Hybrid clubs have grown in popularity thanks mainly to one fact: It’s easier to make solid contact with a hybrid than a long iron.
Hybrids have other benefits, too. For example, they slide through thick rough without snagging, and make a great option for long chip shots near the green.
Add one more plus to the hybrid column: Higher ball flight and softer landings.
In general, each hybrid is numbered to match the iron it’s meant to replace. A 3-hybrid, for example, produces shots of similar distance to a 3-iron. The difference is, a ball hit with the hybrid will fly higher than one struck with the iron.
A few factors account for the extra lift. For one, the hybrid’s deeper clubface places the center of gravity (COG) lower and farther from the ball. The lower the COG, the higher the ball will launch from the club.
Hybrid clubs typically feature larger sweet spots than their corresponding irons, and a well-struck shot flies higher than a mishit. Finally, most hybrids feature graphite shafts while iron shafts are usually steel. Graphite is lighter, generating greater clubhead speed and a loftier trajectory.