I Hate This Idea: The xE1 Wedge | As seen on the Golf Channel
The XE1 Wedge: Does It Fix Your Golf Game?
For more information on this wedge, click here.
There’s a disconnect between the spirit of golf and much of the equipment that comes out each year. The sport is meant to be challenging. It prioritizes athletic skills like touch, focus and intuition rather than speed, strength and jumping ability.
Think about your own game for a moment. Do you feel better about stuffing a pitch off a perfectly groomed fairway to three feet or about getting the same result from a dirt patch off the green? Both shots feel good, but the latter surely brings more satisfaction. For once, you’ve beaten this great game.
That’s the way it should be.
We admired Tiger Woods at his height not because golf was easy for him but because he made golf look easy. There’s a difference there.
So it’s with great skepticism that we should consider products like the xE1 Wedge.
What is the XE1 Wedge?
Perhaps you’ve seen the commercials on the Golf Channel, but in case you haven’t here is the boast the company displays at the top of its website:
“There’s A Brand New Wedge On The Market – And Thanks To Its Unique and Ingenious Sole Design – You Can Easily Escape From Treacherous Bunkers, Nasty Rough, And Even From Tight Lies… It Virtually Eliminates Fat or Thin Pitch and Chip Shots… AND Lets You Effortlessly and CONSISTENTLY Hit Quality Shots From Anywhere Around The Green, Closer To The Hole, Every Single Time… GUARANTEED.”
That’s quite the prediction and one worth perhaps five-to-ten shots per round depending on the golfer.
The secret is in the design, which xE1 terms an “auto-glide sole.” The club is meant to move easily through friction like thick rough or wet sand. The result is a wedge that forgives just about all shots and rewards good ones. It is, essentially, a mistake-proof tool.
This is why spokesman and Golf Channel analyst Arron Oberholser says, “No Tricky Footwork… No Opening the Clubface…Just Set Up Square & Take an Easy Swing!” (Side note: overuse of ellipses).
In other words, ignore some basic fundamentals of the game. You no longer need to use them or learn them.
In my eyes, this is a get rich quick scheme for struggling golfers. The xE1 is more like a cheat code for a player instead of a solution. Unlike other products we’ve highlighted in the past, this wedge does not help improve a golfer’s skills. The website even brags about not needing practice: “The First Time You Pick Up This Club… No Practice.”
That’s anti-golf. But I suppose there’s enough curiosity involved to actually try one of these out.
The XE1 wedge is basically the Alien wedge of the 2010s, right?
— Ryan Ballengee (@RyanBallengee) October 2, 2015
This random “Titleist” account is probably spot on…
Want more information on the XE1 wedge? We covered the product more in-depth here.