No matter what your ability level you can learn to hit wedge shots pure and close to the hole. So if you hit some wedge shots fat and skull others, there’s hope for fast improvement in a term you might remember from high school geometry class: radius. (And you thought you’d never use that stuff again!)
You will hit better wedge shots by keeping the radius of your left arm constant through your swing.
In my schools I see many golfers who alter the length of their left arm radius during their swings. This causes severe timing problems in getting the clubhead back to the ball at the perfect height position for impact—namely, the one you started with at address. Tremendous inconsistency in wedge shots results. When you bend your elbow like this, you are picking the club up instead of swinging it around your body.
By keeping your left arm radius constant, you will have a huge advantage in pressure situations. I can testify to this: Back when I played competitively, I knew I would hit my wedges solidly by keeping my radius constant and my head still, regardless of how tight or wet the lie was.
The images above show the proper motion. Notice how my arm length remains the same. If you do this, your impact position will mirror your address position, so everything in your swing stays repeatable and you can make perfect contact.
Drill: Lead-Arm Only:
Here’s what to work on to fix the “changing radius” problem in your swing.
Practice hitting wedge shots with your lead-arm only. When you first try one-armed swings, your shots may turn out badly. Don’t worry and don’t stop trying. Stay with it for a few sessions, making sure you move your body as normal. As your strength and timing improve, you’ll start hitting some reasonable shots.
This drill grooves your perfect arm motion, as you’ll only be able to make solid contact by keeping that radius intact. By the time you can hit good shots with one arm, your two-handed efforts will improve, too.