December 8, 2008

Perfect Strike: Stay Connected

For consistent chipping, maintain the triangle between your arms and chest.

The best short-game players on tour have a lot in common, such as soft hands, solid fundamentals and smooth rhythm. Specifically, one move I see in all good chippers is keeping the arms and body "connected" through the shot.

I like to think of this as "maintaining the triangle" that is created by my arms and chest at address as I swing back and through. It really simplifies my chipping action into a rhythmic swinging of the arms and reduces any unnecessary movements, which makes contact more predictable.

Many of my amateur partners in pro-ams struggle with chipping because their triangle breaks down either going back or swinging through—or both. Usually the chest stops rotating while the arms keep swinging. That disconnection causes all sorts of problems, including inconsistent contact, trajectory and distance control.

So maintain your triangle, and I'll bet your short game improves dramatically.

Tiger Woods writes instruction articles only for Golf Digest. Ask Tiger a question.

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