You find yourself 20 feet from the pin, on an upslope, in the fairway… primed up for a beautiful … wedge chunk! What is more frustrating than hitting your golf ball three feet in front of you and laying the sod over it? Here’s how to save yourself from ever chunking again.
Most chronic “chunkers” suffer from the following bad habits.
EXCESSIVE SHAFT LEAN
If your club is leaning so far in front of you that it points in front of your body, your leading edge is in prime shape for a digger. You have essen-tially turned your sand wedge into a back hoe. So unless you’re trying to plant carrots in your garden, you’re in a world of trouble.
AN INSIDE TAKEAWAY
The more you swing the club inside out, the more that leading edge wants to dig. The feeling we want here is up and down to get the club to the bounce.
‘LAGGING’ INTO THE BALL
We want to keep the rhythm smooth, but the wrist hinge at a minimum. Floppy wrists can also lead to a digging club.
The main goal here is to shallow the angle of attack and to access the bot-tom of your club, a.k.a. “the bounce,” “the sole” or “the flange.” The bounce of your club works to allow the club head to glide smoothly across the ground. Translation: you get away with murder! It’s not about perfect contact, it’s about minimizing the damage from hitting behind the ball.
MY KEYS TO SUCCESS:
(See photos below)
Minimal Shaft Lean
Keep the handle pointing between belt buckle and front hip bone.
Wide To Wide
Keep wrists from breaking down and you’ll shallow out the club head.
Keep The Club With You
We don’t want the club to get stuck be-hind your body, but rather, keep the club in front of your chest through impact into an in-sync finish.
Remember, taking the club behind and inside leads to a digging approach and a probable chunk.
Follow these steps, work on thumping the ground with the bounce to build confidence, and dump the chunk.
Kristin Walla is Director of Instruction at Orinda Country Club in Orinda, California, and a former member of the University of Texas-Austin women’s golf team. Reach her at www.kwallagolf.com