Best Golf Wedge For Mid Handicapper 2023

Find a model that will suit your game and skill level

Best Golf Wedge For Mid Handicapper
(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Getting the best golf wedges for your game could see your handicap improve drastically. While many consider the putter to be the most important club in their bag, your wedges are your scoring clubs. They put you in the position to putt and when fully dialled in, they can be a critical weapon that can help shave countless shots off your score card. If you're a mid-range handicapper looking to get down to single figures, having the correct wedges for your swing-style can go a long way in helping you do that. 

For that reason, we've listed below some of the best wedges (opens in new tab) for mid-range handicappers that can help with game improvement. These wedges generally boast a variety of features but are all forgiving, provide excellent spin and help golfers get out of tricky situations around the course. This guide will also walk you through what you need to look out for when purchasing a new wedge, but we also recommend you read our post on what to consider when buying a wedge (opens in new tab), where we go into more detail on bounce, grind and loft.  

There is plenty of choice for mid-range handicappers when it comes to picking the best golf wedges for you. But why not also use our guides on the best wedges for forgiveness (opens in new tab) and the best wedges for chipping (opens in new tab)  to help you make your decision more informed. 

Best Golf Wedge For Mid Handicapper

Why you can trust Golf Monthly Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Titleist Vokey SM9Editors Choice 2022


(Image credit: Future)
A wedge so good it features in our 2022 Editors Choice Awards

Specifications

Lofts: 46-62
Grinds: 6 (F, M, S, D, L, K)
Finishes: 4 (Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel, Jet Black and Raw)

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible trajectory control
+
Unrivalled looks
+
Loads of bounce and grind options

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited gains over SM8

Titleist Vokey wedges continue to stand out from the crowd when it comes to the best golf wedges on the market. The SM9 (opens in new tab) is a case of evolution rather than revolution from the SM8 but Titleist says it has developed the groundbreaking Progressive Centre of Gravity (CG) design to improve distance and trajectory control. In testing, we found it very easy to square-up on full shots and deliver excellent consistency of spin and flight from closer to the green.

Back again are Titleist’s six grind options - F, S, M, K, L and D - making the Vokey SM9 range highly versatile for every golfer and their unique swing. In total, there are 23 different loft and bounce options and we took advantage of that in our custom fitting session to optimise our wedge set-up for improved performance. A new spin milled cutting process means grooves are sharper, while each groove is specifically cut based on loft and finish. Titleist also inspects every single groove on every wedge to guarantee conformity and that rigorous attention to detail has helped the brand produce one of the best golf wedges (opens in new tab) currently on the market. 

Ping Glide 4.0 WedgeEditors Choice 2022


(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Best wedges for distance control

Specifications

Lofts: 46-60
Grinds: 4 (S, W, E, T)
Finishes: 1 (Grey)

Reasons to buy

+
Unrivalled spin
+
Excellent grind options
+
Looks great over the ball

Reasons to avoid

-
Feel takes a while to get used to

The Ping Glide 4.0 wedge looks exceptional - especially in the more traditional teardrop shape that is available in three of the four sole options. It also has the classic Ping Hydropearl 2.0 chrome finish, which reduces glare as well as flyers from the rough in damp conditions while also adding a touch of style to the aesthetics. 

The WS (wide sole) is where we enjoyed the most success. Turf interaction was exceptional on short shots, making it one of the best wedges for chipping (opens in new tab) we've ever tested. Most impressive, however, was how easy it was to spin the golf ball. Even when hitting shots that came off a little hotter and lower than expected, the ball sat to attention quicker than most new wedges. This could well have been down to the new Emery face blast, which adds a little more friction to the hitting surface.

Cleveland CBX ZipCore wedgeEditors Choice 2022

(Image credit: Future)
A superb performing wedge that offers plenty of forgiveness

Specifications

Loft: 44°-60°
Grind: 3 - (V, S and C)
Finishes: 1 (Chrome)

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent feel on all shots
+
Lots of spin on offer
+
Really forgiving

Reasons to avoid

-
Sound is a bit clicky
-
Not the best-looking from the back

Cleveland has added another model to its impressive wedge line-up, with the CBX ZipCore (opens in new tab) wedge providing superb forgiveness thanks to a cavity/muscle back design. 

