Saturday, June 8, 2013

Chipping with Your Knees

Yes, I'm talking about knees again -- this time, in reference to chipping. This is a new piece by teacher Pomp Braswell, who teaches at one of Jim McLean's schools. You'll want to check out this brief article at golftipsmag.com. This photo is from that article.

Staying low when chipping

Essentially, this article focuses on the importance of keeping your knees flexed when you chip. If you have trouble hitting your chips consistently, you need to make sure you're keeping your knee flex consistent throughout the stroke.

I write a lot about knee flex because it's one of those things that everybody seems to know about, yet to which nobody gives much serious attention. Knee flex is important in every swing you make, not just when you chip. You need to keep a consistent level during your swing if you want to make solid contact, and that means keeping your knee flex consistent throughout the swing.

There may be a few of you who drop too much when you start down, but the vast majority of you straighten your knees. Maybe you're trying to help the ball up; maybe you lack some flexibility and just don't turn fully into your finish; maybe you're just swinging too hard. But whatever the reason, if you straighten your knees during your stroke, you'll probably mis-hit the ball.

And while I shouldn't have to say this, I will: If your playing partners or you yourself end up saying, "You're lifting your head. You need to keep your head down," then you are straightening your knees during your downswing. It's a rare bird indeed who straightens his back without straightening his knees.

Let me repeat myself: If you think you're lifting your head or otherwise losing your posture during your swing, check your knee flex. It's a fairly simple problem to fix, and I can give you links to two posts on this very blog to help you. Here's the "basketball drill" and here's the "rolling ankle drill." Between the two of them, you'll learn to stay level during your chipping... and your whole swing.

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