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Maybe I'm the only one, but I feel like chipping is the most complicated part of golf. Seems like general ideas for driving, iron play, and putting are pretty consistent but feel like every time I see something about chipping, it's the opposite of the previous thing I saw before. Phil Mickelson video saying keep the ball on front or back foot, weight forward, hands forward every time. Then the next video is ball in the middle of stance, let the bounce really work and don't you dare expose the leading edge or get hands forward. Then open stance, focus on hitting behind the ball. Anybody got a simple, effective instruction suggestion for chipping? Just getting the ball on the green consistently from a few different distances. 

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You are correct,  there are many schools of thought. You have to remember that Phil is a master of his approach to chipping. His turf interaction is precise. If you hit slightly behind the ball the leading edge would dig in and chunk it. In other approaches if you use the bounce of the sole and hit behind it, your club could bounce and you can skull the shot over the green.  If you took 20 of us and recorded our chipping you would have 20 different results.  There are different thoughts about what club to use. Some say use one,  some say it depends on the distance to the hole. It is what works best for you. Even though this should be the simplest part of the game it isn't. The guy who taught me was a one club approach. I was a 20 something handicap and he was scratch. So I listened to him. I use my gap wedge 90% of the time. I press it forward to keep it low and running or normal loft to land 1/2 way to the hole and then roll out, or open it up to land near the hole. But after 30 years of doing it this way it requires no though on my part and I am comfortable with this approach. You just have to experiment and see what feels better and what works better for you. 

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So imo chipping can be as complex or simple as the individual wishes it to be.

I'm a mid-complexity kind of wedge player. I like to have a variety of shots in the quiver if needed but mostly stick with a few solid fundamental shots that I can use effectively 90% of the time.

Whatever you're outlook, it is definitely important to keep the 1 or many chipping tools sharp at all times.

Here are some fundamentals that I apply in my chipping game

Disclaimer: there's are many many ways to skin this cat. These are what work for me and I'm sure others will provide equally valuable examples.

Ball position: there is no specific position. Place the ball according to desired trajectory. Further forward = higher, further back = lower. Some may only like 1 trajectory and there's no problem with that. Just remember that the position of the ball will impact the loft of the club.

Weight: always weight forward and toward target no matter what shot. This will ensure that you're hitting the ball first. The ball position will determine club loft and trajectory after the ball is struck.

Read your chip: don't play a wedge shot like it's just another shot to get you to the green. You're basically at the green so don't forget to read it like you would a putt. If you can see it, read it.

Lastly.. 25% hands/wrists and 75% body

You can pick up a couple of alignment sticks at Home Depot for like $2.50 a pop. Here is a really great body rotation drill to help reduce the hand/wrist flipping that can really kill a chip.




Best of luck in your wedge improvement journey!

the more I practice, the luckier I seem to get..

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In my opinion, 9 out of 10 players don’t get their hands up/out enough when they’re chipping.

If you can get comfortable with a more upright shaft angle that slightly lifts the heel of your wedge off the ground, it should encourage your hands to work on a more natural arc and also helps keep the leading edge from digging. Don’t be afraid to choke way down on your grip because it allows you to get closer to the ball (more upright).

From there just rock your shoulders like you’re making a putting stroke and move the ball position (back to front) to adjust carry and roll for whatever the shot requires.

Because it bears repeating, the technique outlined above is best suited for chipping (not pitching). When you’re chipping properly, the club head will never pass (slide under) the ball.

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15 minutes ago, downlowkey said:

From there just rock your shoulders like you’re making a putting stroke and move the ball position (back to front) to adjust carry and roll for whatever the shot requires.

This is one of the simplest solutions I know of, chip with a putting stroke.  Same grip, same address, the heel will be a little higher so address it closer to the toe.  Very little wrist action, so it should be pretty repeatable.

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My short game has deteriorated and I believed my issue was an inconsistent radius.  I reread Phil Mickelson’s book focusing on chipping and practiced for a week in the house with good results. I practiced chipping for about an hour or so last Sunday, the day you made this post, with good results. Great distance control for me, and I holed three when practicing getting up and down from all around the green.  I should mention that I also changed wedges, using Edel Driver grind wedges that I had been fitted with 7 years ago but could never work into the bag because full shots were more than a full club shorter than my gamers at the time.  They replaced a Vokey S grind 56* and 60* K grind I used well from bunkers.

Yesterday, I played for the first time.  The hinge and hold method worked great for chipping for me yesterday.  I chipped 5 times, holed 2 for birdies, got up and down 2 more times and hit one about halfway there and then three-putted.  I was terrible from the sand with the 59* Driver grind wedge.  
 

I like how Mickelson simplifies matters by hitting high chips off the front foot and low chips off the back.  But this was only one round. Looking forward to pursuing this in the future and seeing this method works for me in the future.

Best of luck to you.

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9 hours ago, Clemsonfan said:

My short game has deteriorated and I believed my issue was an inconsistent radius.  I reread Phil Mickelson’s book focusing on chipping and practiced for a week in the house with good results. I practiced chipping for about an hour or so last Sunday, the day you made this post, with good results. Great distance control for me, and I holed three when practicing getting up and down from all around the green.  I should mention that I also changed wedges, using Edel Driver grind wedges that I had been fitted with 7 years ago but could never work into the bag because full shots were more than a full club shorter than my gamers at the time.  They replaced a Vokey S grind 56* and 60* K grind I used well from bunkers.

Yesterday, I played for the first time.  The hinge and hold method worked great for chipping for me yesterday.  I chipped 5 times, holed 2 for birdies, got up and down 2 more times and hit one about halfway there and then three-putted.  I was terrible from the sand with the 59* Driver grind wedge.  
 

I like how Mickelson simplifies matters by hitting high chips off the front foot and low chips off the back.  But this was only one round. Looking forward to pursuing this in the future and seeing this method works for me in the future.

Best of luck to you.

Everyone is different about what feels good to them.  I tried Phil's Hinge and Hold technique, and while it would work sometimes I am apparently not talented enough to be consistent with it.  I love watching Phil's videos on it; he makes it look easy.

I like to have the ball more forward in my stance so that with weight forward, I can still see the back of the ball.  When I moved the ball back in my stance for lower shots, I don't make good contact.  From a forward position I can hit high and low shots with my 60º so there is no reason for me to move the ball.  The only shot I use with the ball back is the one described by @DaveP043 with the heel up and a putting stroke, which I find very useful near the green on uneven lies.

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The heel up, putting stroke has changed my golf life. I play it middle stance, putting grip, choked down to the point where the right hand is touching the shaft. I make a putting stroke but with a slightly faster tempo. Not perfect everytime, but never chunk it. Knocked one in for birdie today and also put one from 40 yards out to 5 feet with a 4 hybrid.

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For me I really focus on controlling the low point. I am never as successful but a great example of this was JT yesterday when he picked it clean with his chip on 12. I find my consistency takes a huge leap when I do a good job of controlling the low point.

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