Your pitching wedge is used primarily to – you guessed it - hit pitch shots. Typically, pitch shots are those short approach shots intended to soar high in the air and land softly on the green, rolling as close to the hole as possible. While lofts can vary, in general, a pitching wedge is lofted at about 45 degrees.
Depending on their handicap and level of play, golfers can hit a pitching wedge anywhere from 100 yards to 140 yards. Most players utilize their pitching wedge both from the fairway and rough as long as the ball is close to the green. Some players even use it in bunkers and sand traps – it really is about player preference.
Tips on Hitting Your Pitching Wedge Like a Pro
Stance and Backswing: When it comes to properly positioning yourself for the perfect pitch shot, you’ll want to match up your arms with your body, so when you do swing the club, your torso and hands swing back at the exact same time. Set your hands lower on the club grip, and stay firm at the top. When you swing, you’re thinking about distance control – you want consistency, not maximum power. You will want to naturally apply a forward shaft lean during swing through to impact. This is designed to help you gain better control for those shots under 100 yards and around the greens and the cup.
Through Swing: Believe it or not, you will want to use your normal swing with your pitching wedge. A strong swing is really the best way to make great contact – the sweet spot – allowing your ball to soar on a targeted path. Remember to stay firm – softer hands mean less control. To get your ball as close to the pin as possible, you need complete control of your swing. As you swing down and through, strike an inch or two behind the ball. This will allow for a proper height of your pitch, giving the ball the perfect backspin so it will soar up and land nice and soft by the hole.
Practice makes perfect. Hit the driving range and play with your backswing and wrist movement – this will give you a better feel for how much club and how much power you need to excel at pitch shots.
In recent years, wedges have given drivers a run for their money as they have become the “it” golf club more golfers say they plan to buy next. It’s a game changer. Check out more tips for excelling at your golf game.