This tutorial explains how to chip a golf ball: the stance of the golfer, the alignment, the movement, and the required position of the ball. It also gives you thumb rule for selecting the right golf club while chipping.
Nothing but practice can help you chip the ball right. But armed with these points for reference, you will know what markers to look out for and what mistakes to avoid.
How to Chip a shot in golf?
The choice of clubs for chipping a shot in golf depends on an important factor, simply called Ratio. The ratio here refers to:
For the numerator distance, measure from the ball position to up to 1 foot into the greens.
So an ideal chip shot should fly the ball from the rough to approximately 1 foot into the greens and roll it from there up to the hole.
If you are standing at a similar distance from the rough to the green as the edge to the ball, then the Ratio is 1:1.
If the pin is further down the green, the ratio could be 1:2, 1:3, 1:4, or maximum 1:5.
A sand wedge is used in most cases when the Ratio is 1:1. As the ratio increases the clubs change for the long roll.
This is a rough table for reference whenever you want to select a club for chip shot:
|1:1||Sand Wedge/Lob Wedge|
Do note that these recommendations are for leveled ground between the ball and the hole. If the ball has to travel uphill or downhill the clubs need to be added or subtracted.
So if the ball should go uphill, consider the 1:3 Ratio as 1:4 ratio and use an 8-Iron.
If the ball has to roll downhill, use a pitching wedge instead of a 9-iron.
Chip Shot vs Pitch Shot:
Chip shot and pitch shots are two different concepts. You chip a shot when you are close to the greens and the distance to the edge of the greens is equal to or shorter than the distance from the edge to the pin.
In short, the ball must fly less than or equal to its rolls.
Pitch shots are taken when you are a long way from greens (up to 100 yards). Here the distance from the ball to the edge of the greens to higher. So the ball in pitch shot flies more distance than it rolls.
When you chip a shot in golf, the ball position relative to your body can make a lot of difference.
Make sure you stand with your sternum in line with the ball and the ball in the middle of your stance.
As the clubhead traces its trajectory, it should hit the ball right before the path bottoms out.
If the balls hit the ground first and then the ball, the latter will be launched into a long trajectory to the other side of the green.
You will have to chip a shot again to get it anywhere near the hole.
A chip shot is an act of precision. To have complete control over the golf club, you must grip it properly. Make sure that the grips of the clubs are not worn off. Wipe off any sweat that might cause the club to slip from your grasp.
Align Your Body:
Imagine a target line to the hole.
Keep the club behind the ball on the target line.
Position your body while maintaining the club position.
The feet must be placed parallel with a distance of your one foot between them. Both your feet must aim forward straight.
Your shoulders must be parallel to the target line. This aids in bringing down the club exactly on the target line.
Keep your hips apart to distribute the strain from upper body movement during the chip shot.
Your shoulders and your arms will form a downward triangle in the correct stance.
Move this triangle as it is for the backswing of the chip shot. If you have let the hips stay open, you will find them turning to keep the triangle intact.
There will be more pressure on your left foot now.
The triangle of your shoulders and your arms will move downwards as it is. The arms, hips and left leg will move to accommodate that movement.
Your arms and body should move together. Otherwise, the club will lag. Make sure your left wrist stays flat.
You can tape a pencil over it so that its point reminds you to keep the wrist straight.
You might be tempted to move the wrist and hit the ball. But that will waste the energy you expended in swinging back.
The weight stays on the left foot.
The triangle remains intact.
At the impact of the chip shot, the clubface should be on the target line, right behind the ball, for a fruitful shot.
You almost look the same you looked at the address. However, make sure that the clubface doesn’t hit the turf before hitting the ball. This can be done by keeping the chest straight.
If you arch, the downswing will bottom out before the impact. The wrists must stay flat through the impact.
Hold the follow-through position until the golf ball reaches its destination.
The residual feeling of the chip shot gives you a lot of information about its mechanics. So if you chipped right, you can recall the motion and repeat it.
These points are guidelines on how to chip a shot. Experiment with different stances and distances between your feet to see what gets you a better result.
Practice the good shots over and over again. This forms a mental impression that helps chip the golf ball successfully more consistently.
Playing a chip shot is a critical juncture in your game. Rarely does anyone hit greens in regulation on every hole. The table for selecting the golf club will ease your mind when you are confused near the greens. The following fundamentals will help ensure you are more successful in how to chip golf ball.