🥇 Tips Drills and Instructions to Improve Your Golf Chipping

Improve Golf Chipping

We are going to cover the ways to improve your golf chipping. We will instruct you on correct chipping stance, grip, ball position, weight at setup, backswing, downswing, and ball striking. And we want you to understand that chipping is a significant part of your strokes per round and wants you to become very good at it. Learn how to chip a golf ball.

Summary to Improve Your Golf Chipping

  • Stance: We want our feet to be parallel to the target line, feet square and zero to six inches apart.
  • Weight at set-up: Your weight on their front foot, so on every swing there is no weight shift.
  • Grip: Little softer grip, choke up to the point that your bottom hand is at the bottom of your grip.
  • Ball position: Ball in the middle of your stance. Move it back for a little lower for more run. If you want to create a little more loft, move it forward a little bit in your stance.
  • Understand total flight-to-roll ratio of each club. Choose a golf club that’s fits that distance ratio.
  • It’s a shoulder swing. Descending below. Choke down and hand slightly forward. There is no movement in the hands or wrists, it’s all shoulder.
  • Make adjustments for uphill, downhill or tight lies

Table Of Contents

The perfect golf chipping practice

What we are going to learn is, the perfect golf chipping practice, in a very short stroke, were you chip the ball close to the hole, from all areas around the green. Ideally from 75 yards in. We are going to go into a very detailed instruction on it. But right now, we want you to see the whole swing and how it gets the ball close to the hole.  You line up feet square, power grip and you just chip it right up to the hole. Very simple, very easy and very repetitive. We want to get close to the hole, a result we want all the time from 3 yards off the green, up to 75 yards off the green, the same stroke, the same simple chipping method.   

Stance - for correct chipping technique

golf chipping Stance set up

We are going to focus on the correct stance for improving your golf chipping. We want our feet to be parallel to the target line, toes in-line, feet square and zero to six inches apart. With you weight mainly on your front foot, in a comfortable stance. Feet are parallel. This stance will allow you to hit the ball correctly every time. If you have a wide stance, you have a tendency to shift your weight, which we don’t want. We want your stance solid, your feet as close together as you can get them. Your weight on their front foot, so on every swing there is no weight shift. This is just a very solid chipping technique.

Grip - for ideal chipping practice

golf chipping grip

Now let’s focus on the ideal grip basics, to improve your golf chipping.  It is a simple swing and a little softer grip. You are not gripping it as tight because you’re not hitting a hard shot. Choke up to the point that your bottom hand is at the bottom of your grip. Remember, use the thumb, feel that in your down swing, the thumb.  Thumb in the back, pushing down through the shaft, providing the power. Bottom hand grips the club and covers that thumb very soft.  Providing a very good stroke every single time. Its a three finger overlap grip, used just for chipping. A slight variation of our recommended two finger overlap thumb grip.

Ball position - guide for chipping basics

golf chipping Ball position

Now that we have covered stance, we want to guide to the ideal ball position while practising chipping. We would like it to be right in the middle. It’s not a very wide stance, but it’s easy to see that the ball is right in the middle. That’s going to give you a medium degree of loft on your shot, if you are using a pitching wedge or chipping iron. It is perfect right in the middle of your stance. If you want to hit the ball a little lower for more run, move it towards the back, just about up a ball back in your stance toward your back toe. If you want to create a little more loft, move it forward a little bit in your stance, off your front foot. That will get the ball up higher, giving you less role, more time in the air. Maybe you want to chip it over a bunker or some patchy grass that you won’t want to run so far. 

Let’s review that one more time. Ball in the middle of your stance, for normal shipping bump and run. Ball in the back of your stance, to have a little more descending blow on it, the ball’s going to run more. It’s not going to be in in the air very long. The ball towards the front toe, the front of your stance, you’re going to have more loft in it and it’s going to get up in the air and land softer.

Weight at set-up – for better chipping drills

golf chipping drills

Let’s now talk about the weight set-up for better chipping practice. Weight should be forward, 70 percent or so. But you must still feel that your body maintains good balance. Quick review from the start; feet parallel to the hole, to the target.  A good choke down grip and soft grip.  Straight front arm and elbow rotated. It’s a shoulder swing. Descending below. Choke down and hand slightly forward. There is no movement in the hands or wrists, it’s all shoulder. And this is going to promote a good solid swing every single time.

Backswing and downswing – to master chipping

golf chipping Backswing downswing

Here lets discuss how to master the backswing and downswing basics, while chipping around the green. Again, your weight is forward. There is no lower body movement.  The power is generated by the shoulders, the front arm stays straight and locked, front wrist is always flat, just like in simple full swing. The only bend that takes place, is your back elbow, where there is a slight bend, to allow for room, for the arc of the swing.  Some slight bending of the back elbow. So, with the club in your hand, the wrist is always flat. Arm is always straight, and the club faces always square. Back elbow slightly bending. Short backswing and short shot. Longer back swing is required for longer shots. It’s very simple and everything is generated by the shoulders and the triangle between the shoulders and the arms. Simple back swing and simple downswing. That’s the movement you want, producing a very solid easy to manage swing. Producing a very solid shot that goes directly where you aim at every single time. Take it back with your shoulders, as this is a shoulder take away.  Not with the hands. It’s not the hands that’s taking it away. There is no wrist break, as its all shoulder take away.

