Do Pros Tee Up Irons? (Explained)

Female golfer hand holding golf ball and golf tee with driver on lawn in golf course.


At the start of every golf hole, players are given the opportunity to tee up a golf ball if they so choose.

Teeing up a golf ball at the start of the hole is a tremendous advantage.

However, sometimes teeing it up feels like an almost unfair advantage.

Luckily teeing up is within the rules of the game, but still, players sometimes wonder if they should be doing it.

Professional golfers tend to set the precedent for what makes the most sense and what is considered best practices on the golf course.

If you have ever wondered if pros are teeing up their irons and whether or not this is a good decision for you, we have all the information you need.


Do Pros Tee Up Irons?

professional golfer


Yes, professional golfers will almost always tee up irons.

Teeing up irons tends to give an advantage because of the lie that you can create and the factors you can eliminate that can sometimes cause poor shots.

Professionals want to eliminate any of the variables they can, so they can focus on getting the ball in the hole with as few obstacles as possible.

Therefore, professional golfers feel that when they are given the chance to tee a golf shot up, they should take it.

Now it’s important to remember that teeing the golf ball up high with an iron is not a great idea.

It is better to tee the ball very low to ensure that the golf ball hits the center of the clubface of the golf iron.

Teeing the ball up high will not help you hit the ball further when it’s with an iron.

The driver does need a higher tee, but this is not necessary with the iron.

This brings about the question as to whether or not amateurs should be teeing their ball up and if this is the right decision for your game in particular.

Let’s take a look at whether or not it makes sense to tee up a golf iron the next time you head out to play.


Benefits Of Teeing Up An Iron On A Par 3

Close up of golf ball on tee. golf ball on tee in a beautiful golf course with morning sunshine


There are a few things to consider when teeing up an iron on a par 3.

We will tell you that most of the time, it makes sense to tee up the iron shots as it does provide an advantage.

Here are the benefits of teeing up an iron on a par 3.


1. Consistent Lie

golf tee


When you tee the golf ball up with an iron, you will get a consistent lie.

The golf ball will not be set on the ground in a way you can’t predict.

You won’t have to worry about a small lump of grass under the ball or turf that is slightly softer or more sandy than others.

The consistency in the lie increases the chance of hitting the shot that you planned.

It takes time to learn the exact benefit of a consistent lie, but the better you get at the game, the more you will notice the benefits.

A consistent lie in golf is something that golfers don’t come across all that often.

When you can create this for yourself, take full advantage of it.


2. Hit The Center Of The Clubface

Gloved hand of a golfer holding a golf club and a golf ball.


When you tee a golf ball up, it makes it slightly easier to hit the center of the clubface.

Be careful as this can be overdone if you tee the ball too high.

Typically speaking, with an iron shot, you will want to tee the ball up so that it is still sitting directly on the ground.

Don’t let the ball tee up over the center of the clubface, as the results will likely not be as good as you would like.

When you hit the center of the clubface, your chance of getting the most distance and the best spin rates are considerably higher.

For new players, learning to hit an iron from a tee tends to be a good idea, and it will create some good habits in the future as you continue to increase your skills and improve consistency.


3. Increase Confidence

Male Golfer Lining Up Tee Shot On Golf Course


If you ask any golfer what it’s like to hit a golf ball off a tee vs. what it’s like to hit a golf ball off the ground, they will almost always say it’s easier to hit the ball off the tee.

Teeing a golf shot up is a great way to increase playability and make it considerably easier to feel confident swinging through the shot.

So many golfers worry about how they are going to get the ball up and off the ground.

However, there is not much you have to do.

With an iron shot, hitting down and through the golf ball is what gets it up in the air.

Most players try to lift the ball with their hands, but this creates an issue.

Instead, work to get used to the concept of hitting down and through the ball, and you will see much greater ball flight and increased performance.

Overall teeing the ball up a little gives you more confidence to get the ball up higher and create spin and control on your golf ball.

