Short Chipping Tips: How To Choose The Right Club

PGA professional Katie Dawkins shares some chipping tips that will help golfers choose the right club more often

Short chipping tips

When faced with a short shot onto the green so many players hit what they deem appropriate for a tour professional. The need to make it look good seems to win over the need to get it close. In the video and article below, PGA pro Katie Dawkins shares some chipping tips that will help golfers choose the right shot to hit around the greens...

Choosing to hit the floaty greenside shot carries a big chunk of risk with it and this can often be detrimental to your score. If this sounds like something you do, maybe it's time to think about your shot and club selection in a slightly different way.

Short chipping tips: Playing it safe

Approach these shots as you would if you were challenged to throw a ball close to the hole. If there is nothing in the way how would we get it there? Most would opt for the route that stays low, keeping the ball closer to the ground, as this approach is far safer than one which involves lobbing it up and down from height.

Short chipping tips

When faced with a shot like this, it makes far more sense to choose a shot that keeps the ball low to the ground

However, some of us are seduced by what we see the likes of Phil Mickelson and Jordan Spieth doing on a regular basis that we forget our main objective: getting the ball in the hole.

Attempting to play the flashy shot means taking a longer swing and therefore a bigger risk. Pull it off and it looks brilliant; get it wrong and catch the ball near the equator and you could end up in far more trouble than you started.

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Alternatively, chipping with a positive putting action will, more often than not, leave your ball somewhere close to the hole with a realistic chance to make the up-and-down.

Short chipping tips: Visualise the shot

Have a really good look at where you are. If there is a bunker in the way, yes, you will need that loft. In extreme cases, you may even be forced to hit a flop shot in order for the ball to pop up and stop quickly on landing.

But if there is no trouble in front of you, then there is no need to go for that more lofted weapon. Arm yourself with a 7- or 8-iron and opt for the chip-and-run shot instead.

Short chipping tips

In this scenario, a little more loft is probably required but you don't need to take on the Hollywood shot

Routine can also play a great part in getting the shot selection right. When you get to your ball pause for a moment and visualise yourself throwing the ball close to the hole. Once you have that image in your head select the club that will best recreate what you had imagined. You can even do this before you get to your ball.

Let’s get a bit more instinctive when it comes to shot selection. Your scores will thank you for it.

Katie Dawkins
Advanced PGA Professional and freelance contributor

Katie is an Advanced PGA professional with over 20 years of coaching experience. She helps golfers of every age and ability to be the best versions of themselves. In January 2022 she was named as one of Golf Monthly's Top 50 Coaches.

Katie coaches the individual and uses her vast experience in technique, psychology and golf fitness to fix problems in a logical manner that is effective - she makes golf simple. Katie is now based at the stunning Hamptworth Golf Club on the edge of the New Forest. An experienced club coach, she developed GardenGOLF during lockdown and as well as coaching at Hamptworth she freelances, operating via pop-up clinics and travelling to clients homes to help them use their space to improve. 

She has coached tour pros on both LET tour and the Challenge Tour as well as introduced many a beginner to the game. 

Katie has been writing instructional content for magazines for 20 years. Her creative approach to writing is fuelled by her sideline as an artist.