If you are a golfer who wants to play the game a bit more seriously and want to cover most of the distances on a golf course, you should at least carry 3 or 4 wedges.
Most recreational golfers only carry a pitching wedge and a sand wedge in their golf bag.
The ideal three-wedge combination for an average golfer consists of a 44-degree pitching wedge, a 50-degree gap wedge, and a 56-degree sand wedge.
However, the number of wedges needed depends on individual skill and playing style.
Most amateur golfers do not fully comprehend using 52, 56, and 60-degree wedges and generally stick to the basic three-wedge combo.
So in this guide, we will take a comprehensive look at choosing the right combination of wedges so you can use them to cover distance around the golf course.
Here's What's In Store For You...
Golf Wedge Distances [52, 56, 60 Degrees Chart & Averages]
1) Pitching Wedge
Loft (degrees): 44-49
Distance: Men: 90-115 Yards/Women: 50-65 Yards
2) Gap Wedge
Loft (degrees): 50-53
Distance: Men: 80-95 Yards/Women: 40-55 Yards
3) Sand Wedge
Loft (degrees): 54-58
Distance: Men: 65-80 Yards/Women: 30-45 Yards
4) Lob Wedge
Loft (degrees): 59-65
Distance: Men: 50-65 Yards/Women: 20-35 Yards
What Is A Golf Wedge?
A golf wedge is a type of club used in the golf game for short-distance shots around the green, such as chips, pitches, and bunker shots.
They typically have higher lofts (45-60 degrees) than irons and are designed to help players control the trajectory and spin of their shots.
Golf wedges are designed for shots that require more precision and control than full swings with other clubs.
They come in various types, including sand wedges, lob wedges, and gap wedges, each with a specific purpose and loft degrees.
Golfers often use wedges and other clubs to hit various short-game shots around the green.
Which Wedges Should I Carry In My Golf Bag?
A beginner golfer cannot hit many greens in regulations during a round.
Golfers with a high handicap, on average hit seven greens out of 18 in regulation, while single-figure golfers hit 8 to 11 greens each round.
This means that an average golfer will be hitting a lot of shots from 120 yards or less so it is important to have wedge lofts that will help you cover those distances to score well.
The modern 48-degree wedge, or the pitching wedge and the sand wedge, which has a loft of 56 degrees, are the most common combination of wedges found in a golfer’s golf bag.
However, with time golfers tend to realize that their pitching wedge and sand wedge have a distance gap that needs to be filled.
This is where the gap wedge comes in.
For players who have an experience of 1-2 years, it is recommended for them to have 3 golf wedges – a pitching wedge, a gap wedge, and a sand wedge.
Each one can have a 4-6 degrees of loft difference between them.
If your pitching wedge is 48 degrees, you can use a gap wedge between 50 or 52 degrees of loft and a sand wedge of 56 or 58 degrees.
Your preference will choose for you.
But before closing down on any of these, you should know your carry distances.
The wedge or the loft does not matter if you do not know your capabilities.
An inconsistent hobbyist trying to break 100 or 90 must understand that they will not hit many greens.
Most 100 breakers will hit 1-2 greens in regulation, 90 breakers will hit 2-4 greens in regulation, 80 breakers will hit 4-8 greens in regulation and par breakers will hit 8-12 greens in regulation.
It is important to remember that most golfers trying to break the 80-90 score will miss 8-10 greens per round.
This is completely normal and shows that our wedge game decides the score.
You should have at least three wedges with different degree lofts.
Having four wedges can make a huge difference because this will allow you to cover a decent distance with the golf ball.
The fourth wedge can be a 60-degree wedge, also known as a lob wedge.
A lob wedge can help cover a distance, but it is mainly used for higher, softer shots with increased spin.
While it can be used for full shots, its primary purpose is for short-game shots around the green, where precision and spin control are more important than distance.
A golfer may use a lob wedge to get the ball over obstacles or to stop the ball quickly on the green.
Which Wedges Should I Carry to Cover What Distances?
You will have to carry a combination of wedges to cover your distances; the pitching wedge can be used to hit 100-125 yards.
The gap wedge can be used to hit 90-110 yards; the sand wedge can be used to hit 70-90 yards, and a lob wedge can be used to hit 60-70 yards.
How To Measure How Far You Hit Your Wedges
A general guess will not help you track your wedges distance reliably if you want to improve your short game. Similarly calculating the average distance covered by your wedges is also not reliable enough.
The best way to do so is to measure golf shot distance; with recent advancements in technology, it has become a lot easier.
The most reliable method to measure how far you hit your wedges is to go somewhere you can walk and collect your golf balls.
Now take your sand wedge, hit ten shots toward the intended target, and measure how far you hit each one.
If you hit a really bad shot, just do not count it, and if you can use the same ball for all 10, even better shots.
