15 Best Golf Clubs For Beginners: Pros & Cons

The Callaway Strata set is the best golf club for beginners in 2024, beating out their rivals on price, forgiveness, and robust composition.

If you are new to golf, it’s easy to waste money on the wrong club, so be sure to read to the end to discover high-launching, accurate, and consistent clubs.

I started with a 7-iron and putter in my first year. Then, I bought a packaged set for convenience and affordability. Later, I had more control of my flight, launch, and spin and purchased individual clubs tailored to my swing.

That’s why I share the best beginner sets, drivers, woods, irons, wedges, and putters for you to start building your bag.

Top 3 Men’s Best Golf Clubs For Beginners

Best Beginner Golf Set Best Driver Best Irons
Callaway Strata Cleveland Launcher XL Ping G430
  • Affordable
  • Robust set composition
  • Forgiving golf clubs
  • High MOI
  • Expanded sweet spot
  • High launching driver
  • Outstanding forgiveness
  • Extremely fast clubface
  • High launch
  • There are distance gaps between the 3 wood and 5 hybrid
  • Not suited to taller golfers over 6’1”
  • There are distance gaps between the 3 wood and 5 hybrid
  • Not suited to taller golfers over 6’1”
  • Expensive irons for a beginner
  • Firmer feel than I like
Rating 4.6 Stars 4.7 Stars 4.5 Stars

Why You Should Trust Us

best golf clubs for beginners matt callcott stevens strata personal

Our team spends thousands of hours trying out and researching golf equipment to help you take your game to the next level. Here’s our product review process.

I started playing golf when I was 4 when Rory Sabattini’s dad put a 7-iron in my hand. 28 years later, I’m still happy to play this great game and grateful to share what I’ve learned testing and reviewing products.

I have thoroughly researched and evaluated the Srixon irons shared below. Then, an editor reviewed and fact-checked the list. Finally, we conduct regular content audits to update and revise our reviews to ensure you receive the latest information.

To select these clubs, I considered these criteria:

  1. Cost
  2. Forgiveness
  3. Distance
  4. Accuracy
  5. Spin
  6. Launch
  7. Speed
  8. Feel

We can bring these reviews to you through the small commissions we earn if you buy through the links below.

15 Best Golf Clubs for Beginners

1. Best Starter Golf Club Set – Callaway Strata

strata men's golf set

  • Affordable
  • Robust set composition
  • Forgiving golf clubs
  • Easy to carry bag
  • There are distance gaps between the 3 wood and 5 hybrid
  • Not suited to taller golfers over 6’1”
  • Set Composition: D, 3w, 5h, 6 – 9i, PW, SW, Putter, Bag
  • Bag Type: Stand bag
  • Colors: Red, Blue, Purple

The Callaway Strata Complete package is the ideal golf club for beginners. They are affordable, feature every club a first-timer needs, and have a solid composition.

You do not need to break the bank to acquire a bag and all the clubs needed to get you started. I purchased the ladies’ version of the Strata set for my wife two years back, and it was all she needed.

A driver starts the 14-piece set, followed by a humble 3-wood and 5-hybrid. I find the oversized mid and short irons highly forgiving and accurate. Their larger faces made getting clubface on the ball easier for consistent launch, distance, and accuracy.

I further like this set, thanks to including a sand wedge. I often find beginner sets leaving the chipping club out, making it harder for new golfers to thrive in the short game. The blade putter is a simple design that gets the job done. But I find it best suited to players with a minor arch in the putting stroke.

Rating: 4.6

Read More: Best Golf Sets Under $300

2. Best Driver – Cleveland Launcher XL

cleveland launcher xl driver 1

  • High MOI
  • Expanded sweet spot
  • High launching driver
  • Adjustable hosel
  • Not the longest driver
  • The oversized design is off-putting
  • Lofts: 9°, 10°, 12.5°
  • Shafts: Project X Cypher 50

The Cleveland Launcher XL’s oversized, forgiving design makes it perfect for beginners. Its enlarged sweet spot helps maintain ball speed and low spin, leading to consistent distance.

With its maximum moment of inertia (MOI), this driver enhances stability and widens the sweet spot, facilitating rapid ball speed. Coupled with a low and deep center of gravity (CG) it ensures a high, consistent launch.

I asked my 56-year-old playing partner, Martin, to try it and gauge its effectiveness. Despite his above-average swing speed of over 90 mph, he was impressed with the driver’s easy launch. He even considered switching from his Titleist TSi3 for the Launcher XL’s consistency.

