Your driving well, your fairway play is coming on but your short game needs help? It’s time to improve the game from 150 yards and in and learn here how to ‘Chip like Seve‘… are you lacking that magical touch around the greens?
Let’s look at the basics of chipping along with something 90% of golfers do. (and I’ve seen this in some very low handicap players I’ve taught!)
– As normal (refer to “Pro tips – Summer golf” for a refresher)
– Hold half way down the grip to give more control and feel to the shot
– Firstly – make sure you do this in the order set out here
– Stance width will be approx. 1 foot apart and I’d like you to pull your left foot back a couple of inches – as shown right
– Position the ball opposite your sternum
– Now lean slightly to your left with your upper body – once you have moved, the ball should now be just behind your sternum – as shown below. This will allow us to make a slightly downward blow onto the ball giving you that crisp, spinning chip.
When we chip the ball we want a consistent strike and consistent loft. Both of these help to judge distances as if you get these the same every time, all you have to do is vary the length of your swing to hit the ball different distances.
A big fault I see when I give a chipping lesson is the golfer will try to help the ball into the air, destroying the strike and giving very inconsistent loft. In the finish and through impact you will see the club get ahead of the hands – as shown right
Often this is because the golfer is trying to use the hands and wrists to control the distance of the shot. Not only does this make it incredibly difficult to strike the ball consistently and create consistent loft, but also makes it very hard to get a consistent speed through impact.
This happens, as our hands have fast twitching muscle fibres which are difficult to control – especially under pressure!
I’d like you to feel like the shaft of the club moves in line with the sternum as you swing the club back. To give an example I’m going to use Luke Donald – sure you will agree – not a bad chipper!!
See how the hands and sternum are pointing parallel to each other.
This shows the body is more in control of the swing and allows him from here to keep the hands very passive and let the chest turn the club through the shot.
Below we can see the finish position where the sternum, club, and hands are all pointing in the same direction. No flip, just a swing controlled from the chest!
– Feel the sternum move the club shaft back and through, and FEEL as though they stay in line through out.
So there you have it, get down the range and add some ‘Seve Magic’ to your game!
By Andy Clissold – TSG Head PRO