Few people appreciate the amount of innovation and technology that goes into making golf a club. Modern clubs are made of various materials including wood, iron or hybrid and have multiple components. Normally, clubs consist of a shaft with a grip and a club head.
Initially all golf clubs were made of wood. The material was soft enough not to damage the stuffed leather golf balls used in the 1800 and was easy to shape. Club heads were made of dog wood, beech, pear, apple or permission. Shafts were made of different types of wood including hickory and orangewood, while grips were fashioned from leather strips wrapped around the shafts.
When the gutta-percha golf balls were introduced in the mid-1800s, golfers no longer needed to worry about damaging balls and began using clubs with iron heads. Iron heads were considered ideal since they could be shaped into sharply inclined striking faces without losing strength and were great for making high trajectory shots.
With time, most players realized that getting the conventional long irons-1, 2, 3 and 4 irons- airborne and hitting the ball consistently was a challenge. As a result, hybrids golf clubs were invented to make life on the course easier for players.
Hybrid clubs are a cross between iron and fairway wood. A typical hybrid features a head resembling a fairway wood head. The head is usually shallower and does not extend backwards from the face unlike a fairway wood. The hybrid’s club head must have an iron-like lie angle which gives it a flatter sole compared to a fairway wood club.
Hybrids tend to be highly versatile and are commonly used for long shots from a difficult situation. They are also used for most shots where the player would normally use iron but would be uncomfortable to do so. Since hybrids can help the golfer to get out of tricky situations such as tight ties, TaylorMade Golf decided to market their brand of hybrid golf clubs as Rescue clubs. While hybrids are not compulsory, even the best players in the world are now using them.