• Announcements

    • iacas

      Visit FlagstickRule.com   03/13/2017

      Visit the site flagstickrule.com to read about and sign a petition for the USGA/R&A regarding the one terrible rule in the proposed "modernized" rules for 2019.
Jack Watson

Practice wedges and short irons

Recommended Posts

Jack Watson    86

These clubs are so fun.  I see a lot of high caps and they all wanna bust driver on the range.  Personally in any given range session I might hit a driver or two or a lot of times I don't.

To me,  wedges and short irons can reduce scores so much.  Think about it-you get in trouble off the tee and have to pitch out or mishit your second or bust a big drive-with Good wedges and short irons you have a great chance to give yourself a putt instead of a chip on the next shot.

Do you enjoy practicing these?  What's your range session like?  Is it more long clubs?  

The longer I play I really see the importance of setup changes from shorter to longer clubs.   It really makes a difference to have a pro help with this.  

I think players should be competent with these clubs before worrying too much about driver.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sign up (or log in) today! It's free (and you won't see this ad anymore)!

Sign up (or log in) today! It's free (and you won't see this ad anymore)!

Vinsk    196

Well I guess it depends on what the goal for the player is. If they have the mindset of, " Oh just swing the club and have fun. It's an easy game, where ever the ball goes..there it is!", then sure, have fun hitting those wedges all day on the range.

For someone who really wants to improve their scores, imo, getting 'competent' with driver and mid-long irons is of most importance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Patch    308

Yep, there is nothing more pleasing than well struck wedge shot finding the bottom of the cup. Another plus is that it also saves wear and tear on that putter.....:-P

I practice with my wedges more than any other clubs in my bag. It's easier, and more convient. My home course has a decent short game practice area, while their range for longer clubs is usually mats only. The fact that my "shortish" long game needs good wedge play for consistent scoring is another reason I prefer more short game practice. 

Don't get me wrong. I also believe that those golfers who can still use their long game to set up an easier short game, need to spend more time on their long game. 3, or 4 decades ago I too knew that the long game was more important. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86

@Vinsk

Why would one think if they cannot hit short clubs that they should work on long ones?  

I am talking shots from 50-150.  From good lies those need tight dispersion.  

To me driver is almost the same just with a different setup and you're gonna freewheel driver.  That's it.  You can hit a little hold wedge but that won't work on driver.

Imo shots from 170-210 are not super important.

Physically,  not everyone has the ability to rip driver past 250 or become good at long irons.

Everyone can get good with short irons though especially if they learn to club up.  The force involved is not much.

If you can't control your nine iron you have no hope with driver.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MarvChamp    21

Good topic. I typically take a wedge or two, two short irons, a mid-iron, a hybrid or DIR hybrid and a fairway. Maybe driver. I begin with wedges and short irons, about 15 shots each. Then 10 or so with the others. The reason is that my distances off the tee on pars 4 and 5 are shorter than they used to be at my age, though generally accurate. I MUST own the 2nd and 3rd shots. So I practice the clubs I will likely use. -Marv

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vinsk    196
23 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Imo shots from 170-210 are not super important.

Which are you more likely to get trouble from i.e. penalty, deep woods, hazard, ob...a poor shot from 170-210 or a 50-150yd shot? You can be a short game wizard all you want. But if it's taking you 4 or 5 shots to get to your 'hot zone', you're doing nothing for your score. Just think about it.

Off the tee (you haven't practiced driving, maybe a few if at all). You slice your drive ob. You reload. So you're laying 3 with 185yds to the green. You haven't really put much time into your mid-long irons..so you push your 6i way right into deep rough. But hey, you've been cracking out those 30yd pitches so your 5th shot rolls to 10' and you're ok with that. Lo and behold you sink that putt and save db...you walk off..so grateful your short game saved the day. What did it save?

Can't remember if you said or not...but have you read Lowest Score Wins?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

JonMA1    351
1 hour ago, Vinsk said:

Well I guess it depends on what the goal for the player is. If they have the mindset of, " Oh just swing the club and have fun. It's an easy game, where ever the ball goes..there it is!", then sure, have fun hitting those wedges all day on the range.

For someone who really wants to improve their scores, imo, getting 'competent' with driver and mid-long irons is of most importance.

I don't think the emphasis on the importance of the long game in any way means giving up on everything else.

GIR are king, correct? I agree the full swing (driving) is the biggest relative skill in hitting them and as such, the driver should be practiced more than 2 or 3 times per session. But wedges play a big part as well.

1 hour ago, Jack Watson said:

Physically,  not everyone has the ability to rip driver past 250 or become good at long irons.

Working on your full swing is not as much about hitting it farther. It's about getting good enough to keep the ball in play. If you can use the longest club in your bag with confidence, all those other skills will benefit from it.

