Making Progress Chipping With Great Practice Techniques

You probably don’t need to be told that it will be necessary to practice if you hope to improve your chipping. That much should be assumed in golf, as it is extremely difficult to make progress in this tough game without spending quality time working on your skills. Sadly, chipping is an area of the game which is regularly overlooked by amateur golfers. Plenty of players work on their swings at the driving range, and most players will at least stop to hit a few putts from time to time. But far fewer spend any significant time working on their chipping, which probably explains why so many golfers struggle in this area.

So, the first thing you should consider doing to improve your chipping performance is simply to practice regularly. If you do decide to go practice, keep the following techniques in mind.

  • Seek out variety. It is easy to get into a habit of just practicing the same chip shot over and over again. For instance, you might find a nice patch of fairway near the practice chipping game to set down your bag and hit a few shots. That’s a good place to start, but your session shouldn’t end there. Try to find some rough to practice from, and look for some uneven lies as well. You are going to wind up in many different situations when out on the course, so diversify your practice to prepare properly from what you’ll find during actual rounds of golf.
  • Try using one ball. This point plays off the previous point regarding variety. If you practice using a bunch of golf balls, you will be more likely to settle into a rut of hitting from the same spot over and over again. That isn’t as likely when you practice with only one golf ball. By using one ball, you will need to walk up and retrieve the ball after each shot, meaning you might as well look for a new spot for the next chip. Sure, it will take longer to practice this way, but the work you do will be more valuable in the long run.
  • Practice hitting a landing spot. The ability to accurately hit a landing spot will help you tremendously when chipping. As you practice, be sure to pick out a specific landing spot for each and every shot. Don’t judge your performance only by where the ball ends up, but also on how consistent you are with the task of hitting your landing spot. If you would like, you can place a tee in the ground (or some other small object) as a visual identifier for your landing point. It’s a good idea to pick a landing spot for all of your chip shots on the course, so you might as well get into that habit during practice.
  • Chip with only one hand. You might think this idea sounds a bit odd, but it can actually do wonders for your ability to make clean contact. For some of your short practice chip shots, take your right hand off the club and swing using your left hand only. This is a great practice drill because it teaches you to use your shoulders more than anything else to move the club. You’ll struggle to make decent contact if you use too much hand action, since you only have one hand available to use. After just a few repetitions, you should have a good feel for how this kind of shot should be played.

We know that it isn’t always easy to find time to practice your golf game. When you do get a bit of free time to work on your game, you might feel like that time should be spend on the driving range rather than working on your chipping. But that isn’t necessarily the case. The short game is incredibly important to your overall success, so practicing your chipping is always a wise investment of time.