One of the most important questions you can ask of your game is – how far do I hit the ball?
Do you know the answer?
Knowing what distance you hit the ball and how far each club carries can help you plan your way round the golf course and lower your score.
A distance gap exercise could be one of the most important hour of your season.
You can do this by either spending some time on the practice fairway or, considering the weather, a good option is to visit a golf coach who can measure your club distances using a TrackMan or Flightscope launch monitor which can measure to within a yard.
What is distance gapping?
This is where a golfer measures how far they hit the ball with each club. Once a golfer knows each club’s yardage they can then asses the ‘gaps’ in distance between each club.
Why is distance gapping important?
For most amateurs distance gapping helps in two ways. It sets a benchmark for how far you hit the golf ball and more importantly it highlights distance gaps in your game that none of your clubs cover.
Some golfers may have big gaps in club distances between 190-240 yards and find it difficult reaching greens with long irons, finding themselves reaching for the fairway wood or hybrid a lot.
For others it could be measuring the distances with wedges closer to the green. This is the scoring zone in golf and a player might use a PW for a variety of distances rather than a SW or gap wedge to help control distance better.
Another consideration, more common than you think, is that lofts on clubs might not always be correct.
Most sets of golf clubs include a Driver, 3 Wood, 5 Wood 3-9 irons, PW, SW & Putter and numbers on golf clubs are not always as critical as the actual loft and how far its owner hits it.
Whilst the pros know their distances inside out (Ian Poulter was heard recently expressing his intention to hit the range to dial in the different swing feels of hitting the ball 117 yards and 114 yards) most amateurs would be hard-pressed to commit what the exact distance of their 9 iron is.
Effective Distance Gapping starts here.
For amateurs, its never been so easy to access this knowledge. GPS devices, laser rangefinders and yardage markers all make it possible to do so on the course. For more accurate results you can follow the pros and use a radar launch monitor.
Trying to work out how far each club goes might not be ideal in windy or changeable conditions, having access to an indoor launch monitor can be of significant benefit – and comes with added extras too.
Having an assisted practice session with The GolfSchool can establish more than just yardages for clubs.
The GolfSchool can make recommendations based on your game, perhaps ensuring your yardage gaps look correct or maybe recommending adding additional clubs if appropriate and if lofts, lies, grips or shafts need changing then they can take a look at that too.
Knowing the yardages of each club and the distance gaps between them helps plan shots with greater confidence whether its hot, cold, raining, windy or uphill.
Knowing you have the right club in your hands helps commit to encouraging confident swings every time.
Make a good note of the information you get from this exercise and understand it, what were the differences between good shots and bad shots, what was the yardage that felt most comfortable and most consistent, do your yardage gaps make sense for your game?
For instance, during a recent assisted practice session with a 5 handicap golfer we noted that, while he carried four wedges in his bag, there was a significant 37 yard gap in distance between his PW and 52 degree ‘gap wedge’, highlighting the need for a rethink on his choice of wedges. But it doesn’t matter what level of golfer you are, keeping tabs on club distances, especially after you buy a new set can help empower your game.
Visiting The GolfSchool can enable you to answer the fundamental question posed by every shot on the golf course with absolute confidence – what is the distance and which club should I use?
For more information, or to book in an assisted practice session to work out your club distances, visit The GolfSchool or call us on 0161 478 5620 for a chat about YOUR golf game.