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Sunday, August 23, 2015

That "New" Chipping Technique Tiger Used

You probably heard Brandel Chamblee talking about the "new" chipping technique Tiger used at the Wyndham on Saturday... I believe it was at the 16th hole. [CORRECTION: It was 17.] Chamblee said that, although it was new to Tiger, it was a technique that both Dave Stockton and Jim Furyk use. In fact, he recommended finding a video of Furyk chipping.

Guess what? Here's your video request! I believe Jim also demonstrated this on Golf Academy Live but I couldn't find the clip at GC's website, so I pulled this old one from YouTube.

There aren't any great secrets to this method. Essentially, you hold your chipping iron like a putter, set up like you're going to putt, and then use your putting stroke. However, here are the key checkpoints:
  • Hold the iron so its shaft is in line with your forearms.
  • Stand up taller with the ball a bit closer to your feet. As Jim says, you aren't bent over like a normal iron shot; this is like your putting stroke. These first two steps are what "make the magic" with this technique.
  • Use your putting stance, although you may want to put a bit more weight on your lead foot to ensure a downward strike.
  • Place the ball about in the middle of your stance.
  • Make your putting stroke.
Now, the big change this causes from a regular chip is that the heel of the iron is a bit off the ground. That helps the club move through the grass more easily because there's less of the club's sole touching the ground.

The thing you have to watch out for -- and a little practice will teach you how to adjust -- is that the face of the club is now tilted a bit away from you so the ball might not go quite straight toward the hole. That will require a very slight adjustment in the direction the face is pointing. All you'll do is close the face just a bit at setup. It's not much and you'll find how much pretty quickly when you try it.

And that's all there is to it. A lot of players use this method because the club doesn't get caught in the grass so much, which is especially important on grainy grasses like bermuda. You'll be able to pick it up quickly, and then you'll have another option in your short game.

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