Although it may not look the best wedge from the back, all forgotten when standing over the ball at address as the classic teardrop shape and chrome finish inspire bags of confidence. Another positive, from a visual standpoint, is the all-black Catalyst Spinner graphite shaft.

Aesthetically pleasing at set-up, it also performs superbly, with the ZipCore extremely easy to hit and surprisingly easy to flight, something that’s likely a consequence of the low-density ZipCore that sits at the heart of this wedge to shift the center of gravity and raise the MOI for maximum forgiveness. Because of the performance it has earned a place in our 2022 Editor's Choice Awards. (opens in new tab)

Ram Tour Grind Wedge

(Image credit: Future)

Specifications

Loft : 50°- 60°
Grind : 3 (5,11,9)
Finishes: 2 (Black and Silver)

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible levels of spin
+
Pleasing turf interaction

Reasons to avoid

-
Hard to flight on full shots

This is a fantastic wedge that we think certainly punches above its weight when it comes to the control, forgiveness and performance on offer. The Ram Tour Grind is a great club for any high-handicap player, looking to improve around the greens. It boasts an eye-catching look that comes in a black and a silver finish, and while it took a while to grow on us, we did eventually come to like the stamped numbers and writing on this club. 

The highlight of this wedge is the excellent level of spin it delivers around the greens. We were able to generate a ton of control from the precision milled grooves when chipping. And having tested a host of the best wedges this year, the Ram Tour Grind easily holds its own among other heavyweights in the same division. One thing to note is that on full shots it doesn't offer the same level of forgiveness and workability as its competitors, but at a fraction of the price, the Ram Tour Grind is not to be overlooked. It does feel a little firm off the face but offers bags of confidence in the level of control it offers. That combined makes it one of the best wedges for chipping (opens in new tab).

MacGregor V Foil Wide Sole Sand Wedge5 Stars

(Image credit: Future)
Excellent for those who struggle with chipping

Specifications

Lofts: 66º
Grinds: 1 (Extra wide autoglide sole)
Finishes: 1 (Steel)

Reasons to buy

+
Helps to reduce fat and thin chips
+
Promotes straighter shots
+
Confidence-inducing

Reasons to avoid

-
Right hand only

Marketed towards players who see chipping as a weakness in their game, this club is a great way to help improve consistency and eradicate both thin and fat shots (opens in new tab). It features a wide sole that is designed to reduce the amount of dig into the turf. That helps the clubs instead glide over the grass and strike fluidly, with loft, through the golf ball. The club also only comes in a 66º loft, which helps to get the ball into the air and clear the lips of bunkers. 

Another advantage of the club's wide sole is that it prevents turning the club over, which keeps the face open and allows players to hit straighter, more accurate shots while adding more spin onto the ball. It also features grooves across its full face and that helps to keep miss-hit shots on line. While it is not designed for every golfer, it is an excellent piece of equipment for players who struggle with chipping or lack confidence when doing so. If you're a mid-handicapper in the market for a new lob wedge (opens in new tab) and are looking for a club that can give you a little more confidence from less than 100 yards out, then the MacGregor might be the right club for you. 

Callaway Jaws Mack Daddy 5 Wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Best feeling wedge

Specifications

Lofts: 46-64
Grinds: 5 (S, W, C, X, L-W)
Finishes: 3 (Platinum Chrome, Tour Grey, Custom)

Reasons to buy

+
Wide variety of loft and sole grind options
+
Both finishes bolster the premium appeal
+
High level of spin
+
A soft feel

Reasons to avoid

-
Some may prefer a straighter, longer leading edge for easier alignment

Not only is the Jaws MD5 one of the best gap wedges out there, but we  believe that you’ll struggle to find a better all-around wedge offering because it has no obvious weakness. The MD5's really excel at creating spin on longer pitch shots and full shots where the extra speed can generate backspin in excess of 11,000rpm in some cases. That makes it an excellent club to use from over 100 yards out giving you more precision and control over the shots you're hitting.

Everyone will enjoy that buttery soft feel on all lengths of shot, which is down to the mild carbon steel used to create the heads, the muscleback design and the soft and tacky Lamkin UTX grip. The club has a premium finish and features the classic circular weights on its back that Callaway Jaws wedges have boasted for some time. 

