By Neil Tappin
In this 5 Biggest Short Game Mistakes video, Neil Tappin is joined by Golf Monthly Top 25 Coach Clive Tucker to look at some of the most common mistakes players make
Watch 5 Biggest Short Game Mistakes Video
Striking short, delicate chip and bunker shots consistently well is one of the great challenges posed by the game. For a lot of players, simple mistakes creep in and wreck your confidence. Here are Clive Tucker's 5 Biggest Short Game Mistakes and how to cure them!
5 Too Steep
The fault here stems from the ball being too far back at address and this means the handle is ahead of the ball through impact. This takes bounce off the club and as such, it will be prone to digging through impact. To help, make sure the ball is set under your sternum at address and keep your wrists 'passive' through the stroke. Rely on the rotation of your body to create the momentum (not the hinging of your wrists) and you should be able to create a shallower angle of attack.
4 Not Releasing
As we have already mentioned, your wrists create speed and that's why they should remain passive. It is ok to have a small amount of 'give' or 'hinge' in the wrists on the way back but remember this needs to be undone before you reach impact. This is key. If your wrists hinge a little on the way back, this angle needs to be released to ensure you find a shallow angle of attack and you deliver the bounce of the wedge in the right way.
3 High Or Low
Golfers can sometimes get confused between the two different techniques that deliver high and low flighted chip shots. You need to avoid hinging your wrists on the way back (as you would for a higher flighted shot) and then holding onto that angle through impact as this will often create fat strikes. Likewise, we see golfers taking the club back on a wide arc without much wrist hinge for a lower shot and then effectively their wrists collapse through impact and they flick the club at the ball. The simple rule is as follows: for lower shots make a wider, shallower swing arc with less hinge, for a higher shot the swing arc is narrower and there is more wrist hinge back and through.
WATCH: Why Do I Pull Iron Shots?
2 One Dimensional
Amateurs often get rather one dimensional around the greens - using the same club for every shot they hit. You have a whole bag of clubs that can be really helpful in different positions. A good practice game is to take 6 different clubs and hit 6 shots to the same flag, one with each club. Repeat this from numerous positions around the greens. This is a great way to develop the feel and versatility you need to improve your short game.
1 Bunker Strikes
You should aim to strike the sand about 3 inches before the ball. Most golfers understand the concept here but struggle for consistency. To help, draw a line in the sand, from your lead heel to the ball as shown. Place one ball at the top of the line and practice making swings so your splash mark starts just before the back edge of the line. Make swings, moving up the line and then try to replicate the same splash as you hit the ball. This is a great way to train the consistency you need.
Early Black Friday Deals
Callaway Rogue X 7PC Iron Set
$789.99 $599.99 at Worldwide Golf Shops
Coming in 5-PW + AW and in either regular or stiff, the Rogue X irons are a great option for a higher handicapper looking to increase distance with irons. They offer great forgiveness too.
Mizuno JPX 919 Hot Metal Irons
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Get that great Mizuno feel along with added distance and forgiveness with the JPX 919 Hot Metals. At under $550, this is a great deal. You’ll get six irons 5-PW in stiff or regular steel shafts. They’re also 0.5″ longer than standard.
Cobra King F8 Golf Hybrid & Iron Combo Set
$999 $642.86 at Walmart
Perfect for a higher handicapper, beginner or improving golfer, this King F8 set from Cobra features a 5 hybrid and irons from 6-GW with regular flex graphite shafts. The hybrid features Baffler Rail technology and the irons are forgiving and long-hitting.
Cobra King F9 Speedback Graphite Irons
£690 £479 at Jam Golf
If you’re a higher handicapper needing an upgrade in the iron department, these F9 Speedback irons will be a welcome addition. They come with Fujikura Atmos 6 graphite shafts in 6-SW.
Cobra XL Speed Irons PLUS free J Lindeberg umbrella
£499 £329 at Scottsdale Golf
Save yourself £170 on this Cobra XL Speed set from 5-SW with Dynamic Gold steel shafts. The clubs are forgiving and long-hitting to help out higher handicappers and beginner golfers. You’ll also get a free J Lindeberg umbrella worth £49.99.
Vega VU-04 Hybrid
£249.99 £119.99 at Scottsdale Golf
Not aware of Vega? It’s a premium Japanese brand that is famous for its beautiful forged irons. This VU-04 hybrid from the company comes in 16 degrees of loft in stiff flex and is £130 below the RRP.
Honma Future XX Golf Balls
£53 £29.99 at American Golf
12 premium golf balls for less then £30? That sounds like a pretty good deal to us, especially given these Future XX’s have a 6-layer construction and advanced aerodynamics to deliver more performance
TaylorMade Pix Golf Balls
£49.99 £39.99 at American Golf
Rickie Fowler worked with TaylorMade to create this golf ball which has something called ClearPath Alignment – 12 pixellated, triangle-shaped graphics that are strategically placed to provide immediate feedback as to how the ball is rolling.
For all the latest golf news, check the Golf Monthly website and follow our social media channels @golfmonthlymagazine on Facebook and @golfmonthly on Twitter and Instagram
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