There are 2 pressure shots in golf and both require a calm and effortless swing: Putting and Chipping. Unfortunately, when the shot is so easy and there is so much pressure to be precise, many of us get the YIPS. Hunter Mahan choked on a 2010 Ryder Cup chip that lost a match. Of course it was a yip that he will never forget. You need to understand what takes over your mind and body to mess-up these shots?
First you need to understand why you feel this pressure and why your muscles and mind react the way they do. Both of these shots are finesse shots. They require soft hands and a good feel for the shot, the roll of the green & the loft of the club (for chipping). The pressure is all in your head. When you drive a ball or hit a fairway shot there is a lot of room for errant shot. When chipping or putting you have 1 shot to get your ball close to the hole. You expect perfection. THAT IS PRESSURE and that is where the YIPS come from!
My favorite weekly blog from Golf-Info-Guide by Thomas Golf summed up the solution in 2 words: CONFIDENCE and PRACTICE.
CONFIDENCE: Golf is a game of memories: the good ones and the bad ones! Unfortunately our last poor chip or putt is a hard memory to overcome. A lack of confidence creates self-doubt: “Stiff shoulders, arms, wrist and fingers choke the club and limit freedom of motion.” You need to realize when this is happening and snap out of it. Take your mind back to the perfect swing.
PRACTICE: The Golf-Info-Guide blog reminds us that you need to learn the skill of chipping by practicing. It’s not going to happen your you have one shot under pressure on the golf course. Learn the shot with different lofted clubs. Understand what works. Relax your hands and don’t rush the swing. Let the weight of the club do the work as you accelerate through the ball to a straight arm finish with your club pointing to your target.
>Narrow your stance with the ball in the center of your stance and weight forward on your leading foot
>Hand grip should be a 4 out of 10 with your hands forward of the ball at address and at impact (shaft is leaning forward). This is especially important when you have a tight lie in front of the green.
>The swing is a downward blow, taking a slight divot forward of the ball as you rotate your chest toward the target.
>Don’t rush the swing: 1/3 backswing with limited wrist break and 2/3 follow through with no wrist break.
GOLFSTR+ is the ideal golf swing training aid to help you learn limited lag in your trailing wrist (fix #4) and a flat leading wrist in your follow-through (fix #6). Check it out today or buy it as a gift for your friends for Christmas. Great Stocking Stuffer.