Golf – Chipping Situations with the Pitching Wedge

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 91,868
    Professional golfer Paige Veliz-Gilbert demonstrates chipping situations with the pitching wedge.

    Hi, I am Paige with the Presidential; we are going to continue our discussion about Chipping. Now, we are going to work with the Pitching Wedge. The reason I love the Pitching Wedge is that it is much more versatile than the 8 Iron, but the 8 Iron was fairly limited, I really needed a lot of green to roll the ball. It is not always the situation on the golf course; in fact a lot of times, we do not have that much green in which to roll the ball. So, the ratio or guideline with the Pitching Wedge drops back to 50-50 which gives me a lot of options around the green. You can see here, the green is still fairly close to us but we do not have nearly the range that we had with the 8 Iron and so the additional loft to the Pitching Wedge is going to help me out a lot. The chip-shot itself does not change, the only thing that changes is my landing area. So, what I am doing now is I am thinking of a 50 percent ratio of my landing area as opposed to the one-third ratio that I had with the 8 Iron. As I am doing this, I am actually looking at my target and making this practice stroke. This is going to help my body gauge what that distance is and develop some feel. Now when I get setup to the ball, I am looking at the half way point and then I can take the shot.

    The best thing about the Pitching Wedge though is around the green, I do not have to have a perfect lie to hit a perfect shot. For example, if the ball is sitting down in a dived like as was before, the Pitching Wedge allows me to take a little bit stronger shot. I can hit it with a little bit more force and because that club base angle is more lofted, the ball does not go out and roll a lot more. It actually gets a little bit higher and lands softer allowing the ball to be struck out of this nasty lie that I have here.

    The other change that we would make in this shot is that we are going to play the ball back in the stance. So, I am going to play the ball closer to my right foot. My landing area, I am going to bring a little bit closer to me because I am hitting the ball with the little more force, it may roll a little bit farther. But the underhand tossing motion is still the same. The great thing about the Pitching Wedge though is that we are not always in a perfect lie around the green. The short grass situation is one thing but a lot of times when we are around the green, we are faced with a shot from longer grass. When we hit from the rough, the Pitching Wedge is just as versatile as it is from the short grass. Let me show you, our ratios do not change, the setup does not change all that much. What I am doing though is because I am in longer grass I may need to have a little bit more force in the swing. Again, I do not have to change my ratios that much but I do need to a strong enough swing to get through this longer grass. The longer grass is going to tend to want to grab the club and slow it down, so it is really important that as we are swinging through, we are making sure that the club is accelerating and not stopping when we get to the golf ball. Good idea to take a couple of practice swings and just get a sense of how much resistance the grass is going to give you as you are swinging through. Now I can step up, find my 50-50 ratio and take the shot.

    Stay with us, in our next segment we are going to talk about how we get creative around the green even if you only want to use one club.