What is an AW Golf Club, What Does It Do & When To Use One

If you have seen the abbreviation AW when referring to golf clubs, you are probably wondering what this means and is used for.

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Quick Answer: A gap wedge is often referred to as an approach wedge by golfers and companies. The names basically mean the same thing so you can refer to them interchangeably.

Approach wedges are very popular among golfers because of their versatility and usefulness on the course. Depending on the type, there are many different brands of wedges that fall under this category; they’re all somewhat similar in principle and function.

Let’s discuss some of the common questions about an approach wedge, which is the predominant type of sand iron available on any given golf course.

What is the Degree of Loft in an Approach Wedge?

There’s a typical loft range for approach or gap wedges of 46 degrees to 52 degrees.

The range of loft (from 50 degrees to 58 degrees) is one of the largest ranges offered on any type of golf wedge, and it allows for different types of golfers.

How Far Does an AW Golf Club Go?

How far a golf club goes is always tough to determine because there are so many factors that can come into play. Factors such as swing plane, swing speed, and contact can all play into how far the ball will travel after it has been hit with the golf club.

But a rough estimate is that men typically hit an approach wedge about 70-110 yards, while women can be closer to 40-70 yard wedges.

What Are Popular Uses for an AW Golf Club?

Approach wedges are not only used for wood shots to the green from distances beyond 70 yards, but they can also be used in other instances on the course.

Gap wedges are great for shots of high trajectory when there is an obstacle or not much area to work with. They can also be used on pitch and chip shots around the green.

It really depends on what type of shot you’re playing. You would use a sand wedge, pitching wedge, or an approach wedge depending on the terrain.

How Do You Swing an AW Effectively?

Short irons require a similar swing to that of your approach wedges. When swinging on short irons, you place the ball in the middle of your stance and make an exaggerated golf club’s motion to get it in the air.

If desired, a knockdown shot can also be used from time to time for your gap wedge. It is basically the same swing you would use with your wedges and irons.

What Are Popular Brands of Approach Wedges?

There are many wedges marketed for golfing by various companies. Most of these will be rated as being in the intermediate-to-advanced category, but there are a few that occupy the top rung on this ladder.

There are many company’s that make approach wedges, such as Cleveland, Titleist and Callaway. If you’re interested in a wedge not included from those brands then it does not mean the quality is less good.

Getting feedback from other consumers is the easiest way to determine whether or not it’s worth your time and money.

How Does an Approach Wedge Compare to Other Wedges?

“An approach wedge” is a type of club because it has loft (or power) and distance to hit the ball.

A pitching wedge is the lowest lofted and it goes the farthest. Next would be an approach or gap as they both cover a similar distance but with minuscule differences. A sand wedge comes after that, followed by the lob which covers nearly half of what a sand can reach.

To clarify, order from farthest to shortest:

  • Pitching wedge
  • Approach wedge
  • Sand Wedge
  • Lob wedge