This month, I’ll discuss hitting short pitching shots ranging from 30-80m. This component of the game is extremely neglected by the casual golfer.
I regularly see students and customers coming to the range with only a fairway or driver. They lace away with no warm up, hit 100 balls and maybe hit 10% ok. They walk away with no confidence, poor rhythm and timing and most likely a sore back.
ALL tour pros will start their range session hitting a sand wedge to their favourite yardage between 30-80m. This helps to warm up their muscles, create good rhythm and timing then build into the longer clubs.
Example practise breakdown:
- 50% with LW to PW
- 30% other irons
- 20% Fairways and driver.
A common fault I see when hitting wedges is too much use of the hands and no-body rotation (see pic 1.)
A simple drill to cure this is hitting short shots with your right hand only (see pic 2). This promotes more body rotation and less flipping of the hands.
The first few shots might be a bit ugly, but after a while you will be able to feel how active your body needs to be. I suggest hitting five shots one-handed then one shot with two hands.
It is very important to use more body when pitching and chipping, engaging your bigger muscles creates a more consistent move.