by AJ Gaul, PGA
Marriott Golf Academy in Palm Desert, CA
The ability to consistently hit crisp, consistent chip shots begins at the address position. The positions achieved at address become the positions the body and golf club should also be achieving during impact.
Begin by addressing the golf ball with a fairly narrow stance and tall spine, so that the arms can hang freely in front of the body. Once these positions are achieved, we move into the heart of the address position. Place the golf ball toward the rear of the stance in order to promote ball first contact. This placement of the golf ball allows for the hands to place slightly ahead of the golf ball, with the butt of the club pointed toward the left hip pocket. Once the hands are set in position, lean gently toward the left leg, so the weight is favoring the left side at a 60/40 clip.
|This picture shows the completed address position. When examining the picture, notice how the forearms and clubshaft take the shape of a lower case “y” at the address position. This relationship is the crucial point to again achieve during impact, unfortunately the impact many players achieve looks similar to the next image…
|Notice the very different relationship between the club shaft and the forearms. Instead of the arms and hands leading the clubhead into impact, the clubhead is arriving first. This position is often referred to scooping and leads to extremely inconsistent contact and distance control.
In order to quickly feel the arms and club shaft maintaining the positive relationship preset in the address position, use a homemade club extension. Take any long, straight object that can be held against the golf club and body.
|I am using a broken shaft as the extension. While holding the extension on the golf club, it will rest against the left hip. During the swing, be sure the extension remains against the left hip. By maintaining the pressure against the left hip with the shaft extension the club head will not be allowed to pass the hands through the impact area as it did in the second image above. The drill will allow the lower case “y” position to be maintained throughout the swing in order for the address and impact positions to mirror one another for consistently solid chip shots.