Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Golf tip: Pitching and chipping

The golf tip applies to both pitch- and chip shots. Pitching shots are typically from 10-70 metres from the green, where the ball stays in the air for longer, while chipping shots are the more delicate shots played from just off the green.

Different instructors use different figures for the weight distribution during chipping and pitching, but as a general golf tip, try to keep your weight 60-70 percent on the left leg (for right-handers) and 30-40 percent on the right throughout the shot. Position the ball slightly forward of centre and, importantly, since these chipping and pitching shots are not full swings, you need to limit your backswing and follow through accordingly.

Avoid the golf tip #1: Chipping or pitching with too much weight on the right

The reason this golf tip came about in the first place was to ensure that the golfer keeps his or her weight on the left foot at impact. Many amateurs, especially high handicappers, try to lean back and scoop the ball up into the air.

The perception on this golf tip is that to chip or pitch the ball up quickly, the weight should be on the back foot so that you can get under the ball and lift it. Then the ground tends to get in the way before the ball does!

The problem with setting up with the weight favouring the right and allowing the weight to be too much on the right side in the backswing is that, at impact, your low point will be on the back foot – behind the ball. This golf tip leads to either hitting your chipping and pitching shots fat, or topping it!

Avoid the golf tip #2: Chipping or pitching with too much weight on the left

If you overdo it by putting too much weight on the left side, you’ll end up having your head in front of the ball and your right side too high.