When playing your iron shots to the green, accuracy and control are much more important than distance. Perhaps you can do your maximum swing and hit a 7 iron 150 yards, but can you do it repeatedly and make it go straight? You might hit better shots by taking more club and less swing. Forget the macho thing, it won’t make your score any lower!

Consider this chart out of Ben Hogan’s book. Hogan could hit a 7 iron a maximum distance of 160 yards. But, in competition, he played it at 135 yards. Why did he intentionally give up the yardage? Because he made more birdies this way! You might have heard interviews recently with both Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in which they both admitted working on hitting more “knock down” and “punch” shots into the greens for better accuracy. I don’t know about you, but if Hogan, Woods, and Mickelson have applied this strategy with success – I’d give it a try!

Regular Maximum Minimum
From:
  Driver 265 300 235
  Brassie 250 270 220
  Three Wood 235 250 210
  Four Wood 220 230 200
  One Iron 195 220 185
  Two Iron 185 210 175
  Three Iron 175 200 165
  Four Iron 165 190 155
  Five Iron 155 180 145
  Six Iron 145 170 135
  Seven Iron 135 160 125
  Eight Iron 125 150 115
  Nine Iron 115 140 105
  Wedge (Pitch) 50 in 105 in to green
  Wedge (Sand) 25 40 in to green