How Far Should a Pitching Wedge Shot Go?

By William McCoy
Regular play helps you develop a consistent distance with your wedges.
Regular play helps you develop a consistent distance with your wedges.

The distance you can hit a golf ball with a pitching wedge depends primarily on your swing and your ability. If you are a beginner, it's likely your pitching wedge play will be sporadic. As you develop your skills, you will gain more consistency in the distance of your shots.

Distance

Men typically hit their pitching wedge from 100 to 140 yards, depending on their skill level, while women hit the same club from 70 to 120 yards. Beginners often find they do not achieve these distances, but their distances will increase as their swing improves. PGA Tour players get an average carry distance of 136 yards with their pitching wedge. LPGA Tour players get an average carry distance of 100 yards with the same club, according to Andrew Rice Golf. The carry distance doesn't take into consideration the roll distance, so the tour players will typically gain additional distance on these shots.

Variables

The ability to hit your pitching wedge consistently depends on a number of variables within your control and others outside of your control. The speed of your clubhead at the point of impact, the centeredness of contact and the direction that the clubhead approaches the ball all play key roles in the distance of your shot. If you take a short, soft swing, you won't hit your pitching wedge as far as if you take a full swing. Other factors include the lie of the ball and the speed and direction of the wind.

Consistency

Many golfers carry yardage books that help them gauge the distance from where their ball lies to the green or flagstick. Knowing this information is useful for selecting the right club for your shot. For example, if you hit your pitching wedge 100 yards and your ball is next the 100-yard marker, the pitching wedge is the right club to use.

Practice

An effective way to improve your consistency with your pitching wedge and learn how far the ball travels on a regular basis is to practice at a driving range. Because ranges are equipped with yardage signs, it's easy to hit a number of balls and see where they land. Note your average distance with full swings and half swings. Knowing this information can help you shave strokes off your score.

About the Author

Toronto-based journalist William McCoy has been writing since 1997, specializing in topics such as sports, nutrition and health. He serves as the Studio's sports and recreation section expert. McCoy is a journalism graduate of Ryerson University.

Photo Credits

  • Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images
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