Wedges – A Buyers Guide

So when it comes to wedges there’s a lot to learn and consider. You can go for every degree gap or you can space it out to give fewer wedges and more woods.

The starting point for me it is to look at the irons in your golf bag. You may have irons down to a PW, GW or SW. Everyone’s bag will differ.

Use the almighty powers of Google to search for your irons followed by the word “specs” You are looking to find out what lofts you are rocking around with and plan from there.

Scenario 1 – Irons to PW and SW

This may show you that there is a large gap between the PW and SW, as though an entire club can fit in to the gap.

That gap may be ok for those newer to the game but a nightmare if you are becoming more established and noticing hardship with full shots at that range.

Trying to fill the gap can be tricky, especially if the irons you have are not made any more and the gap club needed cannot be ordered or found on eBay. (Hint)

Scenario 2 – Irons to PW and GW

This is ideal because your distances with the PW and GW full shots will flow nicely as the shaft is the same, lofts are consistent and the sole is the same shape, width and size etc.

Now it could be a case of finding your needs around the green with a specialist wedge. 56 and 60 or a 58 could be a relevant addition, if not already available!

Scenario 3 – Irons to PW or 9 iron only + Full Wedge Set

The Full Wedge Set is the holy grail of consistency for spin, turf interaction and distance gaps.

It can be done with more and less forgiveness for all abilities. We all have different needs nearer the greens.

A set could have tighter 4 degree gaps or space out a bit more for those wanting more woods. 46, 52, 58 or 48, 52, 56, 60 could be a relevant combo.

Why Specific Wedges?

That more specific wedge or wedge set has grooves and tech like milled clubfaces to grab the ball and give it the best chance of spinning and adding control for your game when landing on the green.

There is also a lot of choice (with guidance) to get the right sole, shaft and lofts for your game to get the best performance for your golf.

Examples:

Cleveland RTX ZipCore – £129 each (£140 Colour + Grip Upgrade )

Cleveland CBX2 (Extra Forgiving) – £109 each (£120 Colour + Grip Upgrade )

PXG 0311 Forged – £179 each (£190 Colour + Grip Upgrade)

KBS Custom Series Wedge Shafts +£59 (White, Red, Green, Orange, Blue)

Shaft Upgrades or matching to Irons from £25 to £65, ask for details

www.instagram.com/HoleSaleGolf

Email me at HoleSaleGolf@gmail.com if you’d like further FREE advice. I’m more than happy to help as I am genuinely passionate about this end of the bag.

The Working Week

This is an update announcement

As business is picking up and more and more diversity to my working week develops, I have a new structure to implement:

TUESDAYS Pull clubs apart.

All the New, Used and Broken clubs that come in get broken down in to components as necessary and lined up ready for the next day.

WEDNESDAYSPut clubs together

The components from yesterday get put back together as required as this is a far more time and resource efficient way for me to work. My favourite epoxy takes 4 hours to set and 12 hours to fully cure. Using 1 batch is the best process for me.

THURSDAYSPut grips on and QC

This is where I get the grips on, reduce ferrules, clean up and renew paint for the clubs coming through for the week.

Drop your club/s off: over the weekend / Monday (ideally)

Pick your club/s up: Friday / over the weekend (ideally)

Need it done quicker? £20 rush fee next day ready to play

*Any components that come in late from suppliers get automatic free rush service.

I am currently looking at Warehouse/Workshop units as well as Head Professional openings at golf clubs. Do please shout at me if you see anything or have ideas.

No idea is a bad idea!

Golf – Skill Acquisition

Skill acquisition refers to voluntary control over body movements in an effort to solve a motor skill problem and achieve a task goal

So! I had a bad score …What now?

I found some weaknesses in my stats for Greens In Regulation (GIR) in the last few weeks and worked on the clubs in the bag to make sure I had the right tools for the task.

Yesterday was a PGA South Region event at Sunningdale Heath, a golf course with many par 3 holes and the odd par 4. I missed the cut for day 2.

Yardages were worked on on Flightscope Mevo and they were spot on for the day. Granted a few wrong club selections from lack of trust in it!! I needn’t have worried.

Also found a new problem that needs attention. Lack of skill. Lost my touch.

Getting up and down 50 yards and in; Pitching, Chipping, Holing Out.

The next step is to work on SKILL ACQUISITION – The easy way.

Driving range practice shows I can plant the ball on a target repeatedly but that isn’t transferring to the golf course in the same way.

Growing up, we had a great bunch of Juniors at Leighton Buzzard Golf Club. Chipping comps, Putting comps, throw your golf balls in and winner takes all.

