Tour Quality Short Game

Featured Length Instructional Video: Steve Elkington breaks down all the fundamentals of chipping, pitching, and bunker play - from using various hinges for different spin to utilizing the proper pressure for hitting the right distance.


Transcript

STEVE ELKINGTON: We get so many people that ask us about the short game, and we really need a short game video. So I've learned a lot of short game shots from watching great players like Ballesteros and Bernhard Langer-- all those guys. A lot of guys come to mind-- Trevino-- I've seen a lot of that.

But you know, there's a few principles that you have to have. Principle of pitching, chipping. What is a chip? What is a pitch? What's the difference? What tools do you need? How to play a correctly bunker shot. How to play real advanced chipping-- real advanced bunking game.

If you have a good short game, it has a tendency to compound your large game. Makes it better. You hit the ball better, because you know the short game is good. And you can attack flags that you wouldn't before. So it's all inclusive.

It doesn't really matter what wedge you have. Because the most important thing is the knowing what you have. You know, here's what I have. I have three wedges. I have a 48, a 54, and a 60. But that's not what's important today.

This wedge-- my pitching wedge that goes with my set-- Titleist-- and this wedge has zero bounce. Bounce being a hump in the back. So when I sit on the ground, on this-- if you get down there on-- level, that basically-- that front edge is basically sitting on the ground. OK? That's basically a zero bounce. That's my pitching wedge. Because I've always played that way, and I've always had zero bounce.

Now, this 54-- on the back of it, this is a Vokey-- it says 54 degrees is 10 degrees bounce. So it has more hump in the middle. So when I sit it on the ground, you can see the front edge is higher-- higher off the ground. So when it comes in, it's going to give a little more cushion. We're going to talk a lot about these, what-- why we need to know what we got.

And then this is my 60-- 4 degrees bounce. So it's also very close to the ground. It's a Vokey. So basically, what I've got is I've got a 0, a 4, and a 10. So I've got three different bounce sizes. And we'll learn what all that means when we're out on the course today. But like I said, it doesn't matter what company you're using, necessarily. It's just knowing what bounces you have, so you know what you're looking at, and how to evaluate these lies. OK?

One of the things you can also do is check right off the bat, make sure you can see what's going on, is I'm going to brush this cement right here-- this kind of smooth cement, so it's not going to really rough up the club too much. But find a smooth bit.

[CLACK]

And that, you can see, scratched right in the middle. And what that tells me is a couple of things. It tells me that the club is bent the correct lie angle, because it's caught right in the middle. But more importantly, on this wedge, it's back from center. And that's where the bounce is going to hit on this club. So I'm going to grab my other two.

This is my pitching wedge and my 54. Now, all things being equal, I just have the 4-degree club that hit kind of in the middle. This-- I'm going into the same area. This is my pitching wedge.

[CLICK]

He's also-- he's right in the middle from toe to heel, but he's right there on front edge. And that's important to know. And then my 54, I'm going to hit in the same area.

[CLICK]

And he's also good from toe to heel, but he's further back. And that's also important to know. So like I said, you've got to have-- I like to have three-- it's no good having three wedges the same that hit in the same spot. So let's get three wedges, one that hits on the front, one hits in the middle, and one hits in the back. In my case, I've got zeroed out pitching wedge, I've got a 10-degree 54, and I've got a 4-degree 60. Let's go see how all this plays into it.

The first thing that we're going to do today is we're going to start as close as we can to the green. The first shot that requires a different club, other than the putter. So we're going to start with a chip. What is a chip? OK? What makes a chip? I'm going to put a little line there for my foot. Play a chip.

[CLICK]

So a chip is not breaking of the wrist-- no cocking of the wrist. We don't need that power. It's the smallest shot that you can play is a chip.

[CLICK]

OK? Now, a lot of people have problems with the short game. And the number one principle that we have to address, on every shot, but particularly that we're going to talk about today, is this line of compression. What makes it-- what makes the whole thing work? And I've got this ball position.

