Instruction

A Light Grip Will Give You a Feathery Greenside Touch

Photo: Angus Murray

Instructor James Sieckmann says light grip pressure is vitally important to chipping.

Great wedge players hold the club lightly -- about a 2 on a pressure scale of 1 to 10. More importantly, they maintain this pressure from start to finish. Everyday players tend to change pressure mid-swing, gripping harder in the transition or as the club nears impact, a move that destroys any sense of feel. Stone hands make your scores sink like a rock! Follow these steps to get a surgeon's touch in 30 seconds.

1. GRIP IT: LIGHT IS RIGHT

Get into your chip setup and hold the club very lightly. Before you swing, gently -- almost imperceptively -- hinge the clubhead off the turf. It should feel heavy in your hands. That's the right feel for finesse wedge shots.

2. GRADE IT: GAUGE PRESSURE IN PRACTICE

Make two rehearsal swings. Your goal is to maintain the light grip pressure that you created in your setup all the way to your finish. Gauge the tension. Was your grip pressure a 2 throughout, or did it go higher?

3. LET IT FLOW: YOU NOW HAVE THE TOUCH

After you complete your rehearsal swings, address the ball and repeat your motion. Your transition should feel slow and smooth. That's the secret! Transition tempo and all-around rhythm are what ultimately give you touch.

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