Bounce is a term not many golfers understand, even the most hardened of weekend golfers may not fully grasp the idea of a bounce angle (or bounce as it’s more commonly known). So if you’re a relative beginner, I wouldn’t worry too much if you hear other golfers talking about it on forums or on the range, you’re not required to know what bounce means at this stage. But if you’d like to hear golf bounce explained, then I’m going to help you understand what it means in this post.
So What is Bounce Angle?
According to PGAProfessional.com Bounce is:
(“bounce sole, bounce angle”) the angle of the club’s sole in relation to level/horizontal, or the amount that the leading edge of the club is higher than the part of the club’s sole that is lowermost (usually used in reference to irons — wedges in particular — and measured in degrees)
Confused? I am too! In simpler terms, bounce angle is the measurement in degrees of the angle created between the front of the sole of the club at address and the ground.
You refer to bounce angle on irons and wedges only, where measurements are from 0 degrees to more commonly 10-12 degree bounce clubs. The higher the golf club bounce the less the club is likely to dig into the ground upon impact.
Why is Bounce a Factor?
Generally the harder turf and firmer the sand bunkers are on your course, the lower the bounce angle will need to be. This lower degree will help you make firmer contact with the ball by digging down through impact.
In addition, if your local course has softer turf and fluffy sand traps, the amount of bounce on your wedges/irons would need to be higher obviously. This will prevent your clubs digging into the ground too much, and causing that pain in the ass fat shot.
On the contrary, club bounce also comes down to your style of swing. Do you have a steep incline swing, or do you have a smooth flat swing? Either or will determine which bounce wedge you would need. For steeper swingers the higher bounce wedges are ideal, as the higher bounce will help prevent them digging in the ground. If you’re a smooth guy/gal then the lower bounce angled wedges are what you should be looking to buy, as they help prevent skidding off the turf and making contact with the middle of the ball, otherwise known as skulling.
Which Bounce Angle Will I Need?
If you’re not entirely sure which bounce angle you should go with, it’s easy enough to find out. Just take your higher lofted irons/wedge to the driving range and hit off the turf. If you’re divots are long and deep then it’s a sign of a digger, so you’ll need a higher bounce set of irons/wedges. On the contrary if you’re taking hardly any divots at all then it’s a fair sure sign you’re a smoothy!
When you’ve recognised your swing type, and you’re sure of your local clubs’ common conditions, it’s a simple straight forward choice to make. With this info you can get fitted with your ideal set of clubs, and be on your way to mastering your short game!
As always if you have any questions, comments or arguments 🙂 please leave them in the comment section below, or, if you want to get practicing immediately, the Wilson Harmonized Golf Wedge is a great choice. (looks good too!)
All the best! Rob.