by which the leading edge sits back from the shaft (behind the hosel) so the player hits it straight. The hosel position offset changes the feel and look of a golf club.
Effects on Center of Gravity
It significantly affects the club’s centre of gravity and moment of inertia, as the centre of gravity plays a significant role in deciding the club’s launch angle and spin rate.
Offset moves the CG farther back from the clubface, where its weight is balanced. Thus it helps the golfers to achieve a high trajectory and more distance.
Effect on Moment of Inertia
During the swing, the club’s resistance to twisting is known as the moment of inertia. Offset affects MOI by moving the centre of gravity farther back, thus increasing the club weight.
This mechanism makes the club more forgiving and makes it possible to hit straight. The effect of offset on a golf club depends on the design of the club head and the golfer’s swing technique.
So measure it accurately to get an acquired result. Are you thinking about measuring it? Well! You can measure the offset amount by measuring the distance between the leading edge and the front of the hosel.
There are two types of offset golf clubs:
- Blade/Face: Blade offset golf clubs are best if you want more control over shots.
- Cavity/Back: If you want more forgiveness on shots, cavity back is always preferred.
The division is based on golf club design, as offset plays an essential role. Let’s discuss its role in designing the golf club.
The Role of Offset in Golf Club Design
Offset is a design feature implemented in golf clubs to help golfers who slice the ball. When an offset is added in the club, the hosel is set back slightly from the clubface, resulting in a straight shot.
Therefore many companies design their products while focusing on offset size, shape and speed of the club head.
Offset Relation With Shape of Clubhead
Offset impacts the shape of the club head. Have you ever seen some clubs have a rounded appearance at the top of the clubface?
This is because of a lot of offset present on the clubface, and to accommodate them, the hosel angled back, which caused the clubface to curve inward at the top.
Offset Relation With Size of Clubhead
Some manufacturing companies design the golf club with an oversized clubhead that can accommodate more offset, allowing more surface area for golfers to contact the ball.
Offset Relation With Clubhead Speed
It also impacts the clubhead speed. The greater the offset, the higher the chances of off-centre hits, leading to reduced clubhead speed. However, it also helps to generate more speed.
Offsetting is controversial; some find it helpful to improve the game, while others consider it a crutch leading to bad habits. Let’s find out.
The Benefits of Offset for Golfers
The offset golf clubs are designed to square the clubface and higher ball flight. Besides these two advantages, offset golf clubs have many other benefits. Let discuss them
Squaring the Clubface
Promoting the better wrist position while giving extra time to the golfer for squaring the clubface during a downswing. How is this possible?
When the clubhead approaches the ball, the shaft leans forward. At that time, the clubface squares to the ball by delaying the impact between the shaft and the clubface.
Reduces slices and hooks
The clubface opens at impact when a golfer hits a slice, causing the ball to spin clockwise. As a result, the shot turns right.
The clubface closed at impact when a golfer hit a hook, causing the ball to spin counterclockwise. The shot turns left.
Offset golf clubs reduce slice and hooks by promoting square clubface at impact and encourage better swing path. However, golfer techniques and swing mechanics also matter.
Higher Ball Flight
The offset golf clubs have a low centre of gravity which encourages square clubface and more upward strike on the ball, thus promoting higher ball flight.
When a player hits the ball, the launch angle and spin of the ball are affected by the club head loft’s angle, angle of attack and clubhead speed.
If the clubface is closed or open at the impact, it results in lower ball flight. However, other factors like ball position and swing mechanics affect ball flight.
The Drawbacks of Offset for Golfers
Instead of promoting higher flight and reducing slice, offset golf clubs have some drawbacks. Let’s have a look at them.
- There is a potential trade-off between accuracy and distance.
- The shape and appearance of the club head are disturbing and uncomfortable for some golfers.
- It affects the club’s balance and weight, resulting in less control.
- The offset golf clubs are made more challenging for shape-shot intentionally.
- It becomes challenging to control pitching or chipping.
- Offset golf clubs also affect ball distance and trajectory.
- Offset golf clubs are more expensive than non-offset golf clubs.
Offset golf clubs are a design feature to reduce the spin on the ball, making the ball travel straight. They benefit high-handicap golfers who hook and slice by squaring the clubhead and producing highball flight. However, some golfers don’t like offset as they feel uncomfortable.