• Golf Glossary
Golf Club - EquipmentThe most common usage of "golf club" is this one. The golf club as equipment is one of the necessary tools used to play the game - the implement used to strike the ball. No golf club, no golf.
A golf club can come in many different forms, and in several different categories: Woods, irons, hybrids, wedges and putters. Woods include the driver and the fairway woods. Irons are usually sold as a set including the 3-iron, 4-iron, 5-iron, 6-iron, 7-iron, 8-iron, 9-iron and pitching wedge. Hybrids are, well, a hybrid of a wood and an iron, carrying some of the characteristics and funtions of each.
Wedges are also irons, but are often grouped separately, and can include a gap wedge, sand wedge and lob wedge. And the putters are used on putting greens as the last step of playing a golf hole - knocking the ball into the cup.
All of these are golf clubs; any individual one is a golf club.
Beginners who want to know more about the basic form and function of individual golf clubs should take a look at our Meet the Golf Clubs section. More advanced golfers might enjoy our Golf Club FAQ section.
To read about specific makes and models of golf clubs, including reviews, see the equipment news and reviews section.
If you have specific golf club questions to ask, visit our Golf Forum and post your question in the "Equipment - General Discussion" folder.
Golf Club - CourseIf a golf course has the words "golf club" in its title - for example, "Augusta National Golf Club" - that is usually (but not always) an indication that the course in question is a higher-fee, more upscale golf course; and it is sometimes an indication that the course in question is a private, members-only golf course.
For public courses, using the words "golf club" in the course name, rather than "golf course," is a way to imply a certain level of service, of course conditioning, of fees.
On the other hand, sometimes the words "golf club" in a title are nothing but a marketing ploy.
At any rate, in this usage "golf club" refers to a golf course.
The About.com Golf Travel guide has much more about individual upscale resorts and daily fee courses (reviews, rankings, etc.) - the type of courses more likely to be called a "golf club."
Golf Club - AssociationThe third meaning of "golf club" is, well, a club of golfers - a group, an association, an organization. If you join the Podunk Municipal Golf Course Men's Golf Association, then you are a member of a golf club.
Joining this type of golf club is a necessary step for anyone desiring an official golf handicap index (it is also possible to join a "virtual golf club," or a golf club without real estate, in order to establish a handicap).