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Fairway Woods - Complete Guide for Beginners

Regardless of your skill level, having some fairway woods can really help you improve your game. Over the years, using Taylormade fairway woods and from other companies has become quite common. There are many different options and companies to choose from. That makes it hard to narrow down which fairway wood suits your requirements the most. It’s definitely worth the effort, and in the end you will be amazed with the experience and professionalism. That’s what truly makes fairway woods stand out.

What makes fairway woods different?

In many ways, fairway woods are very similar to drivers. It’s not the same when you compare fairway woods vs hybrids for example. But drivers are very similar to them, yet there are differences here. The drivers have large heads, a fairway wood has a size from 140 to 180 cc, instead of the 440 cc you find on a driver.

On top of that, fairway woods have a shallow face when compared to a driver. What this does is it maintains a low gravity center. It helps you because getting the ball airborne from the rough or fairway becomes a lot easier and more convenient. Another thing to consider is the fact that many fairway woods have soles that make it easier to hit from the rough or divots. That’s hard to do even with a more modern driver, so it’s definitely going to bring in various differences here.

When is it a good idea to use fairway woods?

The fairway woods best circumstances differ based on the player. Normally, you want to use fairway woods when you are off the tee or on short par 4s, maybe even for long approach shorts on par 5s, or if you are in a fairway bunker.

However, there are also people that use fairway woods around the greens. It’s actually a very good idea to experiment and try out something new. If you are around the green and your wedge is not working exactly the way you want, then a fairway wood is actually a great option. It will still get the job done, and the benefits are nothing short of incredible.

What degree should you go for?

Ideally, you want to have multiple degrees and space these out to see what works for you. The 3 wood is a very good option for pretty much any player, and it’s certainly something everyone needs in their golf bag. The main focus is to think about your swing speed. The loft for these is 13 to 15 degrees. The 5-wood for example, comes with a loft range between 18 and 21 degrees.

You can also find the 18 degree fairway wood, which some consider the strong 5 wood or the standard 4 wood. It will depend based on the face characteristics and design. The 7 wood is ideal because it can help you hit the ball between 175 and 190 yards. It’s a good idea to have the best fairway woods ping, and you can have a 3 wood, 5 wood and a 7 wood. The gap of 15 yards between every club adds versatility and it also makes it easier to experiment with stuff, while also bringing in a sense of clarity and value all the time. That’s what makes it an ideal option to experiment and see which ones work for you.

What material is ideal for the fairway wood heads?

Steel is one of the most common because it offers stability and it works great even for the smaller clubs. It’s also inexpensive when compared to other materials, so it’s totally something to keep in mind. Titanium is a very powerful material and it will help deliver more distance if you use a spring like effect from the thinner face. The fact that it’s lighter also means you will have more forgiveness and stability.

Composite materials are also common because they are very light, but they can’t be used for the sole or club face. With that in mind, they deliver the lightest crown on the modern fairway woods. It’s a great way to lower the gravity center, and you can have more weight towards the sole. Getting that stability really helps, especially if you are a newcomer for example.

The ideal length for fairway woods

What you will need to keep in mind about fairway woods is that length differs based on the type of fairway woods you use. So once you know what are fairway woods used for, you do want to figure out the right length. The shaft of a 3 wood will be 42 to 43 inches, 5 woods and 7 woods will have 41 and 40 inches each. You do want to have a custom fit because it adds to the overall value and you will find that it delivers much better results in the end. It does take some trial and error to make it work, but overall you will find that this conveys the benefits and quality that you may need, just try to take that into consideration.


Many times, steel shafts were the most common, however during the last 20 years, graphite shafts have become pretty much the ideal option. Graphite is lighter and you can swing quickly. Steel is still ok, if you want to use it. The industry moved to graphite because everyone wants higher speeds and lighter shafts, so obviously the benefit is definitely there.

Can fairway woodsbe adjustable?

This might sound strange to some, but yes, the fairway woods are indeed adjustable, if you need them to be. The great thing once you know how many fairway woods are there is that you will see many of them can actually be adjusted. Depending on the model, you can adjust the lie, loft and also the face angle. Which is great, because it adds more versatility and style into the mix, while eliminating many of the potential concerns that can arise. That alone truly makes it a wonderful approach for all users.

Face angle

The face angle is basically the angle that the fairway wood face has at address. If you have a square face, then that one is perpendicular to the target. The open club face on the other hand is lowering lot, but if you have a closed clubface, that adds loft. Needless to say, the face angle is a very personal choice. With that in mind, the thing you can do is to experiment and see what really works for you and what you can adjust if you want. It’s a great idea to experiment and see which one is better to suit your requirements. In the end, this is a wonderful option because you have plenty of versatility and quality, and the style itself can really complement what you need.

Movable weights

While not a lot of fairway woodshave movable weights, some of them deliver this kind of stuff. The reason why it might be an option for you is because you can choose the location of the weight in your clubhead. In doing so, you are changing the ball flight, which is certainly a thing to take into consideration. It’s more of a fine tuning thing than anything else, but it does work and it certainly offers that style and quality that you may need. It’s totally worth giving it a try, and in the end the potential can be nothing short of amazing.

Standard or tour?

Tour units are usually made out of titanium and they can deliver less weight and better accuracy, not to mention maximum distance. It’s a great idea to check these out and give them a try, and with that approach the experience can indeed be second to none. Which is exactly the thing you want to pursue. Standard fairway woods are ok too, but they are not as reliable when compared to the other options. Of course, if you play for leisure and don’t really care about other things, this is actually going to work better than you might expect.

Should you use fairway woods for tee shots only?

Generally, fairway woods are great especially for tee shots. With that in mind, with some help and custom fitting and testing, you can find the right lie angle, shaft flex and loft that works in your case. There’s no one size fits all here, and that’s the thing that truly makes fairway woods such a great option. It will take a bit to get used to some of this stuff, but in the end it’s totally worth it.

Even if you have trouble hitting fairway woods at first, it all comes down to practice. For example, if you are a high handicapper, the fairway woods are great because there are some models with a low gravity center and a sole that’s wide enough to add stability and quality.

What companies deliver the best fairway woods?

There are a variety of right hand fairway woods you can buy, just like left hand fairway woods. The ladies fairway woods in particular are a great option. Of course, when it comes to brands, the Taylormadefairway woods are very reliable, just like the Cobra fairway woods or the Callaway fairway woods. You can also find custom fairway woods too.


As you can see, finding the right fairway woods for you can be quite challenging, especially as a beginner. We recommend following these guidelines and you will find it a lot easier to narrow down what option suits your needs the most. Rest assured that fairway woods are a great addition to your toolset, since they are versatile and you will learn how to use them in no time!

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