Tuesday, October 25, 2011
My Favorite Tips & Drills
Improve fast with my top ten tips
Labels: Pitching, Wood Play, Instruction, Iron Play, Quick Tips, Ballstriking, Training Aids, Scoring, Wedge Play, Short Game, Driving, Swing, Putting, Power, Techniques, Chipping, Trouble Shots, Game Improvement, Full Swing, Sand Shots, Drills, Exercises, Body, Slicing, Shotmaking
Many golfers make chipping and pitching much more difficult because they worry too much about what the ball might do as it rolls to the hole. This becomes a distraction that clutters the mind and results in poor contact and a general lack of distance control.
Instead, the most important thing to focus on is the landing area on a chip and/or pitch since that's really the only thing you have total control over. Select a chipping location, visualize the shot and where you would need to land the ball, then go place your hoop where the landing area is. Then give yourself 10 balls to accomplish the following tasks: Get one ball to land in the hoop and get one ball to come to rest within three (advanced) to 10 (beginner) feet of the hole, depending on your skill level. The goal would be to finish the task in as few balls as possible, while learning how your chips and pitches roll or check up. Some golfers put a little more backspin on their shots, and some hit it lower and play for more roll. The key in using the hoop is to not only get in the habit of not aiming directly at the hole, but also see how your shots react once they do hit the ground. Do this, and your distance and direction will improve tremendously with your chips and pitch shots.
Too much tension in hands and arms leads to flipping at the ball instead of creating a solid chipping stroke. When this happens, you see a lot of flubbed, fat and thin chips.
A great way to loosen the tension in the hands is to try the club-toss drill. Grab a couple wedges and make room to toss each wedge a few yards ahead of you. As you make a chipping motion, allow the club to come loose through impact. Do this about 10 to 15 times. Then, add a ball to the motion. If your club gets tossed dramatically to the left, then you're using too much tension and trying to hit at the ball or scoop it. If the club starts to go fairly straight, then you're starting to feel what it's like to have Tour professional hands and control around the greens.
If you struggle with hitting chips the right distance, it's probably because your eyes and your golf swing don't see and feel the same thing. Also, you're likely hitting at the ball again, instead of letting your body and club swing through the ball and toward the target.
To alleviate this problem, practice chipping with your eyes on the target instead of the ball. Before trying with the ball, do about 10 to 15 practice strokes with your eyes on your target and allow the club to naturally brush the grass. See if you notice that your legs and torso begin to shift weight and rotate with the motion of the club. Then set up to a ball and practice without your eyes on the ball—keep them on the target. In a short time, you'll get a better feeling and visual for not only making the right swing length, but also hitting through the ball, not at it.
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