And this is where people get confused. They'll see the TV, and the TV will say, the ball position is positioned under my left heel. There's no real squash on a chip. So you don't need to be one inch ahead. So right under the armpit here. This is the radius of our circle. So the TV can be misleading, or whatever way you say that it's off the right foot, right? People say, well--

[CLICK]

--he played that chip right off his right foot. Well, it's not true, because it's an illusion. Because if I cut the right leg off, it's still on my left foot. So the thing that is separates people that can really chip and can't is the nailing of that ball position. So I was just drawing a little line there from my left ankle right on up there.

Now, for this shot, I've got 40 feet of green there. I'm going to put this right foot where I feel like-- I'm going to put this right foot where I feel like this is going to happen. You know? I got the break in mind. And right foot feels good about right there. It doesn't feel good there. It feels good about right there.

[CLICK]

So once I know that that's where I'm going to hit this ball from, then I can start being very relaxed, very creative, knowing that there's no problem about hitting this ball first.

[CLICK]

Hook up that foot. You can kind of see it there, but I'm under there on my left heel. Using this line here as a 90-degree angle for the purpose of being able to see this.

[CLICK]

It will line up with that left end of that board. And line up with that.

[CLICK]

Chipping. So how do you hit it? How do you, how do you-- how do you hit it, a little chip? [INAUDIBLE] So when we hit that chip-- got my line,

[THUD]

[THUD]

I push that-- push that club back--

[THUD]

--with my feet. OK? So I've got to load, gotta load something. Load it.

[THUD]

Holding it right there with my feet. I'm holding that club against that with my feet. And on the way down, when I change directions,

[THUD]

I'm holding against that with my feet. My feet are pushing that way. On this side--

[THUD]

--my feet are pushing that way. So I have a little slight bit of pressure. On the back-swing, my feet press this way, and then they reverse. So that gives me that drag-- that drag feel that I can really tune in on the flag.

[CLICK]

There's a lot more going on here than meets the eye. It looks like a very simple shot. Guy walks up and hits it very close to the flag. You have pressure in my feet pushing that way. You change, push the other way. Push that way.

[CLICK]

It's on plane. On plane chipping there. On the break line there.

[CLICK]

On the plane.

[CLICK]

Unfortunately, you know, the chip and run shot's kind of gone-- it's kind of lost. You know, everybody goes to the wedge now. And they've built all the wedges so they really bite and stop. And that's fine. That's a shot-- a good shot to have, if you know what you're doing. Um, but I think we've got to have more than that. Can't just have one shot with one club.

So the only other option we have here is what hinge we're going to use-- what forefinger feel. We have three options of that.

[THUD]

We have right hand all the way over. It's called a caterpillar-- like, to make it roll.

[CLICK]

It's really good for this length shot, obviously, because it's quite a distance across the green there. Feel pressure-- pressure against my feet. No wrist break.

[CLICK]

Made that one. And that's one option.

Second option would be just more or less a no-roll feel. No roll feel.

[CLICK]

Wouldn't be inclined to take off running very much, even though I hit it hard enough there to get there.

And then the third option would be a reverse roll, or open feel. Cut shot fee. And it's not really applicable here. It would be more applicable if I had a chip to a very small pin.

[CLICK] [CLICK]

Found myself on the down slope here, or coming down. And now I've gone to more of a lofted club, because I'm just showing chipping. No wrist cock. But I'm going to use this feel-- under.

[CLUNK]

[THUD]

[CLUNK]

[THUD]

You can see how that's hit right-- you know, sweet spot, right? Really sweet spot.

So in review, on chipping-- what is chipping? Chipping is we're not going to cock the left wrist. So there's no cocking of the left wrist in chipping. That's why it's called chipping. Left foot has to nail that line right there, put the right foot wherever you want. And we have that-- we'll load that club into the bag, and drag it. OK? And we have three possibilities of hinges. We're going to have the forefinger-- the right forefinger is all the way over-- corkscrew over.

[CLICK]

That's an option. Club face is turned over. We have a no-roll option-- more of a block, right there. You see that a lot.

[CLICK]

And we have a under-feel. Not so much applicable from this shot, because it's more of a [INAUDIBLE] running shot. But we're going to--

[CLICK]

Under feel. Under.

What guarantees that clean contact there, that left foot position and the weight on the left foot a little bit.

[CLICK]

The hinging is the player's preference. What they feel.

