Golf is hard! Yesterday I shot 87, my highest score of the year. Played in a Men’s event on Pinehurst #5 where I typically shoot low 70’s. Our whole group got off to a bad start. No one broke 80. I went OB 3 times, 3 putted 3 times and missed 4 putts inside 3-4 feet for par. Course conditions were below average. Maintenance of the course was below par due to a shortage of maintenance personnel. Cups haven’t been changed in a while, have you ever seen the cup rims overgrown by grass before? And of course they decided to finally do some maintenance before the event started and sanded all the greens. Everyone struggled!
Fast forward to today! Played #2. In fantastic shape, greens are rolling true, fairways are what I call lush, not cut to tight. Bunkers were even raked! Shot 4 over 76(White Tees). What did I do better? Putting was great, 2 sandy pars, one sandy birdie. 3 over on the front, one over on the back, bogeyed 18. Statistically I hit only 7 fairways and 6 GIR. Chipping, bunker play and putting both on and from off the green was great. 27 putts.
I probably spend 20 minutes or a little more most days. First some stretching to start to loosen things up. Then some short irons, slow or partial swings first, progressing to full swings. Next a mid-iron, progressing from easy effort to proper full swings. Maybe 5 or 6 drivers. Then back down, a few mid-irons, a few short irons. To the putting green, mostly 20 to 30 footers feeling for speed, alternating with a few 4 to 6 footers to practice hitting my line. Back to the range, a couple more drivers (or whatever I'm swing on the first tee), and off to the course.
For a competition, I'll typically arrive a bit earlier, start with a few putts, then a few chips, and then into the same basic sequence as I outlined above. If I'm not at my home course, I'll spend more time chipping to watch the behavior of the ball when it lands, and more time with longer putts to get adjusted for the speed.
Had to give this a shot couple times today while practising, at first it felt so uncomfortable I couldn't focus on my target at all. After doing this even my normal grip felt weird for a while. Not sure was the weak grip weak enough, but it surely felt like the wrists might break if I hit that hard dry ground, ended up hitting little thin. One friend used to play with almost this weak grip and he always said the hard fairways make his wrists hurt, now I understand why. 😅
Also felt like hitting with completely straight stiff hands with the weak grip, one lever got completely robbed. The strong grip felt like I could hit the ball with nothing but wrists and it still would go a mile. 😄
It may depend to some extent on what your swing is like for these shots. A lot of people prefer a swing arc that just brushes the grass, with the back side of the flange (the bounce) being the only part of the club to actually contact the ground. For that kind of shot, use a club with more bounce, you'll have a little greater margin for error.
It may also depend on the firmness and speed of the greens you play. The 56 should fly higher, land softer, and stop quicker than the 50, everything else being equal.
Personally, I use my 60/8 lob wedge for most short game shots. I've played and practiced enough to be able to close it down and hit low runners, open it up and hit high soft lobs, and almost everything in between. The only real change is when I get close enough to hit a true chip and run, and I'll use anything down to 7 or 8 iron, but those shots aren't what you're asking about.