Chris Stroud - Chipping With 8 Iron

Chris Stroud explains how he will select his 8 iron to hit the chip when possible. It's an easier club to hit more solid which allows for greater consistency.


Let's face it. Some people have favorite clubs. And they like to chip with less loft. They feel like they can have more solid contact. They're afraid of the loft. So is there anything super-new here?

You know, I think--

Some of the best shots I've ever seen hit in my life, i by people that control the ball on the ground.

You know, there's no question. You know, I've been fortunate enough to play St Andrews a few times, and you've got to use these kind of shots. If you play a golf course, like St Andrews, that has a lot of fairway and a lot of room. Maybe you have a 100-foot putt and you're just off the green.

Very tight turf.

Very tight.

So you don't feel that good about going big loft, sometimes.

That's right. It's hard to get on a very, very tight turf, a 60 degree, and hit it 42 yards, and have confidence you can make that good contact. So it's easier to pull out an 8 or a 7 iron, and then just run it.

Is that because the face is up closer and it just--

Exactly. You have less loft. You're going to have an easier time hitting it solid. And the hardest clubs in our bag to hit are wedges. And a lot of people may not know that.

But, I mean, that's why 75% of my practice is with the wedges. Because to make really good contact with a 60 degree is very difficult compared to really good contact with a 7 iron. So for me, again, start out with visualization.

It's an 8 iron. I don't know if I can even land this on the green and stop it short of the pin. So what I'm going to do, I'm going to hit, kind of, a bump and run shot. And I see it, kind of, landing six or eight feet short of the green, hit the upslope, bounce up, and then skip and roll to the pin.

And we're talking about visualization here, primarily, pre-shot for you. And, to me, that's the fun part about playing golf is actually saying, here's what I think I can do with this, and I'm going to pull it off. That's what is golf to me.

I agree.

But you've got to, you know, you've got to have some tools, right? You gotta know how to do it.

You gotta have some tools. I think that is a big part of what can make golf so fun is using your creativity. Being able to see a shot is one thing, being able to do it is another.

I think a lot of people can actually visualize a shot pretty decently. But being able to pull it off, they may not know how to do it. A really simple thing, again, go back to my same--

That's where you come in.

That's where I come in, I'm helping. I'm going to go, a nice simple setup again. I'm going to go because I want to hit it low and bounce it up. I'm going to go pretty standard on the 8, maybe a little bit forward. I'm going to put it a little bit back on my stance. That way, I hit down on it, and it comes out nice and low.

I'm not worried about spin. I'm not trying to add loft or speed. Put it back in my stance, grip hands in front. And, again, I'm not adding or subtracting loft or using a lot of hands.

Still going to use my body. And at the end of the day, I'm just trying to catch this solid, really, really solid. Let the club do the work.

Came out pretty good, didn't it?

Came out really nice. Go in.

Out of all those balls we hit--

That was the closest one.

I know. I the closest.