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Definition: "Loft," or "loft angle," is a measurement, in degrees, of the angle at which the face of the club lies relative to a perfectly vertical face represented by the shaft. Technically, iron loft and wood loft are measured slightly differently, but the effective result is the same.

Imagine a line running down the shaft of the club and continuing into the ground. Now imagine a second line running from the top of the clubface and extending down the clubface and continuing into the ground. When those two lines meet, they create an angle between them. That is the loft angle, or golf club loft.

Loft gives you an idea of how far ball will go and the type of trajectory it will have. Drivers are the least-lofted clubs (not counting putters), while wedges are the most-lofted. The more loft a club has, the higher the trajectory on which the golf ball will travel, and the shorter the distance the ball will travel.

Driver lofts for most players run between 9 and 12.5 degrees. Clubs increase in loft through the set until reaching the lob wedge, which is usually lofted from 60 to 64 degrees.

Also see:
• FAQ: Are there industry-wide standards for the lofts of golf clubs?

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