Golf is made up of many different golf shots. Next to putting, I find that chipping garners the most strokes during my round. I have never actually counted (might do that for fun), but I know from my other stats that chipping is an important aspect of scoring well. Understanding this for some time, I dedicated a great deal of time at the beginning of the season to significantly improve my close to the green game.
While working through my process of improving my chipping, I have adopted three differences from last year that I am comfortable sharing because they are proving to successful.
First, I have stopped relying on one club and use all of my wedges and my 7-iron. I find that instead of adjusting the loft on my Gap Wedge (52° degree) for the various shots, I now change clubs and swing basically the same. I still use the same ball position as previously stated, but the different clubs help me control my overall flight distance and release.
Second, I am choking down a bit farther on my grip. This allows for improved control my swing. I am making better contact and have a better feel for how the ball is going to react. Basically, I am placing my hands about 1 or 2 inches above the bottom of the grip; thus I am bent over a bit more on my chips. This position seems to enhance my ability to be more aggressive when chipping because I have more confidence and control.
Lastly, I open my front foot a bit more than normal. This facilitates my club head following my chosen path. The flaring front foot opens my hips and lets my arms swing freely. I have to keep reminding myself to flare my foot because this is the one real significant change to my set up. I have to fight muscle memory of sorts.
The above three changes to my short game have allowed me chip with authority. If I follow these three things, my ball gets the hole more often than not. Even if it is a bit long, I am confident that I will be able to make the come back putt. I feel my chipping has improved and I look forward to continuing my refinement of my chipping.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!