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seanfitzg

Chipping. Mickelson/Utley versus Leadbetter/Pelz

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First time post, from a long time lurker.  I think this is an ongoing debate on this forum.

I believe I have a fairly solid golf swing as I've been playing for a long time (see here ), but right now I have an absolutely terrible short game, especially around the greens.

2 years ago I bought Stan Utley's book's short game book to try and improve my sort game, especially my chipping.  I've also watched Mickelson's short game DVD.  Both of these guys promote the hinge & hold method (see also here ).  But I think my short game has become substantially worse by using this technique.  I'm thinning chips, duffing chips, and I no longer have any confidence in making solid ball contact.

After much frustration I decided to watch the chipping section on David Leadbetter's old short game DVD yesterday. I think it's excellent: much simpler, more like putting (with the putting grip) and less margin for error.  In fact, Leadbetter's method was how I used to play a chip, the same thing I learned years ago when I read Dave Pelz's book .  In fact I had much more success back then, so that now I think I have to return to that method.

It made me think - perhaps Leadbetter's/Pelz's chip-putt method is a far easier technique when, like me, you don't have the time to put the hours in around the practice greens.   Mickelson/Utley's method is more for the low handicapper that has the time to get it right, and the confidence to make good contact.

What do you think?

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I think the methods are really for different situations.  Chipping with a a putting method works well for just off the green from the fairway or very light rough. @mvmac posting a video of this technique below.

But there are situations where I will use an Utley style chip too.  These are usually much longer chips where I need to either get some height or a long roll out.  For any situation where I need height, I will use a pitch.

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I like Dave Stockton's advice about keeping it simple and just try for a low shot or high shot I don't like to get to much into mechanics and go knee height and below for "chipping" and chest height and above for "lobbing ". It I try to hit something in between I almost always mess up my shot
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Additionally, this video and thread have done well to help a lot of people learn to pitch:

I would tend to agree that "hinge and hold" is of limited use. Phil doesn't "hinge and hold" on too many shots, if you watch him. It may be his feel for a lot of shots, but feel and reality are often two very different things.

Good luck!

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2 years ago I bought Stan Utley's book's short game book to try and improve my sort game, especially my chipping.  I've also watched Mickelson's short game DVD.  Both of these guys promote the hinge & hold method (see also here).  But I think my short game has become substantially worse by using this technique.  I'm thinning chips, duffing chips, and I no longer have any confidence in making solid ball contact.

What do you think?

Sounds like you are coming in too steep and/or you are too armsy.

Pitching -- think wide coming down (club comes down before club comes forward - more of U contact at the bottom instead of a V contact) so you can use the bounce. Stay connected with the body for good rhythm.


And simply, Chipping should be wrist hinge, not wrist cock. Pitching will have hinge and wrist cock.


Relax.

(I use styles that are a bit of Utley, Phil, and what I've found on TST, depending on what I'm trying to do)

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There's nothing wrong with anyone's teaching of the short game. The problem lies with the the golfer being able to utilize those different teachings.

I liked Pelz's stuff for a while, and then I tried Utley's stuff. They both worked well for me, but I wanted a little more from my chipping game. I found some info from an older golfer (Paul Runyon) which gave me a better understanding of what I was trying to accomplish. I never looked back after reading/practicing his information. Here's a link to one of his videos.

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Thanks guys,

So if you are using the Utly method, does the Chip-Putt ever come into play?  The reason I ask is because Leadbetter appears to suggest that this is the best chipping method (with a putting grip), whereas Utly never mentions it at all.

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Thanks guys,

So if you are using the Utly method, does the Chip-Putt ever come into play?  The reason I ask is because Leadbetter appears to suggest that this is the best chipping method (with a putting grip), whereas Utly never mentions it at all.

I think you've got to find your personal comfort zone.

On a chip not too far off the green, I use a traditional grip, move closer to the ball, set the wedge more up on its toe, weight on front foot, hands even or slightly ahead of ball, and use a wrist hinge with some relaxed rhythm in the swing. It's not a big swing and it may resemble more of a putting motion, if I ever videoed it. lol.

But that's me. You need to find your own zone of consistency.

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Thanks guys,

So if you are using the Utly method, does the Chip-Putt ever come into play?  The reason I ask is because Leadbetter appears to suggest that this is the best chipping method (with a putting grip), whereas Utly never mentions it at all.

I use both.  The chip-putt is used when I am just off the green and need a little carry to get over the fringe.  For longer bump and run type chips, I will use the Utley method.  One thing about the Utley method is I will get the ball to check up because it adds a lot of spin with good contact.

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