How To Organize A Golf Bag — (What Does Every Golf Bag Need?)

how to organize a golf bag what does every golf bag need and parts of a golf bag

Perhaps the most under-appreciated piece of golf equipment is the golf bag. Even though we use it to carry everything we need or might need to make it through a round of golf, it is often an afterthought. 

The variety of golf bags, from the carry or Sunday bag, the stand bag, the golf cart bag, and the massive tour bags, means there’s a golf bag for every golfer.

The Tell Me More golf experts will give you advice on how to set up whichever golf bag you have to keep you organized on the golf course.

how to organize a golf bag what does every golf bag need and parts of a golf bag

Parts Of A Golf Bag

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All golf bags come with an open, center area to store the clubs, front pockets, side pockets, shoulder straps, and a large base or retractable legs to sit the golf bag down. In addition, many golf bags will have a Velcro patch or a ring that you can attach golf gloves to.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the different parts of a golf bag.

The Center/Dividers

The number of dividers can vary from one model or style of golf bag to another. It’s a matter of personal preference to decide how many partitions you want. The dividers are built to minimize the club faces bumping into one another when the bag moves around. It also allows the golf to organize their golf clubs to grab them quickly when out on the course.    


The golf bag pockets store the things you need to take out with you on the golf course. The pockets can vary in size and placement depending on the style of golf bag. In addition, some bags have special pockets for range finders or a water-proof pocket to protect your valuables and other accessories from the elements.

Shoulder Straps

All golf bags will come with shoulder straps to carry the bag. The straps will be adjustable to fit comfortably with your body type. Some will have a single strap so that you can carry the golf bag comfortably over one shoulder. Many golf bags come with dual straps and are balanced to carry the bag with both shoulders on your back. If you’re looking to carry your bag regularly, look into a golf bag with dual straps. 

Retractable Fold-Out Legs – Bottom Ring

A stand bag will have retractable, fold-out legs, which allow you to set the bag down at an elevated angle so that you can pick them up without bending over. When you pick the bag up, the legs retract back into the body of the bag.  

Golf cart bags and Tour bags both have a large, flat-bottom ring so that the golfer can set the bag down on a flat surface. The bottom rings also fit into the bases on the back of golf carts when you strap them in.


how to organize a golf bag what does every golf bag need and parts of a golf bag at tell me more golf

A 5 Way golf bag configuration has one divider at the top of the bag, one divider in the middle, and one large open area at the bottom of the bag. The most popular method for organizing golf clubs is to have the longest clubs at the top of the bag, the irons in the middle, and the wedges at the bottom of the bag. Then, the clubs ascend in loft from left to right in each row.    

The putter is often kept with the longer clubs because they often have larger heads. In addition, it is easier to grab the putter in an upper compartment. Here’s a standard way that you can organize a 5-Way golf bag:

Driver, 3-Wood5-Wood, Putter
4-Iron, 5-Iron, 6-Iron7-Iron, 8-Iron, 9-Iron
Gap Wedge, Pitching Wedge, Sand Wedge, Lob Wedge


How To Organize 6 Way Golf Bag

You’ll organize your golf clubs in a 6-way golf bag configuration, much like what you did for the 5-way golf bag. A 6-way golf bag has one divider at the top, one partition in the middle section, and one divider at the bottom of the bag opening. The same right to left process for each bag level works well here. For example, a six-way golf bag setup might look like this:

Driver, 3-Wood5-Wood, Putter
4-Iron, 5-Iron, 6-Iron7-Iron, 8-Iron, 9-Iron
Gap Wedge, Pitching WedgeSand Wedge, Lob Wedge

How To Organize A 7 Slot Golf Bag

The 7-slot golf bag follows the same organizational pattern as the 5-way and the 6-way golf bag setup. You’ll have the driver in the top-right slot, and your fairway woods are in the upper right section. In the middle level, you’ll start with the long irons on the left and climb through the middle irons to the short irons in the right slot. 

