If you suffer from poor chipping and pitching, read on to find out about a simple drill that will help to improve both shots.
Normally poor pitchers tend to try and flick/scoop the ball into the air.
This actually has the opposite effect, as the ball then struggles to lift at all.
Take a look at the first picture.
You will see that I am holding the large cardboard tube with my hands set at roughly the eight o’clock position.
Inside the tube there is a yellow ball and a red ball, and the idea is to keep them inside on the way back, then allow them to fire out at the correct point of the downswing.
As always my weight is set firmly on my left side on a 60-40 basis - it also remains there during my backswing, then moves even more to the left on my throughswing.
At no point does it ever transfer onto my right side.
Now have a look at the second picture.
You will notice that both balls have “fired out” of the tube, at a point just after impact.
This is perfectly correct, and is referred to as the “low point” of the swing arc.
Note also how straight my arms are, with my weight now even further to the left.
And my head is held steady, to keep everything nicely behind at the moment of truth.
If I had tried to scoop the ball into the air, with my weight stuck on my back foot (right side) then the balls would have flown out of the tube much earlier.
If there was a “next frame” to this picture, it would show my hands ending up at the four o’clock position.
This means a good balance to the swing motion, and helps greatly in terms of distance control and judgement.
So if you struggle with your pitching department, try this simple drill out in your back garden.
You can use the plastic airflow balls to avoid any unwanted breakages.
Good luck as always, in your quest to improve your short game.
NEXT WEEK’S COLUMN: Shadow swing time.