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Quickie Pitching Video - Golf Pitch Shot Technique

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I got a PM from someone today as well (it's a PM so I'm not going to say who) thanking me for this video or this technique.

Thanks, anthony, and the PMer. Glad you found this useful.

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I tried this "soft elbows" pitching technique today for about 30+ minutes. It was gold.

I've never really felt bounce like this previously. What a great feeling when the club head effortlessly glides into and following the striking of the ball. I am writing review of a wedge with 15 of bounce (it had 59 of loft) and was afraid the club head would "bounce" up (because I've heard that so many times on various golf boards). No worries. In fact, the more confident I became, the better the result. High, low. My 55 Wedge had 11 of bounce but I felt more comfy using the higher lofted wedge with 15. Go figure. I'll work with the 55  more - this is a new technique. Thanks again. Gold.

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To be completely honest, I had no idea what the bounce did on a wedge until now. Obviously, I was aware of it, but I didn't really know what it did or how to use it properly. I played everything back in my stance with the club handle well forward (and chunked a lot a pitches). Mostly, because sliding into the ball is a bad idea on full swings and I thought this applied to pitches as well. Now I'm aware that is incorrect and I was using my wedges with negative bounce.

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Erik,

What would you suggest for a higher handicapper to get started with this.  Currently I have the club handle forward and use a putting stroke, which works ok most of the time. My buddy, who is a lower handicap, has mentioned bounce before and I just can't seem to get the feel. I have the ball a bit forward, slow take away, hing the right wrist, but here is where it gets inconsistent. When I start the downswing, I try to get the feeling of gravity pulling the club down (float loady) with brush stroke feeling, but the club always chunks the grass\dirt well behind the ball.

TL;DR - What can you recommend to higher handicaps to practice this move and get a proper feel?

Thanks!

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Originally Posted by Th3R00st3r

Erik,

What would you suggest for a higher handicapper to get started with this.  Currently I have the club handle forward and use a putting stroke, which works ok most of the time. My buddy, who is a lower handicap, has mentioned bounce before and I just can't seem to get the feel. I have the ball a bit forward, slow take away, hing the right wrist, but here is where it gets inconsistent. When I start the downswing, I try to get the feeling of gravity pulling the club down (float loady) with brush stroke feeling, but the club always chunks the grass\dirt well behind the ball.

TL;DR - What can you recommend to higher handicaps to practice this move and get a proper feel?

Thanks!


I'll jump in and Erik can add anything I leave out.  I'd suggest a similar motion to what Erik and Dave are demonstrating in the video.  To start engaging the bounce your motion has to change.  Instead of hinging the right wrist I would suggest feeling more rotation of the forearms on the takeaway, feeling like the clubhead gets under plane.  That's how we swing the club head but the hands stay close to the body.  This will allow you to then "thump" the ground with the bounce of the club.  To me I feel it by rotating my left forearm so the toe is up, like Dave below left pic, but have some dorsiflexion (cupping) in my left wrist.

Pitching pic.jpg

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Originally Posted by mvmac

I'll jump in and Erik can add anything I leave out.  I'd suggest a similar motion to what Erik and Dave are demonstrating in the video.  To start engaging the bounce your motion has to change.  Instead of hinging the right wrist I would suggest feeling more rotation of the forearms on the takeaway, feeling like the clubhead gets under plane.  That's how we swing the club head but the hands stay close to the body.  This will allow you to then "thump" the ground with the bounce of the club.  To me I feel it by rotating my left forearm so the toe is up, like Dave below left pic, but have some dorsiflexion (cupping) in my left wrist.


Thanks for the visual and explanation Mike. Between posts, I went to the range at lunch. I did nothing but practice this move. I was about10 yds out from the green and the pin was about 10 yds from there. When I said "hinge the wrist" I meant as the forearm rotated.  I kept the ball closer, about 10-14 in. just in front of the middle of the stance. Front foot slightly open. Took the club back, rotating the forearm and hinging the right wrist bringing the clb back to about 8:30-9 o'clock. I would then turn through allowing the club to drop. I focused on my hands moving on a small arc just in front of my thigh. This allowed me to control the club head better, for me anyway. The club would hit just behind the ball and because I was turning through, it "slid" under the ball popping it up. Now since I am just trying this out and trying to get a feel for distance, some were left, right, and a little long, but would bounce before the hole. Also, depending on the lie, I would obviously get different results. On a deadpan lie, it's a lot harder to do. So I will need to practice this more to get the feel for alignment and distance.

Thank you very much for the videos and explanations. Again, if there are any drills one can do to get a better feel for this, please post. This thread helped a lot!

**Edit**

I was using a 56 14° bounce and a 60 10° bounce trying different shots.

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One other thing: weight 80/20 on the front foot. If not the club will tend to bottom out prematurely.

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Say I am 30 yards out. I want to bring it in low. With this method, which is recommended, hands forward with a SW, or a normal setup with a 9 or PW?

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i havent seen the video but the still frames seem to describe it well,.....

