The sand wedge is one of the most important clubs in the bag. Used in bunkers and in and around the green, perfecting the use of your sand wedge gives you the best possible chance of carding a low score.
As you’re probably aware, the degree of loft of a sand wedge is important, but so is its bounce – something that many recreational golfers overlook.
Below, we explain what you need to know about the degree of bounce of a sand wedge and compare the differences between wedges with ten and fourteen degrees and answer the question of should I be using sand wedge bounce 10 or 14?
- How Does Bounce Affect a Sand Wedge?
- Should I Use a 10 or 14 Bounce Angle on My Sand Wedge?
- What is a Good Bounce for a Sand Wedge?
- Is a 10 Degree Bounce Good for a Sand Wedge?
- Is a 14 Degree Bounce Too Much?
- What About Sand Wedge Bounce for High Handicappers?
- What Bounce Do Pros Use on Wedges?
- Overall, is High Bounce More Forgiving?
How Does Bounce Affect a Sand Wedge?
The bounce of a wedge is given by its angle between the leading edge of the club and the ground. It’s the part of the wedge responsible for hitting through the ground at impact, enabling you to control and spin the ball.
There are three types of bounce: low, mid, and high. Low bounce wedges see the club skip off the ground, while high bounce wedges are perfect for players with a steep angle of attack and usually take large divots.
Choosing the right type of sand wedge for your game is important, as its bounce affects your ability to control the ball around the green. We explain some of the key differences in wedge bounce in the following sections.
Should I Use a 10 or 14 Bounce Angle on My Sand Wedge?
A 10-degree bounce wedge is classed as mid bounce, while 14 degrees of bounce is regarded as high. Both are suited to different types of players, so you will need to think about your technique before settling on which club to opt for.
Players looking for a versatile wedge would be best to opt for a 10 degree over a 14 degree, as they’re ideal for neutral swings that have a moderate angle of attack. They’re perfect for lots of recreational players, as 10 degrees of bounce allows you to exert sufficient control over your green-side shots.
Conversely, a wedge with 14 degrees of bounce is a high-bounce sand wedge. If you typically have a steep angle of attack and find yourself taking large divots, you will be well suited to a sand wedge with a 14-degree bounce angle.
Players opt for high bounce angles as they’re known for generating lots of spin, but you will need to be a competent player to get the most out of them. If you don’t know how to play a high bounce wedge, you will find yourself hitting a lot of fat shots!
What is a Good Bounce for a Sand Wedge?
It’s not helpful to say what is good and what is bad in terms of bounce for a sand wedge, as every player is different. If you opt for a wedge with low bounce – typically six degrees or lower – they’re only really helpful in hard bunkers where the sand is course.
If you’re playing out of bunkers with beautiful white and fluffy sand (just like those at Augusta National), a low bounce wedge won’t really get the job done. This is because low-bounce wedges skip off the surface and don’t support a high angle of attack.
Equally, when you’re playing golf during the summer when the turf is hard, you might struggle to get the most out of a high bounce wedge, as it will be difficult to penetrate the ground, resulting in a duff shot.
This is why many recreational golfers opt for a sand wedge with mid-bounce, as they can be used in different circumstances and on various terrain.
A wedge with a mid-bounce is one that falls between 7-12 degrees of bounce, so this should be a good starting point for your research.
Is a 10 Degree Bounce Good for a Sand Wedge?
Ten degrees of bounce is good for a sand wedge, and it’s regarded as mid-bounce range. This means you can use it on normal turf and in standard bunkers, which are the conditions that you will face in the majority of courses that you play.
Another benefit of playing a wedge with ten degrees of bounce is that the angle of attack is moderate, meaning it’s well suited to a broad range of swing types. In other words, you don’t have to change too much about your setup to utilize the wedge in and around the green.
Although it’s extremely important, bounce is something that many recreational golfers tend to overlook when buying a sand wedge. More focus is on the degree of loft of the club, whether 54 or 58 degrees, for instance. Of course, loft is important, but so is bounce.