Nothing to do with technique, just stiff competition.

I think our youthful combined handicap at one point was +8 before everyone started getting full time jobs and the location of a pub.

However, THAT is the practice model I want to try and recreate on the driving range, chipping green and putting green.

Compete with yourself. Measure it.

How many out of 12 are successful? 1, 2, 3?

No problem… Next time aim for one more point. Deduct or double points for the last ball to add a bit of sauce to it.

Driving Range – 15 minutes that was already going to be used

Never hit the same shot twice.

12 ball drills in groups of 3…. Wood, Iron then Wedge.

Each shot on target gets a point.

How many out of 12 each time?

Chipping Green – 15 minutes or so

12 balls from the edge of the green (use 1 ball so you have to restart the chipping process each time, much like the golf course)

You have to “hole out” so grab the putter and roll that ball in after each chip

How many out of 12 did you roll in each time?

Putting Green – 10 minutes or so

1 putter length from the hole, tee peg it at 4 points

1 grip-length further from the hole, tee peg it again

1 more grip-length further from the hole, tee peg it

Now you have 12 points to go from. Inner circle, middle and outer circle.

Normal routine or process, use 1 ball, how many out of 12 each time?

Measure Your Progress

When you’re looking at a 10 minute putting drill, it’s not too much of a chore.

Take mental note or actual note of the numbers you are getting out of 12 for each area of practice. Start to push yourself to make the task harder or to try and get more points each time you are doing it.

This gives you something to measure and track your skill based progress

If these scores out of 12 improve – Your scorecard will do the same.

But I Don’t Hit Practice Balls

No problem, If you tend to sneak out for 9 holes as and when you can, you can do some things to test your skill. Or pick 6 holes with your mates and try something different:

If you hit the fairway, kick it forward 20 yards (makes you want to hit the fairway)

If you miss the fairway, drop a ball 20 yards short and in deeper rough?

Yellowsomes – Play 2 balls and pick the worst one to play from each time?

If you leave a putt short, pull it back a club-length?

5ft putts and in, It only counts if you hole it twice? (Personal Favourite)

If you are in a bunker, put the ball in a footprint or step on it?

MAKE THE GAME HARDER IN PRACTICE – So it’s easier under pressure.

Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail

Over the last 11 years, I have not been able to play in a weekly medal. Not able to have a competitive scorecard in my hands on a weekly basis.

This year there are 4 main Order of Merit events in the South Region PGA which I plan to play in. This gives a lot of time in the middle to prepare.

WHAT DO YOU DO TO PREPARE?

Is a regular club competition all you need to prepare or do you have planned practice to work on specific things in the build up to the weekend? Or do you just turn up?

For me, my preparation has always been variable and not specific at all. My results when I was a PGA trainee around 2012 reflected that. Working full time, going through PGA training modules and juggling a social life and all that.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE CONTROL OF?

Time, equipment, data, facilities.

How much time can you put to practice? How can you best use that time?

If it’s 10 minutes before you tee off, no problem at all.

If it’s a week off before club champs to tune in, great.

What you do with the time you have is crucial to play your best golf.

What clubs are in your bag and are you getting every 1% gain you can?

What data can you get? stats, your club distances?

Where can you find this information? And where can you practice or improve it?

It could be as simple as counting your putts and thinking of ways to reduce them.

GOLF COURSE STATS

With some encouragement from my dear friend at https://waggleduff.com/, we kept some stats of our first rounds back on the golf course after lockdown.

He is the master of the spreadsheet.

As expected, our golf had regressed after no golf for so long, I’m sure you can relate.

What do we do about that?

I think it’s a great idea to keep stats on the course.

Even if it is as simple as putts per hole noted next to your markers score. This can give you some idea of where shots may be slipping away.

There’s so many to keep track of but the more you can keep, the better you can reflect on areas of improvement.

Score, Putts, Green in Reg Y/N, Fairway Hit Y/N or left/right, Up and Down success Y/N, Bunker Up and Down success Y/N.

THE SAT NAV PLAN

How does a Sat Nav work? – needs to know where you are – needs to know your destination – shows you the route.

Find out where you are (Your current golf stats; scores, fairways, greens, putts?)

Work out where you want to be (Expose weak areas that most damage scorecards)

Break 100, 90, 80? Hit 1 extra fairway, hit 1 extra green on the last round?

What can you do? (Go back to what you can control; time, equipment, data, facilities)

Everyone will be different but this is the basics of performance management for golf.

MY PLAN

First few outings exposed my weakness for hitting greens in regulation (GIR).

Looking at why that happens exposed a weakness for hitting the fairways.

