On short chip shots, these tips will help you get closer to the hole

When you find yourself just off the green, it can be a daunting predicament. An optimist might look at it as an opportunity to put your ball close and leave yourself with a tap-in putt. But someone struggling with their chipping may fear the dreaded chunk or thinned shot, making for longer putts and (likely) a higher score.

Make no mistake about it, short chip shots are just as important as finding the fairway off the tee. In fact, one can argue that they’re even more crucial, since a strong short game can cover up some inconsistencies with the driver.

To help golfers gain confidence each time they’re faced with a short chip shot, GOLF Top 100 Teacher Kellie Stenzel breaks down some ways to get the best results with each swing.

How to hit short chip shots

In the video above, Stenzel emphasizes a few simple tricks to remember while setting yourself up for a short chip shot, saying, “you want to use your setup to help you control your stroke size and your distance.”

Stenzel adds that a common mistake she often sees from her students is when they “have got their hands really high on the club, and the feet are wide — which is going to make you want to move around too much.”

To avoid falling into these similar habits, Stenzel says to do the following instead.

1. Focus on gripping down

“I want you to grip way down on the handle. I don’t even mind, if you’ve got a teeny, tiny chip, I don’t mind having your hands coming down off of the grip and onto the shaft. That’s just physics — if I make this lever shorter, the ball will travel less distance.”

kellie stenzel chips onto the green

2. Narrow your stance on short chip shots

Next, the Top 100 Teacher emphasizes the placement of your feet while hitting short chip shots.

“I also want to see you get your feet very narrow — no wider than a clubhead width apart. And, for a little baby shot, I don’t even mind if your feet are almost touching, because that’s going to keep your lower body from moving around, which will deliver less power.”

kellie stenzel chips onto the green

3. Lean toward your target

Finally, remember to lean your body toward the target prior to hitting the ball.

“When you do that, it’s going to drop your left shoulder, so it’ll help your angle of attack. It’s also going to move the bottom of the swing in the correct place right after that golf ball.”

By following the above steps, golfers will be able to better control the ball around the green, setting themselves up for a much closer putt to finish the hole.

kellie stenzel chips onto the green

Nick Dimengo

Golf.com Editor