Ball striking - tips for chipping drills

Here we go in to the ball striking basics, to improve your golf chipping. The power in the shot comes from the thumb, you are pushing down with your top hand thumb. Getting your club head right through the ball, with your thumb pointing right at the target.  If you do that, pushing down the thumb, right through the ball, club face square, we guarantee the ball’s going to go exactly what your club faces aimed every time. Because the thumb is generating the power, through the shot. The big muscles in pressure situations that we all like to be in, will really help you have a good shot every time. The bad shots here are when you get nervous and you get wristy. Topping the ball and fatting the ball. All those bad things that happen if you are too wristy. We want to eliminate that. We want it to be nice and solid.  Lower body still and quiet, weight forward, shoulder take away and nice soft grip. Shoulders do the work and thumb does the hit, that gives you a nice clean shot every single time.

Handling Trouble shots - while golf chipping

We will give you some tips for how to handle trouble shots around the green.

Chipping drills from Deep rough

golf chipping deep rough

Deep rough : Standing in fairly deep rough, deep enough to give you some problem, the ball is kind of down in the rough or sometimes it sits up above the grass. This shot is a little bit more difficult than, if the ball was sitting on very short fringe area around the green. You get your club behind the ball. A same stance and we want to make sure that it’s a little firmer grip. Little more thumb power and same shoulder turn, getting the club, to come through the grass. And not let the grass turn your club one way or the other. So again, just requires a little bit of practice with the club face square.  Now with this lie, the ball is going to have a tendency to roll more, because the grass acts like a sponge and kicks it out a little bit. So, the ball is going to have a little bit more roll to it. Plan for where we want the ball to land. The club head will go through the grass smooth and easily. We want to emphasize that this is the same swing, with club face square with a bigger arc, as the club goes back further. And it’s accelerated little more through the shot. Let’s see if you can get it out of the rough, on to the green and close to the hole.

Deep rough and uphill lie : Let’s look at a shot from deep rough, around 10 to 15 yards off the green. If its fairly deep rough and uphill lie, then you want to put the ball in the front of your stance.  Creating a little bit more loft with the club face.  Make sure you hit down through the ball.  Take some good practice swings.  Get used to the thickness of the grass making sure your club head can stay square through the shot. Get your shoulder tilt the same angle as the hill, so that you can have a good arc through the shot.  Take some practice swings, so you get a feel for how thick the grass is. Test it and try to put up right close to the pin.

How to control the chipping distance around the green?

Let’s check how we can control the chipping distance around the green. In this section we talk about the different distance ratios, in order to dial-in the correct yardage, while practising chipping around the green.

  • Understand distance ratio – the total flight-to-roll ratio
  • Choose a club that’s fits that distance ratio.
  • Make adjustments for uphill, downhill or tight lies

What is the fly-to-roll distance ratio while chipping?

golf chipping distance control

The fly-to-roll distance ratio is important in chipping. It is the distance you are going to be flying the golf ball versus how far the ball is going to be rolling. First we need to calculate, how far it is to the front of the green, to fly our ball, about a yard on of the green, with each of the different chip shot. Once we understand that number, we then look at our pin placement. And that will tell us how far that distance is compared to where we are hitting our golf ball. If our flag is in the center of the green, then we are going to paces off that distance first.

1:1 distance ratio while chipping

Measure the distance to the front of the green, where you plan to land the ball. And if that distance is about the same as the rest of the distance to the hole, then it would be a 1:1 fly-to-roll ratio. Each of the different pin placements have a different ratio to it and it is critical that you understand this concept. The idea is that you are able to choose the correct golf club for a particular chip shot.  We pace off these different yards, so that you understand exactly what club to hit in what situation. Understand the distance ratio, so you can use that into the future. We are going to pace off the clubs first. Starting with the sand wedge, you will get a feel for how far it is to hit a sand wedge.  We may have 5 yards to the front of the green, where we are going to be landing your golf ball.  Also, 5 yards to the hole. Then we have got a 1:1 fly-to-roll ratio. At a 1:1 ratio you want to hit a sand wedge or lob wedge.  

1:3 distance ratio while chipping

Now let’s take a look at the next pin, with a 1:3 fly-to-roll ratio. Here we are going to be using, a 9 iron. You would hit a 9 iron, as it’s 5 yards to the front of the green and then it’s 15 yards to the pin, so its 1:3 ratio. Hopefully you’re starting to understand how this works. You’re looking at the front of the green and then you’re trying to look at the different pin placements. You try to determine how far it is to fly it on to the very front of the green. And then you look to see how much role you need and then you choose the right club.  7 iron all the way to the pin, with a 1:5 ratio. Fly a 7 iron about a yard on the front of the green and roll it the rest of the way. A 7 iron roles 5 times as much as you fly. 

