Hello golfers and welcome to this weeks tips & tricks. This week we are going to take another look at chipping. We are getting close to the start of the season and scoring is going to be very important. We have done the hard work through the winter working on technique and now its almost time to go and put it into practice.
Lots of people struggle with chipping but luckily I absolutely love it. Dr Bob Rotella, a leading sports psychologist, said something along the lines of “players need to learn to love the art of chipping”. The reason being is that it can save you lots of shots! It can also cost you lots of shots if you struggle. Practicing one handed chipping could be a great way to understand the technique and improve if you’re struggling.
Firstly take a look at the following video to see the common faults I see on a daily basis and how to practice one hand chipping.
The most common fault I see with chipping is trail hand dominance which leads to flicking the wrists. People feel as though they need to “get under the ball” and help it up in the air. A club with any significant amount of loft will get the ball in the air. A pitching wedge, sand wedge, or lob wedge will be the best to practice with if you want to see the ball pop up in the air. When the trail hand goes under the lead hand (right under left for a right handed golfer) the club will bottom out early meaning the club will hit the ground before the ball (fat shots). Alternatively the bottom of the club will get to the ball first (thin shots).
Learning to control the club with the left hand for a right handed golfer is very important. It makes it much easier to control the angle of the clubface when more pressure is in the left hand. Notice in the video how there is structure in the left elbow throughout the shot. There is a little bit of movement in the left wrist but not a huge amount. The weight of the clubhead accelerates through the back of the ball and the clubhead stays low to the ground through impact.
For most people this will be lots easier than left hand only chipping. Using the dominant hand usually gives more strength and control and learning how to use this hand properly could save you shots. Try to connect the right arm to the body and keep it there. This will encourage better body rotation. The better the chest turns for this kind of shot the less active the hands will want to be. Most right handed flicks when chipping come from trying to “keep the head down” or trying to “stay still”. Try to feel the palm of the right hand staying pointing at the target for longer and not facing to the sky too soon. This will help keep the clubhead lower and will help to cut through the grass utilising the bounce on the bottom of the club.
Don’t flick at it! You don’t need to try and help the ball in the air when chipping. If you know which hand is controlling the club you can control the strike and flight much easier. Let the clubhead do the work and don’t be scared to accelerate the club through the back of the ball. Good chippers create momentum with the clubhead to help create spin. The more confident you get with chipping the better your scores will become during the season.
If you would like any help on your short game you know where I am. If you have the dreaded yips or would like to learn what shots to play and when BOOK A LESSON HERE.
See you soon!