Playing from the rough can mess around with your distance control as more grass gets trapped between the ball and the face and wreaks havoc with your spin.

The flyer. I was missing long way too often. one round had 6 GIR. Target is 14-18.

Good job I can putt.

A few fairway left/right and GIR stats gave me some useful information.

I grew up fighting a big left shot. But 4/5 misses were to the right.

The left shot is not much of a threat statistically so I have to let go of the historic left data in my brain. It simply isn’t going left.

THE TOOLS

What do I hit greens with? Irons and Wedges.

I changed my wedges to have more choice.

Removed 54, 60. Renewed with 50, 54, 58

Then used a launch monitor to get the average carry and max carry of each club through the bag.

This was specific to my needs.

What do I hit fairways with? Driver and 3 Wood.

I changed the top end of the bag to make sure it was easier. Some clubs are cool but forgiveness and choice was lacking.

Removed 3 and 4 iron. Added 4 Hybrid and 5 wood and then made adjustments to the Driver. Overall more choice from the tee.

Continued use of the launch monitor for carry numbers.

ASSESSMENT

We will see what these changes do long term but there are instant results already.

Going from 6 to 13 GIR. Comparably 77 to 71 as putts were much the same.

Not out of the woods yet but getting there.

A combination of awareness of the flaws and having the right kit to combat them was my first point of analysis.

If I had the right equipment already and it was a skill that needed work on, It would have been a completely different approach. Using the same Sat Nav idea.

The SKILL of hitting fairways and greens is my next point of attention moving forward. Applying real pressure techniques during practice. Try the below article for ideas.

Here’s a little video to show you some of the distance measuring process:

Get A Grip!

So how important is the golf grip? How you hold the club?

I once did back to back 10 minute lessons at The Golf Show in various locations for 2 or 3 days at a time. I changed the way 3 people gripped it out of 183 on one of those stints.

One was a beginner, wanted to know. Another specifically asked about their grip

The last person was 180° in the wrong place. Once he stood up to his full 6’4″ with good posture, his grip naturally moved 90° better.

This was a biproduct of having clubs too short from youth. Stooping down to the ball.

The reason I think I changed so few grip is because it’s a short term fix and it feels horrible for all that change it. Most go back to what’s comfortable.

If your hands start round towards your left pocket, it’s easier to open the clubface through impact. Open face, ball starts right of target.

If your hands start round towards your right pocket, it’s easier to close the face through impact. Closed face, ball starts left of target.

So the grip does influence flight. But what other problems could it be masking?

Most problems I have seen over the years have come from far bigger movements in the body or big fundamentals like how far you stand from the ball and posture.

Make a note of where your hands are on a good day or even a good shot. If you have a bad day or a bad shot…. And they are in the same place… The problem may not be the grip.

My right hand creeps over to the left. This sneaks in a right shot. I have a position I go back to as a benchmark place of golfy goodness.

Below I look in to the different ways to grip; baseball grip, interlock grip, overlap grip and reverse overlap.

New Golf Ball’s

New menu page on the www.HoleSaleGolf.co.uk website

New range of choices in golf balls from Srixon

/https://holesalegolf.co.uk/srixon-golf-balls-2021/

Let me know if you think it’s easy or hard to navigate so I can make any necessary adjustments!

All feedback appreciated

Prices not published on there as my stock commitment doesn’t reach the threshold. Everyone will be treated with the same tlc.

Srixon Golf Balls 2021 at Hole Sale Golf.

Far and Wide

The dispersion of your shots can vary from player to player. Left to right and front to back.

Having an idea of the longest shot and the shortest shot you may hit with each club can be extremely useful to know

If you vary 20 yards front to back, so be it. But that big hoop your club will land in wants to be in a safe area

The first step is to identify your hoops! Carry is key.

Once I find a premises to teach / coach from, this will be an available service!

#headproFred #holesalegolf #proshopsearch The search is on!

Here’s me using the Flightscope Mevo to dial in and get an idea of my variance on a 7 iron:

Scratch That Itch

How might a scratch player set up their golf bag?

For me, the emphasis is on the wedges first. Good loft gaps to create consistent yardage gaps at the bottom end of the bag.

Also not often will you see two clubs create the same yardage anywhere in the bag. If there is is, it may well be for two different types of golf course.

Take a look here at how I adjusted some clubs to get a little more forgiveness in the long irons and the use of the settings on the adjustable woods for optimal flight:

Practice With Purpose

Right. So I’ve got the bug again.

I couldn’t hit a Donkey with a Banjo last week and practice practice practice we go.