So, if you’re looking for a sand wedge with a reasonable degree of bounce that is suited to recreational players of varying abilities, then 10 degrees of bounce should do the trick.
Is a 14 Degree Bounce Too Much?
Fourteen degrees of bounce isn’t normally too much; it really depends on what you’re looking for in a sand wedge. If you’re someone who is hoping to maximize spin and distance control, then 14 degrees of bounce should suit you well.
It lets you get under the ball, which is how you generate spin around the green.
A wedge with 14 degrees of bounce will also do well out of softer lies in bunkers, so you might want to consider the type of sand that your course uses in its bunkers before thinking about whether a 14-degree bounce wedge will suit you.
The good news is that the manufacturers of the best wedges in the game offer their clubs with various loft and bounce options, so you can usually select a wedge that is well suited to your game.
Overall, a wedge with 14 degrees of bounce can work well for you if you’re hoping to generate lots of spin in and around the green. For this reason, it’s perhaps a better option for players with lower handicaps, as they typically have the ability to influence the fine margins of the game.
What About Sand Wedge Bounce for High Handicappers?
As a high handicapper, you should opt for a sand wedge with a mid-degree of bounce, somewhere between 8 and 12 degrees. The main reason for this is that mid-bounce wedges can be used in various settings, and you don’t necessarily need to adjust your stance or set up to play them.
As such, a wedge with ten degrees of bounce will be ideal for high handicappers and beginner golfers, as it’s regarded as a mid-bounce wedge.
Another thing you might want to consider as a high handicapper is selecting various wedges with different types of bounce. The reason for this is that you can practice your technique out on the range with each type of club and perhaps even switch between clubs as and when required.
When you’re still learning the game, it’s important to try out different things until you’re able to perfect your technique. Still, if we had to pick one type of wedge for beginners, we would recommend going for one with mid-bounce.
What Bounce Do Pros Use on Wedges?
Interestingly, the majority of PGA Tour pros use wedges with around 12 or 13 degrees of bounce. This is ever so slightly on the high side and allows them to get under the ball enough to generate sufficient spin and exercise good control around the green.
However, you will find that PGA Tours carry wedges with varying degrees of loft and bounce in the bag to make sure they’re covered for different shot types and angles into the green.
After all, if a pro experiences a tight lie in and around the green, a wedge with 12 or 13 degrees of loft will be far from ideal. Rather, they would look for something with a lot less bounce so the club could kick up off the surface and set the ball moving in the right direction.
One thing you can be certain of is that PGA Tour pros consider every little detail of the clubs they carry, so you will find that they bag the best wedges that are most suitable to their golf game and technique.
Overall, is High Bounce More Forgiving?
It wouldn’t be accurate to say that high bounce is more forgiving. You need to have a steep attack to utilize a wedge with a high degree of bounce, and you will end up hitting fat shots if you don’t execute the right type of shot with your wedge.
Equally, wedges with high degrees of bounce are best suited to players who are looking to spin the ball more and control it in and around the green.
As such, high bounce wedges are well suited to players with lower handicaps who can generate spin and exert control in their short games.
As mentioned, if you’re a beginner, opting for a wedge with ten degrees of bounce is likely to be your best bet, as it’s well suited to the shot styles of most recreational players.
And as is the case with all golf clubs, if you pick up a new wedge, we’d definitely recommend trying it out on different lies on the practice range before you take to the course. Fee thins are worse than standing green side and fatting a shot because you didn’t take into account its degree of bounce.
Although most recreational golfers focus on the degrees of loft that a particular club has, it’s really important not to overlook the bounce of a particular wedge so in choosing sand wedge bounce 10 or 14 you really have to try them both out.
Wedges with ten and fourteen degrees of bounce are among the most commonly used, and as explained, they’re suited to different types of players.
Hopefully, you now have all the information you need to choose the ideal degree of bounce for your sand wedge and can pick a club that is suited to your level and style.