How Inches Can Change Your Golf Game!

Golf is a game of inches or so I am told. Reading all the available literature and watching the best videos, I hear the constant blah, blah, blah of white noise. It appears that most experts believe they have found the solution to you woes and all I can say to most of them the phewy! Most golfers need their own solution because of the uniqueness of their body type and swing. Well, today I can say with certainty that I have found a chipping solution that works for my game and might for yours. Let me explain!

Last year was a terrible year chipping. You name the woe and at some time, I was doing it. Mostly, I found that my contact through the ball was poor regardless of what I tried. And believe me I tried many solutions that included, but not limited too:

  • accentuated forward press with my hands
  • the ball on the back foot
  • the ball on my front foot
  • weight distributed all over my stance
  • short backs wing and popping through the ball (this fail miserably)
  • long slow back swing and slow controlled follow through (chili dip anyone?)

As you can see I did not have a banner year. It was at the point that I did not want to be between 3 and 10 yards of the green. This was a danger zone for me. At the end of the season I was helping my ball to the green and was just another recipe for disaster. Looking at my stats, I would say I was chipping the ball less than 30% to within 5 feet from 3 to 10 yards from the green. This is just not acceptable. Okay enough of the whining, I think you get the point.

During my chipping practice over the past few days a glorious light of understanding suddenly flashed. It was if I was a novice player realizing I had beaten down the door holding me back from lower golf scores. It was so simple, I cannot believe that I did not recognize it the past. Are you ready?

I lowered my hands on my wedge by two inches. Yup that is it. After doing this, I was able to consistently hit chip after chip in my DIY chipping area. The funny thing is that I used to set my hands up on my wedge when chipping all the time. I guess my time off for medical reasons in 2018 resulted in my loosing my touch. See the minor adjustment below:

Top image before change. Bottom image after change.

Talk about knocking off the rust from my short game. I feel like a weight was lifted and I am eager to keep practicing my short game.

I realize that this seems like an odd thing for someone of my experience to overlook, but it was not until I was consitently hitting behind the ball resulting in poor inconsistent ball flight that I needed to take a very serious look at my technique.

So, it is back to my old style of chipping. I feel confident with this minor change and wish that I had this epiphany last year. It could have saved me a season of frustration.

With my recent change or reversion, it demonstrates that all golfers need to really examine the roots of their game from time to time. In my case, two inches will make a world of difference. Now all I need is the ability to practice outside!

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

9 thoughts on “How Inches Can Change Your Golf Game!

  1. Pingback: Remembering The Right Things To Do When Chipping | The Grateful Golfer

  2. Jim, congrats on your ah ha moment! I’m with Kevin on this. If you chipped well two years ago and didn’t choke down, the cause of your problems may be posture related. Perhaps you had rolled your shoulders forward and/or didn’t maintain your spine angle during setup and got too close to the ball. Could cause the chunk and poor contact in general. Moving ball position or changing tempo wouldn’t solve for that. What’s good is that you have time to experiment with a flat lie in your garage. Good luck and may your melt go fast!

    Brian

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Brian,

      Truthfully, the last two years has been a challenge. Missing most of 2018 and working through many things in 2019 halted my progress. I finally feel like I am on the right track and will continue to practice indoors. It is really helping. I hope you are able to hit the links more in the coming months, unless there are restrictions in place of course.

      Cheers Jim

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jim we are just glad to have you back and actively working on your game – great thing!

        Our situation is fluid. Courses are open for play and are taking precautions. No rakes in the bunkers and no open food service or water coolers on the course. I can deal with that. One course is raising all their cups so players don’t need to touch flagsticks or reach in the hole to retrieve their ball. If you hit the rim of the raised hole, you are deemed to have holed out. I would only book a round at this course if I was desperate to get out, and then it would have to be at a reduced rate. I am full-time working from home now along with most other IT folks. Fortunately, I have a school field adjacent to me where I can hit full pitching wedges with my bag shag. If courses close, I’ll be up there grooving my swing. Of course, all schools are closed so I wouldn’t be putting any children at risk 🙂

        Stay safe!

        Brian

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      • Brian

        Thanks for the nice words. Great to hear that you have a place to play next door. Working on your wedge play is always a great thing. Home full time, I completely understand. We all need to take precautions.

        It is interesting that courses are taking the precautions you mentioned. Raised cups is very interesting for sure. I actually never heard of those. Rest of the customer service changes makes perfect sense. Stay safe and I hope you get to keep playing.

        Cheers Jim

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I do one thing religiously before setting up to the ball. I take a practice swing to note where the club brushes or strikes the ground in relation to my stance. I use that information to both get my distance to the ball correct so I’ll hit the face in the center and to adjust my grip according to the terrain so I’ll hit the ball first. I do bend more when chipping and so I do grip down a bit more, but the amount is dependent on the terrain. In your garage, just like on a flat lie, it should be pretty consistent. But around the course, it will need to change on up and down slopes so that’s how I determine how much. It helps give me a good visual of the club head striking the ball before I go too.

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    • Kevin

      You are right about the consistent flat lie in my garage. I to bend over a bit more to use my big muscles when chipping. I try to avoid using too much wrist most of the time and by chocking down, this helps. Adjust my ball position to adjust for terrain is something I also do, more subconsciously than intentionally. I hope you are enjoying your rounds.

      Cheers Jim

      Like

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