Guest Author - Letta Meinen
Everyone is always looking for suggestion and tips for their short game. Many strokes are lost from bad approaches to the green. It is when should I chip or when to pitch the ball to get a good shot to the green and close to the pin. In this monthís Golf Digest Luke Donald has several pages of instructions and suggestions to get up and down in fewer strokes.
He begins with suggestions of how to get out of the rough in chipping to the green. It shows here do and doníts in form on how to hit a great shot. In the ďdoĒ shot he emphasizes the stance being slightly back and making good contact with the ball in a downward strike. By leaning the shaft toward the target and accelerate toward the pin. This is a crisp shot not much follow through so finish low as the ball will jump off the face of the club to the target line.
In the donít sample it shows that taking too long a back swing you will over accelerate through the ball. This can often lead to all sorts of problems like a fat shot or a scuffed shot and neither will get you were you want to be.
The next page are the shot you want if you are 20-30 yards away from the green. This pitching shot means you will hinge the club up and unhinge on the down stroke. Move the ball slightly forward in your stance and let the arms swing the body through the shot. The momentum of the club will pull the body forward in the finish do not let the body control the shot.
To get loft onto your shots he suggests you use an open face with a longer swing. You should be leaning back and move the ball up off your left foot. His thoughts are to make a longer lazier motion on the back stroke and swing through to the follow through. Tips on adding back spin which he explains come from a crisp downward strike of the ball. The club should skid not dig into the turf at impact.
Luke also adds suggestions on putting do and donít which may help cut more strokes from your score. He suggests for players to feel the stroke with your arms and shoulders, he calls it a rocking motion. He adds a little pop at impact as he says that is the theme for him in the short game but not to accelerate through the shot. Making sure it is an arm stroke and keeping the head still will improve your putting score. Luke Donald became number one in the World Golf Ranking this past May and through July he was top 10 in 16 short-game and putting stats. It should be worth your while to practice some of these short game tips.