Developing a good short game is the key to reducing one’s score in the golf course. Learning to control the trajectory of your golf shots is crucial especially with chipping and pitching. I thought I’d share with you a few basics to help you learn various trajectories.
One school of thought is we can use different clubs for chipping. As much as this is true, it is also very important to be able to manipulate the loft of your sand iron in order to change the golf ball’s trajectory.
Ball position, shaft length, and the club’s bounce angle, and club face manipulation are the keys to control your trajectory.
Here’s a general summary for the three basic trajectories in chipping:
Put the ball back in your stance, inside the right heel and in line with your right ear, and have the shaft leaning forward. The front of the bounce should skin across the ground. Please note the leaning edge should not dig into the ground.
Play the ball from the middle of your stance, in line with your nose, and reduce shaft lean in comparison with the low shots’. Middle of the bounce contacts the ground.
Play the ball forward, inside left heel and in line with your left ear, and have a neutral shaft. The back of the bounce skims the ground.
Notice that I refer ball position not only to the feet but also to the head. This is important for good players in that it encourages them to have a steady head/centre during the shot.
A good short game is vast and must have an arsenal of shots to select from so I encourage all players to practice manipulating the sand iron in order to become a better player.
Article first published in NSRCC magazine Resort View, Jan/Feb 2022 issue.
Brad McManus is Singapore’s former National Golf Coach and the Head Golf Coach of Singapore Sports School. Brad has coached players to over 60 tournament victories worldwide. Read more about him here!