If you are a beginner or an aspiring golfer, then you might have dreams and ambitions to get almost any chip shot up and down, irrespective of where you might find your golf ball on the course. You might also want to try short games because it seems the easiest since it is the shortest. Well, it is not. It would be best to practice the chipping drills to acquire the short game skills.
The short game requires the ability to hit the golf ball at the accurate distance, height, and with the right amount of spin. Since practice makes perfect and with short game skills, you will be an outstanding golfer at any major golf game.
In this guide, we have seven chipping drills you can practice at home that will improve your short game in no time. We also have two games to play with your chipping drills to speed up the improvement. Keep reading!
Why You Need to Practice Golf Chipping Drills
The key reason you need to have a practice session is to perfect your golf game. As a renowned golfer, Gary Player said, and I quote, “the harder you practice, the luckier you will get.”
To improve your short game, pick one game preferably and play it once a week for a month, ensure you keep track of your best score. If possible, add 10-15 minutes at the end of your golf chipping practice to work on your skill. Besides, gaining control of your strike and dynamic loft are two key factors needed for a steady ball roll and excellent distance control.
Chipping drill 1: Maintain the triangle or “y” with an alignment stick
Although this is a chipping tip, it is also a chipping drill. It is ideal for short chips around the green and will produce a more controlled chip shot. Besides, it is an easy drill to come back to when you feel like you are losing that touch.
To set up;
1. First, take your standard grip on the golf club together with the golf alignment rod. The rod should run parallel to the shaft. Also, a considerable portion of the rod should extend past the grip.
2. Secondly, take a chipping posture, with both your hands a bit in front of the golf ball, creating a lower case y shape with the club and your arms. Furthermore, the alignment rod should be touching the inside of your ribcage lightly.
3. Lastly, put about 60 to 70 percent of your weight on your lead foot and maintain this shape throughout your hip-height swing, allowing your upper body to do the work. Your upper body should be the one doing all the golf club swinging while your arms and wrists stay still.
This practice will make sure there is a downward blow on the ball, allowing the club to get the ball into the air.
Chipping drill 2: One-handed shot
This chip shot happens to be one of the most accessible short games of them all if you are a pro, but then it can still be tricky. The main problem that beginners have with this chipping drill is that they slow through impact. Decelerating through impact does many different things. However, none of them is good.
In this case, you want to let gravity allow the club to fall through impact naturally. This will enhance consistency, contact, spin, and control. Therefore, to get a feel for allowing the club to accelerate through the ball, try hitting some chip shots with just one hand.
With just one hand, you will not have the strength to decelerate the club through impact, but instead, you will be forced to allow gravity to naturally take the club through the impact zone. However, ensure you relax your hand and do not hold the grip very tightly.
The key point of this drill is to enable you to master the right tempo and force through impact. This drill should help you be in a position to hit some good chip shots with on hand on the club and still win in the golf games.
Chipping drill 3: Distance control
When it comes to chipping the golf ball, controlling your distance is crucial. For a short game, you are hoping for a bit of roll. Therefore, you need to know how hard the chip shot should be to get the ball to roll out the right amount. There are two critical ways to how you can control your distance, which includes;
- Club selection
- The length of your swing
For distance control chipping drill, this is how you go about it:
1. First,erect three targets at various distances on a practice green; a long distance, medium length, and short.
2. Next, grab three clubs that you like to chip with. A long, mid and short iron is recommendable.
3. Next, practice three different backswing lengths by simply taking practice swings.
4. Make sure one club length is about a foot past your back toe, the other one is 4-6 inches past your foot, and another is a couple of inches past your back.
5. Next, rotate through your three golf clubs with your three swings.
6. Lastly, note how far each one travels. This will help you on the golf course when you take the swings. You will be confident because you will make chip shots at an accurate length with the right amount of roll.
Chipping drill 4: Slam dunk
The slam dunk chipping drill is a fun way of practicing after your round of golf. It is even much better if you can invite your friends to play together. For you to enjoy the drill, choose a distance from 10-30 yards away. The concept is to try and slam dunk the ball straight into the cup without touching the green. It sounds easy, right.