We have a shot here, over this hump. So chipping is not applicable. So we're going to try-- I'm going to try the 54.

[CLINK]

This one. And we'll talk more about the lie, and which club to use. But I still want a fair amount of run here. I don't really need much-- the ball to stop so much here. We'll get into a shorter shot where the pin comes in tight. Um, same thing here, of course. I've got my line, and I'm going to have my left foot on.

And now, as we talked a bit in chipping, where we didn't have any wrist break, now we need a little bit more velocity, so we'll have wrist break. And that will give us more velocity. Load that club. I'm going to put my right foot wherever I like. I've got this point covered. Breaking the wrist, no break.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

And of course, I have my options of hinging of the club-- what do I see this ball needing to do? I have my three choices. I've got my ball positioned. As I say, it's an illusion. I've got my right foot there. You would say it was off my right toe. But my leg-- if I cut my leg off, it's still on my left foot. I've always felt comfortable with my well opened. So you've got your hips leading to the target.

Because there's no real-- we don't need a lot of velocity here. Just a hit-- this arm of mine weighs 25 pounds, and this is 25, so it's probably 50 pounds, or 40 pounds of arm. And that's enough. It's 40 pounds of arms with wrist cock just falling on the ball there.

[CLICK]

So I have my options here. I have my three hinges. First thing I do is establish where am I going. Where am I going? I'm going that way. And I mentally draw that 90-degree angle, and capture it. Right there. I'm good to go. I know I have-- I can roll over option, hold on option, or up under option. Up under option here is-- I don't see that. So it's either just this straight block. It's a very simple, straightforward.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

I feel that with my feet. I ask my feet. And I say, I ask my feet, how much pressure do I need there, to get that there? How much? I don't need this much. Be like a driver. I want to try to get away with as a small amount, got that captured, wrist break.

[CLICK]

Because you'll see in slow-mo, I'm still adhering to that principle there-- the line of compression there. Now it's OK if you feel comfortable-- break, no break, and then break again, if you want, just to relax at the end. Some people, like Phil Mickelson, who is a great pitcher, chipper, pitcher of the ball hold, stays there.

Some people we see-- Seve-- went back to what he was at address.

[CLICK]

Might go back to there like that. Gives the appearance that he didn't really have that principle. That gives the appearance that it was more or less like this, but it really wasn't. So we want to dispel all the myths. So in pitching, if I wanted to use that under, I would then-- I wanted to throw it up a little bit higher, I could open my face. So now it's aimed to the right. Move the whole package around. OK? I'm on this plane. Right through this.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

And use the under hinge. Player's choice.

So this is what the plane looks like. This is my options. Running-- a running pitch.

[CLICK]

What I would call just a standard pitch.

[CLICK]

And then a high pitch with a reverse hinge. I got it-- I'm on plane there. Open the face. And now it's aimed to the right. I'm going to walk-- walk my club around to where it's straight. And now I have to adjust this plane.

My guess is slightly across this way with an open face, left wrist cock. A little bit more velocity, because you're gonna need a height.

[CLICK]

And it has a lot more check on it.

So much easier to play golf when you, you know, you've made a choice, and you just execute it. Right? The easiest shot in the world is to hit a snap hook out of the trees, right? It's like a no-brainer. You can turn the face and roll the hand, right? So this is-- we're putting you sort of in that frame of mind. You know?

I'm going to pitch it, or I'm going to chip it. I'm going to use this motion. You've already chosen the club. You've matched the lie, because you've evaluated that. And uh, you know, nine times out of 10, you're going to hit that shot a lot better than you would if you're just sitting there worrying about it, or making some mindless swipe at it. You know?

So we've put some balls around, and I've got these three clubs that we talked about early in the video. I've got a zero bounce, 10-degree bounce, and a four-degree bounce. And we're going to-- I'm going to sort of give you the evaluation of how I'm going to do this now that you know the shots. So let's look at this one.

So you know, I'm not going to do anything short, so I've got to go up, over. So that automatically gives me some lofts. And I'm going to use my 60. It's going to be a pitch, and the left wrist is going to cock. And the hinging is going to be under. So I can open that face, and--

[THUD]

I'll be that way with it. I mean, that's kind of how you evaluate it.

