It’s the shot everyone sees tour pros hit on TV and, as a result, it’s the shot they all want to have in their own bag.
‘How do I spin the ball like that’? ‘What do they do to make the ball spin like that?’ Tour players are able to make the ball bounce a couple of times and then stop dead.
They all have superb control of their golf ball from around the greens. Their short game, their wedge play, is so important to good scoring - and not just making birdies but saving par and often getting them out of trouble.
This shot allows you to be very aggressive as you know the ball is going to stop and spin. It gives you so many more options. And let’s be honest, it looks good, it’s a sexy shot, and there are times that it can be played - but I would wage caution on this shot.
At times, there is genuinely no need for it. Sometimes it’s just not required, so don’t feel as though you need to try this every time you’re within touching distance of the flag.
Ball position is key
The critical thing on this shot is how you set-up to the ball. Technique is really important with this one. You want to get the most amount of spin.
You want a shallow angle of attack, so the ball position should be in the centre of your chest with your hands over the golf ball. Use a 54 or 56 degree wedge to get the most amount of spin. Make it easy on yourself.
Create a shallow attack angle
Before the advent of launch monitors, to generate maximum spin, many people though that you had to hit the ball with a very steep angle of attack with the path of the club out to in.
It has actually been proven that a very shallow angle of attack and a club path that is slightly in-to-out actually generates more spin. So you can be more aggressive with that. What you want is for the club to move a little further out to the right than it normally would, and not across the body.
Ideally, you want to catch the ball first and take a little to no divot. If you take the ground first, you’re not doing yourself any favours. And if you take a big divot, your angle of attack is too steep (that’s something I struggle with sometimes).
You want to nip it off the surface and graze the grass. Slide the sole of the club under the ball.
Pop up your left shoulder
Here’s your shallow angle of attack. What happens through impact is that the handle of the golf club and the hands are rising. That’s the feeling.
They rise because your left shoulder should move up and backwards. That allows your hands to work up, which shallows out your attack angle.
If that shoulder works down, and not up, the angle is steeper, which is not what you want. Get your left shoulder back and up.