PXG Sugar Daddy II Wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
A very forgiving club

Specifications

Lofts: 50°-62°
Grinds: 2 (C, BP)
Finishes: 2 (Chrome, Xtreme Dark)

Reasons to buy

+
Extremely forgiving
+
Unique levels of adjustability 
+
Well balanced
+
Extra bounce and grind option for 2022

Reasons to avoid

-
High-toe design won't suit some

The visuals of this wedge are striking thanks to a weight that's been added at the back of the head as well as the introduction of full-face grooves and a high-toe design. Believe it or not, all that was done after PXG received feedback from its tour staff. 

One of the first things we noticed was the balance on offer. It's incredible and makes playing all lengths of shot easy. In addition, there is a new bounce and grind option for 2022, meaning golfers have more options to tailor the set-up to their unique delivery and turf conditions. For us, that meant switching into the higher 13-degree bounce model.

Although the high-toe design wasn't to our liking aesthetically, it worked to make this one of the most forgiving wedges (opens in new tab) we've ever tested. When pitching and hitting full shots, controlling the flight was more simple than usual, while the spin was comparable to anything on the market. It also comes in two finishes: Chrome and Xtreme Dark, which is a really nice addition.

Cleveland RTX ZipCore Wedge


(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Most versatile wedge

Specifications

Lofts: 46-62
Grinds: 3 (Low, Mid, Full)
Finishes: 3 (Tour Satin, Black Satin, Tour Raw)

Reasons to buy

+
Forgiving on full shots
+
Superb value for money
+
High-spinning and soft-feeling
+
Lots of loft and grind options

Reasons to avoid

-
Better players may want to see a straighter leading edge

The Cleveland RTX ZipCore wedges are traditional in shape and progress from being iron-like in the lower lofts to being more rounded in the higher lofts. Whilst some better players may want to see a straighter leading edge, the raised section at the top of the wedge is well hidden, so it still displays a thin topline that better players will enjoy.

Meanwhile, there's plenty to like about the tour satin finish, which oozes class, and the performance on offer. Despite the impressive levels of spin, full shots didn’t balloon through the air and distance control was very consistent, even when the strike wasn’t pure. That made the RTX ZipCore was a very forgiving golf wedge (opens in new tab) that still added some spin onto miss-hit shots.

Mizuno-T22-wedge-review

(Image credit: Howard Boylan)
Great wedge for custom fit options

Specifications

Lofts: 45-62
Grinds: 4 (X, S, D, C)
Finishes: 3 (Denim, Satin Chrome, Raw)

Reasons to buy

+
High level of spin control
+
Wide range of finishes available
+
Great in wet weather

Reasons to avoid

-
Raw finish scuffs up quickly

The T22 wedges feature a microlayer of copper beneath the nickel chrome, just like on the MP20 irons, to improve the feel at impact. They feature a slightly more compact, ‘modified teardrop,’ profile with an extensively beveled top edge to make it appear thinner. The spin-weighted blade design, created by tapering the upper portion of the blade, helps create more consistent spin and a more penetrating trajectory.

Mizuno’s HydroFlow Micro Grooves deliver great wet weather performance as the club is laser etched to release moisture and reduce spin drop off, while the Quad Cut milled, and loft specific, grooves are cut into Boron infused steel to offer a longer effective lifespan. Three finishes are available - Denim Copper, Satin Chrome and Raw. The Raw finish comes without the copper underlay, but it will rust over time for a look requested by many of the Mizuno tour players.

TaylorMade Milled Grind 3 Wedge Review


(Image credit: Future)
Best value wedge

Specifications

Lofts: 48-60
Grinds: 4 (Standard, Low, High and TW)
Finishes: 3 (Chrome, Black, Custom)

Reasons to buy

+
High levels of spin
+
Traditional shaping
+
Excellent finish

Reasons to avoid

-
Arguably lacks versatility for the more creative golfers

Raw face technology means these wedges have an un-plated surface material that rusts over time to maintain consistently high spin generation in wet conditions. TaylorMade has also added Raised Micro-Ribs between the grooves to aid spin and precision around the greens. This is because the abrasive surface further enhances the friction between the ball and the clubface.

