The next time you have a shot inside 30 yards of the green, ask yourself if you need loft or not. The rule of thumb is “when you don’t need loft, don’t use loft”. The chip shot, also called the bump and run, goes low and rolls a lot – it’s an easy and essential way to lower your score. Let’s take a look at the thinking and the mechanics of the chip shot.
Opt For The Chip Whenever You Can
Rolling a ball is easier and the consequences of a less-than-perfect roll are less dire than a high wedge shot gone wrong.
A Chip is a Cousin to the Putt
They both roll, but the in the chip shot the club has a little bit of loft on the face of the club. The putter has essentially no loft. That really is the only difference.
Select Your Club
You can use any club in your bag and yes that includes your hybrid! Try it – it could be your favorite short game shot. To select a club, look at your lie, the distance to the pin, and any obstacles between you and the green. You want a low trajectory that gets the ball to the predictable surface of green as quickly as possible.
Practice Makes Perfect – Or Nearly So
You will want to practice with your clubs to see what each of them will do for you from the different distances but it will be time well spent. Having confidence in your chip will shave points from your score.
Chip Shot Mechanics
From my Instructional Cheat Sheet For Golfers
- Position the ball near your right foot if you have a less lofted club and want more roll or in the middle of your stance if you have a more lofted club and want less roll.
- Your body weight is more on your left leg and leaning towards the target to create a slightly lower ball flight and more roll.
- Your left arm and shaft of club will form a straight line on our backswing and follow thru.
- AT IMPACT (the moment of truth) – your left arm and shaft of club HAS TO FORM A STRAIGHT LINE!!!
- You have to hit the bottom of the ball to make it go in the air. You can’t hit the middle or top of the ball and have it go in the air!
- The swing length is the same on both sides of your swing and no more than waist high on both sides. Hold your finish on follow thru to see if your left arm and shaft are straight. Be your own instructor and learn to evaluate your finish.