Wind is the most frequently encountered condition on a golf course that will make a player take more club. When the wind is blowing in a players' face, he will have to change clubs to be able to drive the ball into the wind. Players attempt to keep a ball low when the conditions are windy so that the flight of the ball is less affected. For example, a player looking at a 170-yard shot to the green for which he would normally employ a 6-iron would be better served by using a 5- or even a 4-iron if he is playing into the wind.
Cold weather is another time when more club is advisable, as golf balls don't travel as far when they are cold.
Players facing a shot about which they are not confident with their club selection should always choose the longer club. By taking more club, a golfer need not attempt to hit the ball as far as he can. He can take a normal swing and easily carry over a hazard such as water or sand. Being long with a shot is typically better than being short, because most hazards protecting a green are in front of the hole. Also, if the lesser club is chosen, the player often feels that she must hit the ball as far as possible, which can lead to a host of problems: inaccuracy, slicing or hooking the ball, or an altered swing that can throw off a golfer's entire round.
Golfers are notorious for having an inflated opinion of their own abilities. At some point in a round, many a golfer attempts to hit a shot that is beyond his means after someone else in the group has hit a long drive off the tee. Rather than use a longer club, he will try to duplicate the shot of his partner with the same-numbered club, swinging as hard as she can. The result is often disastrous, with an increased potential for the ball to go out of bounds or be skulled along the ground. By simply ignoring the other player's drive and taking more club, a player can utilize a more relaxed swing and hit the ball down the fairway.