The Milled Grind Sole process continues with each leading edge and sole grind being individually CNC milled for accuracy. There are three bounce options that help to make this a great wedge for chipping (opens in new tab). Those bounce options are low, standard and high. There is also, for versatility, a more aggressive TW (Tiger Woods) grind available in the 56° edition for those players also looking for a new sand wedge (opens in new tab)

Wilson Staff Model Wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Best wedge to control ball flight

Specifications

Lofts: 48-60
Grinds: 2 (Classic, Tour)
Finishes: 1 (Grey)

Reasons to buy

+
Consistent flight through the loft range
+
Super soft feel at impact

Reasons to avoid

-
Doesn’t generate as much spin as others

Wilson has revamped its short-game offerings with the introduction of the Staff Model and the Staff Model Hi Toe wedges. The Wilson Staff Model wedges have been constructed with soft-forged 8620 steel and machine-engraved scorelines to create Tour-calibre spin and control.

Meanwhile, the Hi Toe model combines a high toe and wide sole with a 431 stainless steel head and a precision-milled face for ultimate creativity around the green. The scorelines also stretch right across the face to ensure consistent contact at impact, too, making this a great wedge for chipping (opens in new tab).

cobra-king-snakebite-wedge

(Image credit: Future)

Cobra King Snakebite Wedge

Suitable for all skill levels

Specifications

Lofts: 48-60
Grinds: 3 (Versatile, Classic, Wide Low)
Finishes: 4 (Grey, Black, One Length, Custom)

Reasons to buy

+
Full face and conventional grooves available
+
Three grinds on offer make these a great option to get custom fit for

Reasons to avoid

-
Fairly similar to the MIM wedges

Cobra's most recent offering in the wedge market comes in the form of the Snakebite wedge, designed to provide more spin and 'bite' - see what they did there? - around the greens. 

As you can see, the overall shape of the wedge is very similar to Cobra's MIM wedge - as seen above - but it is on the face where Cobra has worked its magic. On the 48-54° lofts, where you'd be using the club with a square or de-lofted face to approach the green, the groove are a conventional length across the face but are narrower and deeper to optimise spin.

On the 56°, 58° and 60° wedges, the grooves are full face and are wider and shallower than the lower lofts to create more spin on the wedges you'd be using with an open blade around the green. There are three grind options and lofts from 48° down to 60° and - especially with the different groove patterns down the set - the Snakebite wedges are ideal to get custom fit for a full set that can all do a very specific job in the bag. If you like Cobra clubs, why not take a look at our guide on the best Cobra drivers (opens in new tab) on the market.

Honma T//World Wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Best wedge for chipping

Specifications

Lofts: 48-60
Grinds: 2 (I, C)
Finishes: 1 (Grey)

Reasons to buy

+
Feels great
+
Simple aesthetics
+
Variety of sole shapes available
+
Impressive consistency

Reasons to avoid

-
Compact shape may be intimidating for some

One of the finest looking wedges on the market, Honma’s T//World wedges, pack a compact look at address which will suit more experienced golfers looking for a thinner top line. The thinner top line is not to say these wedges are unforgiving, in fact Honma have added aluminium back inserts to improve the CG location and make these wedges more forgiving from off-center hits. That makes them a great club for mid-handicap golfers looking for a set of game-improvement wedges they can reduce their handicap with. 

There are three sole shapes available too, meaning golfers of any ability will be able to find the perfect set up with a good custom fitting. The C-SOLE, which is across the 56°, 58° and 60° wedges, has a thicker design on the upper portion of the head for greater versatility and we loved using these around the green. 

How we test wedges

When it comes to wedges, we take the testing process very seriously. Whether we are sent a product or buy it ourselves, we put everything through its paces to ensure we can provide thorough and reliable advice. Every member of the Golf Monthly team is an avid golfer and as such, knows what does and doesn't make for a good wedge.

As far as our methodology goes, we review all wedges properly, which means we have used each one across multiple rounds and in practice to assess every aspect of performance in all conditions. For example, if a wedge claims to be the ultimate chipping club, we will test that theory from any and all lies possible.

