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Thursday, October 10, 2013

VIDEO: New-School Pitching

I found this little video on chipping/pitching over at (You can use this link in case the video below won't run.) In it, instructor Brady Riggs is teaching a "new" pitching method with a 52-degree wedge that replaces the "old" chipping method with a lob wedge most of us have been taught.

It sounds somewhat like the "putt with a 7/8/9-iron" method I've recommended in past posts but, since it uses a wedge, this version teaches you how to use the bounce of the club. That's definitely something you want to learn!

Why does he call this a pitch instead of a chip? It's because (1) this method uses more wrist action than we generally associate with a chip, (2) the ball is airborne longer than with most chips, and (3) you aren't hitting down on the ball quite as much, which eliminates some of the "chunking" that can happen when the front edge of the wedge digs into the ground.

He accomplishes this by leaning the club shaft toward the target less than with a traditional chip. (If you've been using my tip of setting up so the ball is under your hands, you're already doing this.) Then he allows the head of the club to pass his hands after he hits the ball. (Not all that unlike my suggestion that this stroke feels something like a putting motion. His action in the video certainly reminds me of a long putting stroke.)

Note that he's using this method off shorter grass; both his method and my method work well there. But if you find yourself in deeper grass, go to a sand wedge with more bounce and use Brady's method. You'll get something more like a short sand shot that way, which is much more effective from thicker lies.