Despite a worldwide crisis and pandemic, people are still playing golf, including the pros. Sadly, fans aren’t there to watch the action but golf has been a savior for so many players in these strange times.
Some of the best action these days is watching the bulked up Bryson DeChambeau. During the lockdown Bryson didn’t just sit around and get lazy, instead he hit the weights… big time! Now, he’s the longest hitter on the PGA Tour and provides us endless entertainment for fans around the globe.
While his drives are incredible, let’s not forget about his single length irons as well. Everything he does is different from the normal golfers, including his one length irons.
If you’re like most golfers, you might be wondering, “Are single length irons a good idea?”
It’s a great question and not something that a ton of golfers know about or talk about. But when you’re done reading this post, you will know everything about these types of clubs so you can decide if they’re right for your golf game.
Single Length Irons 101
Before diving into these types of irons, let’s look at most traditional sets of irons. In general, players use 7-9 matching irons to make up the majority of their set (known as variable length).
This is usually a 3-PW, 4-PW, or 5-GW or some sort of unique combination of irons. In general, most players use different wedges or can opt for a few of the matching iron sets.
Each of these irons have a variable length.
Irons with lower loft (like a 4 iron) are the longest irons. As you go up in loft, the club shortens, making the wedges the shortest clubs in the bag (other than a putter). This is a traditional iron set and the way that 99% of clubs have been made for the last century.
But in 2021, things have changed slightly. While most golfers (professional and amateurs) are using this type of traditional set, now there are more options than ever. The alternative to the traditional approach is the single length iron.
What are Single Length Irons?
They are just what it sounds like – each golf club is the same length! Meaning, if you have a 4 iron through pitching wedge, each club is the exact same shaft length (these are also commonly referred to as one-length irons as well.
As I mentioned, this is 100% different from the majority of traditional iron sets in the golf industry. Normally, a pitching wedge is much shorter than a 4 iron or a mid iron. But with these sets, all of them are the exact same length.
If you’ve been playing this game for a while, you know how crazy this sounds. To think about having a pitching wedge be the same length as a long iron is a hard concept to get your head around.
In general, all brands that offer single-length irons are around 37-38 inches (which is a normal 7-8 iron length). Most manufacturers allow you to add or remove up to 1-2 inches as well.
In essence, you’re basically playing with a bag of 7 irons with different lofts on each club. Surprisingly, this isn’t a new concept…
History of One Length Irons
While it’s easy to think of these clubs as a new trend (like Bryson and his three protein shakes a day), they’ve actually been around for nearly a century! That’s right, the great Bobby Jones used a type of single length irons to win all four majors in 1930.
The irons from Spalding weren’t exactly “one-length” as every two irons were the same length. Meaning, the 3 & 4 iron were the same, then the 5&6 iron, etc.
Other players in history that used them included Moe Norman, Jack Nix, and others. In fact, Tommy Armour Golf had their own single length clubs in the late 1980s but never gained much popularity and eventually was discontinued.
Bryson began tinkering in 2015 with these irons and realized it was easier to swing as he only had to master one swing. To his physicist mind, this made sense instead of trying to master a swing for each iron.
In 2015, Bryson DeChambeau found a ton of success with these irons. He emerged as a top amateur in the golf world winning both the NCAA Championship and U.S. Amateur Championship in the same year.
The following year, he used them on the Web.com (now the Korn Ferry Tour) to win and on the PGA Tour at the John Deere Classic in 2017. This made him the first PGA Tour winner to ever use a single iron length set!
Advantages of Same Length Golf Clubs
So what’s the advantage of having each club the same length?
For starters, in theory it makes it easier to set up consistently to the golf ball every single time. Since each club is one length, it should make setting up square to the ball easier. This way, you don’t have to worry about changing ball position or adjusting your swing for each club.
The other advantage is the swing itself. Since you’re using the same length iron for every iron in the bag, it should be easier to make a consistent swing. A lot of golfers particularly struggle with mid to long irons (which is why we recommend hybrids) so this switch could help.
But with one-length irons, the long irons should be easier to hit more consistently and have smaller misses. Since long irons have a 7-iron shaft length, it should mean a tighter shot dispersion and avoid those costly big misses.
Players who try out these irons find a more consistent rhythm and tempo instead of rushing the downswing or getting quick with a traditional set.
Disadvantages of One Length Golf Clubs
While there are some advantages to making the switch, there are plenty of drawbacks as well.
First off, it’s going to take some time to get adjusted to these types of irons. This isn’t something you can buy and expect to play your normal golf the following week.
Since they are all the same length but different lofts, this will take some serious time to understand your address position and full swing. Plus, learning how to take some off a club or hit knockdowns could take some time as well.
Don’t forget about distance control either. Since all shafts are the same length, this will have a huge impact on your overall distance with each club. Think about your 5 iron having a 7 or 8 iron shaft, that’s a big shift.
Conversely, having a pitching wedge with a shaft that 1-3 inches longer will also change things as well. You might find it harder to control shorter shots around the green and from 50-100 yards.
