You have just whacked the longest drive in your foursome (a good 20 yards further than all your buddies), they are all envious. You are right in front of the green maybe 50 yards away. Uh oh…that’s right you are in that feared ‘tight lie’ zone. The place where you have chunked it only advancing the ball 3 ft so many times before, or worse, skulled it sending it skipping over the green and onto the next hole.
The problem is you are two close for a full swing pitch shot and too far away for an easy little chip. You have to make a solid and accurate ¼ swing shot, not to mention you have to get it over that bunker. Your biggest goals are to get the ball up in the air first, and second get it close to the pin. Your divot should always be in front of the ball on this shot (remember you always want to make contact with the ball first).
It is so painful to make bogie (or worse) when you know you should have been putting for birdie.
Follow these simple steps and those days will be long gone.
Oh yeah, and it will wipe that grin off your buddies face.
1. Stance: you should take a slightly open stance for this shot, this will make sure you get the ball up in the air.
2. Line up with the ball positioned towards the back of your stance so that the shaft is leaning forward. This will keep your hands ahead of the ball (this will ensure you hit the ball first, not the ground).
3. You want to focus on the front of the ball not the back, while you take your club back and then pop the ball up for that perfect shot.
Oh and one more tip. If you are right in front the green with no sand traps in the way, and the grass is short you can always try a little bump and run with a 7 or 8 iron. You will want to position the ball back in your stance for this one too. This can be a great alternative because for many players they can hit the bump and run way more consistently.
And before I forget, practice these shots on the range! Imagine these scenarios while your practice and perfect these specialty shots on the range not on the course.
For Better Golf,
Head Golf Nut, OHP