Getting the right feel or action in our golf technique can be difficult at times. Sometimes the best way to achieve this is find a drill can highlight or exaggerate a certain part of the swing we want to improve. Here a two chipping drills that may help improve your chipping action. (The descriptions are based on a right handed position).
Right hand or bottom hand drill
The idea here is to improve our sense of rhythm and smoothness of our technique. The key feelings to notice here are a relaxed arm swing, allowing the weight of the club to continue the swinging momentum of the club and our chest rotation through the downswing/follow through phase in particular. Best clubs to use here is sand wedge, lob wedge or gap wedge.
Place 5 balls in a line about 10 – 15 yards from the chipping green. Hold the club with your right hand and place your left hand onto your chest. Make a few practice swings letting the club brush the ground each time. Place the club behind the first ball and again just let the ball get in the way of club head as it brushes the ground in the downswing. Move to the next ball as soon as the momentum of the club has stopped swinging and again repeat the process. Continue in this fashion for all 5 balls. You should have a nice even tempo and consistency from shot to shot. Notice how the chest acts as the tempo engine and swinging motion is relaxed and automatic.
Left hand or top hand drill
Golfers sometimes become too dominant with the bottom hand in chipping causing scooping or bladed shots. The left hand drill is great way to feel how your left arm and hand should feel through the impact/follow through phase of your chipping action. It feels a bit strange a first but after a number of shots you will get used to it. Once again the key is to stay relaxed and keep the swinging tempo nice and easy.
Place a ball in the middle of your stance. Maybe place a bit of your weight on your left side. You will need to lean the club shaft forward a little so your arm and shaft make a continuous line but don’t overdo this. The objective is to swing the club and try to maintain this line through the impact/ follow through phase.
Of course both of these drills take a bit of getting used to but then again that’s the purpose of the drill. If we could do this successfully straight away then you the likelihood is you already have control of your chipping action. One important observation is that in both drill the club has still been released through the ball even though there isn’t a scooping action the shaft still points to the left trouser pocket area in the follow through allowing the clubhead to bounce or brush the ground at impact and not dig in as a result of too much shaft lean.