Golf Talk With Greg Holman – #92

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The Lob Wedge or L Wedge or 60 degree wedge was invented by Karsten Solheim, the founder of PING Golf Products. Before the invention of the lob wedge the golfer was required to perform the shot with a sand wedge or pitching wedge by opening the blade and cutting across the ball making for a much more risky shot. Traditional sets of irons do not include a lob wedge. Before 1931 golfers used a single wedge called a jigger. Dave Pelz, a physicist from NASA was the first to teach how to play a lob wedge. Tom Kite was one of the first on tour to include it in his bag. Phil Mickelson is considered the master of the lob wedge.

I think it’s the most difficult club to master. I’d rather be asked to hit a 1-rion on the green into the wind from 180 yards than hit a flop shot with a lob wedge off hard pan from 30 yards. In fact it probably isn’t the club to use from a bare lie, at least by the average golfer. The lob wedge has the most loft of any iron and just as the name implies it is designed to lob the ball with very little spin and land dead on the green with very little roll. Most useful from around the green to work with. It’s not as heavy as a sand wedge so I leave the L wedge in the bag unless I have a perfect or near perfect lie. The club take practice. Again you need to be relaxed to hit the proper shot. Open the blade slightly, take a three-quarter swing from ten or 15 yards and just drop the club on the ball making sure you hit down on the ball and hit the ball first. The shot will go straight up, land and settle quickly on the green. It’s very easy to scuff the shot by hitting behind the ball or worse yet send the ball flying over the green if it is hit from the leading edge.

The lob shot with a lob wedge is a fun shot to hit and if you pull it off you can not only save yourself a shot or two you’ll get a “Nice shot” remark from your playing partners.

Hit ’em straight!

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