Chipping drill 5: Front foot
Another mistake that beginners make when chipping is letting their weight get much far back on their back foot. This posture causes them to lift at the ball. As a result, you have a chucked or skulled chip shot. It would be best if you had your weight forward on your lead foot. By this, the club travel down as well as through the ball at impact. This will result in better chip shots.
To get the right feel for having your weight forward in the correct position, follow the guidelines.
1. Lift your back foot off the ground. If you want, you can then rest it on your toe only. However, either way, you will have a considerable percentage of your weight on the lead foot.
2. Hit some practice shots on a practice green.
3. Concentrate on hitting down on the ball and through the ground.
This practice will give you a good feel for where your weight should be distributed when making a chip shot on the golf course.
Chipping drill 6: Trail hand release
This drill is from the legendary coach, Bruce Harmon. Coach Harmon observed that normal chipping “yips” results from the lead arm ( your left hand if you are a right-handed golfer) stopping before impact and the trail hand flipping. This drill makes you understand the importance of clubface. It as well trains your body to physically not let you do what the golfer with “yips” does, flipping their trail hand right before impact.
This is how you do this chipping drill;
1. Take your usual chipping posture, feet narrow, 60 to 70 percent of your front foot, and ball off the back foot.
2. Make your usual chipping stroke, but just before impact, drop your trail hand off the grip.
3. Concentrate on maintaining your lead arm swinging towards the target directly.
However, if you are struggling with having occasional “yips” or sculling your chip shots, you can get the range and wear this drill out.
Chipping drill 7: Hula hoop
Once you have learned how to hit chip shots, you can now concentrate on aspects like distance and direction. Besides, it is an excellent chipping drill that you can try at the practice range, Local park, driving range, or in your front yard.
To set up;
1. Place a hula hoop or make a similar-sized circle with string.
2. Place eight golf balls in 5-40 yard intervals from the ring.
3. Start with the golf ball closest to the hoop. Chip each one so that they can land within the hoop.
4. Every time you make a successful chip, move to the next ball further from the hoop. However, if you miss one, start over again from the beginning. Do not quit until you can successful get all eight balls in the hoop one after the other.
The key point for this chipping drill is to challenge you to use multiple different types of chip shots. Note how far away from the ring you can get before having to start over again. It is a fun as well as a great way to track your skills in chipping.
Chipping Practice Games
Practice game 1: Par 18
Although golf games keep your practice session fresh, sometimes doing drills for chipping can get boring. Therefore, to add an element of fun as well as competition, try this Par 18 game, which is popular among tour pros. Furthermore, it is a great chipping game that you can use to compete with other golfers or your scores around the green.
So how do you play the Par 18 chipping game?
1. Around the green, select nine spots at varying distances and angles. However, if playing with other golfers, alternate who selects the spots, they become the “holes,” each with a par of 2.
2. Play one ball from each spot. This creates a Par 18 golf course.
The key objective of these games is simple, complete the hole (chipping up as well as putting out) in as few strokes as you can. Use various shot spots and even state the lie ( sitting up, sitting down) to pushother golfers and yourself to try different types of shots. Do this even on your own.
Also, record the total score as that will be your target to beat the next time you will be playing. Do these short game drills once per week, and the scores will start dropping in no time.
Practice game 2: One shot, three clubs
This practice game involves various clubs. In fact, the best chippers in the world hit shots with different clubs and ball positions to get the kind of shot they want. In this game, you will have your clubs “compete” against each other.
Just like Par 18, you will use nine different shot spots around the green.
This is how to play one shot, three clubs;
1. Pick a low-loft option (8/7 iron), a mid-loft option (PW/9iron), and a high-loft option (lob/sand wedge)
2. Hit one ball each from the same shot spot, and whichever club finishes closest to your target wins the hole.
3. Try different lengths and states but first clear the obstacles, short-sided, etc.
This game will help you learn various shot types that you can take out on the course rather than rely on just one club every time.
For you to be the best chipper in the world, you have to practice. Standing at the chipping practice green and hitting 20 balls to different holes without focusing on what you do does not count as practice. Try each one of these golf chipping drills, or pick one from each type of shot. If you give each of a couple of minutes of practice every time you hit the range, your short game will improve significantly.
To spice your chipping drills, play one of these games to measure your skills. Besides, they will help you improve your scores. Thank you for reading the article, and good luck in golf chipping.