Developing Feel in Your Short Game

PGA.com
By
Tom Ellis, PGA

Problem Area: Short Game
Series: Instruction Feature

Too often students will ask me what the best club is to use for a basic chip shot, for example. My answer is that there is no one single club and that it's up to the player themselves based upon their feel using a particular club, not to mention other variables such as lie, distance, hole location, etc.

To develop your feel for the short game, take your pitching wedge, 8-iron, and 6-iron and hit shots with each club to three different targets. The first target should be about 20 feet in front of you, the second 30 feet in front of you, and the third at 40 feet. First hit shots using your pitching wedge. Start to notice how much time the shot spends in the air versus on the ground when hit to each target. Do this with each club and you will see how all shots vary.

Once practiced with all clubs, pick around six random targets no more than 40 feet away and begin to ask yourself what the best club is to use for each. You will then be on your way to developing your own feel and understanding for the short game and how different clubs can be beneficial for various types of chip shots


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