Golf irons through the years

Mark Stuart-William

13 November 2023


Golf is a very old game, and over recent years, the technology found in golf clubs has changed dramatically.

Centuries ago, golf clubs were carved out of wood, and by the mid-18th century, golfers of the time had access to the first iron clubs. Wooden hickory clubs became the norm for the sport right up until the early 20th century, when steel shafts revolutionized the game.

Can you imagine how difficult it must have been to play with crudely carved hickory clubs? How thrilling it must have felt to pull off just the right shot with one?

What about the world’s best golfers of the time? Do you think playing golf to such a level with comparably worse equipment than we have today would make them more talented than our modern players?

We’ve had an awful lot of technological advances in the past 50 years. Modern research and development as well as the convenience of established supply chains means we have a mass production of new and improved golf clubs with each year that passes.

PING makes fantastic golf irons, and today we’re going to take a trip down memory lane. We’ll be looking at some staple now decades old PING irons and comparing them to this year’s release.


Millennial Aesthetics

You may or may not have been playing golf back in the early 00s, and if you were, this wonderful golf iron from PING might be bringing back some memories.

The head on the G2 features a deep cavity back with lots of surrounding perimeter weighting. The PING brand name appears on an attractive blue stamp on the back of the clubhead, and the insert is a subtle black against the chrome finish.

This club was a real marvel when it was released in 2002. The rounder, more pear-shaped clubhead is an example of how the golf iron as a piece of equipment has transitioned away from the square iron heads that were a staple of the early-to-mid 20th century.

The golf irons we have today don’t only perform better than those of decades-gone, they look better, and help us feel more confident when we’re lining up our approach shots.


Recent Tech


Let’s take our minds back a decade. The G30 that was released in 2014 is the perfect marriage of performance and aesthetics.

The back paneling on this club looks very sleek and refined. The PING brand name now sits in its own section of silver hexagonal paneling with black, blue, and chrome wedges cutting up the stylish clubhead.

PING gave this club plenty of oomph, and if you were playing with it a decade ago, you would have been no doubt taking advantage of the club’s performance-enhancing technologies.

This iron had a wide sole for excellent turf contact, and a low center of gravity that helped pop the ball up in the air to give you plenty of height when you’re hitting into the green. These forgiving clubs were an excellent example of the kind of tech and shape it takes to make a superb distance iron.


Modern Tech

The golf irons of 2023 are pushing the known limits of how far you can hit a golf ball with this type of club. Not only do they give you tremendous distance, they’re also designed to give you lots of forgiveness and are a lot of fun to play with.

PING’s latest iron release, the G430, is the cutting edge of golf iron technology. The iron will give your shots exceptional distance thanks to the flex zones behind the clubface.

This club feels very comfortable to swing through the ball with. The multi-material cavity badge, tungsten toe and shaft tip weighting all contribute to a solid sense of feel.

It also looks fantastic when you’re standing over the ball, and perfectly retains its playing effectiveness throughout the wet winter thanks to the Hydropearl 2.0 chrome finish.

If you have a slightly slower swing speed and you’re looking to improve your game, you’ll benefit from the G430 High Launch irons. This club has an overall 15% lighter build than the standard G430 while retaining all the same tech. This set of irons will give you a real confidence boost as you approach the fairways.

In the pro shop, we’ll be able to tell you all the ins-and-outs of modern golf clubs in detail so you’ll know exactly how your clubs work. If your current set is looking a little weathered, why not consider getting yourself an upgrade? When you come in for a club fitting we’ll take a look at how you play and give you a recommendation of what kind of golf iron would be most appropriate for you.

Contact us today