Chipping: Your Prime Concern Should be to SKID, not DIG!

Fri, 06/15/2012

Perfect Contact

Hitting your chip shots fat or thin usually comes about because the bottom of your swing arc is in the wrong place (usually too far back), which means the angle of attack is poor. You’ll either hit the ground behind the ball or hit up on the ball causing you to thin the ball across the green. The best way to overcome this scenario is to learn to use the bounce on the club and recognize the right feeling of the club ‘skidding’ through the grass.

Bounce on Sand Wedge

Sand Wedges have a a varied amount of ‘bounce’ on the sole of the club. This is the difference in angle between the front and back edge of the sole. As with this Taylor Made lob wedge, most soles are also fairly wide and smooth at the edges.

The bottom of the sand wedges are designed in this way to aid the club in ‘skidding” when the club makes contact with the grass.

 

With this in mind, achieving the feeling/sound of the sole skidding in the grass should be one of your key intentions when playing the shot. If the club skids at he right point relative to the ball then you will have perfect connection and the ball will lift with the desired trajectory.

In my pre-shot routine for chipping I make sure that I have a few practice swings to establish, among other things, that sound/feeling of the club skidding. This lets me know that I have the right angle of approach for the shot.