Learn The Correct Chipping Technique

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Paul Wilson is the creator of Swing Machine Golf and founder of Ignition Golf. Paul's golf swing technique is based on the Iron Byron swing machine. YouTube Channels: Paul Wilson Golf and Ignition Golf Tips. Please Join me on Google+

64 Responses to “Learn The Correct Chipping Technique”

  1. September 3, 2012


    CHIPPING you make it look so simple! It is I’m sure, but it’s causing me no end of problems. Played a new difficult course yesterday very hilly and lots of chips with green on a steep angle here in England. The Wife (she of a far lower handicap) has always given me grief about not following though correctly, but I landed in more bunkers and short shorts with the new technique. I’m definitely not scooping and maintaining the angle and 4 knuckles all the way. My problem is I’m hitting the ground resulting in a stabbed effort or a duffed shorter short at best. Bears bloody Best I screamed must be the heat that causes the ball to rise! In fairness (not yesterday) I’ve hit a couple of chips this way that’s made for brilliant comments. Since I’ve revisited your tips and tried out tonight on the range finding that if I grip down more virtually to the metal I get a more positive response and I feel more in touch though still hitting the turf occasionally.
    When I see you on the clips you seem to lift a bit to make the follow through which I seem unable to do. Any comments would be gracefully received.

    • September 4, 2012

      Paul Wilson

      Paul, if you are hitting behind the ball on your chips you have too much weight on your back foot at impact. Remember, I want you will at least 70% on the forward foot throughout the whole stroke. This means as you take it back too. I lift in the follow through because I am turning through it. No other reason.

      It took me 2 weeks to learn this chipping method. This was every day for hours and hours per day. No you know the technique you just need to put in the time to work on it. Stay focused and keep working on it. As you do make sure you are practicing from a little light rough or longer grass (not a tight lie) and a pretty flat green. This will make it easy to get the technique down. Once you get good at it you will be able to adjust for the different lies.

      Please visit the Chipping Category in the red navigation bar above. There are a bunch of tips there on chipping.

  2. September 4, 2012


    Much appreciated Paul. I didn’t take the weight factor fully into consideration and probably not emphasising enough on my front foot. Also understand your comment about Rome not being built in a day. Just two more thoughts:
    Firstly being only 12″ from the front of the back foot is tight I guess I’m nearer 18″ at the moment. Secondly, is the low grip position on the shaft (just off the metal) the same on all clubs?

    • September 6, 2012

      Paul Wilson

      Paul, chipping is like putting. You should be close to the ball. Just set up as I suggest and lift the grip of the club up to accommodate this set up. Again, think putting.

      Gripping down is the same for all clubs.

  3. Hi Paul,

    I have used your chipping technique for the last month now and am getting pretty good results on a rough lie. However if I have to chip on a spongy/Muddy surface (or even a very short surface) I find that I am digging up the ground and getting under the ball. This means that the ball is travelling 2/3 ft ahead of me and not even getting near the green.

    It is difficult to give tips when you cant see my shot, but do you know what kind of adjustments that I would need to do on these types of surfaces? Or do you think that I need to adjust my chipping stroke all together?

    Kind Regards
    Jason Tomlinson

    • October 9, 2012

      Paul Wilson

      Jason, If you are hitting the ground behind the ball you are not keeping your weight on the forward foot throughout the whole stroke. Keep the weight 70% on the forward foot and you will be fine.

      The surface should not matter at all. When you have this type of shot it can psych you out. Stick to your routine and know this will work no matter how spongy the lie is.

  4. October 10, 2012


    Hi Paul. As a fellow who has had a lifetime of trouble with pitching and chipping, your very simple and clear techniques will be a God-send. I’ve watched this video about 10 times and marvel how simple you make chipping look, particularly for a guy who would rather putt from long distances from the pin.
    In your technique is there any wrist hinge? Your hands seem so relaxed, I thought there might be a slight wrist release on the through swing, instead of a totally stiff wrist method, which might effect the feel of the shot.

    I’ve wasted literally thousands of strokes around the greens because I was too lazy to correct things. Your videos have convinced me it’s never too late to improve.

    Thanks, Ron

    • October 11, 2012

      Paul Wilson

      Ron, You want to keep the wrists locked in chipping. Remember it is like putting. I am not stiff I am relaxed but I am thinking of my putting stroke when hitting these shots. This is so simple yet so effective. In 2 weeks you will be hitting great pitches and chip which will save you a ton of shots. Seems like a small price to pay.

  5. April 27, 2013



    Even with my weight on the front foot, I am either catching the leading edge into the ground or hitting the ball way too far. Any thoughts?

    • April 29, 2013

      Paul Wilson


      Your hands are too far ahead of the ball. Back the hand up a little so they are off the left leg and also check to see if your ball is off the instep.

