The offset golf club was developed and implemented as a game-improvement technology in the late 1970s and early '80s. The offset actually places the clubface slightly behind the hosel of the club, allowing players who tend to slice the ball to more easily square the club at impact and hit the ball straighter. Many clubs are still manufactured with offsets of various sizes.
Swinging an Offset Club
It is important to understand the difference between an offset club and a traditional club with no offset. The offset hosel is designed to help correct flaws in your swing, usually those that cause a slice. Basically, it provides a split second of extra space for the player to close the club face and keep it square through impact. This space helps players who have difficulty bringing the club through square because of poor setup, deceleration or a number of other reasons.
Take your regular stance: Because the offset club is designed to counter flaws in your setup and swing, you should first try to swing exactly the same way you would previously. The mechanics of the club should help straighten out your shots naturally. If not, consider a few of the following other approaches.
Square your setup: Most slicers tend to set up with a slightly to severely open stance. If this describes you, move your left foot forward to be the same distance from the target line as your right foot (reverse for left-handers). The square setup should help you bring the club back to its same square position you had at address.
Low, slow takeaway: Players who slice often take a wild, speedy lash at the ball that makes it difficult to keep the club on line at any position in the swing. When you are ready to swing, take the club away low to the ground and straight back along the target line for as long as you can hold it. This move helps keep you square and takes maximum advantage of your offset club.
Bottom up: Because the offset on your driver accentuates the open club face you have at the top of your backswing, it is important to keep the club in the right position all the way through your swing. The best way to do this is to fire the right parts of your body in the right order. Basically, your weight should shift to your left first, then your knees and hips should unwind, then your torso, shoulders and finally your arms an hands should unwind back toward the ball. As your arms do this, your clubface gets more square as you approach the ball. Since your natural tendency is to have your clubface open at impact, your hands flow through that position and the offset club closes with your hands slightly past their normal position. Remember to accelerate through the ball and finish to a full follow-through and your offset club should help you hit longer, straighter drives.