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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Butch Harmon on Chipping

With all the critiques of Tiger's chipping and pitching problems, I decided to just post a short instructional video from Butch Harmon. (Claude Harmon III is also in it.) This one is about how to hit a low spinning chip shot.

I'm not going to say a lot about this video because it's pretty self-explanatory. This one demonstrates that "hinge and hold" technique that Phil talks about all the time, but I think Butch makes it much simpler.

Okay, you twisted my arm. Let me point out two quick things:
  • Butch doesn't want you to exaggerate the "hold" in the followthrough. Note that the club shaft and lead arm form a fairly straight line when they stop. This will help you keep from digging so much with the leading edge of the wedge and also help you use the bounce a bit more. Butch's student isn't taking divots; he's just roughing up the grass a little.
  • Near the end of the video Butch tells his student to slow his stroke a little. Note also that Butch says this technique is from Jose Maria Olazabal, and that you just want to "put your hands ahead of the ball." The idea is that you don't have to swing hard to get the chip up in the air with enough spin to take a hop and stop.
When you try this shot, just try to stay loose and don't stiffen your arms anymore than you have to during the stroke. A soft grip will give you better feel for the distance, and that means better results.

The best thing about this technique is that it will give you a shallower approach into the ball, not the "too steep" approach that Tiger's struggling with right now.


  1. Are you still aloud to sat Attaboy.

    Here I the UK you would be locked up for it.

    What is cool about Butch video's is the guy handing him the club

  2. Should have said that this is similar to the technique James Ridyad is teaching.

    I heard James is getting a growing reputation on the tour as a short game coach.

  3. I hadn't heard of James Ridyard -- I had to look him up.

    For those of you who are interested, he has a YouTube channel under his name that has a number of videos on different golf shots.