Chips Ahoy! Helpful Golf Chipping Tips

golf-chipping-tips

If you’ve always been a fan of playing or watching golf, it is highly likely that you are at least somewhat familiar with chipping. Chipping is the process wherein you’re able to hit a shot and make it pop up and out before it hits the ground and the ball starts rolling forward towards the hole.

Professionals already know how to plan how they’re going to chip, and they know doing this can reduce the number of shots that they need to take before they land the ball in the hole. But for you, and for other people who are only beginning to take a liking to golf, this may be hard to achieve. This is where you can use some golf chipping tips to improve your skills.

It is likely that the main reason you’ve decided that you want to try chipping is because you have seen other professionals do it and you stood in awe of how they were able to turn a bad situation into a good one. You have to remember that even the professionals can suffer bad swings from time to time.

No matter how good or gifted a person is at playing golf, there will be days when, no matter how hard he tries, it seems like none of his swings are good. When you practice different techniques, you lessen your chances of having an off day.

When the ball is already on the green, your main goal is to land it in the hole in one simple movement. But it is never that easy, and that’s a goal that’s rarely achieved. It may look easy for the pros, but for normal folks, it can take some effort to do everything in just one stroke.

Chances are good that, if you’re relatively skilled, you can land the ball on or near the green. If you get it near the green but not completely, you’ll need to chip the ball up onto the green from the fairway so you can putt into the hole. This is the fundamental purpose of chipping.

Do remember that, even if you did badly on your first swing, you can always employ chipping to get the ball in the right spot. Try to do better by practicing and learning these different tips on how you can chip effectively.

Fundamentals of Chipping

Now that you’re determined to succeed at learning how to chip and try playing like the pros, read on to learn some of the essential things you have to remember.

  1. Correct Positioning – Make sure that you position the golf ball in between a narrow opening of your feet. You don’t want your stance to be too wide. The ball has to be in front of you and you have to position your body in such a way that it will be able to swing at half of a normal swing. Make sure that your body is able to rotate. If not, you might do a “flip” instead of a chip (which means you’re swinging with your wrists, and too quickly).
  2. Choke Down – This means that you have to make sure that you hold onto the club in such a way that your hands are even closer to the ball than before. When you are doing this stance, make sure that you use your hands to choke the ball and not your body. Keep your body in an almost normal, upright position. This means that you should not hunch. Let the hands do the choking for you.
  3. Use Your Hands – In normal swinging, you will be required to use your body to give you power, but when you are chipping, you have to rely on your hands and arms more than the rotation of your body. You have to let your hands naturally do the work for you. Do remember that your chipping might differ depending on what hand you use for playing golf.
  4. The Right Club – You probably realize this, but the club that you’re going to use for chipping will matter. There are some clubs that can make it easier for you to do basic swings—like the backswing or the downswing—but there are also clubs that will make it easier for you to do chipping in particular. The type of club you choose to make it easier for you will depend on what you’re comfortable with to some degree, but in general, the closer to the green you are, the “loftier” your club should be. Anything from a 7 iron to a wedge works best.
  5. Swing Length – There are some professionals who are truly good at this. They know if they’ll require a long swing to go farther or a short swing to simply pop the ball. If you’re near the hole, do a short swing, and if you’re far, do a long swing. That makes sense, right?
  6. Heads Up – Do you realize that even though a lot of professionals look at the ball before they swing, they usually keep their neck aligned with their spine? This is because this type of position will give the best swing possible. In chipping, you may be required to put your head up instead of bowing or looking down at the ball. When you try doing this, you will see how this improves your chipping even if you change nothing else about your technique.
  7. Make Smart Choices – The moment that you reach the green, you’ll be able to pinpoint what type of chip you need to do in order to place the ball in the hole. If you are hasty and don’t stop for a moment to analyze your situation, you may end up doing the wrong swing and wrong chip that will cost you your score when you play. Getting too cocky and thinking that it won’t take you a lot of effort may cause you the shot, too. Just be calm and feel free to take enough time to assess the situation before making your move.
  8. Putt Location – Where you’re going to put your putt will make a huge difference in how effective your chip is. If you’re going to try to get the ball in the hole and the terrain is flat, you probably won’t have many problems. But if the hole follows a downwards slope or sits up on a hill, you have to make sure that you are able to get a larger angled club to putt downwards or a wedge under the ball to lift it up, respectively.

Top tip

Making a clean contact is crucial when chipping and this video by Dave Marsh is the best tip I could find for chipping on the web.

The final—and most critical—point is that you need to practice. Put these tips in action and see how you can learn to adapt to them more effectively over time. You have the right tools to build your skills, so now it’s time to apply them and start chipping better than ever before.

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