THE LEADING EDGE

A chipping key often overlooked. With Michael Breed

By Michael Breed  

Many times your standard chip shot just won’t do, like when you need a higher shot for a close pin or a lower shot to get to the other side of the green. To adjust trajectory, most golfers play the ball farther forward or back in their stance. But changing the ball’s position can throw off the start line of the shot and your contact.

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Instead, change how far you stand from the ball: farther away for a high shot (above), closer for a low shot (below).

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Notice the height of my hands is the same for both shots. To get in the closer stance, all I did was grip down a few inches. Why does your distance from the ball change its trajectory? It establishes the angle of the shaft to the ground, which pre-sets how shallow or steep the swing will be. Standing back creates a shallower swing for more loft; standing close makes the swing steeper for a less loft. It’s the simplest way to vary the height of the shot. —WITH PETER MORRICE


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