Chip Shots for Left-Handed Golfers

By Steve Silverman

Learning to hit a chip shot is vital for a golfer who wants to become a shotmaker and improve his score. A shotmaker is the kind of golfer who is creative on the course and can envision different ways to make successful shots near the green by chipping with his 7-, 8- or 9-iron. Learning to chip takes practice, but once a golfer gets the feel for succeeding on these shots it should become a regular part of his makeup.

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Step 1
Take your 7-iron when you are about 90 yards from the green and there are no hazards in front of you. Instead of pitching to the green with a wedge, you can hit a low chip shot that bounces up to the green and stops near the hole. Take your stance and make sure your right shoulder is square to the flagstick. Bend your knees and envision hitting a shot that will stay on target all the way to the green.
Step 2
Take your club back about 6 to 8 inches past your knee. Keep your wrists stiff as you come down and through the ball. Stop once you get past knee level. This stroke is somewhat reminiscent of an elongated putt, but you hit it harder. This shot can be effective on a sun-baked fairway during the heat of summer.
Step 3
Take your 9-iron when you are about 40 yards from the green and face an uphill lie. Square your right shoulder to the green. Bring your club back to about knee level and then come through the ball at medium speed, breaking your wrists on impact with the ball and stopping as you get to your knees on the follow through. This will pop the ball in the air a few feet from the hole and should stop quickly.
Step 4
Take your 8-iron for a chip-and-run shot when you are about 70 yards from the hole. This can be an effective shot when you have a water hazard in front of you. Square your right shoulder to the hole; take a half-backswing (waist level) and then bring the club forward. Break your wrists on impact with the ball and stop about waist level. The ball should fly over the water hazard, land and take three or four bounces up to the green.

Tips & Warnings

Be creative with your short irons. Many golf pros will eschew the chip and instruct golfers to pitch the ball, but chipping is a very effective way to get there when you have a difficult time landing the ball softly on the green. Go to the driving range and practice your chipping. Not only can it be an effective way of getting to the green, it is also a great way to get out of trouble when you are in the rough.
Be creative with your short irons. Many golf pros will eschew the chip and instruct golfers to pitch the ball, but chipping is a very effective way to get there when you have a difficult time landing the ball softly on the green.
Go to the driving range and practice your chipping. Not only can it be an effective way of getting to the green, it is also a great way to get out of trouble when you are in the rough.

About The Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.

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