intermediate golf

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Perfect pitch shots

Hit down on your green side shots to get up and over any obstacle between you and the hole.

by Glenn Deck, PGAPublished: April, 2012

This is not a difficult shot if you incorporate the following three swing keys: correct set up, bottom of arc and accelerate through the shot. Let’s take a closer look at these fundamentals you should practice to make your pitch shots consistent.

Set up: The ball is in the middle of your stance underneath your nose. If you start leaning back to help get the ball up and get your head behind the ball, you make it difficult to hit down on the ball. If you make a mistake in your set up, lean left so the ball is behind your nose.

Bottom of arc: Your wedges have plenty of loft, so you don’t need to scoop, flip or lift it. Your job is to hit down on the ball so that the bottom of the arc is past the ball, under your left shoulder. Take a few practice swings and make sure you’re cutting/scuffing the grass past your ball. The picture you want in your mind for the bottom of your arc is a forward-leaning “y.” The shaft has a forward lean so it is in line with your left arm, your right hand bent as you hit down.

Accelerate through the shot: You always want a longer follow through than backswing. You want to keep the hips turning through the shot and hands moving forward to avoid them slowing down and creating a flip of the club head at the bottom of the swing. So think more of swinging through the ball with hips and hands at the target. If the ball consistently goes too far, simply add more loft, hinge less or shorten your backswing. Make sure you don’t decelerate into the ball to hit it shorter.

With a little practice on the range, these fundamentals will give you more confidence with your pitch shots. The more you can get away from mechanical swing thoughts on the course, the better. Just make sure you cut the grass past the ball and swing through to a nice finish position.


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Readers Feedback:

helpppppppp lol . i used to be a great putter with a low slow baikwscng and at worst 2 putted buttttt i layed the putter down and it snappped at the hozzel . now i cant get the distance evennnn close my reads are excellent but my distance is so horrible . i have shot many rounds in the mid 80s now with 40some putts . i play on small triple cut greens and that 2 foot putt he made woulda sent my ball 20 feet easily . HELP
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