How to Correct Ball Position on Chip Shots

By Steve Silverman

Chipping is one of the key areas in golf where it is possible to improve your score. It is a relatively easy swing that calls for a good feel for the ball and correct positioning of your feet. A good chipper can knock 5 to 7 shots off his score for 18 holes once he becomes accomplished in the area.


Difficulty: Moderate
Step 1
Play the ball back in your stance when you are close to the green and you want to pop the ball in the air and have it run to the hole. The ball should be about two ball lengths closer to your back foot. By coming down on the ball with your wrists stiff, the ball will run toward the hole after it bounces on the green.
Step 2
Play the ball in the middle of your stance if you are chipping from a distance of 40 yards or more on a flat lie. With this kind of chip, you want the ball to bounce and run up the remaining distance to the green and roll toward the hole.
Step 3
Play the ball closer to your front foot if you are chipping from 40 yards or more on an uphill lie. The ball should be about two ball lengths closer to your front leg than it would be if you played it in the middle of your stance. Make sure you hit the bottom of the ball, because golfers have a tendency to top a ball while playing from an uphill lie.
Step 4
Open your stance by pointing your left (front) foot to the left if you are playing a right-to-left shot. Play the ball near the middle of your stance. By opening your left foot, you will come across the ball and that will give the ball a side spin.
Step 5
Practice chipping at the driving range. You can use the mat that the range provides but there is also a practice pitching area that may be even more appropriate. Playing the ball more forward or further back in your stance will not feel natural but it will help you put the best stroke on the ball.

Tips & Warnings

Chipping the ball and having it run to the hole may be a good alternative for golfers who are not as accomplished with a pitching wedge. Instead of pitching it high, a good chipper will get the ball to the hole by keeping it low.

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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