3 Techniques and Variations to Basic Chip Shot

    Learning how to play a basic chip shot with a simple arm swing is a great start. This shot will come in handy in a number of situations, and it will always give you a basic option to play the ball up toward the hole. However, that basic chip shot simply isn’t going to be the right option in every circumstance. Sometimes, you are going to need to alter your chipping technique in order to produce a shot that suits the situation at hand just right.

    In this section, we are going to highlight three different types of chip shots that you can build on the platform of your basic chip. Of course, you shouldn’t just rush out to the course to try these during a round, as it is always difficult to learn new shots on the fly. Instead, take time to practice each of these shots so you can build confidence before giving them a try during a round.

  • The flop shot. Of all the different shots you can hit around the greens, this one is the most impressive. You make a big swing, the ball shoots way up into the air, and it (hopefully) comes down softly near the hole. While you are sure to impress your friends with this shot, it would be a mistake to overlook the difficulty of this option. Hitting a flop shot is a challenging task, and it can easily go wrong. To work on your flop shot, open the face of your wedge at address, and use a wider stance to accommodate the big swing. Then, make a big swing while actively using your hands to set the club in the backswing and release it in the downswing. You’ll need to keep your head stable and have a steady nerve to pull this off. Since there is some risk associated with a flop shot, you should only turn to this option when you don’t think any easier shots will be effective.
  • The chip and check. This is a chip shot that flies low to the ground, lands on the green, and stops quickly thanks to a high rate of backspin. If you are going to play this shot, you will need to place the ball back in your stance and use a highly-lofted wedge to pinch the ball off the turf. You will need a clean lie in order to pull this off, and just like with the flop shot, you will have to make perfect contact to make it work nicely. Using backspin to stop your chip shots can help you manage you distance properly, but only if you practice this shot consistently. This is another shot that is harder than a basic chip, so it too should only be used when necessary.
  • The hybrid bump. Our last type of chip shot is not actually played with a wedge, but rather with one of your hybrid clubs. This shot may be an option when the ball is resting just off the edge of the green, usually on the fringe. Basically, you will be using your hybrid like a putter to send the ball rolling up toward the hole. This is still technically a ‘chip’ shot, although the ball will barely leave the ground. To hit this shot, simply hold your hybrid like a putter and rock the club back and through. It will only take a small amount of effort to provide the ball with enough speed to scoot all the way up to the cup with ease.
  • Even if you have excellent chipping technique, you aren’t going to have much success in the short game if you only know how to hit one kind of shot. You’ll encounter all kinds of different chip shots as you continue to play this game, so it is important to have a number of different shots available. Do your best to work on learning a variety of shots during practice so you can alter your approach as necessary on the course.