A chip shot from the fringe should be the easiest shot in golf.
It’s a short swing, and you’re literally trying to hit the ball 20 yards or less. But if you’re anything like me, you’ve gone through a world of pain, with chunks that go a yard, or skulls that fly through the green.
I’ve tried multiple techniques without much success. But I recently followed several “clues” from various forum threads and videos and found something that’s working. All the information on this is out there, but I’ve not really seen it put together into one. And the thing is, it’s super simple.
Since using this technique I’ve been chipping it consistently close and getting up and down more often than not.
1. Use a mid iron to chip
You can use your wedge for this technique. But I’ve found that a 7 or 8 iron is best as it will fly (low) around 30% (enough to get it on the green) and then run the rest of the way up to the hole.
2. Stand close to the ball and lift the heel off the ground, with the club shaft more vertical
Why? Because while the heel of the club tends to dig or snag, the toe will glide through the grass/earth. Even if you don’t quite make ball first contact, the club will still make a decent connection with the ball. The vertical shaft ensures your attack angle will be shallow, which again will stop the club from digging.
3. Address the ball off the toe, and slightly back in your stance
Addressing (and hitting) the ball off the toe of the club deadens the hit. You can be more aggressive through the shot without worrying about the ball coming off hot and flying through the green.
The ball back in the stance (just a ball or two behind middle) should help to ensure you hit ball then turf.
4. Use your putting stroke to chip the ball
No fancy technique. Just use a short back and through like a putt. With the club shaft of your iron more vertical, your iron will feel more like a putter.
And that’s it.
You’ve probably heard about using your putting stroke to chip. But it’s the lifting of the heel, addressing the ball off the toe, and the vertical shaft that makes the difference. Those are the missing pieces of the chipping puzzle.
With the heel off the ground you’re not going to dig (goodbye chunks). Hitting off the toe deadens the shot, allowing you to be more aggressive and stopping the ball whizzing through the green. And the vertical shaft keeps your swing shallow, which again stops you digging.
The best bit…
You can practice this in your living room.
Once you get the technique down (and you’ll have it down in a few strokes) it’s just a case of dialling in distance. All you need to do is find a practice green and hit chips for half an hour or so until you feel comfortable.
That’s literally all I did before taking this technique to the course, and I got up and down 5 times out of 6 in my first round… which is unheard of for me!
After a couple of rounds I started holing a few. Effectivey turning what might previously have ended up as bogies into birdies.
You’ll be able to use the same feel for distance you do when putting, without worrying about technique.
Try it out. I guarantee you’ll be chipping it close in no time.
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