Five-Iron Distance: Where Do You Rank

When it comes to long clubs, you have all kinds of options when it comes to what you choose to put in your bag. 

If you’re a traditionalist, maybe you still carry long irons.

But maybe you struggle to hit long irons consistently and get them up in the air, and you’ve opted for hybrids. 

Even still, some golfers have gone to fairway woods like seven, nine, and 11-woods to replace their long irons. 

No matter what you choose for your long clubs, you’ve probably spent some time wondering how far your distance stands up to other golfers out there.

For purposes of this article, we’re going to take a look at a traditional five-iron.

What is a Five-Iron?

If you’re new to the game of golf, you might still be trying to figure out what all the clubs in your bag are called and what they’re used for. 

A five-iron is considered a long iron that’s used on long approach shots and for tee shots lengthy par threes.

Its loft is stronger than most of the other irons in your bag.  As a result, it flies lower but is meant to go farther. 

What’s Loft?

Loft is a term that describes the angle of a golf club’s face when its sole sits flush against the ground.  All your clubs have different lofts because they’re designed to travel different distances.

What’s the Loft of My Five-Iron?

For years, the typical loft of a five-iron was 28 degrees.  While this is still the case with most five-irons, some have lofts of either 24 or 26 degrees depending on the manufacturer.

If you have distance or game improvement irons, there’s a good chance your five-iron has 24 degrees of loft. 

What Is the Average Five-Iron Distance?

If you watch golf on television, you’ll see players on the PGA Tour hitting five-irons in excess of 230 yards depending on the conditions.  But keep in mind these are the best players in the world and they’re finely tuned athletes. 

Recent studies of golfers of all abilities have found that male golfers average hitting their five-iron 160 yards, while females average 140 yards. 

But remember, these are averages across the entire spectrum of golfers that ranges from the best players in the world to those just starting out.

How Far Do the Pros Hit a Five-Iron?

Like we stated above, some Pros hit their five-irons 230 yards or more.  However, the average distance for a Pro to hit a five-iron is 205 yards.  Of course, there’s plenty of variation around this number in either direction.

What’s the Fairway Wood Equivalent of a Five-Iron?

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, not all golfers play with a traditional five-iron.  In fact, I’d venture to guess the majority of senior golfers have replaced their five-iron with a hybrid or fairway wood.

So, what’s the fairway wood five-iron equivalent?  An 11-wood. 

Even though 11-woods can have as much as five less degrees of loft, they have proven to fly about the same distance in testing. 

What Is the Hybrid Equivalent of a Five-Iron?

Hybrids have corresponding numbers to long irons.  Hence a five-hybrid being the equivalent of a five-iron. 

Five-hybrids have a loft of anywhere from 24 to 27 degrees depending on the manufacturer, and whether they’re a men’s or women’s hybrid. 

What Are the Best Five Irons I Can Buy?

If you want to stick with a traditional five-iron, below are our recommendations for the best ones on the market. 

Ping G425 Five-Iron

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For a long time, Ping has made some of the most forgiving golf clubs in the game.  The G425 is no exception.  Perimeter weight expands the sweet spot, so golfers get more forgiveness on mishits.  This feature also adds stability through impact. 

A wide sole improves turf interaction and gives players added relief on both fat and thin shots.  The top rail undercut in the G425 lowers the CG to help golfers get the ball in the air.

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TaylorMade Sim2 Max Five-Iron

For golfers looking for maximum distance, TaylorMade is the brand to turn to. Their Sim2 Max irons are some of the hottest ever created.

Cap Back construction and the Thru Slot Speed Pocket give golfers both extraordinary distance and maximum forgiveness.  From an aesthetic standpoint, the Echo Dampening System improves both sound and feel on mishits.

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Callaway Apex 21 Five-Iron

When it comes to technological innovation, Callaway is at the forefront.  The Apex 21 irons have a Flash Cup Face that was inspired by AI.  The design feature enhances ball speed and explosive distance is the result. 

Ample tungsten in the club lowers the CG to help golfers get the ball in the air with ease.  The face is inserted with urethane microspheres that push the legal limits of COR.  Here again, golfers are on the receiving end of exceptional distance.

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Conclusion

Golfers come in all different shapes, sizes, and ability levels.  As such, the distances each golfer hits their five-iron vary greatly. 

This article is designed to give you an idea of the average distance most golfers hit this club. 

Whether you are above or below the average isn’t something you should take personally.  Whatever the case may be, investing in the right equipment and taking some lessons is the fastest way to gain more distance, become more consistent, and have more fun.

 
Paul Liberatore
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Paul Liberatore

Founder of Golfers Authority

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