Golf Short Game Chipping Practice Tips, Ideas and Suggestions
Short Game Golf Master Class
– Turn 5 into 4
– Get up and down every time with our key short game recovery shots.
Many average golfers achieve little success at basic greenside recovery shots.
Improvement in your short game can reduce your scores dramatically.
Crowlands Heath Head Golf Professional Chris Jenkins will offer you a few short game ideas which you will find easy to implement into your own game.
Typically, I find that club golfers tend to use the same club, usually one of their wedges, for allchip and pitch shots around the green. That is fine if you have a sound technique and endless hours to refine your feel for distance, and judgement of spin. For those who don’t have endless hours to practise golf, a more reliable and consistent method involves the use of a variety of different clubs to get the ball close:
The idea is for the ball always to land a couple of feet onto the green, where the bounce is more predictable. Simply vary your club selection to produce sufficient roll to get the ball to the hole. This might be a wedge if the flag is close to you or it might be as high as a 5 iron if the flag is at the far side of the green. You can even use a rescue club or wood if you feel that’s the club which is needed to get the ball to the hole (fig.6).
Using this method is easier because you are always looking to land the ball in the same spot. Choosing the correct club, will dictate the spin and roll of the ball. There is less emphasis on ‘feel’ with this method, as opposed to what is required when a single club is relied upon to produce this shot to a variety of landing areas.
The Mental Process
Pick your landing spot about two feet onto the green, taking into account any slope the ball might encounter on the way to the hole (read it like a putt). (fig.1)
Then choose what golf club is required to get the ball to the hole. (fig.2)
Set up next to the ball and practice your golf swing while looking at your landing spot. So you know exactly where to land your ball. (fig.3)
Set up to the ball. Look at your landing spot (no need to look at the hole now if you have the right club and landing spot). Play your shot and watch the ball roll up to the hole. If you have the right club and land the ball where you want then this shot cannot fail! (fig.4)
In order to enhance your judgement of distance with different clubs, place a coin on your landing spot and hit lots of chip shots with a variety of clubs. Try to monitor the amount of roll for each successful chip shot. (fig.5)
If you are still struggling to find consistency, then your chipping technique is the problem. It is important to use the club correctly (whichever club is chosen) and to let the loft of the club do the work for you. Set up in a way that creates a downward strike, even to the extent to take a small divot after the ball. You must not try to get under, scoop or lift the ball.
Up Against the Collar
This shot has not been around for long but now nearly all the golf pros are playing it. Basically it is a putting stroke with a fairway wood or a rescue club. The flat sole of the club (fig.7) will glide through the long grass before the ball, making it virtually impossible to duff the shot.
Set-up in the same way as for a chip and grip down the club about two to three inches (fig.8). Swing the club back and through as if you were hitting a long putt. The clubhead stays pretty low to the ground throughout the stroke collecting the ball on the way through to the hitting area (Swing sequence fig.9-fig.13).
Eliminate the fat and the thin
Often poor golf strikes are caused by standing too far from the ball in the set-up (fig.13) with your hands too low. As this shot requires a fairly slow swing, gravity plays a big part and can cause the shaft to drop to a more vertical position (fig.14 & fig.15).
This means the club head is lower at impact than it was in your set-up, thus contributing to fat and thin shots. The answer to this is to set up with the shaft more vertical to start off with. This will mean the heel of the club will be slightly off the ground but it means the club-head cannot get any lower throughout the shot guaranteeing a good strike (fig.16 & fig.17).
Give this a try to avoid those miss-strikes.