[THUD]

Let's see what this one says. This one here is a little bit more straight on. I'm not going to bounce it. I'm not going to mess around with that fringe. So I'm going to stay with a 60.

[CLINK]

[WHOOSH]

It's a pitch.

[WHOOSH]

And it's just a normal hinge just straight behind the club there.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

OK?

This one I can't land on the green. So I've got to play it short. 54 degree might get hung up, so I'm going to go with my pitching wedge with no degrees.

[CLINK]

[WHOOSH]

I think it's a chip. I don't need to cock my left wrist, and I can turn my right hand over there, and play a little chip.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

This one here I could play two ways. I don't have any green to work with. If the lie was really good, I could play the 60.

[CLINK]

Open my face, step around it-- well, first, I would capture the line. Open that blade up. It's aiming over there, so I bring it around.

[WHOOSH]

Definitely a pitch with an angle-- with a reverse hinge.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

And now I'll play it the safer way, if the lie wasn't so good-- a bad lie, where I know I couldn't get under it. I've got my pitching wedge, and capture-- I want to play it-- I'm gonna play a chip. No, it's going to be a pitch. It's gonna be a pitch with a full roll hinge-- full roll hinge.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Not quite hard enough, but very safe.

[CLICK]

[CLICK]

Play a little pitch with a full roll.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Nice. Now, as you can see, I don't really have any preference of what club I'm going to use. I sort of wait until the shot tells me. I've got another very difficult looking shot here. I've got a down-slope to deal with. I've got two balls. This one's not a very good lie, and this one's a great lie. There's no chance I can land it on the green, I don't think, with much consistency. So I've got to bank on the down-slope, and then up-slope.

[CLANG]

I think I can take my 54 and just do a little pitch and bang it into that bank there.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Wasn't too bad. I flew it a little too far. This is a better lie, a bit too much loft. I've got a great lie, so I'm going to play it with a pitching wedge. And grab that line again. Foot's way ahead. Looks like it's way back. And I think it's just a chip, with a smother hand right here, to make it go up that hill.

[CLICK]

See, that was beautiful the way that came out. I like that.

So once you have all these options and you know what you've got, you can pretty much just wait and see what's going to happen here, as far as-- got three balls here laying quite comfortably. No automatically ever go into the 60. I'm not.

People say when they cut the grass on the tour, it gives us a lot of options. It's bad for the player. Uh, I don't know how options is bad. I mean, when you have the long grass, there's only one shot. We'll get to that as well. And I'm going to play this one with a pitching wedge.

[CLINK]

It's telling me I want to have a little wrist break. So a little wrist break. And I'm just going to angle it. Just a angle hinge there.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

I'm going to play this one with the 54.

[WHOOSH]

[WHOOSH]

I'm gonna play it with a full roll, a little pitch.

[CLICK]

Now I'm going to play this one with a 60.

[WHOOSH]

Pitch. A little bit of a cut shot.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

A little too far. I'm going to do this with a 60. I'm gonna set up, find my line. The grain, as you know, is very, very, very rough here. Open that face. Come around, then out. Now I'm good to go. Big pitch. But I'm actually going to move your way a quarter of an inch, so I know I'm going to hit it fat. And I'm just going to take all of that-- all that grass with me.

[THUD]

[THUD]

It came out perfect. It's like a controlled fat shot.

[THUNKING]

Takes out a lot of risk.

Another way to play this-- I think it's-- just right there, there's some beautiful, uh, grass. But again, right here--

[CLICK]

--real nasty into the grain, right? Right here. Look at that. So I've got a pitching wedge. And this time, I'm going to find my line. And I'm going to do an Alex Mercer shot, with he leaned on that left foot. And I'm gonna play it with an angle hinge. And what I'm going to do, I'm going to squeeze that ball into that turf, and it's going to put backspin on it, so when it hits that bank, it's not going to dig in. It'll skip. It'll skip off of it.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Perfect. That came out nice. So when you're playing into that grain, up those hills, it's not always mandatory that you're going to overturn it. Because sometimes it'll--

[CLICK]

--it'll dig in. It won't get up. You're almost better off playing the Alex Mercer shot, if you weigh it heavy on the left, and play an angle like a cut shot with a pitch, and get it to skip.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Because it's got backspin on it, it's going to hit that and skip like a rock would when you throw across the river, or onto a pond. It's a great shot to have. Just different shots.