It took me a while to understand that. You are correct that our distance is limited by physical ability. But that shouldn't limit anyone from maximizing their ability and working towards reducing errors with it.

The driver/full swing is much more important than I think you're considering it to be, IMO.

Edit: I meant to include this link: 

 

Edited by JonMA1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86

@Vinsk

Practicing driver without a fundamentally sound motion is only going to make a person worse.  Sure you can groove compensations during that session to influence dispersion for that session but tomorrow you will be starting over again.  If you can get tight dispersion from 150 that's very very similar to what you should be doing with driver minus setup changes.

People get driver and think distance that's their problem.  The swing changes.  The focus should be on dispersion/hitting it online.

If you can hit a large % of good shots at 150 you have a much better chance of using longer clubs effectively.  If you're spraying left and right and short and long at 150 you're not gonna do any good trying to bomb driver.  The swing is poor.

Practicing scoring clubs is so so valuable.  Spraying drivers all over is a complete waste of time.

You gotta learn to walk before you can run.

;-)

 

Edited by Jack Watson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vinsk    196
42 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

If you can hit a large % of good shots at 150 you have a much better chance of using longer clubs effectively.

Purely hypothetical.

 

43 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Practicing driver without a fundamentally sound motion is only going to make a person worse

No kidding. When did I say practice driver in that manner. And, the same goes for practicing wedges. What's your point?

 

43 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Practicing scoring clubs is so so valuable.  Spraying drivers all over is a complete waste of time.

Sounds like you're saying, "Even though It's important, driving is hard so just skip it and do something easier." You can start practicing 85% of your time with your short game. You'll do a great job of thinking you're really improving your game. You won't be. You seem to have some kind of avoidance as to how difficult this game is and that you have some way to circumvent what has been proven to be the best way to play, swing and improve on this game. I think you're kidding yourself because your're so frustrated that you haven't been able to improve the way you figured your philosophical approach would allow you to do. You are reluctant to just admit you can't get it and simply choose to pretend that it doesn't matter to you and you're just gonna swing and be happy and do what makes you think makes  you happy. I'm just not buying it Jack. I think you're every bit as passionate as I am but just can't come to the harsh reality that we suck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86
6 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

Purely hypothetical.

 

No kidding. When did I say practice driver in that manner. And, the same goes for practicing wedges. What's your point?

 

Sounds like you're saying, "Even though It's important, driving is hard so just skip it and do something easier." You can start practicing 85% of your time with your short game. You'll do a great job of thinking you're really improving your game. You won't be. You seem to have some kind of avoidance as to how difficult this game is and that you have some way to circumvent what has been proven to be the best way to play, swing and improve on this game. I think you're kidding yourself because your're so frustrated that you haven't been able to improve the way you figured your philosophical approach would allow you to do. You are reluctant to just admit you can't get it and simply choose to pretend that it doesn't matter to you and you're just gonna swing and be happy and do what makes you think makes  you happy. I'm just not buying it Jack. I think you're every bit as passionate as I am but just can't come to the harsh reality that we suck.

You are good at the straw man thing.

when in this thread did I mention anything that relates to the above nonsense?

I'm quite content with my game thanks.  I hit it where I am looking most times.  Really just have to stay out of my own way.  You seem somehow offended by me or something.  I don't get it.

Ive paid my dues man and there is light at the end of the tunnel.  

One of the times my driving really began to get better back when I was putting in range time years back was when it was 160 max.

I was going 3-5 times a week limited to 160.  When I got back on course my driver was way better than when I was whacking away with it like a hack.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hacker James    167

My practice routine is purposeful.  I am able to hundreds of balls in my back yard, but usually break it up into 7 or 8 at different times during the day. I do not change clubs all that frequently, in that my "sets" are with a particular club with multiple "reps". I might choose a six iron for several, then later in the day switch to a hybrid. Driver...eh...not all that often as hitting into a target 12 feet away with a driver does not make a lot of sense. But I may do some slow mo drills.  Short iron, full swings have to be really up close to avoid going over the net, so I usually just pitch from across the yard 45 feet or so into a hanging vinyl target. 

To the subject at hand. All practice is important with accuracy weighing in more than distance. There have been times on the course where I will use my 3 wood for most of the round, only because it gives me the best "feel" for that particular day and staying in the middle of the fairway maximizes my chances for a GIR or close enough approach to make a one putt likely.
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Vinsk    196
3 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

I'm quite content with my game thanks.

No you're not...come on Jack. It's ok..Golf is hard.

 

3 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

You seem somehow offended by me or something.

Not at all. It's just been well proven by statistics, not opinion, on the importance of the long game especially over putting.

