Grow My Game

Chipping When it’s Wet Outside

By Brian Conley
Published on

I'd like to share a tip about playing on a wet course, one that I think could help most golfers.
Not long ago, one area that I really needed to improve on was my short game when conditions were "soft." Think about it, how many times have you, or someone in your group, chunked or bladed a chip when playing on a wet course? I know I've done it, and I'd bet most of you have, too.
When you are chipping under normal, dry conditions, the bounce of your club adds an element of forgiveness. Under "soft" conditions, your club is more prone to dig into the ground, thus creating the "fat" shot. Or you get so wrapped up in avoiding that "fat" chunk, you end up blading the ball, and watch it scream over the green into who knows what. Neither are very fun or helpful to your score.
So how do you avoid these pitfalls?
You avoid them by hitting the ball first, but not hitting the ball only. In other words, don’t try to "pick" the ball cleanly. Go ahead and be aggressive with the stroke.
Play the ball just a touch further back in your stance; for me that means about half a ball further back. Again, this ensures that you contact the ball first. Then take a little extra-lofted club, perhaps a sand wedge rather than a pitching wedge, or a lob wedge rather than a sand wedge, and “close the face a little." The delofting of the shot comes from playing a touch back in the stance. Don't want to close or shut down the toe at address and through the shot. Address the ball more closely so that the heel is slightly off the ground at address, too.
Keep the short game fundamentals top of mind
Now, very importantly, the same fundamentals of the short game still apply. Keep your hands in front of the ball and always moving left (for right-handed golfers). Your club can and should contact the ground.
The ball will come out lower but will check up for you. I'd suggest practicing this shot to get a good feel for your distances. But this technique is easy to implement into your game and will help you lower scores when playing on a wet course.