The distance that you hit consistently will be the one that you are capable of hitting.
Do not take any averages, nor take into account hits that are outliers for example, if you have hit 70,70,73,71,72,73,73,48,75,90,100.
These different distances are outliers: 48, 95, and 100 yards.
The most accurate way to measure each shot is to use a GPS measuring device, smartwatch, or a laser range finder, but if you do not have any of those, simply pace out the distance to each shot and write down how far you hit each shot.
Simply repeat the process for each of your wedges, and you will be ready for your next game and clearer on which wedge will work best for your short shots.
To be even more precise, you can also record the shortest and longest distances you hit the ball with each wedge to get a range.
If this process isn’t possible or easy for you, you can try hitting only three balls in a row when the course is quiet or heading to your local driving range and using the yardage markers to give you a rough idea of how far you hit your wedges.
This will be less precise but still useful and an improvement on any existing guesswork you currently base your wedge distances on.
Differences Between Pitching Wedges, Gap Wedges, Sand Wedges, & Lob Wedges.
The primary difference between the different wedges is the degree of loft that each of these golf clubs can provide.
The greater the degree of loft, the higher the ball soars after connection.
a) Pitching Wedge
Pitching wedges have the least loft angle among wedges. The pitching wedge is the most common in almost every set of golf clubs. The pitching wedge loft varies between 44-49 degrees.
The pitching wedge is great for hitting shots from 100 to 125 yards away.
b) Gap Wedge
A gap wedge is predominantly used by the more avid golfer and comes with a loft degree range from 50-53 degrees. These clubs can hit the ball at a distance of 90 to 110 yards, preferably from the fairway.
Your gap wedge should ideally have a 4 to 6-degree difference in the loft. So, for example, if you have a 48-degree pitching wedge, you will need a 52-degree gap wedge, a 56-degree sand wedge, and a 60-degree lob wedge to complete your full set of wedges.
c) Sand Wedge
This wedge is designed to get golfers out of situations where their ball has landed in sand or high grass. Sand wedge loft varies from 54 to 58 degrees and has a much heavier head weight.
You need it to get out of sand traps.
They can cover distances of about 70-90 yards and offer minimal roll but far greater height which can be useful in many situations.
d) Lob Wedge
The lob wedge can hit the ball at a distance of 60-70 yards and have loft degrees ranging from 59 to 65 degrees.
This wedge is best for low-handicap golfers that want enough loft and extra spin on their strokes even when hitting full-swing shots.
How Far Can A Professional Golfer Hit Their Wedges?
Professional golfers carry 3 to 4 wedges with lofts varying between 46 and 60 degrees.
Their choice of wedges depends on the design of the golf course they are playing at and what conditions it has.
Some pro golfers can bring along a 5th wedge to have more options for shots inside 125 yards.
The average distance PGA Tour professionals hit a pitching wedge is 130 to 135 yards, 115 to 120 yards for a sand wedge, and between 75 and 95 yards for a lob club.
The average pitching wedge drive distance on the LPGA Tour is 105 to 110 yards, while the average lob and sand wedge drive distance is 75 to 90 yards.
The most interesting aspect of how professional players describe how far they can hit their wedges is how accurately they describe how far they can hit them with a variety of different swings.
Why Do Golf Wedges Matter?
Golf wedges matter because they are specifically designed to help players make short, precise shots around the green.
They have a higher loft and a more specialized shape than other golf clubs, allowing for more distance control and spin on the ball for shots such as chips, pitches, and bunker shots, and help you bring your score down with great wedge play.
Wedges can greatly impact a golfer’s accuracy and score on the course.
Wedge distances can also make or break your short game, so you should look at ways to improve your wedge shots.
Ultimately your wedge game will play an important role in determining your score.
Having the right golf equipment can make your game much easier and more fun. You can only find the best wedges if you know your own game.
Using the right wedge at the right time can greatly improve your short game by offering far more options when playing from the fairway and the greens on the golf course.
The right-degree wedge can also help you achieve those long bunker shots that simply weren’t possible with a traditional pitching wedge or sand wedge; allowing you to lower scores and hit a much wider range of shots.
If you want a strong wedge game and have been playing with only two wedges, it is time to buy a third one to have a complete set consisting of a pitching wedge, a gap wedge, and a sand wedge.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How Many Wedges Should You Have?
Wedge play largely depends on your skills and the design of the golf course. Wedge shots can help you get around a difficult course therefore choosing the right wedges for your golf gear will depend on your understanding of the game.
How Far Does A 60 Degree Wedge Go?
Most amateur golfers can use the 60-degree wedge to hit the golf ball for distances of 60 to 100 yards.
Is A Gap Wedge The Same As A 52 Degree Wedge?
Any wedge that offers between 50 and 53 degrees of loft is considered a gap wedge. So, yes, it is the same as a 50-degree or 52-degree wedge.