How To Chip Like The Pros
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One of the biggest differentiators between score ranges is chipping – proximately to the hole, up-and-down percentage, your ability to save par or make bogey instead of double – it’s super important.
When I coach chipping in person, probably 90% of the time I have to tell people two things. Almost everyone I see chips with their ankles about shoulder or just inside a shoulder width apart. You’ve got to get your feet closer together. I want your heels almost touching. Toes aren’t touching because I flare out my left foot a little bit, but my feet are super duper close together. The only reason I need width of stance is to be able to shift some pressure on my feet for power. In chipping, I don’t want the ability to move a lot of pressure in my feet. I want good contact and precision, so we’re getting our feet closer together.
The second thing I always have to tell people constantly is you are not getting close enough to the ball. Watch good players chip and see how close they are to the ball. A lot of them are really close, like on top of the ball. The golf ball is probably just a little bit more than a grip length away from the foot.
If I’m standing that close to the ball I may need the shaft more vertical. Shaft more vertical would be better than shaft too far down. You should also grip down on the club.
There are a few in-swing principles as well. The first is hinge amounts. Whatever you do going back, try and do the same thing going through. Meaning, if you’re going to be more Steve Stricker or Jason Day, when you go back and sort of have less hinge, then again, you have to keep that sort of less hinge on the way through. You have to watch during the backswing. If you go no hinge, you don’t want to add hinge.
Swing plane is the next thing you need to think about. I would prefer you guys to be right on the plane or even slightly outside of the plane. I’d much prefer the club head working more outside when I’m doing pitching and chipping.
In swing we also have to deal with clubface. If your club face is really closed or tilted down going back, you’re going to use a lot of leading edge and you’re going to struggle with contact. If you make a backswing where the clubface is more open, you will have a lot of options from there – including using the bounce.
Those are the things you should be looking at when you chip. That’s how the pros do it. That’s how you guys should do it too.
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