  6. April 28, 2013


    Paul any toughts on tight lies like 20-25 yds from green I feel like i’m going to duff or thin the shot thanks

  7. April 30, 2013


    Hi Paul

    Similiar to PaulLucas’s question, on a uphill lie would weight still be 70% forward or as with other uphill “swings” would weight go more towards back foot and get shoulders parrell to ground?

    Thanks, Patrick

  8. Hi Paul. Just a comment this works well for me and today I hit 69 chips then I would putt the balls in and total out The up and downs. On 69 balls I only had 76 putts so working with this does work of course of the 69 I only chipped in 6 of 69 Working on increasing this number. After first tube of balls I am warmed up then my goal is to make sure if the ball is not chipped in the hole that it goes by the hole….no short chips. I have only been doing this for a 3 days now so I am looking forward to what 2 weeks will bring. This has been helpful and easy to explain to the Juniors I teach! Thank you. And make a good day. Coach Ahrns

    • Debra,

      Hey, at least you sunk 6. Most people can’t sink any. I really can’t see you having a problem. Keep at it and I see you getting to the point where you think you can make everything.

  9. Hi Paul, The main problem I seem to have in chipping is breaking the wrists or flipping. This doesn’t happen every time but does crop up periodically. When I have the sensation of pushing the club head with the right hand, I seem to keep the angle between the wrist and hand much better. This also helps keep the left wrist from breaking down. Is this a good swing thought or do recommend another?

    Thanks, Ron

  10. I ‘ve just seen this chipping instruction Video today ,I probably missed it when you put it on the Net .I ‘m amazed at this technique of yours ,because I do just the opposite and it works for me!
    I weaken to the utmost my grip ,just as I do for sand saves ,one knuckle of left hand showing ,and I aim in front (Target wise ) of the ball ,all my weight is on the left foot ,a descending blow .
    To make sure I don’t skull the ball ,I put a towel behind the ball when training .
    I’m going to try your technique and see If it works Better than mine!
    For the moment I’m pretty good at chipping “my way “

    • Ray,

      Yes, give it a try. It works incredibly well because even your bad shots turn out pretty good.

      • Though I am pretty good at chipping with most of THE clubs in my bag with THE “very weak grip -only one knuckle of left hand showing- I put your very strong grip to test:it worked beautifully ,much easier than my original technique .
        There is However a difference :with THE strong grip my chips fly higher than with THE weak grip .
        I have to account for this .
        Question :does this strong grip work also with THE Sand Saves ?
        My regular sand save technique is also with a definitely weak grip .

        • Raymond,

          My chipping technique is great once you get used to it. This is because it makes the mis-hits end up pretty good. Missing it good is the whole game.

          Make sure you are not hitting chips too high:

          How To Get the Proper Chipping Trajectory: https://ignitiongolf.com/chipping-trajectory/

          No, you should not be doing this strong grip in bunkers. Bunker shots are your normal golf swing with a few modifications.

  11. August 7, 2013


    Paul – in this chipping video, do you try to hit the ball first on the descending blow or grass then ball?

    • August 7, 2013

      Paul Wilson


      You are hitting the ball first as the club descends. This gives you that nice sound and contact. It should just happen though due to the right technique and grip/hand position.

  12. Avatar photo

    December 5, 2013


    Another technique that works very well…my golf is actually golf now! Thanks Paul…

  13. January 1, 2014



    I’ve watched this many times, but I’m noticing that, as you hit the ball, your torso is turning. I had thought it was just an arm motion, like putting, but watching more closely, there’s more going on. Could you comment?


    • January 2, 2014

      Paul Wilson


      Your boy is not really moving going back. It moves coming through to allow you to get through the shot. I am not thinking of this in any way it is just happening.

  14. Avatar photo

    April 26, 2014


    Do you use just a shoulder rock putting stroke with this set-up or is there some concious hip rotation in the forward stroke. When using just a putting stroke i am hitting it fat ( even with all the weight on the forward foot). When i add some hip rotation i catch it clean.

    • April 27, 2014

      Paul Wilson


      You are allowing the hips to follow the stroke on the way through. It is pretty restrictive if you keep the hips locked throughout the whole stroke. You definitely need to keep the still in the backstroke though.

      The only reason you would hit it fat with the weight on the forward leg would be that the ball is not back far enough. If you keep the weight on the forward foot you should not be hitting it fat at all. This is because the club would not be bottoming out before impact doing my grip and setup. Please double check your set up position and let the hips rotate as you go through.

  15. May 31, 2014


    Hi Paul,

    I implemented your technique to my game. Wow, so simple, effective and what a difference. Most chip shots ended no more than 1 m of the pin. Next step is to get used to the ratios.

