For Chip Shots Use A Sand Or Lob Wedge

July 01, 2012

Low Trajectory: To hit a low chip using a lob wedge, keep your left wrist flat, and don't let the clubshaft pass your hands until your follow-through.

High Trajectory: To add loft to a lob wedge and hit the ball higher, your left wrist should cup through impact. Notice that the clubface is pointing up.

It was common in the past for players to hit a low, running chip with a 7- or 8-iron. You don't see this approach as much today, mainly because greens are a lot quicker and it's hard to hit this shot soft enough with those lower-lofted clubs. Often the ball runs well past the hole. Now, most good players use a sand or lob wedge because the ball comes off at a slower, more controlled pace.

To execute the low chip, set up with a slightly open and narrow stance (above, left), with the ball just back of center and your weight favoring your front foot. Make a smooth swing, but don't let the shaft pass your hands until after you've hit the shot. Note how flat my left wrist is after impact.

If I wanted to hit a high shot with the same club, my left wrist would cup at impact, adding loft to the face and allowing the bounce to skim through the turf (above, right). Versatility like this can improve your short game.

LEADBETTER is a Golf Digest Teaching Professional and is based at ChampionsGate, near Orlando.