Since I broke my left wrist very badly three years ago, after foolishly hitting at a ball, resting on a camouflaged chunk of rock buried in deep rough with a PW, I was thereafter never able to hit long irons (3, 4, 5 and even 6) or take any kind of divot. I was out for six weeks. My iron play was in shambles, to the extent that I considered giving up the game - something really unimagineable for an old timer like me, but true. Within 18 months I fell from an 8 to a 17. Hitting greens in regulation became a fairy tale. I could drive and I could putt, that was it.
Yet hybrid technology provided me with an alternative; not magic, but something I could use to continue playing. I found that the 'sweeping' motion of hybrid play provided me with the ability to pick the ball clean, without the need to 'hit down' on it and taking divot as one would do with most irons. Systematically my long irons were replaced by hybrids: 3 iron > 19 degree Titleist 910h; 4 iron > 21 degree Titleist 913h; 5 iron > 24 degree Titleist 913h; and 6 iron > 27 degree Titleist 910h. The distances I get from these clubs are very similar than those I got with irons and the trajectory slightly lower.
Hybrids also affected my (highly suspicious) short game in a positive way. I have gradually learned to use these clubs to run the ball onto the green with relative precision, even from problematic lies. I also hit the hybrids far better from the second cut or semi-rough than I did with irons. I punch them better and keep them lower from below trees.
So, the hybrids work for me. They are, for me, versatile. They get the job done. I can appreciate why it is also called a 'utility club'.
I will highly unlikely be a single digit ever again, but at least I can still break 90 relatively often. I don't know if I'd still be playing my normal two rounds per week if it was not for the alternative hybrids provided.
I still use a 7, 8 and 9 iron, but replaced the shafts with stiff flex graphite shafts in an attempt to create the same feeling, possibly the sensation of the weight of the club, on the irons as on the hybrids.
I also carry a 3W and a 5W. In effect I have double the amount of hybrids and woods in my bag than irons.
Now, after this long story, my eventual question: Am I the only one? I have over the past three years never played with any person, ladies included, who had more hybrids than irons in their bag. I see some tour players carrying two hybrids, but no more - I think only KJ Choi and YE Yang carry three, and then only on some courses.
I realize that few things in golf could be considered normal: but is this normal, even for a 16 handicap in his late forties? Why don't I see many other players, especially older players, doing the same? Why do some players, even mid handicaps, frown upon the mere possibility of carrying more hybrids than irons or openly ridicule it? Are there other players on the forum carrying numerous hybrids or preferring hybrids to irons?
Thanks for any reaction - It would be a consolation to know that there are others whose bags look like gigantic flower pots, with all the huge headcovers standing out!