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Need help on Approach Shots

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,
Lately on the course I would smash a drive only to mis hit my approach. I've been struggling most with 100 yards in... I find myself gauging distance wrong or hitting it fat/thin ect. This type of shot used to be my strength and now it is costing me a lot of strokes. Anyways, any advice or drills to work on this would be appreciated.
Thanks
post #2 of 28
On my approach shots I swing super easy and slow. When I tend to go fast I mishit and flip hitting it fat, thin, etc. So maybe think slow and easy and try not to get excited and amped up.
post #3 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by mchichioco View Post

Hello everyone,
Lately on the course I would smash a drive only to mis hit my approach. I've been struggling most with 100 yards in... I find myself gauging distance wrong or hitting it fat/thin ect. This type of shot used to be my strength and now it is costing me a lot of strokes. Anyways, any advice or drills to work on this would be appreciated.
Thanks


It could be you are trying to finesse your shots.

Approach shots still require an aggressive play, even with shorter swings.

 

Drills - Hits shots to the 100 yrd flag or marker at your practice facility.

 

Start with a Sand Wedge, then Gap, then Pitch, then 9 iron.

The key is distance control and target.

You should soon get the feel back for the amount of spin and contact with the different clubs.

You can also practice a short punch and pitch shot with these clubs as well.

 

You will be back throwing darts at the pins in no time.

 

Club Rat

post #4 of 28

Remember you have to cover the ball with these shots, always trap the ball against the ground to get optimum spin and control. Remember left wrist bow a impact and try to imagine your right hand pointing down through impact  as well. Take a lesson or take a video and post it for Mike or Erik to take a look, bottom line is until you start hitting irons crisp fairly often it's almost impossible to get confidence.

post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by flopster View Post
 

Remember you have to cover the ball with these shots, always trap the ball against the ground to get optimum spin and control.

 

Pedantic notice: that doesn't actually happen.

post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flopster View Post
 

Remember you have to cover the ball with these shots, always trap the ball against the ground to get optimum spin and control.

 

Pedantic notice: that doesn't actually happen.

...@iacas, I watched this video a few weeks ago and it has been bothering me. Starting at the 0:10 mark when he is talking about compressing...is this correct???

 

post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

Pedantic notice: that doesn't actually happen.


Well okay, but that's what I'm thinking, and what does pedantic mean?

post #8 of 28

So, two things:

  • A golf ball does not appreciably "compress" (as in "get denser") when it squishes against a clubface. It deforms.
  • A golf ball struck below the equator (i.e. a normal, properly struck golf shot) immediately begins going UP. It does not "compress" or "get trapped" against the ground in any way, shape, or form.

 

synonyms of pedantic: over scrupulous, scrupulous, precise, exact, perfectionist, punctilious,meticulous, fussy, fastidious, finicky;

post #9 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

So, two things:

  • A golf ball does not appreciably "compress" (as in "get denser") when it squishes against a clubface. It deforms.
  • A golf ball struck below the equator (i.e. a normal, properly struck golf shot) immediately begins going UP. It does not "compress" or "get trapped" against the ground in any way, shape, or form.

 

synonyms of pedantic: over scrupulous, scrupulous, precise, exact, perfectionist, punctilious,meticulous, fussy, fastidious, finicky;

I think it's safer for me to be a stupid monkey.

post #10 of 28

Thanks...so it doesn't "squish into the ground, roll up the club face and then TAKE OFF!" like the homeboy in the video says? lol

 

Sorry to hijack your thread @mchichioco . . . sounds like you got the yips from 100 in. Having gone through that a few times in the last year, what really worked for me was just to focus on keeping my head and posture still, and abbreviate my backswing. As always, just my $.02. 

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by BENtSwing32 View Post
 

Thanks...so it doesn't "squish into the ground, roll up the club face and then TAKE OFF!" like the homeboy in the video says? lol

That always makes me laugh.

post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by BENtSwing32 View Post
 

Thanks...so it doesn't "squish into the ground, roll up the club face and then TAKE OFF!" like the homeboy in the video says? lol

 

 

The "ROLL UP THE FACE"  part was a WUUT? Trapping is a term I have heard often though to make students understand they need to hit the ball first with a downward strike, I should have left the ground part out.

post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thank you guys for all the helpful advice so far...
Also I should mention that my most common mis hit with these shots are usually fat ones. They aren't super fat where they go like 10 yards, but it It causes me to lose distance and land short of the target where sand bunkers are usually placed
post #14 of 28

