Make the Short Game Your Best Game!

Get to know all about the most useful clubs in your bag - the four golf wedges. Learn which wedge is best for certain types of shots. Understand why some shots should not be attempted with some wedges. will focus on helping golfers get the most out of the four wedges that a golfer can have in their bag.

Why Use 52°, 56° and 60° Wedges?

More than 50 percent of golf shots are hit from inside 100 yards. 52° Gap Wedges, 56° Sand Wedges and 60° Lob Wedges are critical to any golfer's success from inside 75 yards.

Distances of 100 yards and closer are referred to as a golfer's “scoring zone.” The goal from these short distances is to knock the ball as close to the pin as possible so that you have an easier putt. From these short distances, golfers can more easily visualize shots and aim for a specific target. Improving these type of shots will allow golfers to break 100, 90 and 80 without a doubt.

The club most commonly used by recreational golfers for shots within 100 yards is the Pitching Wedge. The Pitching Wedge is often too much club from these distances because it has a low loft, which can produce shots that generate significant roll. Golfers also tend to overshoot the green with a Pitching Wedge, which is an effective club from 90-120 yards for most golfers but it is not the precision, shot-making tool required for close-range, approach shots.

52° Gap Wedge

One of the most common things seen on a golf course is a golfer walking up to a shot carrying a Sand Wedge and a Pitching Wedge. The golfer thinks, “If I hit the Sand Wedge, I am afraid that I will leave it short, and if I use the Pitching Wedge, I am afraid it will roll off the back of the green.” This is a very common dilemma.

Many golfers are adding Gap Wedges to their bag. They fill the large and important void between the Pitching Wedge and the Sand Wedge. The Gap Wedge provides golfers with the ability to hit from longer distances similar to the Pitching Wedge but it has a higher ball flight and more spin like a Sand Wedge, which allows the ball to roll to a stop quickly on the green and enables more precise shot making. The Gap Wedge is also referred to as a “Utility Wedge” or a “Tweenie.” Many golfers have replaced their Pitching Wedge with a Gap Wedge because they can use their 9 iron for 100+-yard, approach shots and prefer the Gap to the Pitching Wedge inside of 100 yards.

The Gap Wedge is also fantastic for shots where you are too far off the green to putt and too close to hit a traditional wedge shot. The 52° Gap Wedge is the perfect club for these “chip and run” situations. To perform a “chip and run” use your putting stroke with the Gap Wedge from off the green and the ball will get just enough (a few inches) lift to move through grass, across fairways, and land with a smooth true toll on the green, stopping easily. These types of shots earn the Gap Wedge its “Utility Wedge” nickname.

Men golfers use the Gap Wedge from distances up to 75-100 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed. Women golfers use the Gap Wedge from distances of 50-80 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed.

56° Sand Wedge

Most golfers carry a Sand Wedge (Fairway Wedge) but it is often the oldest, most neglected and least-used club in the bag! A Sand Wedge is a critical tool from not only the sand but also from the fairway and the rough. A good Sand Wedge will not only help you build confidence and hit better shots from the trap but it will also help you hit high, accurate shots from distances of up to 75 yards. A good Sand Wedge is a must have for all golfers. The simplest way to figure out if you should carry a good Sand Wedge is to ask yourself two simple questions:

Do I ever play golf on a course where there is sand?

Could my short game stand to improve?

If you answered “Yes” to both of these questions, you are an excellent candidate for a premium Sand Wedge.

Men golfers use a Sand Wedge from distances up to 75-90 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed. Women golfers use a Sand Wedge from distances up to 45-60 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed.

60° Lob Wedge

Lob Wedges are known for their loft of 60°. The high loft allows golfers to “lob” the ball high up in the air, have it drop sharply on the green, and stop quickly with little or no roll. These are often referred to as “flop shots.” Lob Wedges are great for short approaches to raised greens, getting over trees and out of trouble. They are also great for getting out of deep traps.

One of the best habits a recreational golfer can have to reduce scores is to play the natural contour/loft of wedges rather than trying to open up the face of a wedge for additional loft. Golfers will most often open up the face of a Sand Wedge to escape a deep trap or get over an obstacle. These shots most often result in golfers' skulled shots (the ball is hit with the edge of the club rather than the face) and the ball is miss hit often way too far or out of bounds. Having a Lob Wedge lets recreational golfers execute these types of shots easily, accurately and consistently, while playing the natural loft of the club. The Lob Wedge is never the most used club in a golfer's bag but it accounts for a vast majority of saved shots and approach shots.

Men golfers will use the Lob Wedge from distances up to 40-60 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed. Women golfers will use the Lob Wedge from distances up to 25-40 yards and closer, depending on swing type and speed.

Go back to Previous Page