3 minutes ago, Hacker James said:

My practice routine is purposeful.  I am able to hundreds of balls in my back yard, but usually break it up into 7 or 8 at different times during the day. I do not change clubs all that frequently, in that my "sets" are with a particular club with multiple "reps". I might choose a six iron for several, then later in the day switch to a hybrid. Driver...eh...not all that often as hitting into a target 12 feet away with a driver does not make a lot of sense. But I may do some slow mo drills.  Short iron, full swings have to be really up close to avoid going over the net, so I usually just pitch from across the yard 45 feet or so into a hanging vinyl target. 

To the subject at hand. All practice is important with accuracy weighing in more than distance. There have been times on the course where I will use my 3 wood for most of the round, only because it gives me the best "feel" for that particular day and staying in the middle of the fairway maximizes my chances for a GIR or close enough approach to make a one putt likely.
 

You and @Jack Watson need to read LSW. I think you'll find it quite enlightening. @Jack Watson You in particular but I'm thinking you don't want to read it because it's going to show very clearly what I think you just don't want to believe. I'm not offended at all Jack. I actually enjoy reading most of what you write. And I'm a golf fanatic and I appreciate your passion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86
3 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

Not at all. It's just been well proven by statistics, not opinion, on the importance of the long game especially over putting.

I never practice putting.

Again practice is useless if you are spraying long shots trying to 'figure it out.'

You find the edge of where your ability to have tight dispersion is and work in that level.  

High caps don't have tight dispersion at 150 yards.  Like I said if you can't even hit a good nine what makes you think you'll do better with a five?

Think about it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vinsk    196
6 minutes ago, Jack Watson said:

Again practice is useless if you are spraying long shots trying to 'figure it out.'

 

That's exactly why you should practice. If you can solidly hit your 50-150yd shots with a tight dispersion...then consistently practicing that is what is a waste of time. You have to be bold and practice that which is uncomfortable yet has a significant separation value. If you're spraying drives everywhere,  you will not score well. Period. I don't care how awesome your wedge game is. Right? You get that right? What good is a laser accurate wedge game when you're laying 3 every time you pull that wonder club out? 

I think you may be missing my point. I'm referring to people  who DO care about their game and ARE NOT happy with their game as is and want to improve. None of this matters for a guy a like you. You're happy with your game and have no desire to improve, you've maxed out your potential and just want to swing the club and have fun. And that's great, I have no problem with that. But if that's all true, why do you bother to post in so many forums where game improvement, swing mechanics, etc are being discussed? Why don't you just hang out in the grill room and shoot the s*** so to speak? 

Edited by Vinsk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Killa    15

If you let me choose what part of the game I could be good like a PGA pro I'd take driver to 7 iron any day of the week compared to 8-putter. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86

@Vinsk

Driving consistently is very important.  I am just saying hitting a lot of drivers is not the best way to go about improving ones driving,  especially if you're missing the green at 125.

Getting really good at 50-150 is much more likely to lead to good driving than people think. 

The other thing that just crushes consistency is the ridiculous length of the drivers.

If you want to be a good driver get good at 150.  Adjust setup same move.  WALA

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hacker James    167
19 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

 

You and @Jack Watson need to read LSW. I think you'll find it quite enlightening.

Oh, I am not discounting that in the least. On those days that a driver feels right, I will use it and on those days, I have very little trouble in keeping the ball in play.   Now, admittedly it would seem to make sense that should I practice with a driver more, then I would be more proficient. I do not delude myself however, I will not have the distance I once had no matter how hard or often I practice. Right now, I just try to maximize what I have and go with what gives me more consistent results. Having not read that book, I can not agree nor disagree. I find anything new (to me) enlightening. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Jack Watson    86
2 hours ago, Vinsk said:

nk you may be missing my point. I'm referring to people  who DO care about their game and ARE NOT happy with their game as is and want to improve. None of this matters for a guy a like you. You're happy with your game and have no desire to improve, you've maxed out your potential and just want to swing the club and have fun. And that's great, I have no problem with that. But if that's all true, why do you bother to post in so many forums where game improvement, swing mechanics, etc are being discussed? Why don't you just hang out in the grill room and shoot the s*** so to speak? 

I see you added a big edit after I responded.

I know how I got to where I am.   I offer my opinions because I see so many online golfers all tied up in knots.  Quick story...I play with a guy who loves golf but before maybe six or ten months ago shot mid high nineties if not occasionally over one hundred.  Good friend.  Think about this-no swing changes outside of changing intent/mindset.  He's now a consistent short knocker.

Now he's in the eighties and has almost broken 80.  It took time but he listened and trusted me and I detoxed him.  He doesn't go to the range except once in a while a day before a round.  He does practice short game.  He flips really bad and has no d on his irons and might get a good drive 240-250 max.  

He hits a lot of shots right at his targets now-sure he tends to come up short but he's not the most athletic guy.  

I enjoy posting about ideas that have helped or hurt me along the way.  It's a bit of a personal detox if you will.  

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now