Distance isn’t everything

GOLF_DISTANCEWell, actually yes it is. We obsess about distance, egged on by the advertising copywriters who promise us extra yards every year from the latest clubs. Given the relentless march of technological innovation, it is rather curious that the average handicap has remained pretty much unchanged in recent times. And, if we can hit it further with some clubs, I suspect that is largely down to stronger lofts and longer shafts. Read this article on the subject of loft creep and the resulting need to invent the gap or approach wedge, if you don’t believe me.

The key thing, in my view, is to know your own distances with your own clubs and to work with that. To this end, I put together the following table which shows my various clubs, their lofts and the distance I could expect from them given good conditions and a nice fairway lie. I keep a copy in my bag to check in moments of doubt and, although it’s not foolproof, I find it helps me get the choice of club pretty much right most of the time.

3   wood

15

200+

3   hybrid

21

200

4   hybrid

24

190

5   iron

27

180

6   iron

30

165

7   iron

33

150

8   iron

37

135

9   iron

41

120

PW

45

105

AW

52

95

SW

56

85

LW

60

70

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