A question many people new to the game of golf ask is, “how many golf clubs am I allowed to carry in my bag”? It’s a valid and important question with consequences, benefits, and pros and cons.
How Many Clubs Can I Carry?
According to the rules of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, golfers can carry a maximum of 14 clubs in their golf bags. You might not know that as a golfer, you can choose to put any clubs you like in your bag, meaning you’re not required to carry every club.
Some PGA Tour players have been known to carry two drivers in their bags for a tournament, while others have carried no driver but opted for an extra fairway wood or long iron.
If you’re playing a round of golf with friends, then I’m pretty sure no one could care less if you carried 15 or 16 clubs, but bear in mind, when it comes to tournament play, 14 clubs are the maximum. Be sure to count how many clubs are in your golf bag before you tee off because you will be penalized if you have more than 14 clubs.
14 Clubs In The Bag: What Are They?
There is no hard and fast rule about the type of golf clubs that golfers must carry in their golf bags. Generally, most manufacturers and brands follow the same setup for clubs.
If you were to buy a standard golf set from a pro shop and look inside, it would probably look like this:
- One Driver
- A 3 and 5-wood
- A Hybrid club
- Long iron 5 through 9
- 3 Wedges and a
I would note that many golf sets do not include a putter, meaning you’ll have to choose a putter separately.
What Clubs Do PGA Pros Carry?
Typically, PGA Tour pros carry a driver and at least a couple of fairway woods. Many professionals still carry carefully chosen long irons to help them penetrate the wind. Pros also carry four wedges; a pitching wedge, gap wedge, lob wedge, sand wedge, and then, of course, a putter.
Fairway woods vary dramatically from brand to brand, so choosing the right fairway woods can be quite daunting. Start by practicing and testing several manufacturers before spending your hard-earned cash.
How Many Golf Clubs Come In A Set?
There is no “one” number of golf clubs that you’ll find in a golf set. However, most manufacturers and brands generally sell sets that comprise between 10 and 14 clubs. You can find full-sets, half-sets, juniors sets, lady’s sets, and senior sets.
Many golfers will buy a half-set and then choose their own wedges from brands they are loyal to. I did this. I bought a set of Callaway irons but then separately purchased four Cleveland wedges to put in my bag. For beginners, I recommend buying a complete set of clubs as it’s much easier and takes the guesswork out of it.
Why Do I Need So Many Clubs?
I get this a question lot from beginner golfers, and to be honest, it’s a fair one; Why are there 14 different clubs? Every golf club has what is called a bounce, loft, an offset, and a specific club face angle.
For example, long irons have minimal loft meaning the ball stays lower through the air but travels further. Short irons, on the hand, have a higher loft making it easier to get the ball airborne quickly. The driver has the lowest loft, while clubs like lob and sand wedges have the highest.
Every golfer has a different swing, so ensuring you choose the right club for the right time is essential to shooting a good score.
Is Carrying Two Putters In Your Golf Bag Ok?
While, in theory, you can carry two putters, I would strongly advise against it. Putting is already hard enough as it is. Adding another putter during the round means you have to adapt to the different weight, size and shape of the head and also the look, which can be off-putting.
Find a putter that you like and stick with it. If you want to add two of the same club, think about adding two drivers with different lofts. PGA Tour pro Phil Mickelson has been known to do this during his career. Phil is recognized as one of the greatest golfers of all time.
How Many Golf Balls Can You Carry?
Unlike the rule for golf clubs which limits you to carrying no more than 14 clubs, the sky is the limit when it comes to how many golf balls you can take. I take between 6-10, but in saying that, I always ensure, I keep a big batch in my golf bag just in case.
PGA Tour pros use up to 20 balls each round, and many of them play new golf balls on each hole. Granted, however, those PGA Tour pros are sponsored, so using that many balls costs them nothing. An amateur golfer using 12 Titleist Pro V1s would cost close to $80; a pretty expensive round of golf.