The pin is just right there. If you don't get it up over that-- just that one little ledge, coming back for sure. And you know, then you've got the grass into you, as well, which makes it very difficult. So the question is, do you go with a 60-degree and try to loft it all the way? Or do you play something a little bit more conservative with some rollover?

On the last hole I showed you, I got some nice Bermuda grass up there that's very-- cut like greens, so it's not going to grab my ball. Well, I'd play this with a little pitch, with a ferocious rollover, you know, to get it to caterpillar.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

And a fraction too much speed, but I'm really going to work that--

[CLICK]

--over. Keep that going up the hill.

You can't make a run shot out of this rough. So I-- you know, I like opening that face and grip it normal. So now I've just got a crazy open face. And catch my foot. No point-- don't have to aim it any more, just come-- turn around. And now there's just no way I can close that. I'm going to--

[WHOOSH]

--really use a lot of velocity with that right hand, knowing that the clubface can't close. Shoot, the only thing it should do is go up.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

Going, you know, 90 here. All right? So we use we know before. I would stand right there to hit that clean. I can catch that clean out of there.

[WHOOSH]

I don't want clean. I want fat a little bit. So I can always come in here and nail that left line. That's what I do. Nail the left line, and then I just scoot back across it. So now I know the bottom is roughly there. A lot of people ask me how many inches. Well, you know, I don't have to take out a ton of inches right here for this shot.

The main thing about bunkers with people is they are not sure how much sand to take. And there I am. I know that's clean. I'm going to get that out of there clean. It's a bend, you know, a bend. You can-- Ben Doyle told me that you can play all those hinges, if you like. You can scoot back maybe a half inch, and just play exactly full roll.

[WHOOSH]

If you wanted to, right there. This is where I'm going, roughly. And get my foot right on that line, so I've got clean. That's coming out clean. So I'm going to just come back a half inch-- not even. Quarter of an inch. And I'm going to full roll that, knowing that I'm going to bottom out right there.

[THUD]

And you can play, it's clean. Half inch. You can play half roll.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Get the line. Foot on the line. Just a quarter of an inch. That's all I want. Play with an angled hand there. A little pitch action.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

A little firm. Nice control. Or you could make that shot. Line. That's coming out clean. Open the face, step around. Play a cut shot.

[WHOOSH]

A bit more velocity. That's a very precise way to play it. Line, on it, open, step around, make that little cut shot.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

I put a lot of skin on it.

There's many ways to play the bunker shots. Pretty much the only shot you don't have to adhere to the rule of the throw away. I used to play this shot same when I was younger-- right there, left foot on the line, scoot back, and now I'm going to hit it fat there. And Just basically break my wrist under. Just break it--

[WHOOSH]

--under. That's going to give you a nice feel. Left foot, scoot back so you got a little fat, and break that-- break the left hand. Just break right under it.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

That's also nice.

And I said earlier, my bunker game has been terrific lately. And I've come in the same way. That's clean. That's fat. And I've taken this arm and just turned-- turn that whole arm belly up. Then I can just use my chest.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

I'm looking around. And I've been just hitting it crazy close to the flag every shot. Take that arm, and turn it. Turn the club the other way. So I've got open against open. Fat.

[WHOOSH]

I like that way, because I can be really aggressive with it. Aggressive.

So it still all comes-- you know, everything comes down to where this thing is bottoming out. That's a little fat. Turn that arm that way, club that way.

[WHOOSH]

This gets under it so nice. Left arm turn, club back the other way. Then I can turn my body, and I've got real control over the speed of the blade there.

[WHOOSH]

Very-- I can play it very aggressively with the body. It makes me. If I twisted my arm that way, club clockwise, angle hinge, underneath hinge--

[WHOOSH]

--I can really thump it. Put a lot of spin on that ball. I've always liked to, you know, get a lot of velocity if possible.

[CLICK]

Ball's got a lot of this nice spin on it.

