Wait…Whaaaaat?! Longer Wedges?! Yes…I said lengthen your wedges. Now, you don’t have to have them as long as my wedges but a little added length to your wedges may go a long way to becoming a completely different wedge player.
Do you struggle to hit your wedges consistently solid? Does your back get tired or tight if you practice them for any length of time? Do you struggle to control your distances? When you get around the green do you find yourself standing awkwardly just to try and get a decent swing on the ball? If you answered yes to any of the above items then you might have wedges that are too short.
Let’s pull these layers apart a little bit. The wedges are the shortest clubs in your bag. Why isn’t important for our topic here, you need to understand a couple of reasons why I hold this view. First, as the shortest clubs in your bag, you are required to bend forward more from the hips, which if you already have a lack of mobility in your hips and low back, this problem is increased. Lack of mobility in your hips will make it difficult to rotate your chest properly and maintain a forward weight position. This gets even more compounded if the ball is below your feet.
Which leads to point number two: the lie. The space around the greens has the largest amount of varying lies that you will face. One of them happens to be the ball below your feet, and this can get quite severe around the greens. Given that wedge play is approximately 25-30% of your total score you’ll have a lot of these situations you’ll need to navigate and having a longer wedge will help you be able to hit the ball and stand relatively normal in some of these difficult situations.
Lastly, a longer wedge allows the shaft to play a little softer, making it easier to feel where the clubhead is and create a little additional spin or bite on the greens. More on this topic in next week’s talk – picking the right wedge flex!
Before you go, know that this is a personal teaching philosophy. A fitter may not recommend this, but it’s a personal instruction recommendation given my 11 years of experience and getting fitted for your wedges will give us the best insight into what you need. Lengthening wedges isn’t for everyone and for some of you you may even need a shorter wedge. There is no one size fits all, but many of you are playing with wedges that are likely too short. Keep an eye out for some upcoming wedge clinics and fittings, or simply give me a call!