Far too often we see amateur and low handicap players pitch the ball with their sand wedge or lob wedge instead of chipping the ball low. If you have plenty of green to work with to let it roll out and there isn't some type of obstacle like a bunker, cart path, tree, etc. that forces us to hit it high, we always want to keep it low. Use a lower lofted iron like a 7 or 8 and let it roll out like a putt. The general rule is the ball will fly 1/3 and roll 2/3 of your total distance.
The three keys to being a better chipper are:
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The number one question we get asked is how do I fix my slice and gain a few yards. Though there are a few contributing factors to why someone slices the ball, the swing path is typically the biggest culprit. We usually see the student start their downswing with their upper body opposed to their lower body, resulting in an out to in swing path. In order to have the proper inside out swing path the downswing must begin by starting with the lower body. This will allow the club to drop to the inside on the downswing and will also build more power by using the large muscles.
One of the most challenging aspects of golf is taking your swing from the range to the golf course. Once on the course, the shot we hit counts and has consequences. By practicing differently, we can change our mind set from what might go wrong to what we want to accomplish.
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I know most people have been told to keep their head down (I cringe every time I hear this statement) but I want you to try and let your head move and begin to look at the target sooner. By keeping your head down this will cause you to limit your upper body rotation as it goes through the hitting area along with not allowing your weight to shift properly in your swing. Also, by keeping your head down you will not allow your arms full extension at impact.
Do you struggle out of the sand? Are you looking to cut down the number of strokes it takes you to escape the bunker. Follow the four steps below and with practice you will see improvement.
1. Set up square to the target.
Set your toes, hips and shoulder lines parallel to the target line, clubface straight at the target and play the ball in the middle or slightly forward in your stance.