Comparing swing weights in wedges

The topic of swing weight is anything but simple and to a certain extent also very individual. In our opinion, however, it is one of the most important criteria for good performance. Especially a swing weight that varies from one club to the next will in principle prevent good performance. The swing weight should not only be uniform, but also fit perfectly. Good players will also feel the difference of only a few swing weight points e.g. between D1 and D3. Average players only notice a bigger difference. This can be interpreted very well with the numbers that a Foresight Quad delivers.

For the following test we used a 56° wedge with an identical shaft and a significant difference in swing weight, namely C3 and D3. Relevant for amateur golfers is a swing weight from B to D where D is heavy and B is very light. In a way, the number indicates the gradation exactly. C8, C9, D0, D1, D2, D3, etc. from light to heavy. The difference between C3 and D3 is therefore relatively clear and is well suited for such a test. C3 in a wedge is quite low and rather a typical ladies swing weight. D3 in a wedge is standard for men.

Goal of the swingweight comparison

In this test we want to find out how the swing weight difference in our test person is and what influence it has on his game. The goal was to approach a flag 68m away.

The numbers in comparison

C3 D3
Ball Speed 60.9 62.2
Launch Angle 29.6 28.1
Backspin 7459 7234
Carry 59 61
Smash Factor 1.02 1.04
Clubhead Speed 59.6 59.8
Dynamic Loft 47.2 44.9

There are some interesting points that can be read from these figures. The player achieved a much better Smash Factor with the heavy wedges - he hit the balls better. This results in a higher ball speed with the same club head speed. The fact that the speed of the ball is practically the same does not suggest that the player was able to accelerate the club better.

The dynamic loft is especially interesting because it is over 2° higher with the light wedge. The explanation is that it is easier for the player with the light wedge to "shovel" and add loft to the club. This is definitely something you want to avoid with wedges.

The clubface was also more neutral with the heavy wedge, too open with the light wedge and the shots were more likely to be blocked. The Angle of Attack was also slightly steeper with the heavy wedge, which is only explained by the fact that a heavy wedge works more "down" in the follow through.

The impression of the tester

For the tester the difference in swing weight was of course clearly noticeable, which demonstrably changed his movement. He had much more control with the heavy wedge and hit the balls cleaner. If you look at the distribution of the balls you can also see that the dispersion to the left and right was much greater with the light wedge.

The tester had the impression that he needed less effort to move the club to the ball. The impact felt richer which can be shown by better smash factors. He had a much better feeling and more confidence with the heavy wedge.

Our conclusion

The test shows above all the following: A heavy club provides more precision and a more consistent hit pattern. It tends to work more "down" in the follow through and optimizes (in this case) the Angle of Attack and dynamic loft. The hands stay better in front of the ball at the moment of impact and the tendency to "shovel" decreases.

Of course these positive effects have reached a limit somewhere and there is definitely too much swing weight. This is reached when the player can't get the club head square to the ball at all and it takes too long to accelerate the club head - if he can accelerate it at all. In such a case, the tendency downwards will be too strong and the player may "dive" too much. In short: A lot can go wrong with too heavy clubs.

Finding the right center is the task of every fitter. It is not always easy and often you should not go too crazy because of one or two swing weight points. However, the swing weight should fit relatively accurately and the clubs should above all be consistent.

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