Definition of the golf club term that applies to soles

golf irons with cambered soles
Image Source/Getty Images

"Camber" is a term that applies to the soles of golf clubs and describes their curvature.

Look at the sole of any golf club you own and you'll notice that the sole is not perfectly flat; it is curved and rounded, perhaps very little or perhaps a bit more, but by a noticeable amount. That curvature of the sole is the club's camber.

"Camber" is often applied to both the club's sole curvature side-to-side (heel to toe) and front to back.

However, many technical clubfitting guidelines refer to camber only applying to the front-to-back (leading edge to trailing edge) part of the sole.

More camber (more roundness) on the rear part of the sole (by the trailing edge) reduces bounce angle; more camber at the leading edge increases bounce angle. A cambered sole helps the club move more smoothly across the turf, or dig less into the ground when taking divots. A cambered sole, in other words, makes a golf club more playable than if its sole was not cambered.