I know, I know, easy for me to say…but hear me out. If you stop worrying about driving distance, you will increase your driving distance.
This might be a bad analogy, but what if you only worried about your biceps and did nothing but work them out heavily? What if you put all of your money into one stock…etc., etc., etc.
Whereas what happens if you work out your entire body…your biceps get bigger…and if you invest in more than one stock, even if one goes down, you end up with more money in the long term…2008 notwithstanding.
Everyone knows that chipping and putting is where the scoring is, but being able to control distance with your wedges is the next most important.
Let me digress and talk about something almost every golfers notices. When you hit a ball right at the hole and you get up on the green, it is always farther from the hole than it looked from where you hit it. When you hit a ball pin high left or right, it always ends up being closer than it looked.
Distance control is an overlooked skill in golf…and yet another reason why holding off the release/adding lag is terrible for your game.
The way you improve your distance control with wedges, and all clubs for that matter, is to control spin and trajectory. Controlling spin and trajectory is all about taking the control out of the hands and allowing the turn of your body to control the speed at which you accelerate the club.
Releasing the club is even more important in controlling spin, trajectory and distance. Unwinding a lot of lag late in the downswing is tough with driver, but you don’t need distance control on that. Having too much lag and it releasing late with wedges will cause too much spin from a good lie, bigger fliers from the rough and little if any trajectory control because of the late release.
That is why you often see some of the shorter hitters on tour being the best wedge players and Tiger airmailing wedges over the green and spinning them off the front on the days he is having trouble releasing it properly.
I will say it for the again till I annoy all of you into believing me. If Tiger can’t control a late release, how can any of us?
Let me put it this way. What is more important? Gaining an extra 10-15 yards on 1 out of every 5 drives, or being able to put your wedges consistently the same distance as the pin.
So you can have one 280 yard drive in the fairway, four in the trees from 230 to 250 and wedges all over the map…or three 265 yard drives in the fairway, one in the light rough and one in the tress at 250 and wedges in a 30-40 foot circle around the pin
If you think having wedges in a 30-40 circle is not that good, check out stats on the PGA Tour to find out how good that is. I bet if you kept track of your would find some amazing results…this would also help you with lower your expectations on individual shots, make you play more strategically and lower your scores.
I can’t think of a better piece of evidence for allowing a natural release to happen than that.
I am putting this post up again in a week or 10 days. Both to remind those that read it today…and expose those who have taken a break from the blog for the Holidays.
Didn’t you like the way I went off on different tangents and segways throughout the post to get back to the lag controversy?