As you read in Part 1 of my blog on Bounce, you learned how it is a very important characteristic in making the correct selection for your wedges. Part 2 of this blog is going to explain where exactly it is on the club and why and how we use it in execution of shots around the green.
The photo on the left shows the clubhead upside down. Notice where the leading edge is in relation to the trailing edge (bounce), it’s lower. So when the club is inverted (picture on right) the bounce is the part of the club that is going to be lowest to the ground. This is the part of the clubhead that we want to interact with the ground when executing shots around the green, NOT the leading edge.
Here is what NOT to do when you are hitting shots around the green.
- Do Not De-Loft the club by pressing your hands forward at address. This will eliminate the bounce of the clubhead by raising it above the leading edge. (See Picture)
- Do Not use your wrists and arms to execute the swing. This will cause a steep angle of attack into the ball and cause the leading edge interact with the ground.
- Do Not take a divot. If you do, the leading edge has hit the ground. When utilizing the bounce correctly, the clubhead will bruise the turfgrass, not remove it. (see picture)
Here is what you SHOULD do when you are hitting shots around the green.
- Set up with your hands over the ball, exposing the bounce of the club to the ground. Set up with your weight slightly on your left foot. Keep the ball in the middle of your stance.(See Picture)
- Keep the clubhead low in the backswing by using your core and shoulders to rotate away from the target.
- Turn through with your body to bring the clubhead through the ball. Do not swing to the target with your arms. The club and your arms should be moving around your body to the left of the target through impact.
A lot of amateurs struggle with shots around the green partly because they are trying to play a shot that is not necessary, more difficult and harder to control the outcome. Below is a picture of what various shots should look like from around the green.
- Shot A – Used with a lofted club like a Sand Wedge. The ball flies high, lands soft and does not roll.
- Shot B – Used with a 9I or a 8I. This ball will pitch onto the front of the green and roll to the flag. The ball is going to be rolling uphill so you need to use a less lofted club.
- Shot C – Used with a PW. Again the objective is to get the ball on the front edge of the green and roll the rest of the way. Because the ball has to fly further to get on the green, a club with slightly more loft is selected.
- Shot D – Used with an 9I or PW. Again we want to maximize the amount of time the ball is rolling on the green, Because this ball will roll slightly downhill, we do not need to use a lower lofted club like Shot B.
- Shot E – Used with a PW or GW. As you can see the trend is to get the ball on the green as early in the shot as possible. However you can use a lofted club and produce a low shot. Like in Shot D, this ball is going to roll downhill. Therefore we don’t want as much forward momentum on the ball from impact, or it will roll well past the desired destination.
The bottom line no matter where your ball lies and where the flag is, your objective is to get the ball on the ground, on the green and rolling as early in the shot as possible. This way you can predict the outcome of the shot more accurately.
I hope these two blogs have helped you understand how important wedges are and how to best use them. Please contact me to inquire about lessons on this or any other short game subject.