We’ve all been there. You hit your approach shot towards the green and it just misses the putting surface. Whether you hit it short, long, left, or right of the green you should be able to rely on your shot game to give yourself a shot at par. Having an arsenal of shots you can rely upon around the green will better ensure your chances of getting up and down. Here are 3 shots you need around the green and easy ways to hit them!
Part 1: The Standard Chip
The chip shot is the go-to around the green for most golfers because of its simplicity. Here are three keys to hitting a clean standard chip:
- Don’t break your wrists
- Hands in front of the ball
- Accelerate through impact
The standard chip shot requires virtually no wrist hinge and your clubface will rarely go above your hip on the backswing or follow through. Depending on the green slope and speed, a chip will rarely roll farther than it flies. This makes it a dependable tool around any green. Try to focus on keeping your wrist firm. Any wrist break or flex in the swing will result in you “scooping” the ball and less consistent contact
To hit a solid chip, keep your hands in front of the ball. You want the starting position of your hands to be as close as possible to where they will be at impact. Wrists slightly forward with the ball in the middle of your stance is a good place to start. Swing the club back and through the ball with as little wrist hinge as possible. The second you break your wrist more variables - so keep it simple and keep your wrist from breaking.
Another important area to focus on is accelerating through the ball. Any deceleration through impact will increase your chances of hitting the ball fat or thin. The goal of the chip is to develop a shot in your arsenal that will get the ball up and toward the pin consistently.
PRO TIP: In your practice try to land the ball about 60% of the way to the pin (and adjust depending on the slope or your target area). This will allow ample room for the ball to roll out. Focus on this technique will help prevent overhitting your chip.
Use a chipping target like the Rukket Haack Chipping Net to practice your chipping by aiming up and down the three targets. Being able to control where your ball lands is the most important part of your short game. If you can hit each target on-demand you’ll be a much better short game player and save par more consistently when you miss the green. Focusing on your wrist, hand position, and acceleration will get you started in the right direction!
Jon handles communications at Rukket but grew up playing competitively in the AJGA and Philadelphia Section Junior PGA. He currently plays to a 5 handicap.