The efficient Rebound Frame added extra spring at impact, reducing spin and maintaining velocity for a higher launch. However, this driver’s high trajectory led to softer landings, resulting in less roll than usual.

Rating: 4.7

Read More: Best Drivers For Beginners

3. Most Forgiving Driver – Callaway Paradym X

paradym x driver

  • Maximum forgiveness
  • Less severe slice
  • Slick finish
  • Adjustable hosel
  • Priced at a premium
  • The offset reduces workability
  • Lofts: 9°, 10.5°, 12°
  • Shafts: MCA Aldila Ascent PL Blue, Project X Hzrdus Silver

The Callaway Paradym X helps beginners reduce slice sidespin, launch high, and optimize ball speed on all shots. It epitomizes forgiveness, promoting improved accuracy and consistent distance off the tee.

It is not the longest driver I have hit, but it is consistent and easy to swing.

The large sweet spot forgave my mishits multiple times, helping me preserve contact and ball speed. Despite my off-center strikes, this combination contained my spin rate to get the ball airborne and a satisfactory distance.

The Speed Enhancing Face Cup and Jailbreak A.I. further boosted my ball speed. The duo simultaneously optimized the flex of the face and the stability of the clubhead to increase energy transfer.

Rating: 4.3

4. Longest Driver – Cobra LTDx Max

cobra ltdx max driver 1

  • Optimal distance
  • Lightweight, aerodynamic clubhead
  • Towering launch
  • Explosive clubface
  • Restricts workable flight
  • The larger profile might not appeal to intermediate and experienced golfers
  • Lofts: 9°, 10.5°, 12°
  • Shafts: Project X HZRDUS Smoke iM10, Project X HZRDUS RDX Blue, UST Helium Nanocore

During my experiment, I found beginners hitting the Cobra LTDx Max farther than the other big sticks for first-timers. I noticed that newcomers thrived with the UST Helium Nanocore shaft, owing to its compatibility with slower swing speeds. The increased torque and flex generated greater whip on the downswing.

The added spring helps beginner golfers increase swing speed into impact, optimizing energy transfer to the ball. In my experience, the LTDx Max clubhead’s enhanced leniency and added flex produced straighter, high-launching tee shots.

Inexperienced golfers will appreciate the extra velocity generated off the clubface across the surface. The lightweight titanium chassis is aerodynamic and accelerates down to the ball, and the PWR-COR and H.O.T Face Technology boost energy transfer at impact.

Rating: 4.1

5. Best Fairway Wood – Ping G430 Max

ping g430 max
  • Super forgiving
  • Smooth turf interaction
  • Modifiable hosel
  • Lowers spin
  • Higher price point
  • Very few improvements over the Ping G425
  • Lofts: 15°, 18°, 21°, 24°
  • Shafts: Project X Hzrdus Smoke Red RDX, Mitsubishi Kai’Li White

I am a fan of the forgiveness, smooth turf interaction, and reduced spin of the Ping G430 Max fairway wood. The ball came off the clubface hot on most shots, stemming from the highly flexible Facewrap Technology. This increased distance with my 3-wood, giving me an alternative option to my driver off the tee.

I felt the Carbonfly Wrap complemented the Facewrap tech, as it raised the MOI of the clubhead for greater sturdiness. The stable head with a flexible face maximized energy transfer to promote faster ball speed and low spin.

Ping employed a Trajectory Tuning 2.0 hosel to the fairway wood, allowing you to increase or decrease loft by 1.5° for higher or lower launch.

Rating: 4.5

6. Most Forgiving Fairway Wood – Callaway Rogue ST Max D

rogue st max d fairway

  • Draw bias design
  • Low spin
  • Lenient design
  • Ample distance
  • Only 3 loft options
  • The draw bias is off-putting at address
  • Lofts: 16°, 19°, 22°
  • Shafts: Project X Cypher Black, Fujikura Ventus Blue, New Mitsubishi Tensei AV Blue

I like the Callaway Rogue ST Max D fairway woods for their slice-fighting design, rapid ball speed, and elevated flight. It was easy to strike off the deck, thanks to slick turf interaction, a large sweet spot, and low CG. This helps inconsistent beginners get more clubface onto the ball for consistent results.

