Today we are going to talk a bit about a subject that many golfers have never heard of, let alone understand. The subject is called "Bounce" and it applies primarily to your wedges. It came up recently in a question that Isaac Simmons sent me.
"There is a lot of instruction on using the heel bounce on pitches and sand shots. When should you use the toe bounce? How do you pitch off hard pan?"
If you look at the bottom of a sand wedge, for example, you will see the front edge, or leading edge, at the very bottom of the face. But then as you look back toward the back of the club, to where the head thickens, this is the area club designers call the bounce. Most modern wedges have some degree of bounce and some even have the degrees of bounce stamped on the head.
If a club has been made with bounce, then it is likely to have two distinct bounce areas, i.e. the toe bounce and the heel bounce. You still with me? I know this can sound confusing so be sure to watch the video where we actually focus in on these parts of the club.
Now let's get to Isaac's question. The key here is that the lie and how far you need to carry the ball will determine whether you use toe bounce or heel bounce. I cover this in more detail in the video, but I can summarize the various situations here:
- Toe Bounce is generally used on a downhill lie or side-hill lie around the green where you do not have a lot of distance from the edge of the green to the hole. This is because when you hit the ball off the toe (and not the sweet spot), it will come off the club dead
- Heel Bounce is normally used when you have a regular lie or an uphill lie where you have ample room to land the ball on the green and let it run out.
- Off of hardpan around the green, I would tend to favor using Heel Bounce in almost every situation. However, if you are tight to the hole, you may need to use Toe Bounce and, let me tell you, this is one of the hardest shots in golf to make on a consistent basis. So practice this one a lot!
If you want to go beyond what I can cover in 8-9 minutes during a daily video, I recommend that you get my comprehensive video on this subject called Situational Shots: On The Course. In it, I show you how to hit 14 of the most common and difficult shots you can face during a round. If you master these shots, I can almost guarantee that you'll knock 4,5, maybe even 6 shots a round off your scores. Having these skills can keep a bad shot from turning your hole into a double or triple bogey nightmare because you'll be able to get the ball back into play on the very next shot.
Keep it vertical!
If you can't view the YouTube video above try CLICKING HERE. You must allow popups from this site for the link to work.