Play Clean Chips from Ultra-Tight Lies

Friday August 17th, 2007
If you chipped on a seesaw its right side would be up.
D2 Productions

The situation: Your ball has plugged in a sand bunker a foot or so below the lip.

This story is for you if...
• You prefer chipping with a cushion of rough beneath the ball
• You chunk or thin chips from the fairway or the fringe
• You just aren't confident from tight lies

The problem: When you face a chip from a tight lie you fear skulling it, so you hit it fat.

How to fix it: Pretend you're balanced on a small seesaw. At address, the seesaw should tilt to the left. This means your weight is perfectly positioned so you can hit down on the ball and catch it clean.

How to practice it: Hit chips with an empty plastic water bottle under your right foot. Play the ball slightly back of center, and use the bottle to remind you to shift your weight over to your left leg. Shifting your weight forward and keeping it there during your stroke correctly positions the bottom of your swing arc at the back of the ball—you won't be able to hit the ground behind the ball if you try.

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