Chipping Highs and Lows

In order to be a better chipper you need to be flexible and play whatever shot the situation calls for. Some shots require a low releaser while others might call for a medium to high checker.  Here are two simple shots that will help you "fit" into any situation you may encounter around the greens....

The High Checker: (using your most lofted club)

  • The stance remains narrow.  Keep in mind this is not a flop shot, this just requires some additional loft versus a regular type shot.
  • The weight is fairly evenly spred and does not favor the front foot.
  • The ball position moves from a centered position for a normal shot up to the front of the stance.
  • Due to the ball being forward and the weight being centered, the hand position is now actually slightly behind the ball. This is important as it allows the club to deliver additional loft to the ball at impact.
  • The club head must beat the handle to impact for this shotNotice how the shaft actually leans back slightly at address, well that angle should be maintained coming into impact.
  • You should feel a little scoopy (oh no that cannot be!!) going through impact, as the right wrist works under the left in an attempt to keep the face open and lofted. Trust me it's true!

The Set-Up for the High Shot

The Low Releaser:

  • The Golden Rule here is:  Do not use a lofted club to hit a low shot! You don't use your sand wedge to hit under a tree, so please don't use a wedge to hit a low chip.
  • Select a club that has the desired loft for the trajectory of shot that you are trying to hit.  An 8-iron for example. The reason why this is so important, is an 8-iron has the lower loft you require for the shot, but it has been bounce built into the sole of the club.  Should you deloft a wedge, well you may create the desired loft, but you also negate any bounce that the club might have.  Have you ever tried to chip with a shovel? Try hitting a low running shot with a 60 degree wedge and you can say you have!
  • The stance width should remain narrow as the weight shifts slightly forward onto the front foot. The weight should favor the front foot only by a 60/40 margin.  More than that and you will start to lose the bounce of the club.
  • Notice that the hands now are ahead of the club head at address. While that shaft angle/lean should be maintained into impact it is vital to not increase the angle.  If you do this you need to be prepared to do some gardening!

The Set-Up for the Low Releaser

As you can tell the set-up is integral to each of the above shots.  Set yourself up correctly and you have already won half the battle!

Things to Ponder:

  • What happened to Brett Wetterich, Stuart Appleby, Peter Lonard, Aaron Baddeley, Trevor Immelman, Adam Scott and KJ Choi this year? Taking the year off I suppose.  Although Adam Scott did just recently order a $40 million plane......
  • Jim Frank writes an article about Tiger and his on course antics.  I think Jim might have anger problems himself and he does not have a clue about what the top athlete in the world should be doing.
  • Is the Wyndham Championship where all of the year's underachievers try to make up for their shortcomings?  Look at the performance Chris Riley, Sergio, Bill Haas, Snedecker, J. Rose and Ken Duke are putting in!

Have a great weekend and thanks for reading!