The old advice of ball back, hands ahead and making sure you hit down on the ball is actually holding your short game back and making it harder to get good contact.
The best chippers, like Luke Donald, make a small pivot even on the smallest of shots. Your hips and knees should rotate towards the target.
To master chipping, set-up with 60 to 70 per cent of your weight on your front foot. Turn that front foot towards the target to aid rotation, place the ball just inside the left heel and stand very close to the ball.
The triangle formed by the arms and shoulders at address should be maintained through the swing, as in the picture above. The butt of the club should remain close to your body and, like the pitch, should work left on the follow through.
Chipping with this technique allows you to use all the clubs in your bag. Use less loft when you want the ball to run, and more loft when you want less roll.
Neutral set-up is key to performing chip shots the ‘new way’. You’ll notice that (right) my ball position is just inside my left heel. I have narrowed my stance so it may look a little further back but the important thing to notice is how the shaft of the club is almost vertical.
AND ANOTHER THING…
Having the ball too far back in your stance and your hands too far forward when chippping often leads to ‘scooping’ (right) as a player tries to compensate for the lack of loft on the clubface. Another reason to introduce a small pivot.
David Patrick is an award-winning PGA professional and teaches at Kingsfield Golf Centre. For lessons, you can call David on 07773 427233. Follow him on Twitter @shortgamedoctor
Originally published on bunkered on July 6, 2012.