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dchoye

How high trajectory should the chip shots around the green should be?

19 posts in this topic

I been finding that the lower I can get my chip shots maybe 1-2 foot of the ground and trying to land as close to the fringe as possible and run afterward , the better my control of distance is.

I notice that if my chip shots balloon to high say 3-4 feet, then it doesnt roll as well, and I might as well have flop/lob the ball.

While i was thinking about this, I remember the tip Dave Stockton says, always try for a high shot(lob) or low shot(chip) but never in between.

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I think you'll get differing opinions on this.  Personally I've only very recently begun working at all on lower, running shots around the green  So on the course I'm not confident in the style of shot you're talking about at all.  So unless my lie dictates otherwise, or I've been pitching it really poorly and just want to mix it up, around the green I almost exclusively use my stock pitch with my 60˚.  That's probably a mid to mid-high trajectory for a 60˚ shot.

But whatever works for you.  There are definitely advocates for getting the ball on the green running as soon as is feasible who have great short games.

I'm not sure I ascribe to the Stockton advice you quoted.  What's wrong with playing a pitch to fly 2/3 of the way there and roll out?

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You are on the right track with your lower the flight, the better distance control. Your ball height will depend on what works best for you. Unless there is a problem, my landing area is always some where between 1-2 feet on the green when I chip. With a consistent landing point, the height of the ball stays consistent. The higher the ball flies, the steeper it will drop. The steeper it drops, the less it will roll.

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From everything I've read, you want the ball rolling as soon as possible. (unless it's a specialty shot).  I don't really follow that rule, but I'm a rebel.

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I prefer to go higher launch. I just think its easier to gauge distance with carry versus roll between different green speeds.

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I never liked the idea of getting the ball rolling as soon as possible. If your landing area is only a few feet off the fringe you need only to land it a few feet short to make an error. I would think landing halfway between the start of the green and the pin would provide the greatest margin for error.
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I use only as much effective loft/trajectory as I need for the shot at hand and only depend on spin to stop the ball as much as necessary for the shot at hand.

My shots around the greens can be anything from a super flop to a shot that barely gets above the grass (and everything in between).

Every situation is different based on lie and landing area and the only time I break my rule is when I am clearly better with a certain type of shot during that round that day.

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I think you'll get differing opinions on this.  Personally I've only very recently begun working at all on lower, running shots around the green  So on the course I'm not confident in the style of shot you're talking about at all.  So unless my lie dictates otherwise, or I've been pitching it really poorly and just want to mix it up, around the green I almost exclusively use my stock pitch with my 60˚.  That's probably a mid to mid-high trajectory for a 60˚ shot.

But whatever works for you.  There are definitely advocates for getting the ball on the green running as soon as is feasible who have great short games.

I'm not sure I ascribe to the Stockton advice you quoted.  What's wrong with playing a pitch to fly 2/3 of the way there and roll out?

The lob is definitely an option, but there's a few greens at my home course with a graded incline to the hole that lob roll out will stop short of the hole most of the time. I seen other players chip/run the ball up to the hole for a better chance to get closer/or in. I am speaking of 20-50 foot run ups. Longer greenside shots , flatter greens and shorter downhiller, I tend to use the LW more.

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I never liked the idea of getting the ball rolling as soon as possible. If your landing area is only a few feet off the fringe you need only to land it a few feet short to make an error. I would think landing halfway between the start of the green and the pin would provide the greatest margin for error.

I agree with this as well.

It is also much easier for me to practice carry distance in my backyard than bump/run distance.

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The lob is definitely an option, but there's a few greens at my home course with a graded incline to the hole that lob roll out will stop short of the hole most of the time. I seen other players chip/run the ball up to the hole for a better chance to get closer/or in. I am speaking of 20-50 foot run ups. Longer greenside shots , flatter greens and shorter downhiller, I tend to use the LW more.

That's funny cause that's my favorite situation for a mid-high hop and stop pitch with my 60˚.  Into a pretty significant uphill I'm pretty confident I can get my 60˚ to hop and stop or trickle from any decent lie.  I love that shot cause it takes one of the variables out of the equation (how's it going to roll).  My putt is pretty much going to be exactly the length of how much I miss my landing spot by.  I'm no short game sniper but with a 10-15 yard shot I've got a decent chance of having a really makable putt.  Much better results for me than I'd get trying to run it for now at least.

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I think you'll get differing opinions on this.  Personally I've only very recently begun working at all on lower, running shots around the green  So on the course I'm not confident in the style of shot you're talking about at all.  So unless my lie dictates otherwise, or I've been pitching it really poorly and just want to mix it up, around the green I almost exclusively use my stock pitch with my 60˚.  That's probably a mid to mid-high trajectory for a 60˚ shot.

