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Golf Chipping Tip - Using More Than Just Your Pitching Wedge

Nothing beats having the perfect setup shot to use your pitching wedge to chip onto the green. Maybe you're 20 or 30 yards out and the pin is playing in the middle or back of the green. With a comfortable swing you can get a nice medium-high arc, hit the front of the green, and watch the ball bounce and roll within a few feet of the cup...

The above is not a common shot when approaching the green. Most golfers find themselves farther away, or with an advantegeous lie, or in a bunker, or without a direct line to the green, or any other non-perfect example. In these situations it may be better to look to other clubs than a pitching wedge to hit a more successful chip.

Take, for example, a longer shot, maybe 40 or 50 yards out. A pitching wedge would be too light of a swing, out of the ordinary enough to possibly cause doubt. Even a lobb wedge, which is even more crucial to hit with more of a powerful swing, would probably result in chunking or a less than desirable shot. One solution is to use an eight iron. This would allow a more comfortable swing, more distance in the air, but with the same relative arc as if you hit a pitching wedge with the same force.

Now consider the extreme opposite, a ball maybe 5 feet or so off the fringe of the green. A wedge shot would have to be hit with just the perfect strength; enough to get it off the ground, but not so much it stays in the air for an extended period of time and doesn't have the chance to start "rolling with green". There is no reason a wood shouldn't be considered here. Hitting a 5 wood with a nice easy "putting" swing will lift the ball up off the ground just enough to clear the lip of the green, but will keep it low enough so that it naturally rolls with the contour of the green after it makes contact.

Every single approach shot to the green in golf is different. If you find yourself within 75 yards or so, consider a different club and a different approach than the standard pitching wedge shot. Think about how the ball will behave once it makes contact with the green.

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