  16. Hi Paul;
    My chipping issue is when I’m a yard or 2 from the green in the rough with a close pin. I either leave it too short or run it too far by to leave an easy putt. I’m actually better off bellying a wedge but not consistently. What’s the key to a pitch this short? Thanks.

  17. August 22, 2014


    Hi Paul:
    Just watched your chipping technique video. I try to emulate your action/motion to a tee as well as I can, but my question is – – Should a definite torso turn be part of the stroke, or is it only an arm swing maintaining that particular angle? I get one of these shots EVERY hole and I know I’ll be able to cut 8-10 shots every round if I learn your technique. Thanks in advance !

    • August 22, 2014

      Paul Wilson


      You should be letting your hips turn on the way through. This is why you open your stance. This helps you get through it. I am not letting the hip turn hit the shot. Like my putting technique I am thinking of my right hand making a throwing motion to hit the shot. The hips are following along because if they don’t I feel very crowded and restricted. Just follow the steps here:

      How to Chip: https://ignitiongolf.com/chipping-how

      Also here is my putting technique:

      The Secret to Great Putting: https://ignitiongolf.com/putting-stroke/

  18. Hi Paul,

    I can’t tell you the difference this tip has made to my short game. Over several years I have tried every technique to chip even resorting to using a chipper.

    This tip is so simple to put into place and combined with your putting tip on practicing lag putts I shaved an astounding 11 shots of off my previous round, getting cut by three on my handicap in the process. And this was in 35 mph winds complete with oscillating balls on the putts!

    Between the two tips I reduced my putts from 44 to 36, totally eliminating 3 and 4 putts. How? I was chipping consistently to within five feet of the pin.

    All I have to do now is get rid of my chicken wing. Colonel Sanders would be proud of it! Thanks Paul.

    Best wishes
    Barry Horwell

    • Barry,

      Good stuff. I love hearing it.

      Stay focused on full extension of the arms. This is a different feeling that you have to get used to. Keep doing it in practice swings then as you hit balls . Watch for fat shots because as you widen the arc you will hit some fat ones. If so, just get off the back heel through impact. This means feel the weigh shift better and you will clear the new arc. Get this plus the short game and watch out!

  19. Hi Paul,
    I have successfully used your chipping technique several times in the past 2 weeks or so.
    My problem and thus my question arise from greenside rough, (5-6 inches in depth) that surrounds the apron on many courses in the Northeast. I tried the chipping method to no avail as either the hosel or the toe catch the tall grass and I find myself going laterally.
    Having said that, I am totally clueless as to what to hit. Any tips or tactics would be greatly appreciated.
    See you on the tee,
    -Rich P

    • Rich,

      You need to make sure you have the hands in the 3-4 grip position with them ahead of the ball. You need to accelerate so the club cuts through the rough. Right now you are probably chopping at it. If so, the ball could go anywhere. When I show people this they pop it right out. Acceleration is the key.

      I did a tip on it here (bad audio):

      One Way To Hit From Long Rough – Pop Shot: https://ignitiongolf.com/chipping-pop-shot/

  20. Hi Paul,

    In the video, I think you were using a sand wedge, chipping about 5 yards to the edge of the green, and letting it run about 5 yards to the pin. It looks as if your backstroke was about 15 degrees from the vertical.

    If you were 10 yards off the green, and there were 10 yards to run to the pin, would you take your backswing farther back? All the way to horizontal?

    Or is there another way to increase the fly from 5 yards to 10 yards?



    • Lee,

      I would take it back as far as I need to hit it just on the front of the green. So yes, it may be a little longer. You can accelerate faster too. Just don’t get too long on these short shots. There is no need.

  21. Hi Paul. In order to be close to the ball, do you lift the heel of the clubhead (“toe down”) or do you setup With the Club flush to the ground? Thanks

  22. Paul,

    You no doubt already mentioned it, but do you also always utilize powerless arms and hands for putting and short chips? If so, is power generated solely by moving shoulders (right shoulder up for backswing and down for forward swing) as opposed to lower body on fuller swings?

    • Walter,

      I have tons of tips on both chipping and putting. You can find them on the original site bu going to the red navigation bar. There you hover your mouse over GOLF TIPS and you will see all of the short game topics come up.

      For putting I want you to do this:

      The Secret to Great Putting: https://ignitiongolf.com/putting-stroke/

      For chipping you do this:

      Chipping Technique: https://ignitiongolf.com/correct-chipping-technique/

      So no, your arms would not be powerless. You can certainly try it with the shoulders if you want. These are feel shots. I want to feel it in my hands. Putting more than chipping but even chipping I feel the hands. My body on a chip does not more going back only in the through swing. I am certainly not trying to put leg action in a chip. It is a stroke like putting with setup changes.

