How to hit a greenside pitch that launches high and lands soft

scottie scheffler hits pitch shot

Sometimes around the greens you'll need to hit the ball high and land it soft.

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The best golfers have a variety of shots in their toolboxes. From high, bombing draws to low, wind-piercing cuts, the truly elite players can control their golf balls in a way that many others can’t.

That toolbox has plenty of shots for full swings, but as the yardage gets shorter, they have even more tricks. With the margin for error so much smaller on greenside shots, creativity becomes all the more important. If you want to hit it to kick-in range from a peculiar spot, you’ll have to dig deep in the toolbox.

One such shot that will come in handy — but many golfers struggle with — is a high pitch that lands soft. It’s a shot that the pros can hit with ease, but for recreational players, it’s not quite so simple.

For help with hitting this delicate greenside shot, we turn to the expertise of GOLF Top 100 Teacher Trillium Rose.

For a simple approach to getting the ball up in the air quickly, you want to let the club do the work. For this shot, the easiest way to get height while allowing the club to do the work is by using a high-lofted wedge. Then, all you have to do is engage the bounce.

“For short greenside pitches, you want to be sure you get under that ball,” Rose says. “Minimal wrist — you don’t want to get too hingey.”

When you get near impact, you want to feel the bounce of the clubhead gliding underneath the ball. As Rose explains in her video, a good way to check this is to practice somewhere with a little sand in the grass. If you’re doing it correctly, you’ll see a little sand kick up as your club makes its way under the ball.

And as far as the actual swing goes, don’t get too much wrist involved in the swing and let your body do most of the work. Be sure to rotate with your bigger muscles — such as your core and shoulders — and turn all the way through to the finish.

“Watch how I’m going to rotate through, almost facing the target when I’m done,” Rose says. “I’m going to let the club do the work.”

If you can learn how to trust the club and use these simple keys, you’ll be able to launch the ball high and land it soft every time.

Zephyr Melton Editor

Zephyr Melton is an assistant editor for where he spends his days blogging, producing and editing. Prior to joining the team at GOLF, he attended the University of Texas followed by stops with the Texas Golf Association, Team USA, the Green Bay Packers and the PGA Tour. He assists on all things instruction and covers amateur and women’s golf. He can be reached at