But whatever works for you.  There are definitely advocates for getting the ball on the green running as soon as is feasible who have great short games.

I'm not sure I ascribe to the Stockton advice you quoted.  What's wrong with playing a pitch to fly 2/3 of the way there and roll out?

Agree with everything here.  My "Stock pitch" is with my 54.5* SW (cuz my 59 has a little less bounce) and I have much better distance control with that shot than I would with any chip shots.  For me, I don't trust a chip shot as much because its too dependent on the quality of the strike.  There is no room for error when using that leading edge.  If you have a 30 foot chip and catch it a bit thin, it could go 50, or catch it fat and it could go 5.  My pitch shot uses the bounce and gives me leeway such that a "fat" shot is still going pretty much the same distance as my intended shot becaue the club isn't digging.  Further, because I know I have the help, I'm cheating and purposely hitting a tad behind the ball ... which allows for a thin shot to work out pretty well too.

But I mostly agree with the idea that "whatever works for you."

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I always opt for the lower chip with a 9 iron. Not a significant amount of backspin so i get pretty consistent release. I want to make sure it lands on the green so I'll hit it a few feet onto the green. Get the ball rolling as soon as possible for the most part. If it's a back pin on a second level I may pitch or flop it up there is there is good room to land it. if it's a front pin, probably the pich or flop is the best. Land it on the green if possible.
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For me, I don't trust a chip shot as much because its too dependent on the quality of the strike.  There is no room for error when using that leading edge.  If you have a 30 foot chip and catch it a bit thin, it could go 50, or catch it fat and it could go 5.

To be fair, a lot of posts on this thread are advocating runners with lower lofted clubs, and you can hit a shot that will come out low and run further than it will fly with a 9i and still use the bounce.

Off topic, I've never understood the alternate definition of the chip shot as one that runs more than it flies (as opposed to the common one on TST, pitch=bounce, chip=leading edge).  Handle forward, steep AoA, lead with the edge has always been a spinny shot for me.  I mean, if you're doing it from just off the green, then sure, you're not gonna get a ton of spin regardless so it'll still roll.  But from more than 15-20 yards away those mechanics are how I would try to hit one of those low hard spinning shots that come in looking hot, take a big bounce, and check hard, not one that will land a couple yards on the green and run all the way to a back pin.  Not that I'm super good at that shot, but I've used those once in a while into uphill greens pretty much just for fun.

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To be fair, a lot of posts on this thread are advocating runners with lower lofted clubs, and you can hit a shot that will come out low and run further than it will fly with a 9i and still use the bounce.

Yeah, I kinda realized that after I wrote my post.  You are right ... I am talking about chips with high lofted clubs, and chips with other clubs are not going to have quite the same problem.

I still like hitting mostly pitches, and hitting almost all of my greenside shots with the same club or two, though.

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I still like hitting mostly pitches, and hitting almost all of my greenside shots with the same club or two, though.

Yeah I'm exactly the same.  Just was noting you can hit runners using the bounce with the right club.

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I had a lot of trouble with distance control around the green last year.

I took a short-game lesson from  new pro I'm working with, and he pointed out that I was inconsistent in my backswing on chips. Sometimes I came back low, other times I hinged my wrists. If I take it back low for a chip-and-run, and keep my hands ahead of the ball, things work out well. You need to have the ball come up initially, but start to run quickly.

If it's uphill to the green, a pitch shot may be best.

Some people who like lob wedges seem to hit mostly pitches and lobs, and don't really use chip shots.

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With my chips, I try tp take the club back low, very little wrists and brush the rough. I like the 9 iron if possible, but for longer chips, say over 50 feet or so, I use a less lofted club because the extra swing with the nine will cause too much spin. I don't use the bounce on my chips. Pitches and flopps only and only when a chip wn't work. I just got my 68 deg wedge with 0 bounce. Going to put that sucker together right nowand play it tomorrow. I can see wonderful things happening.
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Generally you'll find that you tend to hit it higher (due to necessity) on faster greens when you chip and lower on the slower greens. This is just because the ball stops easier when you hit it high, but on a slow green you need to ball to roll out to the pin. It also varies depending on personal preference and what you use to chip with. I use my 60* wedge for just about everything around the green and can make it do anything from the low rolling chip to a high flop shot. It does however mean that I am more likely to go with a chip that has a higher trajectory than someone who prefers to chip with a 9-iron just because a "stock" chip will go higher.

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