Callaway took a different approach to their competitors by pushing the CG lower and forward. I noticed the impact of the shift because my spin rate was marginally lower than usual. Plus, the clean contact and low spin aided my ball speed to maximize distance on approach.

The offset on the Max D proved easier to square the clubface at contact. This might be all mental, but for some reason, I felt I had more time to get my clubface square at impact to deliver straighter shots.

Rating: 4.2

7. Best Hybrid – Tour Edge C522 Hybrid

tour edge hot launch c522 hybrid 1

  • Affordable
  • Wide sweet spot
  • Elevated launch
  • Glare resistant
  • The lightweight shafts do not suit faster swing speeds
  • Nothing else
  • Lofts: 19°, 22°, 25°, 28°
  • Shafts: UST Mamiya HL-SST

During testing, I discovered the Tour Edge C522 hybrid to be the best overall option for beginners. It is affordable, forgiving, and consistent. The Sole Rail Design was excellent, as it prevented my clubhead from ramming into the turf, instead prompting clean glide.

I relished the lighter weight of the graphite shafts, which increased speed on the downswing and spring into impact. This thrust the enlarged sweet spot at my golf ball, imparting optimal pace onto my ball.

My pace was further assisted by the 39 diamond-shaped mini-trampolines across the surface. True to its name, it bounced my ball off the clubface and high into the air. The towering flight produced a sharp descent angle, helping my ball bite rapidly on approach.

Rating: 4.6

8. Most Forgiving Hybrid – Callaway Rogue ST Max OS

rogue st max os hybrid 1

  • Oversized clubhead
  • Swift turf interaction
  • Increased forgiveness
  • Fast clubface
  • More expensive than the C523
  • It reduced workability
  • Lofts: 19°, 21°, 24°, 27°, 30°, 33°
  • Shafts: Mitsubishi Tensei AV Blue 65 HB/IR Graphite

The Callaway Rogue ST Max OS hybrid provides the forgiveness, turf interaction, and distance beginners’ need-on approach. I find the oversized head offers plenty of surface area, making it easier for me to catch the ball in the active zone. A trait new golfers desperately require.

Besides its forgiveness, the Rogue ST Max OS produced blistering ball speed while containing spin. I only tested the 3 and 4 hybrid versions, but Callaway almost makes enough ST Max OS hybrids for a complete golf set. Their hybrid range runs down to a 33° 8 hybrid to maximize forgiveness in the mid-irons.

I thought the refined head profile of the hybrid glided swiftly across the fairway and the rough, promoting a clean strike from every lie. This benefits inexperienced golfers who tend to misjudge their swing and strike behind the ball.

Rating: 4.4

9. Best Irons – Ping G430

ping g430 irons
  • Outstanding forgiveness
  • Extremely fast clubface
  • High launch
  • Optimal spin
  • Expensive irons for a beginner
  • Firmer feel than I like
  • Lofts: 4i – LW
  • Shafts: PING Alta CB Black, PING Alta  Quick

The cavity back structure, perimeter weighting, and an elevated launch made the  Ping G430 irons the best on approach for beginners. It provided sublime forgiveness across the surface, while its flexible clubface amplified my energy transfer. It helped me preserve ball zip with my long irons and enhance friction with my short irons and wedge for increased spin.

I welcomed the explosive ball speed off the clubface, produced by the thinner Hyper 17-4 stainless steel material. My velocity received an extra boost from the PurFlex technology, which catapulted the face into the ball for greater energy transfer.

High launch and ball flight ensued after the ball left the clubface, resulting from the low and deep CG setup. The high flight prompted a steep descent in my low to mid irons, causing my golf balls to bite relatively quickly on approach.

Rating: 4.4

10. Best Budget Irons – Wilson Staff Launch Pad 2 Irons

launch pad 2 irons 1

  • Superior forgiveness
  • Prevents clubhead digging
  • Affordable
  • Ant scratch finish
  • Not the prettiest irons
  • Limited alternative shaft options
  • Lofts: 4i – GW
  • Shafts: Project X Evenflow, KBS MAX Ultralite

Beginners will welcome the low price tag, increased forgiveness and effortless launch of the Wilson Staff Launch Pad 2 irons. This super game improvement set of clubs features hybrid heads to increase the sweet spot, lower the CG, and boost the MOI.

Wilson optimized the sole of these hybrid irons, and I had little trouble getting the club to the ball. The sole glided smoothly across the rough, keeping my clubheads out to optimize ball speed. I also found these best irons for beginners incredibly easy to launch, thanks to the low mass and increased stability.

