Controlling Wedge Distances
You guys had lots to say in response to Tuesday’s post, so thank you for chiming in. That makes this blog more fun to write and more fun for all to read I’m certain.
Today I’m going to address the question that Anti-Mulligan asked about learning to hit wedges close to the hole. Developing the ability to hit accurate scoring shots– and dial in your distance within 2-3 yards most of the time – will make anyone’s scoring much better in a hurry. And I call the ‘scoring shots’ all those made with your clubs over 40* of loft, which will include your 9-iron. I see three very common errors in golfers in this part of their game, so see if any of these might describe you, A-M:
One final note on getting great with your scoring clubs. If it’s important to you that you can hit a pitching wedge over about 125-130, then you’ll not likely ever get that good with these short clubs.
They are not meant to be hit that hard.
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Terry - Thanks for the article. This is the second time you have responded to one of my questions. I need to get a little less handsy and work more turning my body for the non full shots inside 100 yards. Also, with a toddler at home, I can only practice a couple times a week and play maybe twice a month. My expectations need to come down a little!
Terry, I practice almost exclusively with my 9 iron down to 58 degree wedge. Calibrating distances are so important to good scores - especially with these clubs. Also, calibrating your putter!!! (www.mariusgolf.com)
I shot a 76 yesterday and it was bc I was taking dead aim at the flag with a 9 iron and under. I practice exclusively with my 9 and wedges. Preparing for my first world am.
I've been working on this a lot since one of Terry's post a few weeks back and reading his Scor method guide. It has been a tremendous help to back off on these shots - hit with a smooth tempo as opposed to trying to hit hard. Much more consistent contact, direction, and longer distance. Unfortunately I have not had as much success in varying distances and still need a lot of work on distance control - usually miss by 20 feet or so - I'd like to get to 10 feet or closer so that I occasionally make the putt or at least have a very easy 2 putt.
Watching the Stricker video, it seems almost like he is hitting a long pitch shot - very slight wrist cock and all body rotation. Did I miss anything or is this how everyone else sees it?
I hit a couple bad wedge shots and it was becasue i was swinging to hard. One shot i could have throttled back a 56* but instead hit the 60* trying to hit it hard and chunked it badly. So for me it is remembering to be soft and feeeely with the scoring clubs.
On the non full swings or the choke down swings I go left,right, short or long. In the words of Allen Iverson - We talkin bout practice. I think I need more practice.
Well constructed post, Terry; thanks for the videos. No time to talk, off to practice.
BTW, my kids (G9, B6) suddenly took up golf this week for the first time. I had gotten them each a kiddie 9 iron a few years back, but never any interest. Now suddenly they want to go out in the yard and hit plastic balls. Luckily my son is swinging as a righty (as in years past he would turn the club over and swing lefty. I'm glad because if he continues we can share clubs, etc.) It's fascinating to watch their instinctual mechanics. I'll have to keep a diary. They've set up a course in the yard, though originally all they cared about was hitting it far, ha!
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