How are you practicing? Do you have a purpose to a practice or is it just a loosen up type excercise?

Some are looking to improve technique – The drill below will help that transition to the golf course

Some are looking to improve skill – The drill below can measure it’s progress

When you get on the golf course, there is pressure. From your mates, from yourself, internal and external.

Every 1% gain or improvement is worth it in golf. They all add up over the years.

12 Ball Drill

In 3 ball batches – Play a hole – Driver / 7 iron / Wedge?

Some might play 12 full shots in their head at their home course?

For example:

ClubTarget WidthPoints
Driver45 ydY/N
7 Iron25 ydY/N
SW15 ydY/N
3 Wood40 ydY/N
5 Iron 30 ydY/N
SW15 ydY/N
Driver45 ydY/N
8 Iron25 ydY/N
PW20 ydY/N

Beginner – 1 point for each club on target – count how many / 12

This gives you something to measure and try to improve on next time you practice. Maybe be generous with hitting areas, fairway width, green width, 20ft circle.

If you only get 2 points, don’t worry, next time aim for 3.

Club Golfer – 1 point for each club on target – count how many / 12

Reduce those targets down and get more specific. Keep a track of the points you get one week to the next and measure how you are improving.

You might get 6 points each time you do this… Push to get the extra point.

Elite Golfer – 3 points for all 3 on target in each batch – 0 points if 1 shot misses

You can only get 3 / 6 / 9 / 12 points.

This will introduce pressure on that last ball of each 3 batch. Choose the weakest part of your game last for that 3rd ball…

You only get the points when you hit that last ball in your target area.

Tour Professional – Travel up the 12 shots – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, miss …..Back to 0.

Climb the ladder to 12 in a row.

Imagine you are playing for the open. Completely lose yourself in the scenario, feel the crowd, feel the atmosphere. This has to be a very deep level of imagination. The fairways are lined with people….

If this golfer plays in The Open for the first time, it’s less of a shock to the system.

Any level can use this thought process and place yourself in the situation you want to be. Club medal, away match, club champs whatever it be. Lose yourself in the scenario for 12 balls.

Whatever points you pick from this – It’s a 12 shot drill with a purpose. 10 minutes well spent.

Let me know what you think or how you might build this in to YOUR practice!

May The Golf Gods Be With You.

What Does Bad Ball Striking Do?

Ball striking can change the way your ball travels.

Gear Effect is the physics behind your ball flight and strike.

The face on your driver bulges heel to toe and top to bottom to combat Gear Effect. Gear effect happens on all clubs, even the putter.

Ball Strike Position – MRH

TOE – (Furthest from shaft) – This will encourage draw spin. Right to left curve.

HEEL – (Nearest the shaft) – This will encourage fade spin. Left to right curve.

HIGH – (Nearest the sky) – This will reduce backspin.

LOW – (Nearest the floor) – This will encourage backspin.

Driver Spin vs Strike

Getting more weight at the bottom of a driver aids higher launch and lower spin because the gear effect is stronger when further away from the Centre of Gravity (CoG).

Just above the middle strikes are best with a driver. Higher launch and lower spin.

MyGolfSpy did an interesting piece on 0.5″ tee height and 1.5″ tee height. Guess which one had better results for distance AND accuracy?

Iron Spin

Some golfers may wish to reduce backspin as this will also reduce curvature. This will be easier with a lower CoG, more weight at the base.

Other golfers may wish to spin more to help shape the ball or spin more in to greens. This will be achieved with more bladed irons. The CoG / mass is higher up.

Wedge Spin vs Strike

Getting the weight higher up on a wedge (like the “High Toe” designs) aids higher spin.

The best place to strike a wedge is the bottom three grooves and the fairway!

From the rough the strike can creep higher, lowering the spin. Also grass can get in between the ball and the face which also reduces spin.

Your Spin

Do you struggle with strike?

Do you struggle with spin?

Could they both be combatted in the same breathe?

Identify First

The first way to see what your strike is like, look at your clubface and see where most of the scratches are. Are they central?

Dab some water on your clubface while practicing and see where the dimple marks show up.

Try and make adjustments in your own way, stand closer or further away. Tee the ball higher and lower.

Can I Help?

Get in touch for Free advice or a chat if you struggle further.

Is it your striking or the type of clubs in the bag?

Length of club can change heel toe strikes – This can be done at reasonable cost.

Shafts could be changed to alter spin in your flight – Costs can vary.

New clubs could already be on the cards or ask if you want any advice.

Even if you are looking for items I can’t supply, I’m always eager to see what people are looking for and see you get the right kit.

It helps me make future decisions on stock and brands etc.

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