Im relatively consistent with my pitching, i will try this method to see if i can further that, and ill report back accordingly,...

but my question is how it could translate to chipping? i mean, put me 10+ yardas out and i can confidently pitch the ball and i can choose between a low running shot and fly it to the flag shot,...just by changing club selection

but put me within ten yards of the green on a tight/semi rough lie,.....and i blade almost every "chip" wether im using a pw to bump and run or a 60deg to fly it flag high, its jsut blade blade blade,...

i use the "putter" method,....so back and straight through like a putt, trying to keep the wrists out of it

from all the replies to this on how its helped people, im wondering if i can translate it into my short game?

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Say I am 30 yards out. I want to bring it in low. With this method, which is recommended, hands forward with a SW, or a normal setup with a 9 or PW?

Depends what kind of shot you are going to hit and which club you feel more comfortable with. The SW will give more spin, given the same launch angle and ball flight. Bounce may also affect how each shot is played. If I'm in a situation like that, I'll hit a PW if I want it to roll out, SW if I need to carry more and stop it faster.

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Originally Posted by nevets88

Say I am 30 yards out. I want to bring it in low. With this method, which is recommended, hands forward with a SW, or a normal setup with a 9 or PW?

Zeph answered it pretty well. Depending on your AoA and speed you can hit some really low shots with a sand wedge that have a LOT of spin. You might be asking about a shot that's a bit closer to a chip - a bit less bounce, a little more leading edge, a bit less spin. You could play that with a SW or a 9I (or a PW), again depending on your definition of "low," the ground conditions, etc.

This is, as you know, a simple, basic pitch. In reality, though I use pitching mechanics 95% of the time from around the greens, they're all blends. Handle slightly forward, gripped slightly down, ball position slightly different, clubface slightly open or not (rarely closed), amount of thrust from the pivot vs. the hands, etc. It all varies slightly from shot to shot.

Originally Posted by carpediem4300

i use the "putter" method,....so back and straight through like a putt, trying to keep the wrists out of it

FWIW, almost nobody actually chips that way except the really simple and very short chips.

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Zeph answered it pretty well. Depending on your AoA and speed you can hit some really low shots with a sand wedge that have a LOT of spin. You might be asking about a shot that's a bit closer to a chip - a bit less bounce, a little more leading edge, a bit less spin. You could play that with a SW or a 9I (or a PW), again depending on your definition of "low," the ground conditions, etc. This is, as you know, a simple, basic pitch. In reality, though I use pitching mechanics 95% of the time from around the greens, they're all blends. Handle slightly forward, gripped slightly down, ball position slightly different, clubface slightly open or not (rarely closed), amount of thrust from the pivot vs. the hands, etc. It all varies slightly from shot to shot. FWIW, almost nobody actually chips that way except the really simple and very short chips.

Nice tto know im doing it wrong haha Spent a good hour chippping today trying to use the bounce and float loading,...almost felt like i was wiping the ground with the club Chipped rather well :) just gotta learn distance control with it now

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Originally Posted by iacas

Zeph answered it pretty well. Depending on your AoA and speed you can hit some really low shots with a sand wedge that have a LOT of spin. You might be asking about a shot that's a bit closer to a chip - a bit less bounce, a little more leading edge, a bit less spin. You could play that with a SW or a 9I (or a PW), again depending on your definition of "low," the ground conditions, etc.

This is, as you know, a simple, basic pitch. In reality, though I use pitching mechanics 95% of the time from around the greens, they're all blends. Handle slightly forward, gripped slightly down, ball position slightly different, clubface slightly open or not (rarely closed), amount of thrust from the pivot vs. the hands, etc. It all varies slightly from shot to shot.

When I try to hit a SW low, ie never higher than me, my hands are an inch or two ahead of my leading thigh. Is that okay? It feels unnatural.

Originally Posted by Zeph

Depends what kind of shot you are going to hit and which club you feel more comfortable with. The SW will give more spin, given the same launch angle and ball flight. Bounce may also affect how each shot is played.

If I'm in a situation like that, I'll hit a PW if I want it to roll out, SW if I need to carry more and stop it faster.

One reason I use the SW more is if I hit it thin, it actually comes out pretty decent.

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Im not a fan of hinge and hold..

I have been looking for a pitching and chipping technique for a while now, and this looks promising for me.. Thanks for the vid

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This video is awesome. I took this to the range today and it worked for me very well. I will definitely continue this technique. Thanks for the info!

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For the 50-yd pitch, I like to cock wrists early with a short backswing and full follow thru...

The key is acceleration... decelerating is almost always a bad idea for pitches.

Good video.

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Great thread!  Thanks Eric for the videos & still pics.  I've been looking for something like this that shows Utley's bunker technique.  Can you use this technique out of the sand?

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Originally Posted by Grins

Great thread!  Thanks Eric for the videos & still pics.  I've been looking for something like this that shows Utley's bunker technique.  Can you use this technique out of the sand?

Absolutely. Just make sure the ball is a bit more forward (so you hit it fat slightly) and the weight is forward too (just not so far forward that you catch the ball first).

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