Specific to this guide, we tested every club thoroughly to assess the level of spin, feel, turf interaction and how suitable they would be to a mid-handicap golfer. We were also keen to find out how forgiving each model was and if there were any differences in flight.

This comprehensive testing style is not just exclusive to wedges as we test with the same level of thoroughness across all categories of golf gear and equipment. For more information on how Golf Monthly tests products, take a look at our methodology here. Wedge testing is headed up by Golf Monthly Staff Writer Andrew Wright who is currently using a set of Titleist Vokey SM9 wedges.

What you need to consider when buying wedges

Consistency is one of the biggest issues for may mid-range handicap golfers. Playing consistently fluid shots is a hard thing to do, particularly when it comes to using your wedges and this is where many players leave a lot of shots out on the course. One of the biggest bains of many golfers is playing a monstrous 250-yard drive down the middle of the fairway, only for you to scuff your chip shot that would have seen you on the green in two, putting for a birdie. 

Your wedges are your scoring clubs and any mid-range handicapper looking to reduce their scores should really consider buying a set of wedges that are tailored to their swing. Its worth noting that there are a lot of different styles of wedges available on the market, many of which have different features and attributes and that can sometimes be overwhelming if you're not the most knowledgable when it comes to club technology. It is important to get the club that suits your abilities and swing style, and for that reason, we've put together the below list of considerations that will help you find the right gap wedge for your swing. 

1. Gapping

Measure your current wedge yardages and how often you are in between clubs to help decide if what clubs you want to carry. Golfers will typically have around three wedges in their bag which will include a lob wedge, sand wedge and a pitching wedge but many also like to carry a gap wedge too. 

2. Bounce

Low bounce wedges are more suited to hard fairways and tight lies, while high bounce wedges are better for softer ground conditions and bunkers. The most bounce you will ever see on a wedge is about 18°, but it can be as low as 2°. The type of bounce you opt for should largely depend on things like your normal angle of attack, the firmness of your fairways and the type of shots you like to hit around the greens.

3. Forgiveness 

Every golfer knows the pain of hitting an immaculate drive down the fairway, only to chunk your approach shot into the green. Wedges are perhaps one of the hardest clubs to use when it comes to consistently hitting sweet golf shots on different lies. But you can save yourself a lot of shots, by using a wedge that provides greater forgiveness. 

Particularly if you are a beginner or a high-handicapper, a more forgiving sand wedge can help you become much more clinical around the greens. When looking for more forgiving wedges, look out for clubs that have cavity-backed heads, wedges that have a center of gravity closer to the sole and wedges that have a higher MOI to improve the quality and consistency of shots your hitting. For more information on wedges that can help you hit consistently sweeter golf shots.

4. Grooves

While grooves are now tightly regulated, it is still well worth keeping up to date with the latest designs, which use new milling processes and groove shapes to help move water and dirt away from the ball at impact to create extra spin and improve control. 

5. Testing

At Golf Monthly, we recommend players take the time to test a variety of different wedges at a club fitting. As they can come in a variety of lofts, grinds and bounce degrees, it is important to ascertain which type of wedges can help you perform the best depending on your swing and the type of terrain you're playing on. 

For more advice on the types of wedges you may also want to add to your bag, take a look at our guides on the best lob wedges (opens in new tab), best sand wedges (opens in new tab) and best pitching wedges (opens in new tab)

FAQs

What degree wedges should a mid-handicapper carry?

While this is subjective to your playing style, mid-range handicappers should generally carry three wedges. Those include a pitching wedge of around 46º in loft, a gap wedge set at 50º in loft and finally a sand wedge at 54º in loft. You can also carry a lob wedge at 60º in loft which can provide assistance from trickier lies on the course. 

Who is a mid-handicapper in golf?

Mid-handicappers are usually players with a handicaps between 10 and 21. They are typically quite experienced golfers who play on a regular basis, looking to break into single figures. 

Should mid-handicappers use a lob wedge?

Absolutely, if you feel it might improve your game. It's advisable to carry three wedges, with the classic three being a sand wedge, pitching wedge and a gap wedge. That combination covers a good range of yardages and allows you to hit shots from a variety of lies. The addition of a lob wedge does extend the range of yardages, but does allow you to hit higher lofted shots from different terrains.