Hit Your Pitch Shots with Different Trajectories for Different Situations on the Course
by Ryan Gager
As golfers, one of the most crucial skills we strive to master is the ability to control the trajectory of our shots. Being able to hit low, medium, and high shots with the same club opens up a world of possibilities on the golf course. In the latest edition of Fix My Fault, we delve into the world of wedge trajectories with GOLFTEC Athletes Fredrik Lindblom and Hannah Gregg, who show us how to adjust our setup to achieve different trajectories on a pitch shot using a 60-degree wedge.
The Mid-Flight Pitch Shot
Before we dive into the adjustments, let’s understand the fundamentals of the mid-flight pitch shot. In this shot, the hands are positioned directly underneath the shoulders, creating a slight hinge where the handle is a bit lower in the wrists. This setup enables players to set the club slightly in the backswing and release it smoothly in the follow-through.
Take a look at Hannah’s setup as she demonstrates hitting a mid-flight shot to the pin.
To hit a mid-flight pitch shot:
- Position your hands directly underneath the shoulders.
- Maintain a slight hinge in the wrists.
Check out more chipping and pitching tips and drills with Hannah and Fredrik!
Hitting a Low Pitch Shot
Now, suppose you want to hit a lower trajectory shot without changing your wedge. The key is adjusting your setup accordingly. Start with your normal setup and then step closer to the golf ball. This will make the shaft more vertical and change the angle of your wrists. By staying closer to the ball and keeping the hands higher, you will have less wrist set in the backswing.
- Begin with your normal setup for a mid-flight shot.
- Step much closer to the golf ball, making the shaft more vertical.
- Keep the wrist angles unchanged, avoiding excessive wrist set in the backswing.
- This will create a wider arc in your swing, resulting in a shallower angle of attack and a lower launch.
The feeling should be similar to a putting motion, and the result will be a low, controlled pitch shot that stays close to the ground.
Hitting a High Pitch Shot
Now, let’s move on to hitting a high shot. To achieve a higher trajectory, you need to make the opposite adjustment. Instead of moving closer to the ball, you want to move further away. This will lower the handle and allow for more wrist set in the backswing and follow-through. You can also slightly open up the club face for added loft.
- Start with your normal setup for a mid-flight shot.
- Step further away from the golf ball, lowering the handle and allowing for more wrist set in the backswing.
- Keep the clubface slightly open at address.
- With more wrist set and a narrower arc, your swing will produce a steeper angle of attack, helping the ball soar higher into the sky.
With the correct adjustments, you can create a picturesque high pitch shot that stops quickly on the green.
The key to mastering different shot trajectories is experimentation. By altering the distance you stand from the golf ball, you can manipulate the arc length in your swing. Standing closer to the ball reduces wrist set, leading to a wider arc and a lower launch. Conversely, standing further away increases wrist set, resulting in a narrower arc and a higher launch.
Next time you’re out on the course, take these techniques and experiment with your setup to experience the magic of versatile pitch shots. For more help on your chipping, pitching or any other part of your game reach out to a Coach at your local GOLFTEC. As you become adept at controlling trajectory, you’ll gain a newfound confidence in your short game and see your scores improve. So, step up to the challenge, adjust your setup, and watch as your pitch shots dance gracefully to the pin.
For more chipping and pitching tips and drills, check out the videos below from GOLFTEC, including how to get more backspin on your chips, and where to focus when chipping around the green from a Tour Pro.
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