  • 1:1 – fly-to-roll ratio – use a sand wedge
  • 1:2 – fly-to-roll ratio – use a pitching wedge
  • 1:3 – fly-to-roll ratio – use a 9 iron
  • 1:5 – fly-to-roll ratio – use a 7 iron

Now you should be able to hit different chip shots using different clubs, and watch how each of these clubs hit the front of the green and then roll through to the different pin placements.  Change your golf club for the different pin placements based on the correct fly-to-roll ratio, to improve your golf chipping.

Chipping Uphill or downhill golf greens

golf chipping downhill

Its tricky to chip uphill or downhill in to a golf green. If the green is up hill or downhill, you’re going to add or subtract a club to make up for the slope. So, if it is uphill, add a club. So instead of a 1:3 ratio, maybe it is a 1:4 ratio. If it is downhill, you take the club off or subtract one from your ratio. So instead of a 1: 3 ratio it’s a 1:2 ratio. So make a chart, that helps you understand the different distance ratios and you can take them to the course with you. You will be able to dial in the correct club for the right distance.

5 common mistakes while chipping in golf and how to fix it!

So, we are going to cover 5 common mistakes golfers do while practising chipping around the green and how to fix it. So, let’s start with the first thing that we need to make sure that we avoid, while chipping. Its important to understand the basics, to improve your golf chipping.

1. Don’t stand too far away while chipping – Do Get in closer to the golf ball

Make sure that we don’t stand too far away from the golf ball, to improve your golf chipping. We have to make sure we stand much closer. If you are using a sand wedge for a full shot of 100 yards, then you stand a bit farther from the ball at address. But when chipping you want to be standing as much as possible. Why is it important? Firstly, the further you stand away, the more the golf club wants to arc inwards and open. But when you stand a little bit closer, the arc is reduced and it’s easier to control the direction. It’s easier present a good approach angle into the golf ball. You will get better control of attack angle and also the direction.

2. Don’t use the wrists while chipping in golf - Do use the body pivot

Make sure that you don’t use the wrists to get the ball to the flag but instead we use the body pivots. We are trying to cover a short distance here and you can absolutely make double trouble by using your wrists. Bad contact, poor tempo and not so smooth swing. The result will be a very bad stroke.  We need to need to make sure that we not using the wrists, instead use the body pivot to make the stroke. We are using a mini pivot of the body, your chest rotates away, your knees follow and as you go through get a little pivot and your trial leg just leave the grounds. At finish, Your body faces the target. With just hands and arms, it’s hard to control the trajectory, harder to control strike, harder to control direction and distance.

3. Don’t help the ball into the air while chipping - Trust the loft on the golf club

Make sure you trust the loft on the golf club.  Set a little bit a weight on to your left side, have a little bit of forward lean on the golf club and buttons on your shirt is inside the golf ball. If you are in a situation where you need some elevation, take a lofted club. We want to control lowest part of the swing. If you need some elevation, choose the most lofted club. If you feel that you need to open the face let’s do that, don’t put the weight back and lift the ball into the air. 

4. Don’t stick to one club while chipping - Do vary the golf clubs

Don’t stick with the same golf club when you’re chipping around the green. You have got a bag full of tools that you really want to make use of. It makes a lot more sense to use a variety of clubs depending on the situation. You need to figure out, how far you need to fly and how much roll you need to the hole. We recommend the fly-to-roll distance ratio we discussed earlier.

5. Don’t be too quick to hit the golf shot - Do use a chipping routine

Don’t just walk into this ball and hit your shot on the green. We need to do lot of things before we actually execute the shot. We need to find out what is the grass is like, the lie and the distance to the hole.

Best pre-shot routine for chipping in golf

golf chipping pre-shot routine

Here are some pre-shot routine tips to improve your golf chipping:

1. Calculate the fly-to-roll ratio : Figure out the fly-to-roll ratio of that particular chip shot. Take in to account the lie and the slope situation. Is the ball in the rough or uphill/downhill lie? Adjust the ratio accordingly. 

2. Pick the correct club : From your fly-to-roll ratio, choose the correct club, so that the ball hit the front of the green and then roll through to the hole. 

3. Make some practice swings –  First thing we do when you get to your ball, is to have some practice swings to just gauge what you feel that rough is like, feel the resistance from the grass

4. Target your landing zone – Target look at your landing zone and then to go ahead and hit that point. 

If you focus on these things, then you will be guaranteed to get better results. You will leave the ball close to the hole, which puts less pressure on your putting.

Q&A Improve Golf Chipping Technique

Using the same club while golf chipping?

You can also try using the same club for different distance, lets say a lob wedge or a sand wedge. BUT you may have to de-loft or loft it, so that you can get the correct distance. This can be done, but requires to create the angles and precise strikes on the ball. For a beginner or high handicapper, we recommend you follow the fly-to-roll distance ratios and use different clubs.

What are the difference between golf chipping and pitching?

In golf pitching the ball flies more than it rolls. But in chipping usually the ball rolls more than it flies. A pitch shot usually produce more spin on the ball, making it possible to stop the ball quickly. Both are key to a good short game in golf!

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