A good understanding of which clubs to put in your bag can potentially make quite a difference to your enjoyment of the game of golf and it could also improve your scorecard at the same time.
Arguably, one of the most important clubs to get right is your choice of the wedge, as your short game accounts for about half of the shots you will play in each round.
The question is, do you know your gap wedges from your lob wedges?
Here is a quick guide to help you make the right club selection.
A versatile wedge
If you are limited for bag space a smart choice would probably be to go for a pitching wedge.
The pitching wedge is the default option when you buy a standard set of clubs and gives you the option of carrying the ball around 100 yards, or less, and gives you the option of playing a chip and run shot if you are off the green and want a greater element of control.
The typical loft of a pitching wedge is about 45 degrees.
Getting out of the bunker
Sand traps can soon turn your scorecard sour if you are not careful and that is why it is a good idea to consider having a sand wedge in your bag.
The loft of a sand wedge is somewhere around 58 degrees and it has a distinctive round and curved head, designed to make it as easy as possible to deftly hit the ball out of the sand first time, once you have got the hang of using the club.
A perfect compromise
Most modern professional golfers will often have a gap wedge in their bag and the hint should be taken by keen amateurs to follow suit.
You will often find that a gap wedge sits somewhere between a sand wedge and a pitching wedge and, therefore, offers what could be considered the perfect compromise between the two.
The crucial gap in loft between the other wedges is highly relevant and if you want to improve your game you will find plenty of golf instructors and professionals who are happy to suggest you embrace the idea of using a gap wedge to improve your game.
What about a lob wedge?
Another wedge option to talk about is the lob wedge, which typically has a loft angle that is at least 60 degrees.
The fundamental purpose of a loft wedge is to give you the ability to get the ball up in the air very quickly, playing what is commonly referred to as a flop shot.
The subject of wedges can be a complicated one as it is not just the loft that you need to think about but the grooves as well. The grooves on your club serve the purpose of grabbing the ball and then generating spin.
There are new rules on grooves, which means the choice lies between laser-etching, and vintage finish, with the laser-etched option aimed at generating the best amount of spin possible.
Know you know the basic differences between the type of wedge available it is a matter of deciding which option to put in your bag and how your selection might boost your performance on the course.