Best Single Length Irons in 2021
If you’ve read this far and have a feeling that this unique iron set can help your game, we want to help you make the right choice. Since these are relatively new, a lot of big name club manufacturers aren’t making them (yet).
The total number of options are more limited than a normal iron set but there are still a couple choices of irons to choose from.
Here are a couple of choices:
1. Cobra ONE Length King Speedzone Irons
Arguably the most popular model for these types of irons is the Cobra ONE length iron set. I’m not shocked either as Cobra signed Bryson to their brand and are able to learn from him to make the most effective irons possible.
These are a big step up from the 2017 King F7 one irons. While the King F7 one irons were also a top-rated club, Cobra continues to innovate new technology with single shaft irons.
Every one of these is designed with a 7-iron shaft length and made for golfers of all skill levels. They also made the Golf Digest Gold List in 2020. As Bryon is quoted on the Cobra Golf website, “Every golfer can benefit from the one length irons, from junior golfers all the way to adult golfers.”
- Left and right-hand models.
- Steel and graphite shafts (graphite is an extra fee).
- Forged PWRSHELL face to create a 35% larger sweet spot.
- Extreme weighting on both the heel and toe to help mishits.
- Only 5-GW model.
- Too big of a club design for some players.
These are the best one length irons for high handicappers. If you need to save a little bit of cash, check out the King F7 One irons.
2. Cobra Forged Tec One Length
While the Speedzone irons are geared more toward higher handicap players, they might be too clunky for lower handicaps. But don’t worry, Cobra Golf now offers the King Forged Tec to suit better players who prefer single length.
These also made the Golf Digest Gold list for 2020, here’s why…
- Forged design.
- Left and right-hand models.
- Compact muscle back shape.
- Three steel and graphite shaft options.
- Available in 7 or 8 piece sets (4-PW or 5-GW).
- Smaller club head design makes it easier to shape shots.
- No cavity back means not very forgiving for most golfers.
Also, if you’re looking for a utility club as well, check out the King Utility One Length as well.
Do you have more questions about these irons? If so, we have the answers below.
What pros use single length irons?
Surprisingly, not very many pros use these types of irons in the modern day era. Bryson DeChambeau is the poster boy for this style but a few other professionals and high-level amateurs use them as well.
So why aren’t more of them playing these irons?
I would guess the main reason is that they are a huge shift from a traditional set. Switching from multi-length shafts to one length isn’t something you can adjust too overnight.
For pros, most of them don’t have the time to wait to get used to them. Getting and keeping PGA Tour status is extremely difficult (only 125 cards are given each year) so most players don’t have much time to tinker.
Plus, players with this much skill made it to that level for a reason, it wasn’t just equipment changes. Instead, they’ve put in thousands of hours on all aspects of their game to get it finely tuned. Making a huge shift to a brand-new set of clubs isn’t worth it for the guys who are playing for millions of dollars in earnings.
What length are single length irons?
Most one-length irons are around 37 to 37.5 inches which is a typical 7-iron length. If you are custom ordering them you can usually add or remove an inch as well based on your preference.
What are the best single length irons?
I don’t think you can go wrong with any of the choices above. Similar to a traditional set, you want to like the look and feel of them at address. If you’re a higher handicap golfer, I suggest opting for a cavity back like the Cobra Speedzone.
On the other hand, if you’re a golfer who is consistently shooting in the 70s or low 80s, opt for something like the Forged One Tec. These are more compact and allow you to shape shots but still offer plenty of distance too.
How do you build single length irons?
I would suggest not building your own unless you’re a certified club fitter or have done a ton of club work in the past. Here’s the thing, you can’t just saw down your current set or add on to your shorter clubs. This will mess with the shaft flex for each club and give you wild inconsistencies between each iron.
My advice is to buy these irons ready to go so you don’t have to worry and do any tinkering on your end. This way you can ensure each club is made properly, proper loft gaps, and has the same shaft flex in every iron.
What length are the Cobra one length irons?
The one length cobra irons are 37.25” from 4 iron through sand wedge.
Final Thoughts on Single Length Iron Debate
Are single length irons really worth it?
My answer: It depends on the golfer.
Here’s the thing, having same length irons could help you out if you’re committed to learning and tinkering. This is a big if for most golfers and most players don’t have the time and energy to make such a big adjustment!
If you do make the decision to switch to single length golf clubs, give yourself some time to get adjusted. Remember, changing anything in golf (whether it’s your ball, clubs, or swing) takes time. Don’t buy a new set just because they are like Bryson Dechambeau clubs.
Instead, plan this out strategically and give yourself plenty of time to adjust. Make sure you can get to the range several times a week to get a feel for the new clubs. You’ll also need to adjust your distances and maybe take some time off from competitive play until you’re 100% ready.
Look, if things are going well and you’re not struggling or feeling like taking on a new challenge, don’t do it. Making the switch from traditional to single length should be more of a last resort than a fun new thing to try out. Switching can have a huge impact on your swing and if you decide to go back, it could be a lengthy transition as well.