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How Many Golf Wedges Should I Carry?
With the maximum number of clubs allowed in a game being fixed at 14, many players are at loggerheads as to which of the clubs they should include.
With the wedges playing a significant role in limiting the number of shots in the game, knowing the right number of wedges to carry is important.
Most often wedges are relegated to the last with some preferring to add just one or two wedges alone. Some players prefer to carry four wedges.
How many golf wedges should I carry to save my shots?
An optimal wedge set in your golf bag goes a long way in saving the number of shots in your game. To know the number of wedges, you need to first assess the entire game instead of just the wedge play.
For instance, if you choose a fairway wood instead of wedge, your chances of long par 5s and 4s is more while if you add a wedge and lose the fairway wood, you will be saved from making difficult three quarter or half shots inside 120 yards.
In general, there is no hard and fast rule regarding the number or type of wedge you carry. You can either use all or a few of them provided the number of clubs in your bag is 14 or below it.
Professional players devote more time to the pitching, chipping and sand shots, as it is very important to master the skill of minimizing the shots when you are near the greens.
Even recreational players are privy to this. This is the reason for manufacturers coming up with a huge variety in the sole grinds, lofts and wedges available now.
Peruse your wedges
Once you have decided on the 9-irons you want to carry, the next step is to pick the wedges. Wedges vary based on the loft angle and usually range from 45 degrees to 64 degrees. The degrees are shown on the club heads.
In general the wedges used and their loft angles are as follows:
Pitching wedge – 45 to 50 degrees
Gap wedge – 50 to 54 degrees
Sand wedge – 54 to 58 degrees
Lob wedge – 58 to 64 degrees
Benefits of two wedges
To enable more number of shots with a single club many players opt for clock face play in their yardages.
If you are adept at making the three quarter and half golf swings that this method depends on, you can replace a wedge with a hybrid or fairway wood.
In response to the query of ‘How many golf wedges do I carry?’, if you decide on two wedges, it is best to pick the pitching and sand wedge at 48 degrees and 56 degrees.
This provides a uniform gap in relation to the 9 iron you are using. The 9-iron has a loft angle ranging from 40 degrees to 42 degrees usually.
How three wedges help your game?
Most golfers opt for three wedges and this way you can have two of the fairway woods. This is especially handy for players who cannot make the long distance shots as deftly as the pros.
When selecting three wedges, make sure you opt for a pitching wedge of 46 degree loft, lob wedge of 58 degrees and to compensate the loft angle gap a gap wedge of 52 degrees.
This gives a uniform distance of 6 degrees between the wedges. You will have more options with this configuration.
Opting for four wedges
You will require a fourth wedge in the following situations:
· If your shots are too short or too far in between the clubs
· If you find full shots are the most convenient for you
To use four wedges, make sure you have even gaps between clubs. So, begin with the pitching wedge at 46 degrees followed by gap wedge with 50 degrees, sand wedge of 54 degrees and lob wedge of 58 degrees.
This would come to about a yard gap in the range of 8 to 12 for an average player.
Expert tips to the wedge dilemma
Here are some expert tips which will throw more light on the oft asked question of ‘how many golf wedges should I carry’:
- While selecting wedges, players should ensure the presence of yard gaps ranging from 10 yards to 15 yards between the clubs they use.
- The optimal loft gap between the wedges should not be over 6 degree, if you want to use precision centric clubs.
- An average weekend player hits around six or seven greens in a round. This gives the player more chances to increase or lower the pitching distance.
- They do not possess the speed to cover a 300 yard shot. But when using the right grind, loft and gaps they can make more of the precision shots.
- The pitching wedges manufactured at present which are provided along with the irons set have loft angle ranging from 43.5 degrees to 46 degrees.
- When you know the loft degree of your pitching wedge it is easy to create the perfect gapping order for the other wedges you decide to use.
So, to answer the question of ‘How many golf wedges should I carry?’ For the average player taking partial swings to cover specific distance is very difficult.
By even gap spacing, it is possible to get a fuller swing shot. This is why four wedge set is recommended with the highest loft at 58 degree.
For players who need to have their 5 wood, 3 wood and hybrids, it is best to not go over 56 degrees as it is sufficient for them to work with.
With more wedges, it is possible to have more options when you near the golf green. When you are within the short iron distance of 14 yards or less you need a more precise shot.
With even gapped wedges of around 15 yards between them, you can achieve the precision in distance and direction.