On the bottom right section, you can put your gap and pitching wedge and then the sand wedge and your lob wedge on the right side. The single large area is for the putter. This configuration lets the putter face hang, so it does not hit other clubheads. Here is a typical setup for a 7-slot golf bag:

Driver5-Wood, 3-Wood
4-Iron, 5-Iron, 6-Iron7-Iron, 8-Iron, 9-Iron
Gap Wedge, Pitching WedgeSand Wedge, Lob Wedge

How To Organize A 14 Slot Golf Bag

The organization of a 14 slot golf bag is where your personal preference can come into play. There is a slot for each club, from the putter to the driver. Each divider is the same size, so you can arrange the clubs to suit your personal preference. 

However, if you are carrying your bag, you may want to use the same tactic of stacking the longer clubs from left to right in the dividing pockets. One great thing about a 14-slot golf bag is a slot for every club, so you can organize your clubs however you like.  Here is one popular way to organize a 14-slot golf bag:

Pitching Wedge3-Wood4-Iron7-Iron
Gap Wedge5-Wood5-Iron8-Iron
Sand WedgeLob Wedge9-Iron

The Different Golf Bag Pockets Explained

How you use the pockets on a golf bag is a matter of personal preference. You can store your golf gear in different front and side pockets. There might also be a pocket on the front of the bag for you to put a range finder.

Front Pockets

There usually are three or four front pockets just under the carry handle on most golf bags. The top pocket is often a smaller pocket used to store a sleeve of golf balls and maybe some tees.

Underneath the ball pocket is a larger auxiliary pocket for you to keep more golf balls, golf tees, ball markers, and a divot repair tool. This pocket is also an excellent place to keep your golf rule book. It is common for golfers to use a small bag or sack to keep these loose items secured for easy access.

Water Bottle Pocket

On the left side of many golf bags, you will find an insulated water bottle pocket. They are usually large enough to hold water or a sports drink bottle. These pockets keep your beverages cool and within easy reach for golfers who carry their bags on those hot days.

Left Auxiliary Pocket

Just above the water bottle pocket is the left-hand auxiliary pocket. Some golfers will keep an extra sleeve or two golf balls in this pocket. It is also an excellent place to keep a small first aid kit.

Right Side Apparel Pocket

There is a larger apparel pocket on the right side of the bag. The golf bag cover, which protects the clubs from rain, is often stored here. The apparel pocket is a great place to store your rain gear or a pullover for changing weather on the golf course.

Water-proof Valuables Pocket

Many golf bags also have an insulated, water-proofed pocket to store your valuables, a watch, cell phone, or car keys. They are often lined with soft, scratch-free material as well.

The size and the location of the pockets of a golf bag give you a lot of room to be flexible and put things where you want them. Walkers who want to be more concerned with weight will carry only the items they need during the round. Those who ride can load those pockets up with extra golf balls, snacks, and maybe even a cold beverage or two.

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Golf bags are well designed and manufactured to last for multiple seasons. An organized golf bag is essential to find your clubs quickly and replace them in the bag easily. 

A carry bag, or a stand bag, is made for walking and is lightweight yet versatile enough for you to take what you need with you on the golf course. A cart bag or even a Tour bag is made for those who like to ride. It is larger, and you can carry a lot more weight, which gives you room for items like a ball retriever or cold beverages. 

It’s essential to get the style of golf bag that shows your style and fits how you play the game. Thank you for learning how to organize a golf bag from us!


Patrick Corley Tell Me More Golf Instructor and Coach
Patrick Corley
From a golf scholarship to a Southern California University, to a private golf coaching career and an instructor position at a nonprofit organization, I’m here to help you get better at golf! With my 50+ years of golf experience; I bring you Tell Me More Golf. A golf coaching website that helps your game with instructional golfing content that’s ultimately geared toward making you a better golfer and having more fun!
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