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Chip It Close And Save Strokes
by Golf Illustrated

The mechanics for chip shots are much closer to the way you putt. You want to get the ball rolling like a putt without taking the chance of a bad bounce before that roll begins. For shots of this length, the backswing naturally will be much shorter than for pitches, and therefore more vertical. For chips, you want the same smooth, flowing stroke of a putter. You get this stroke with the lofted club by playing the ball inside the left heel or in the center of your feet.

Concentrate most of your weight -- 80 percent -- on the arch of your left foot simply by leaning your body in that direction. You also want to push the club to the left so the shaft and handle are in line with the inside of your left knee. This should align your hands even with or slightly ahead of the ball at address.

As in the putting stroke, there should be no hand action. The club is put in motion with your left shoulder, which dips down just slightly. However, the triangle formed by the shoulders and arms is maintained throughout the backswing and most of the downswing and follow-through. Swing the club along your body line. Do not let your arms swing out away from you. The clubface being square to the target will get the ball on the correct line. Keep your body very still during the entire stroke. There is no need for body movement, and any you do have is going to hurt your chances of a successful chip.

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