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How Far Should You Hit Your Irons? Key Factors & Tips to Add Distance

There are several factors that impact how far your irons travel. The biggest of those factors is clubhead speed. The more clubhead speed you have, the further your shot will go.

Here’s the interesting thing.

We can look at the average distances for your clubhead speed and determine if you are missing out on yards.

Various factors, such as a poor wrist angle at impact, an incorrect shaft or even a golf ball, and a lack of use of ground forces, can make you a less efficient ball striker—even if you have speed!

Let’s start by taking a look at how far you should be hitting your irons, then we can correct some issues that could be causing your lack of distance.

Maximize Your Iron Distance (Key Takeaways)

If you don’t have time to dive into all of this information about how far you should hit your irons, here are the most important takeaways.

  • Your swing speed is the most important factor in determining how far your iron shots go.
  • Wrist angles at impact that are too extended instead of being flexed can cause a golf ball to lose yards due to a slightly open face.
  • Golfers who utilize ground forces can get extra speed, more distance, and consistency.
  • Playing with the right equipment can give you extra yardage- custom golf fittings can be a good idea if your yardages fall below average.
Take a 2-minute Quiz and Step Up Your Game!

1. What do you want to improve in your full swing?

How Far Should My Irons Go?

The table below will give you a general idea of how far your iron should go based on your swing speed. The table uses driver swing speed to estimate 7 iron distance.

We use driver swing speed in the first table as that is the speed almost all golfers know about their game. Most players are unaware of their iron swing speed, so it’s easiest to use this number, and it translates fine when adjusted properly for a 7 iron swing.

In addition, we have given you just one number for the 7 iron. However, you can add 10 yards or subtract 10 yards for each club in the bag. For instance, if a 7 iron says it should be 150 yards, your 8 iron would be 140 yards.

Once you determine how far you should be hitting your irons based on swing speed, determine if there are any gaps. Do you hit your irons as far as you should? Are your short irons fine and then your long irons lose distance?

Driver Swing Speed (mph)7 Iron Distance (yards)

If you do know your swing speeds for your irons, you can use this table as a general guide:

7 Iron Swing Speed (mph)7 Iron Distance (yards)

What to Do When Your Golf Irons Don’t Go Far Enough?

If your iron distances seem to be lacking a bit, there are a few things that could be causing that.

Getting more distance from your irons should equate to hitting more greens in regulation. When golfers often miss greens, it’s because they come up short.

Use these tips to gain some extra distance in your irons and beat the average distances for your swing speed.

Get the Wrist Flexed at Impact

Wrist action at impact is an important factor when trying to gain distance with your irons.

After studying more than 1,000,000 golf swings with HackMotion, we have determined that the players who maximize distance are those who have flexion in the lead wrist at impact.

too much extension at impact position using HackMotion app

There is no exact angle of wrist flexion required to hit a perfect iron shot.

However, we do know the exact pattern that adds to more distance.

This pattern includes no added extension in the lead wrist from setup to the top of the backswing. From the top of the backswing through impact, extension continually decreases to the point that there is often 10 to 20 degrees less extension at impact than there was at setup.

To ensure correct wrist action, you’ll need the HackMotion to help you measure these positions.

This data about your wrists can translate into more distance off the tee with the irons and more consistency around the greens.

Utilize the Ground to Help You

The ground should be your friend when trying to gain distance with the irons. You’ll have to push off the ground through the impact position.

If you can do that, it creates a little extra burst of speed to increase your total distance with your golf irons.

Take some practice swings, focusing specifically on pushing down and through the ground as you approach impact.

You’ll want to feel that weight transfer to your lead side, but this extra push is really what helps ensure a clean and pure ball-turf interaction.

Consider Swing Speed Training

We can’t talk about more distance without at least bringing up the idea of speed training. Hitting the golf ball further is often a direct result of swinging the club faster.

You’ll want to gain speed the right way. Swinging weighted clubs can throw off your tempo and timing, leaving you prone to injury.

Instead, consider top golf swing speed training devices like SuperSpeed or Rypstick, which help you work through a program that increases swing speed at a pace that you can manage. Overall, physical fitness is another great way to improve swing speed.

Take a 2-minute Quiz and Step Up Your Game!

1. What do you want to improve in your full swing?

Get a Custom Golf Club Fitting

Custom golf club fittings ensure that your clubs are the perfect fit for your golf swing. Playing with the right equipment will get you more distance.

However, if you are on a budget, consider these other golf swing fixes before you purchase the latest equipment.

We will let you in on a little secret. Sometimes, the irons you are being sold that supposedly fly so much further are actually just stronger lofted than the irons you are playing with. You may get more distance, but you could also have a harder time controlling the flight.

There are no shortcuts in golf, and that includes gaining distance!

Check Your Angle of Attack

The angle of attack for your golf driver and irons is different. The irons require a steeper angle of attack with more interaction with the ground. When you hit down and through an iron shot, you’ll compress it and maximize your distance.

One of the best ways to work on this is to place a golf tee a few inches in front of your golf ball. The goal is to hit the ball and clear this tee.

If you can do that, you prove you were hitting the ball as part of your downswing. This is a great drill to warm up with on the range and use as you become a better ball striker.

Stay Over the Golf Ball

To hit consistent iron shots you’ll want to stay with your head directly over the golf ball.

Many amateur golfers attempt to take a big turn away from the golf ball and this creates issues with inconsistency and poor club and ball interaction.

Instead, stay with your head directly over the ball.

Use an alignment stick in the ground to test your head position. Start with your head directly over the alignment stick. Now, turn or pivot around this stick and then strike the ball clean.

You’ll notice that it’s easier to return the club to a position behind the ball every single time. In addition, the ability to keep some forward lean in the shaft is also much easier from this position.

Wear your HackMotion as you practice this drill, and you may also find that your wrist action is more consistent without the extra sliding and lateral movement in the shot.

Final Thoughts

More distance in golf will help you shoot lower scores. However, to determine if you are even missing out on distance, you’ll have to start by knowing how far you should hit your irons.

See if there are issues in the distances you are getting, and start by analyzing your wrist position at impact. HackMotion can help you gain distance in your irons by making minor tweaks in your swing.

It’s not about swinging harder or faster; sometimes, it’s about swinging smarter!

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Brittany Olizarowicz
written by Britt Olizarowicz

Britt Olizarowicz is a golf professional who has played the game for more than 30 years. In addition to loving the game of golf, Britt has a degree in math education and loves analyzing data and using it to improve her game and the games of those around her. If you want actionable tips on how to improve your golf swing and become a better player, read her guides.