So, let's analyze WHY the poor play near the green.  Could be 1) poor technique, eg flipping the club head. Or 2) poor skill eg, lifting the head or moving the arms first or 3) lack of confidence or of course, all the above.  Many guys here ask about which technique to use when chipping and lots of responses indicate that there is no single technique which is superior. So choose one and then hone your skill on that technique because when you are near the green you do NOT want to be asking yourself, 'what should i do here'. You must have a chosen plan and a reasonable skill level for that technique. When the skill level gets good and the results show that you are improving then you feel more and more confident which also helps immensely. But the confidence can only arise when the results show you that you are successful. No teacher can tell  you that you have confidence.  

post #15 of 28

A few thoughts from a hack:

 

1. Since getting a Bushnell range finder, I'm shocked at how inaccurately I gauged yardage compared to the Bushnell laser device.  It's a big confidence booster having the correct distance to flag.

 

2. Having more tools.  I try to keep those shots at 120 - 80 yard range.  I now have clubs that when swung full on are perfect for those yardages.  9, PW, AW, 54 and 58* wedges from 110 to 75 yards.  Another confidence booster--I don't have to 'take something off' a PW to make it go 80 yards.

 

3. Swing back slowly and accelerate the club head through the hitting area.  It's a short shot so it's easy for your mind to tell you to slow down at the wrong time ... which is exactly the time we should accelerate through the hitting area.

 

4.  There always seems to be more trouble short of the green, (traps, rough, other bad stuff) than beyond the stick.  Make sure to take enough club and get it to the hole.  Swing with confidence.

 

My league partner does the same thing.  Drives it 270 then beefs a short iron to the green.  Each time, I can see him slowing the club down on the way through the shot.  Big ole alligator of turf comes out.  Ball goes about 30 yards.  Not the result any of us look for in this situation.

 

dave

post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by dave s View Post
 

My league partner does the same thing.  Drives it 270 then beefs a short iron to the green.  Each time, I can see him slowing the club down on the way through the shot.  Big ole alligator of turf comes out.  Ball goes about 30 yards.  Not the result any of us look for in this situation.

 

It's really easy to think in your mind "this shot is a lot shorter, so I need to swing easier". But in reality, being aggressive on short irons and wedges might be even more important than on the driver. To the OP, make sure you're accelerating into the ball, even on a 80 % or 90% shot. Just shorten the back swing and accelerate just like you would on a full shot.

 

As far as gauging distances, this comes from a lot of practice. Spend a lot of time on the range, and when on the course, analyze how far you're hitting solid shots. If you know that your distance to the pin is 100, and you hit a solid shot that flies 90 yards, you can use that information when determining how far you hit each club. 

post #17 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by geauxforbroke View Post
 

 

It's really easy to think in your mind "this shot is a lot shorter, so I need to swing easier". But in reality, being aggressive on short irons and wedges might be even more important than on the driver. To the OP, make sure you're accelerating into the ball, even on a 80 % or 90% shot. Just shorten the back swing and accelerate just like you would on a full shot.

 

As far as gauging distances, this comes from a lot of practice. Spend a lot of time on the range, and when on the course, analyze how far you're hitting solid shots. If you know that your distance to the pin is 100, and you hit a solid shot that flies 90 yards, you can use that information when determining how far you hit each club. 


A pretty good golfer told me when I first started playing "The closer to the green you get the more aggressive you need to be. Most golfers play just the opposite of that. They are aggressive off of the tee and get more and more tentative with each shot after that."

 

At the time it really didn't sink in because I couldn't understand how I could be "more aggressive" with most short game shots. Eventually it dawned on me that I could be aggressive even with the most simple running chip. It's more of a mindset to accelerate through the ball with confidence than the actual club head speed through the ball,

post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post
 

A pretty good golfer told me when I first started playing "The closer to the green you get the more aggressive you need to be. Most golfers play just the opposite of that. They are aggressive off of the tee and get more and more tentative with each shot after that."

 

At the time it really didn't sink in because I couldn't understand how I could be "more aggressive" with most short game shots. Eventually it dawned on me that I could be aggressive even with the most simple running chip. It's more of a mindset to accelerate through the ball with confidence than the actual club head speed through the ball,

 

My point exactly. Well said.

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