WHEN SHOULD YOU HIT A CHIP AND RUN SHOT?
A chip shot or chip and run is a very high percentage shot for getting your ball close to the pin. This shot can resemble a long putt with the goal of flying the ball only about 1/3 of the total distance in the air and the final 2/3rds to roll out. Annabel Rolley shares a great lesson on both good course management and how to execute the chip and run shot. The chip shot is defined by having more ground time than airtime. When near the green it can be very tempting to pull out a highly lofted wedge to attempt a high soft pitch shot with lots of backspin. While these shots can be effective, they are often not your highest percentage shot for getting it close because there are more things that can go wrong.
Just Say No to the Lob Wedge
Who doesn't like the idea of hitting a high and soft lob shot that gently bites and spins back toward the pin? It's so tempting to grab your 60-degree lob wedge and try and hit it high and soft. But this is pretty much horrible course management whenever you have a safer option like a traditional chip and run shot available to you. For example, with the lob or flop shots, you can hit the grass, you can hit it fat, you can hit it thin. If any of those happen, it's going to add lots of shots to your score. We don't want that. So, when you've got room between yourself, and the pin and you can roll the ball, that's when you want to hit the chip and run not the flop shot.
The Chip and Run Shot
The chip and run shot starts with proper club selection. You should use your seven, eight or nine iron. You want to think one third of the shot in the air and two thirds rolling on the ground. The goal is to take out as many high-risk variables as possible.
So now with your weight slightly on your left or your lead side, we want your wrists nice and firm and then we want some nice acceleration through the ball just sweeping the ground and hold that finished position. Pick your spot one third of the way to the hole, where the ball is going to land, allowing for about two thirds release and roll on the ground. A ball position that is more forward will result in a higher trajectory and more airtime. A ball position that is back will result in lower trajectory shots with a lower risk of hitting fat or thin. In all instances, you will want to use good rhythm with good acceleration through impact, firm wrists, and an abbreviated follow-through. This is your traditional chip and run shot.
So put the lob wedge away grab seven, eight or nine iron for the chip and run. Keep it Simple. It'll reduce your scores.
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