This video of Luke Donald chipping balls off a green will give you high anxiety

January 7, 2020
PGA Tour pro Luke Donald chips off a putting green in a recent Instagram post.

When stress and anxiety show their ugly faces, some people enjoy watching soothing videos of industrial processes, cooking recipes, or anything else that will provide a sense of order, comfort, and security to their buzzing minds. One such video of a golf superintendent aerating a green went viral this summer.

A recent video of PGA Tour veteran Luke Donald chipping balls off the surface of a putting green is not one of those videos. In fact, for many golfers it will have the opposite effect.

Donald posted the video on Instagram on Monday and shared a tip to go along with it. In the clip, the former World No. 1 picks three balls cleanly off a practice putting green, sending the balls over a gulley and onto a different part of the green where they nestle up to a hole.

The point of the drill is to practice chipping from tight surfaces. As Donald notes, it’s “essential you learn to use the [wedge] bounce effectively” if you want to be a good “pitcher.”

While the tip is a good one, and expertly performed, it’s more likely to inspire a severe case of the cringes than lower the scores of those who watch it. With putting green etiquette cemented in their brains, golfers have a natural aversion to the sight of someone taking swings on a green, especially a perfectly-manicured green like the one Donald plays in the video. Even though he picks each ball cleanly without damaging so much as a blade of grass, it’s still painful to see.

Try watching for yourself below, and see if you can stomach it each time he makes a backswing.

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If you want to be a good pitcher of the ball, it’s pretty essential you learn to use the bounce effectively. Good little drill here, although you might want to start on a tight fringe or the very edge of the putting green unless you’re very confident you aren’t going to take a giant divot!!!!!A few 🔑’s . 1) Ball position slightly forward and shaft vertical (don’t push the shaft forward as that will only encourage the front edge of your wedge to get stuck in the ground on impact) . 2) Club head stays outside the hands going back with plenty of loft on the club . 3) Body and club rotate together thru the hit. Notice how my body is facing my target at the end even though it’s a short shot & my club is matching with my spine. . Give this a try and let me know how you get on! (Apologies to any superintendents who find a few divots out of their short game greens tmr 🤭)

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Donald did write out a few keys to keep mind while attempting this drill, which you can find below. He introduced the tip with one important word of warning, writing, “you might want to start on a tight fringe or the very edge of the putting green unless you’re very confident you aren’t going to take a giant divot!!!!!.”

Here’s the tip, straight from Donald’s Instagram post:

“If you want to be a good pitcher of the ball, it’s pretty essential you learn to use the bounce effectively. Good little drill here, although you might want to start on a tight fringe or the very edge of the putting green unless you’re very confident you aren’t going to take a giant divot!!!!!A few ?’s

1) Ball position slightly forward and shaft vertical (don’t push the shaft forward as that will only encourage the front edge of your wedge to get stuck in the ground on impact)

2) Club head stays outside the hands going back with plenty of loft on the club.

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