The Staff Launch Pad 2 clubs are offered in both graphite and steel shafts. However, I suggest beginners stick to the flexible graphite models.

Rating: 4.5

11. Most Forgiving Irons – Callaway Rogue ST Max OS Lite

rogue st max os lite iron

  • Lightweight components
  • Encourages faster clubhead speed
  • Exceptional forgiveness
  • Promotes straighter flight
  • The high offset reduces workability
  • The oversized profile is not the prettiest design
  • Lofts: 4i – SW
  • Shafts: Project X Cypher Black 50 HB/IR Graphite

The lightweight components and flexible clubface make the Callaway Rogue ST Max OS Lite optimal for slow-swing-speed new golfers. My senior playing partner found the graphite shafts easy to unload from the top of the swing, maximizing his velocity into contact.

Another benefit for beginners is the significant offset. I’m not a fan, as it is an eyesore and reduces workability. However, it helps inexperienced players square the clubface at contact for straighter flight, and greater accuracy.

I was pleasantly surprised by the feel of these irons, especially on heel and toe mishits. The Urethane Microspheres dampened the vibrations, keeping my palms feeling soft through impact.

Rating: 4.0

12. Best Wedges – Cleveland CBX Full Face 2

cbx full face 2 wedge

  • Maximum surface area
  • Consistent spin
  • Forgiving sole
  • Increased friction
  • The oversized face will not appeal to every golfer
  • Pricey for a beginner’s wedge
  • Shafts: Project X Catalyst 80 Spinner
  • Lofts: 50° – 60°

Beginners will appreciate the unusually large, lenient surface area of the Cleveland CBX Full Face 2 wedge. The expanded clubface allows for more grooves running from hosel to toe, generating consistent spin. This setup saved me on a few off-center strikes, as the grooves still gripped my ball and transferred spin to the cover.

The HydrOZip laser-milled pattern did wonders for my consistency and friction in the morning dew. It shed water from the grooves at contact, still delivering satisfactory revolutions. Speaking of spin, I generated serious revolutions on full-pitch wedge and pitch shots, thanks to the deep, narrow UltiZip grooves.

Added to its consistent spin was a forgiving sole design, which increased bounce. I found it handy in the bunker as it helped get the club through the sand and under my ball. This is a vital feature since many new golfers struggle in the bunker.

Rating: 4.8

13. Best Budget Wedges – Tour Edge Hot Launch E522 Wedge

tour edge hot launch e522 wedge 1

  • Entry-level price tag
  • Full face grooves
  • Minimal turf interaction
  • Consistent spin
  • Limited loft options
  • No alternative stock shafts
  • Lofts: 52°, 56°, 60°
  • Shafts: Mitsubishi Fuubuki HL, KBS Max

The Tour Edge Hot Launch E522 is an appealing budget wedge for a beginner golf club set. It minimizes grass interaction and amplifies contact for improved greenside spin. I felt the Houdini Sole was the star performer, significantly reducing contact with the sand and rough.

The magical sole also carried a lower CG, making it easier for me to open the clubface. Opening the face can be challenging for beginners due to the awkward setup, but Tour Edge eradicates that worry.

I loved the full-face groove construction on the E522 for its consistency. The ball still spun and launched even when I struck it towards the heel or toe. As a novice, you will likely mishit several chips, but full-face grooves will mitigate the damage for better results.

Rating: 4.5

14. Best Putter – Odyssey Ten 2 Ball Putter

odyssey ten putter 1

  • High MOI
  • Generates smooth roll
  • Enlarged alignment aid
  • Built for minimal arch
  • Expensive putter
  • Not suited to beginners with heavily arched strokes
  • Head: Mallet
  • Hosel: Full Shaft

The perimeter weighting, delicate feel, control and roll make the Odyssey Ten 2 Ball the best putter for beginners. It is the best flat stick for starter golfers owing to its leniency, control, and roll. I find the 2-ball alignment aid improves beginners’ aim awareness on the green, encouraging greater accuracy.

In my experience, the face-balanced putter helped me resist twisting the face through the stroke, keeping it level at contact. The full shaft construction suits players like myself, who produce minimal arch or rotation in the stroke.

Odyssey included their famed White Hot Insert in the putter face, which performed as expected. It softened each touch, revved up my friction, and produced consistent topspin and clean roll off the putter face.