  23. September 23, 2017


    This is an awesome technique, thanks Paul! Chipping has always been a big weakness in my game. After watching this and the ratio video, I holed more chips in a practice session then I have in my life. I finally feel confident with my chipping stroke.

    • Avatar photo

      September 25, 2017

      Paul Wilson



      Chipping is so easy when you do it this way. Saves a ton of shots. Work on it for a couple of weeks and have it for life. Keep at it.

  24. April 26, 2018


    Paul – working on the 4 knuckle grip on the side of the club. I am pulling a lot of chips, possibly because the club head is very hooded or my hands want to come back to the normal position which shuts down the clubhead. Any thoughts on correcting this? thank you very much!!

  25. Paul,

    I have viewed, practiced and used your chipping techniques and have had remarkable success in shaving strokes! These techniques have worked well with the more lofted clubs. I had a little trouble with using the 7 iron finding that having delofted the club by pressing the shaft forward to my forward leg, the ball didn’t pop out as far to hit my landing spot on the green(about 4 paces out). This resulted in not getting enough roll to the pin because the ball slowed up in the fringe. I noticed in your demonstration of your “Dial In Your Chipping – Learn the Ratios” tip, you hinged your wrists a little on your back stroke with the 7 iron then drove through the ball to get it on the the landing spot to get it to the pin. Would you recommend this variation for this club or keep practicing this technique for the 7 iron?

    This site has wealth of instruction and I’ve recommended it to my golfing friends. Thank you for your help.

    • Stephen,

      Glad you are doing well with my chipping technique. Thank you for your promo to others. I need all the help I can get.

      Be careful your hands are not too far ahead with lower lofted clubs. Too far ahead and you will not get it airborne.

      How To Get the Proper Chipping Trajectory: https://ignitiongolf.com/chipping-trajectory/

      Keep in mind I have hits hundreds of thousands of chips. I am not thinking of hinging. I may have done this a little in staying loose. In no way am I trying to do it.

  26. Thank you Paul. Makes perfect sense on the lower lofted clubs. Back to the practice range.

    • Stephen,

      Good stuff. The 7 iron is the hardest one because we rarely hit it and practice it.

  27. August 30, 2018


    Hi Paul,
    Using your chipping setup by leaning the shaft toward the front leg and grip it with four knuckles, I’ve de-lofted the club substantially. In your video, you demonstrated with a 56 degree sand wedge, how much you de-lofted the club? For example, will a sand wedge becomes a pitch wedge, or 9 iron becomes a 7 iron?
    Thanks… Wil (your ex-Angus Glen student)

    • Avatar photo

      August 30, 2018

      Paul Wilson


      You want to de-loft the club. It is probably 2 clubs or less. If you are delofting it too much this is not good because you will not get it airborne. This usually happen when the person’s stance is too wide or grip is too strong (I do say 3-4 knuckle grip).

      My feet are literally 3″ apart. So narrow the stance and figure out how far ahead your hands need to be to deloft the club but not so much you can’t get it airborne. If your stance is too wide and the grip strong the club may be leaning too far forward thus delofting it to much.


      Good old Angus. Those were the days. Great times there. Great to hear from you.

  28. September 23, 2018

    Steve Weber

    Update since my post last year. Since learning this technique chipping has gone from the worst part of my short game to where I now feel like I have a decent chance of getting up and down every time I chip. (usually comes down to how well I read the break)

    If this helps anyone I carry a gap wedge and have found that ratio works out pretty close to 1.5.

    • Avatar photo

      September 23, 2018

      Paul Wilson


      Good job. This is an important part of the game where lots of people lose a lot of shots. For the sake of a little understanding and practice you really can become an amazing chipper. The best part is that once you get it you really don’t have to practice that much.

  29. October 25, 2018


    I have same length golf clubs. 37 inches How much should I choke down on my club when I chip. Thanks, Michael

    • Avatar photo

      October 25, 2018

      Paul Wilson


      You will have to grip down until you right index fingers is almost touching the shaft.

  30. Paul , will this work with chippers ? One 37’ loft the other 42’

    • Yes, since a chipper is just an iron with a large sole. They would be similar to maybe a 7iron and 9iron.

  31. Paul, I am finding chips going too long. For example, my 60° landing one yard onto the green rolling twice as far as it goes in the air. Same with most of my ratios. Everything seems to be one longer than what I am trying to have it roll.

    • Might want to check how de-lofted you are making your club at set up. Less loft would mean more run. Also, might want to check the ball alignment, could be further back from the back big toe.

  32. Additionally, I’m finding it hard to hit it soft enough and it’s either a flub and doesn’t go far enough or it’s way too long

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