If you struggle with worrying about your ability to launch the golf ball or get the proper ball flight, a slight tee can make a big difference.


4. Better Spin Rates

golfer is teeing off golf ball by golf club from tee boxes


Professionals find that they get better spin rates when they tee the ball up slightly.

When the golf ball is on a short tee, there is a chance for all of the grooves on the club to make contact with the dimples on the golf ball.

Golf balls making contact with the grooves on the club increase spin rates.

This is important on a par 3 golf shot as you can get the ball to stop on the greens where you want it to.

Sometimes golf balls will roll through the green, and this causes a golfer to have to chip back on the green or try and get up and down.

However, with great spin, you can attack the pin with your golf shot, choose the exact club you need, and fire right at the pin.


5. An Advantage Worth Taking

close up golf club and golf ball on green grass with sunrise background


The golf tee option is not something that you will have on every hole.

In fact, most of the time, it is not legal to use a golf tee.

When you get the chance to use it, take advantage and use it to hit a great golf shot.


How High Should I Tee An Iron Shot?

The Golf club and golf ball close up in grass field with sunset.


Have you ever seen a golfer using a short tee to tee up an iron but teeing it as high as the short tee will allow?

This is a mistake.

The short tee is meant to be easy to push into the ground so that you can hit a great shot on the golf course without having to put a three-inch tee into the ground.

It’s very important to tee the ball just slightly above the ground as opposed to teeing it so high.

Golfers should consider this carefully and make sure they only tee the ball up just above the ground.

In fact, if you look quickly at a golf ball on the tee box about to be hit by an iron, you should not be able to see the tee.

The ball will be sitting slightly over the grass, but not enough to be noticeable.

Even when hitting a fairway wood and a hybrid, you won’t need to tee the ball up very high.

Simply take advantage of this opportunity and put it slightly above the ground.

The only club that you will want to tee up high is the driver.

With a 460 cc clubhead, it is very important to give players a longer tee and have the ball sit in line with the center of the clubface.


Can Beginners Tee The Ball Up Anywhere?

golfer thinking


When a beginner first starts playing the game, they often hit almost all shots off of a tee.

This is not rare as it gives golfers an advantage.

So many players struggle with the concept of what it takes to get a ball off the ground and up in the air.

However, with the proper golf tee, this concept seems to make more sense for beginners.

When you head out to the golf course, the golf ball can only be teed on the teeing ground.

Therefore when you hit a golf ball from the teeing ground, you can tee it up; in the middle of the fairway, there is no option to tee the ball up in this way.

For golfers that are having their first experiences on the golf course, a friend or family member may tee the ball up in the fairway.

At this point, the rules are not always followed, and the game is designed to be considerably easier for players.

However, as time goes on, the ability to tee the ball up in the fairway is no longer an option.

These are not the rules of golf, just something that is often done to help a beginner adjust to the difficult nature of the game.

In the end, it makes sense to learn how to hit a ball off of the grass.

You will have to do this for the rest of your golfing career, so at some point, it makes sense to start figuring it out and playing as well as you can from the turf.


Should I Tee Up A Wedge On A Par 3?

Professional Golf Player teach how to Teed Up Golf Ball


Some golf holes are not nearly as long as others; there are times when you will have a par 3 hole that only requires a wedge to the green.

This is where many golfers wonder if they will need a tee for their wedge or if they are better off just hitting it off the grass.

For the most part, it makes sense to tee the ball up.

In fact, not teeing the ball up can be a disadvantage.

Keep your ball teed up just above the grass line, and you will hit an accurate wedge shot with plenty of spin into the hole.



As you can now see, the pros tee up irons when they can.

It’s important to give yourself a good lie when you can get it.

Luckily the ball does not need to be teed very high, so you don’t have to play around with the proper tee height.

Simply place the ball slightly above the ground, and the rest will handle itself.

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