Rating: 4.4

15. Best Putter For Arched Strokes – TaylorMade Spider GT Notchback

spider gt putter nb

  • Maximum MOI
  • Smooth roll
  • Suits moderate to heavy arched strokes
  • Rich finish
  • Expensive
  • Minimalist alignment aid
  • Head: Mid Mallet
  • Hosel: Short Slant

The 30° of toe hang, forgiving head and clean roll make the TaylorMade Spider GT Notchback the best putter for beginners with arched strokes. It consists of 30° of toe hang, helping arched strokes bring the face square at contact to start the ball online.

Although the short slant hosel doesn’t suit my stroke, I appreciated the stability and forgiveness of the putter. The dual tungsten weights that stretch from the heel to toe stabilize the flat stick at impact, keeping the face square.

With the face squared, the Pure Roll² insert takes over, connecting silver aluminum bars to the ball. The result is a cleanly rolling golf ball that produces limited skid, ensuring optimal distance control on birdie and par putts.

Rating: 4.2

How To Choose The Best Golf Club Sets For Beginners

Do I Need A Full Set To Get Started?

No, you don’t need a full set to start. I began playing golf with just a 7-iron and a putter. The Callaway Strata, the best golf club set for beginners, includes only 10 clubs but covers your long, mid, and short game.

Do Club Sizes Matter If I’m A Beginner?

Yes, club size matters, as it impacts your posture, swing speed, clubface control, ball striking, accuracy, and distance. As a junior, my buddy used too long irons for him, and he constantly sliced or faded the ball. His address position, posture, and swing plane were off.

In his early teenage years, he got fitted for clubs, and the pro adjusted the length of his stainless steel irons. This improved his control, setup, and swing plane, and two years down the line, he was nearing a scratch handicap.


Should A Beginner Get Fitted?

Yes, a beginner should get fitted to understand better what excels for their swing. Getting fitted gives you insight into your clubhead speed, ball speed, distance, and accuracy. I find it's the fastest way for beginners to get up to speed with the technicalities of swing mechanics and golf clubs.

What Clubs Should Be In A Beginner Set?

A beginner set should include a driver, a fairway wood, a hybrid, four irons, a pitching and sand wedge, and a putter. These clubs cover every aspect of your game from tee to green without requiring 14 clubs.

Do Golf Clubs Make A Difference For Beginners?

Yes, golf clubs make a difference in a beginner's shot's forgiveness, launch consistency, distance, and accuracy. If a beginner plays less forgiving blade irons, mishits will be punished, and they will lose significant distance and accuracy.
However, forgiving game-improvement golf clubs have a wider sweet spot designed to optimize consistency.

Why Do I Need Clubs Specifically Aimed At Beginners?

You need clubs specifically aimed at beginners for their forgiveness, high launch, and slice-fighting offset. Beginner golf clubs are designed to mitigate inconsistent ball striking and still help you deliver accuracy and ample distance from tee to green.

Which Golf Club Brand Is Best For Beginners?

I find Callaway the best golf club brand for beginners, owing to their abundance of options. Callaway Golf stocks many highly forgiving novice golf clubs built for slow, medium, and fast swing speeds. This means they cover the bases of young, middle-aged, and senior beginners.


The best golf clubs for beginners in 2024 show a trend of forgiving models designed to simplify the game for novice golfers.

I found the best beginner drivers, fairway woods, hybrids, and irons contained offset, low CG, high MOI, and expanded sweet spots. These features combined to boost distance and accuracy off the tee and on approach.

Wedges for new golfers continue the theme of forgiveness, owing to their full-face grooves. The wider grooves optimize spin and control on heel and toe mishits. Putters also encourage leniency with oversized mallet heads, stable construction, and smooth-rolling inserts.

Despite the wealth of top individual clubs, my best recommendation for beginners is to consider a complete set. The best golf club set for beginners is the Callaway Strata 14-piece package. If you demand affordability and desire leniency, look at the set on Amazon.

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Matt has played golf since he was 4 years old and has written over 150 articles at GolfSpan since 2021. Matt specializes in product reviews using his postgraduate degree in Sports Marketing from Johan Cruyff Institute. Matt has a handicap index of 10.8 and currently plays weekly at Pilar Golf Course near his home in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He also loves his Callaway Odyssey Exo Rossie putter and likes a pepper steak pie with curry gravy at the turn. You can connect with him on LinkedIn

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