Working on the pitch shot
June 25, 2003
The pitch shot. This shot is a short, high shot played from around the green and is used when the low rolling chip shot will not work.
A pitch shot is often played when there is an obstacle such as a bunker or bushes that require a high shot that will stop quickly. With this in mind the most logical choice of club is the one with most loft, usually a sand wedge or lob wedge.
It is important to remember that all short game shots are played with the same swing as a full swing, just a shorter version. The variations that take place are subtle and occur mostly in the set up. It is also important to remember that the ball is driven forward and not lifted into the air. The loft angle of the club face will give you the desired height.
To play the pitch shot:
a Select a sand wedge
a Position feet closer together than for a full shot
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a Stance slightly open (line across toes slightly to the left of the target)
a Weight a little on the left foot
a Club face slightly open (turned to the right); this increases the loft of the club and eliminates the need to help the ball into the air.
a Swing back and forth equal distance using the arms and body in harmony
a Club face turned slightly to the right at the finish position.
Practice this shot by swinging the hands belt high both ways. To vary the length of the shot simply lengthen or shorten the swing and always swing back and forth equal distance. Pictured is the address position for the pitch shot.
Terry Gingell is the Director of Instruction at Eagle Valley Golf, and is now taking signups for sports camps, junior golf camps and adult group lessons. Call Terry, 887-7174.