When I got started in golf, one of the most confusing words or terms I heard people mentioned always when discussing golf clubs was the word ‘forgiving’.
Initially, I thought, just like any new person would think, they were referring to some blunders that needed forgiveness, as in forgiving one’s sins.
It was much later I discovered it was something else entirely, not related to forgiving one’s sins.
I am sure every new person to golf might have a little challenge grabbing the meaning of forgiveness in golf clubs, and that is why I have decided to put some clarity on the term here.
Forgiving golf clubs- what is it?
So, what is forgiveness in golf clubs?
Basically, forgiveness in golf clubs simply refers to the design and components or features of a golf club that helps to lessen the effect of poor swing, bad strikes, etc.
It refers to the features in golf clubs that help a golfer play better and achieve a better result even when his swings and strikes are poor.
For example, a club that is designed to help you achieve more accuracy and distance even on a poorly strike shot is said to offer forgiveness.
Usually, to achieve maximum distance, you need to strike a golf ball on the club’s sweet spot, but clubs that offer forgiveness will give you good distance even if you miss the sweet spot.
To further buttress this point, let’s look at some characteristics of a forgiving golf club.
The beginning of Forgiveness in Golf Clubs.
Before Karsten Solheim, the founder of Pings began selling putters designed to help hit the ball easier, clubs were designed to be all muscleback blades( fullback of the clubheads, with no Cavityback or any element of forgiveness), a small and thin clubface that has mass concentrated behind the center of the face, and was difficult to play by less-experienced players.
When the Ping founder entered the game and started selling perimeter-weighting irons and soon after debuting with his first putter sometime in the late 1950s, he quickly realized that golf clubs could be designed with elements that make it easier to hit.
That was the beginning of how the concept of forgiveness got into golf sport.
These days, it is very common to find golf clubs with lots of forgiveness features.
Most beginners would look for golf clubs that offer some level of forgiveness because of how easy they are to hit, even for newbies.
Features of a forgiving golf club.
So, here are a few popular features of a forgiving golf club.
Offset is that feature in a golf club that helps in reducing slices from poor ball strikes.
Offset is an important feature found in every golf club that offers forgiveness.
Other features of a forgiving golf club apart from offset are larger Clubheads and Clubfaces.
Others are cavity backs, thicker toplines, and wider soles, more weight lower and deeper in the clubhead, offset, and (in woods) slightly closed faces.
Whats the difference between forgiving clubs and game improvement Clubs?
If yyou are new to the game of golf, I am sure you will want to know if there is any difference between forgiving clubs and game improvement Clubs as the two words are sometimes used to describe in this category.
Well, there is really not much distinction between the two, as any club that has all the forgiving features listed above is referred to as a game improvement club.
Who Should play Forgiving Clubs?
When you find professional players like Jim Furyk swinging cavity-back irons, then you don’t need anyone to tell you that anyone can play forgiving Clubs.
The essence of a forgiving club is to help hide some mistakes from swinging and the poor ball strikes. so, anyone can make mistakes that can lead to mishit or poor swing.
Although single-digit handicappers can play forgiving or game improvement clubs, the majority of people who will find more value in playing forgiving Clubs are beginners, mid and high handicappers.
Most beginners lack the skills to hit a shot on the sweet spot which makes the ball not go much farther, and so using a forgiving club will reduce the effect of a mishit.