How many wedges should you carry? Some players opt for just the two, while others have been know to carry as many as four. Here we help you decide what is best for you
How many wedges should I carry? It’s a question I often get asked, and with room for just 14 clubs in the bag, it can be tough deciding which ones to put in, and which ones to leave out.
To get the answer to this question you need to evaluate your whole game, and not just your wedge play.
So the real question is, what will save you the most shots? This will probably come down to a choice between losing a wedge and adding a fairway wood to improve your chances of hitting more long par 4s and par 5s, or losing a fairway wood and adding a wedge, so you don’t have to hit as many awkward half and three-quarter shots from inside 120 yards.
What wedges can I choose from?
After your 9-iron comes a choice of wedges, which can range in lofts from 45-64°, and normally you’ll find these lofts displayed on the heads, as seen in the picture above.
Traditionally, pitching wedges are lofted from 45-50°, gap wedges from 50-54°, sand wedges from 54-58°, and lob wedges from 58-64°. So how many wedges should you carry?
Two wedge system
Lots of players use the ‘clock face’ drill to dial in their yardages, because this gives you more shots with one club. So if you are confident replicating the sort of half and three-quarter swings this method relies on consistently, then you may well benefit from ditching a wedge and carrying an extra fairway wood or hybrid.
If you go for this method, we’d recommend opting for a pitching wedge around 48° and a sand wedge around 56°, which will give you a reasonably even gap from your 9-iron, which is usually lofted between 40-42°.
Three wedge system
Arguably the most common choice for club golfers, three wedges leaves you with room for two fairway woods, which is often more important for players who lack the distance tour professionals can muster.
If you do choose a three wedge system, we’d recommend something along the lines of a pitching wedge at 46°, a gap wedge at 52°, and a lob wedge at 58°, which gives you even 6° gaps between clubs, which should give you all the options you need.
Four wedge system
If you regularly hit your pitches too far or too short when in between clubs, or feel most comfortable when committing to a full shot, then you’ll probably want to carry an extra wedge you can hit the required distance.
If you go for this method, the best way to achieve your ideal gaps between clubs is to get even loft gaps. So starting from a stock 46° pitching wedge, you can then add a gap wedge at 50°, a sand wedge at 54° and a lob wedge at 58°, which should equate to 8-12 yard gaps for the average golfer.