The Basic Steps to Perfect Golf
Masterfiles

Chipping action. ( Changed - 09/10/2016)


The movement of the upper part of the body whilst chipping the ball is very similar to the full swing movement, but the difference to the full swing is that the lower part of the body does not rotate as much, but importantly the hips must not be allowed to sway at any point in the chipping action.

The set up is practically the same as the full golf swing, but the stance is slightly open with the weight of the body predominantly on the left leg so that the hips are partially facing the target area.

 

It only requires the golfer to use the rotational movement of the upper body unit to swing the club head towards the bottom of the swing arc with a cutting action so that the hands begin to move past the centre line of your body and the whole body begins to face the target area from the precise moment the club head strikes the ball.

So theoretically you simply use the club head to separate the grass and the golf ball as if you are driving a wedge between the grass and the ball with a swing/slicing action that swings the club head with a cutting action across the parallel to the target line, but importantly you must totally focus your eyes on the back edge of the golf ball, keep the head perfectly still and the hips firmly held over the centre of your stance without any hint of swaying and actually watch the ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball.

It is also vital that you keep the majority of the weight of your body over the left leg and fully focus your eyes on the ball position until well after the ball has been stuck.

Therefore if you wish to chip the ball with precision, you must watch the ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball and keep the hips firmly held over the centre of your stance, but importantly, you must also see the ball move away from the spot that it was resting.

 


THE END OF THE BACK SWING MOVEMENT.

During the back swing the majority of the weight of my body is over the left leg and the passive arms/golf club have been pushed into a half back swing with the leading edge of the club face remaining square to the ball position, but importantly, I am also focusing intensely on the back edge of the golf ball.

 


THE PRE-IMPACT POSITION.

The club is being aimed at  a point where the golf ball is actually touching the grass.

All I have done to return the club head to this position is to use a slight rotation of the hips and the rotational movement of the compact upper body unit to pull the passive arms/golf club into the contact area so that the club head cuts across the "straight to the target line" as soon as the club head strikes the ball and continues with this slicing action as the hands go past the centre line of the body, but importantly, the right shoulder has also begun to rotate under the chin.

 

 

At this stage in the swing movement I am totally concentrating on keeping the hips very firmly in the original address position and using the rotational movement of the very compact upper body unit to control the speed of the club head. The whole idea of the chipping action is ensure that leading edge of the club head separates the ball and the turf with a cutting action coupled with a descending blow.

In fact if I really analysed the movement, I have no conscious thoughts about the club head striking the ball, I am simply concentrating on making sure the club head strikes the ball with a descending blow whilst swinging across the straight to the target line and concentrating on how much power should be applied, but ensuring that the club head continues to move to the bottom of the swing arc with a slicing action.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

If I only want to move the ball a very short distance, I only make a short back swing movement, but I still swing through the contact area with a gradually accelerating action and slicing action - however if I wish to move the ball further I make a slightly longer back swing movement and a longer follow through movement, thus increasing the impact speed, but the tempo of the swing movement and the mechanical action of the swing movement remain the same - but all the time performing the chipping action so that the club head cuts across the parallel to the target line with a slicing action.

 

However, regardless of how far I want the ball to go, as well as keeping the hips firmly held in the original address position I concentrate solely on the action of making a clean strike and then swinging the club head to the bottom of the swing arc. ( Therefore regardless of how far the ball has to travel, the only thing you adjust is the length of the back swing movement and the length of the follow through movement.)

 

The elbow remain close together as the club head approaches the ball but with the right shoulder/right upper arm muscles in control, therefore it is vital that you keep the left arm perfectly straight as the club head continues to move to the bottom of the swing arc with a slicing action.

The weight ratio of my body remains about 70% over the left leg

 

My head is firmly held in the Fixed Frontal condition, but importantly, the head is firmly held in the original address position to a "pin point accuracy" and the upper body angle has been strictly maintained.

 


THE IMPACT POSITION.

 

The right shoulder is much lower than the left shoulder at the precise moment the club head strikes the ball, this is because the right shoulder has already begun to rotate under the chin in conjunction with the rotational movement of the hips as they turn to fully face the target area.

The wrist joint has simply unhinged slightly to allow the club head to slide under the ball and move to the bottom of the swing arc.

 

From this point onwards, the rotational movement of the hips and the right shoulder/right upper arm muscles will continue to pull the passive arms/golf club, so that the club head swings to the bottom of the swing arc.

Because the bottom of the swing arc is located beyond the ball position, the club head will continue to move in a downward and forward motion but you must cut across the straight to the target line.

Therefore it is absolutely vital that you keep the elbows close together as the club head swings under the ball and importantly, you must watch the club head strike the ball and keep the hips held firmly in the original address position.

 


 

THE CHIPPING ACTION.

Move the mouse over the picture to see the complete action.

As I perform this stage of the chipping action, I am simply concentrating using a combination of the rotational movement of the hips and the right shoulder/right upper arm muscles to pull the club head into the contact area with a slicing action, but importantly, watching the back edge of the ball very closely, whilst the club head strikes the ball with a descending blow.
( In order to chip the ball very well you must learn to strike the ball with a slightly descending blow and with a slicing action and also keep the hips in the original address position to eliminate any swaying action.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


THE FOLLOW THROUGH ACTION.

As soon as the club head reaches the bottom of the swing arc, the shoulders, the arms and the wrists remain in a firm condition whilst the complete unit begins to turn towards the target area, but the upper body angle is strictly maintained.

However it is vital that the head remain slightly behind the ball with "pinpoint accuracy".

 

Please Note.

If you focus your eyes intensely on the spot that the ball was resting, as soon as the ball moves away from this spot, the white image of the ball will convert to a black image for a milli-second. - this indicates that you have watched the ball correctly.


 

When you carry out the practice swings, you must make sure that the elbows remain close together but using the right shoulder/right upper arm muscles to control the club head, so that the club head continues to move to the bottom of the swing arc after the club head has struck the ball.

This action is a simple movement, but you must keep the arms totally straight and bonded with the shoulders but the hips must not sway away from the original address position.

Further, you must train yourself to stop the hands from returning to the original address position until the club head makes contact with the ball and keep your head firmly in the Fixed Frontal condition.

One of the most important elements of chipping the ball, is to keep the eyes fully focused on the back edge of the ball so that you make a clean descending blow to the golf ball and continue to swing the club head to the bottom of the swing arc.


Trust your original judgement.

The other important element of chipping the ball, is that you must play the shot exactly as you performed the practice swing.
You must not quit on the shot, trust you original judgement of the length of back swing movement, but importantly, trust your original judgement on the amount of follow through movement required to land the ball where you want.


If the hosel touches the ball it will create a "shank" -- Therefore in order to reduce the possibility of a shank, instead of aligning the ball to the centre of the club face, I align the ball to the outside edge of the club face - this allows for a larger margin of error.

 

Remember, the chipping action is a controlled but relaxed swing movement, but it is absolutely vital that you watch the ball so that you actually see the club head strike the ball and then continue to swing the club head to the bottom of the swing arc with a slicing action but all this will be in vain unless you hold the hips in the original address position until well after the ball has been struck.


 

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