Uphill-- I just got to be up hill, you know? Little fat right there.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

Long as you know you're going to hit it fat, nothing is a big deal. Nothing's a big deal if you know you're going to hit it fat. The only way you can learn how hit it fat is you nail it-- so you're gonna hit it clean. And then just a half inch right there. I'm gonna hit that fat.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

Downhill-- same thing, right? I've got to have maximum open now, because I need the real-- so that would be-- that would be clean. And I've got to get this thing in the air. So actually, my line is over here somewhere. I need maximum-- maximum weighing down to get-- just to get it in the air.

[WHOOSH]

[CLANG]

(CHUCKLES)

That's my line, fat, lean down in there.

[WHOOSH]

Line, fat, not much fat. It's just like a half inch, like a quarter of a ball or something.

[WHOOSH]

Now you got the 60, so a little bit longer shot. Not too bad, but I'm still going to nail that. It's a fraction fat, that's all. I don't need much fat.

[WHOOSH]

Come to a course with a lot of bounce-- with a lot of sand, it might be a little bit more bounce.

[WHOOSH]

Big splash of sand there. Look at that. That's a lot of sand there. 54, I'm taking half a ball. No more than half a ball, but I got a lot more bounce now.

[WHOOSH]

Because I've got less loft, so I don't need to hit it as hard. I could make a smaller swing. The advantage of having a less lofted club like there-- it's just jumped in there, I got tons of sand. Nailed that. Open that. Half inch, and just a very small swing will get it out.

[WHOOSH]

Without any chance of digging, because you've got so much back on it. You get a lot of fried eggs, right? That's a fried egg.

[SPLAT]

Fried egg.

[SPLAT]

Fried egg.

[SPLAT]

More buried.

[TAPPING]

Fried egg. There you should turn the club in, right? This way. I still believe it's the best way. And then, right at impact, you reverse it the other way, right? So you get a straight shot into the ground there, and then twist your hands. Reverse it.

[THUD]

Makes it pop out. I still think it's the best way. There's no great way, but that's the best way. You close the clubface. Up-- straight up, like chop. And then as it goes into the ground, you turn it back the other way without trying to follow through, really.

[THUD]

[CLICK]

You're trying not to disturb all these particles of sand, as Alex Mercer taught me. You don't want to blow them into a million pieces. You want to try to keep them intact as much as possible. And that's this stabbing.

[THUD]

[THUD]

That's nice coming out of here. You feel like you've got a chance of--

[TAPPING]

--being real risky here, right?

[THUD]

Pops out so nice. I was trying to hit it right there.

This is the dreaded 50 yard or whatever, right? It's not as intimidating if you know where the bottom is. So I've got the 60, the 54, and the pitching wedge. Hard shot with a 60. So you can appreciate that I want to hit it clean, basically. I don't want to move at all, just like a long pitch.

[CLICK]

I'm going to hit it, maybe, like a millimeter fat. I'm going to get right on it there. Right on it. I'm even going to move a quarter of an inch forward, so I'm right on top of that. We'll have plenty of loft.

[WHOOSH]

Now I got a 54. It's all about the bottoms. Just a quarter of an inch, like two dimples.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

Just like two dimples fat, just two dimples.

[WHOOSH]

Perfect. It's all about the bottom. I mean, once you know where the bottom is, and you know how to, you know, apply that principle to it? It's nothing, nothing, it's nothing. There's no great mystery in the short game at all. All these little shots and stuff you see in these good shots today is just, you make your decision, you make the play, based on what you see, the equipment you have as far as bounce, no bounce, lots of bounce.

The only time you use lots of bounce-- you know, when you need lots of bounce is you have lots of sand. You don't have lots of sand, you don't need lots of bounce. You know, bounce is like duck's belly. You know-- it helps you when you-- if you did hit it three inch or two fat, it would keep sliding under the club. Well, I'm not really talking about that. I'm talking about, you know, playing close to the ball. You know?

I want to hit the ball, or I want to hit it slightly fat. I'm not really interested in three or four inches behind. That's for guys that-- really, you throw the thing and don't know where the bottom is. A lot of those clubs have a lot of bounce these days, because the amateur doesn't have the precision to know where the bottom is. But if you know where the bottom is, you can play it out of there with, you know, razor blade, basically.

