June 18, 2007

Pivot on chips and pitches

One of the biggest fallacies in golf is that there's only one correct way to play a shot. Take chipping and pitching. One school of thought suggests that a quiet lower body is best, but for me and some other pretty good short-game players, a little pivot is effective.

Besides activating the lower body slightly, a pivot adds rhythm to short shots. It also helps you stay connected—not moving your arms independently of your body. A lot of amateurs get stiff and lose that connection on short shots. You want to be relaxed and in control.

Maintain your spine angle from start to finish, and focus on the back of the ball. Try a little pivot. You'll be smoother and hit more consistent short shots.

Mark Soltau is a contributing editor to Golf Digest and the editor of TigerWoods.com.