Let’s be honest – chipping isn’t the most exciting part of the game. Everybody loves to hit a long drive, stick a short iron tight to the pin, or nail a putt for birdie. But with chipping, you are usually just scrambling to save par (or worse), so it isn’t always the highlight of your round. Because of this, many golfers mistakenly choose to simply ignore their chipping game and fail to practice it at all on a regular basis.
Want Lower Scores? Learn to Chip
In reality, chipping might be the single fastest way to lower scores. Think about it – if you miss the green and hit a poor chip, a bogey is almost a sure result. If you miss the green and hit a good chip to within a few feet, you have an excellent chance to save your par. So, the question becomes, how many greens do you miss during a round? Even a good amateur player is going to miss about half the greens, while a less-capable player might miss 13-14 greens during an 18 hole round.
For the sake of some easy math, let’s imagine that you miss ten greens during an average round of golf. If you are currently a poor chipper, you may get those ten chances up and down just twice. By improving your chipping, it is well-within reach to get up and down six out of those ten tries (if not more). That means, by just improving your chipping, you could save four shots a round!
No matter how long you stand on the practice tee hitting drivers, you will never save four shots as quickly as you will with better chipping.
Five Chipping Tips for Quick Results
Not only can chipping save you numerous strokes on your score card, but improvements in this area of the game can be seen much faster than with your full swing. Sure it helps to make your swing better, but those changes take a long time to take effect. Chipping improvement can be immediate and drastic, which is what makes working on your chipping game so exciting.
The following are five key chipping tips that you should be able to quickly put into your chipping game for potentially amazing results.
Tip #1 – Use Your Hands
The worst advice that gets passed around on golf courses everywhere is that you should chip using a putting motion. Nothing could be further from the truth. To chip effectively, you need to engage your hands and let them work for you. A putting stroke uses no hand movement, and therefore gets no hinge in the wrists. Hinging your wrists is critical to a good chip shot because it allows the club to get up above the grass and hit down with a descending strike.
For right-handed golfers, you should feel like you are using the right wrist to hinge the club up on the backswing, then release it down into the ball. You will quickly find that this is a powerful little motion, and only a small movement is required to pop the ball up out of the grass and land it softly on the green.
Here is an excellent visual example of a proper wrist hinge:
If you need a little extra help you can also try an inexpensive chipping aid suck as the Callaway Chip Stix to help visualize your wrist action and get used to keeping your hands out in front of the ball at impact when chipping.