That what they did, you know, all of their years. All the other niblicks, and mashies, and all those kind of things. No big deal.

I'd put that right toe there, and I just capture it right there. Now, on a driver, you'd want an inch there, so there's some squash. The ball squashes against the face and then leaves. But on the wedges, there's not much squash. I'm right there. I'm good to go.

[WHOOSH]

There's the plane, right there, right? Just-- That hinge has more spin than that one, or even just a half a roll-- half a roll. But I like half a roll. I don't want to put that much spin on it.

[CLICK]

[THUD]

Again, same ball. Long pitch.

[WHOOSH]

[CLICK]

I'm swinging it back into that flat left wrist there. I'm swinging it back into the flat left wrist. I want that lined up with that. OK? And once I've used my feet to tell me I'm going-- I'm going to there, I'm going to unwind with my body, and I'm going to squeeze-- squeeze my buns here. Squeeze. Squeeze. That throws it down into the ground. So there's not a whole lot of moving parts to this motion here. I've got that, going to throw it back into that slot, or into that flat left wrist. And then I'm gonna squeeze.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

You know, talking about shots-- you know, little shots around the green when you're in deep roughs, particularly this Bermuda rough, which is the worst of all. You've got to have a technique that you can do hard, right? You've got to be able to make a big swing at it, and not go anywhere. That's why I like that club open, like the bunker, so I can't close it. I've got (SLAP). I can put a big swing on it and not hit anywhere.

So I've got myself in a bad spot right here. We've got like four-inch Bermuda. You've got to have something you can hit very firm, because you're not-- so you're not afraid of it. Now, I like opening the club, and then gripping it.

[WHOOSH]

Then all that-- all I'm trying to do is close it all the way. Get my ball.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

Open face, you know, with a twirl. Then you've got, whew-- mousetrap on it. Mousetrap feel. Twirl, shoo!

[WHOOSH]

And the only place it's going is up, so you're never afraid of it. There's no fear in it, because the harder you hit it, more or less, it goes straight up. Open, open. Twirl, mousetrap.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

That's just nasty there. Open, grip normal. Got my foot.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

I like the twirl. It's really opened.

[WHOOSH]

[THUD]

To me, that just comes out so nice.

First thing I go is the shadow. Shadow or there's another ball position, you know, you can get off or whatever. Um-- but I go straight to the shadow. Can't fool the shadow. So, when you check that shadow, you know, and you see with your eye-- you might have to adjust your body, you know, around a little bit to get it where it, you know, works right. But that's basically all it is-- hit the shadow. Nailing that shadow. That's it. There's nothing else to it.

Chipping--

[CLICK]

--the reason that the ball position is right on the line in chipping, is because you don't hit it hard enough to get any compression. There's no squash factor. So you can hit more of the back of the ball on a chip than you do-- you don't have to be so much on the inside quadrant. So there's no squash factor.

I put my club in. You can see, when I put in, there's impact, right there. Right on my heel there. Straight line. You know, it looks like I'm playing it off my right foot, right? Take that out of the way, it's right there on my left heel. So the ideal alignment-- flat left wrist, flat face. Flat. And swinging into flat there.

You have a choice of starting from what we'd call address, and then impact, knowing impact's up there. Or you can just start from impact. But we'd swing it into a flat left wrist there.

When we hit it, basically, you know, on this chipping pitching, it's basically squeezing the buns, right? Turning the hips, squeezing the buns. And that gives you the throw out that you need. So it's just more flat, level, (WHOOSH) throw it out. (WHOOSH)

So in review, I've got my right toe there, and I can just get right on that, knowing that's impact right there. You know, it's perfect for chipping and pitching impact. Now, if it was a driver, I'd have to be ahead one ball. If it's more squash, address, impact, and then separation would be right on that there. So you know, on chipping, I'm looking for that right there.

Having the know-how trumps everything. The guy that chips the best knows the most. End of story. The guys that can't chip at all, they don't know anything. I mean, there's no in-between in there. That's just-- that's just fact.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

MIKE MAVES (SINGING): Yeah, a broken heart's better than living with no heart at all. Sh-- ya-yow!