golf-chipping-drill

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3 Drills to Get Sharp in the Off-Season

These 3 wintertime exercises helped me big time coming out of the gates in the spring back when I was in high school. I worked on my putting, chipping and full swing while our family was watching TV…and I won the Maine State Amateur that spring.

Here’s what I worked on…

Putting Over a Dime

Find some good, true carpet to putt on. The faster the better.

Set yourself up by laying a dime on the ground (the hole), with a book behind at a 45 degree angle, and a few pillows to catch the balls.

Lay an alignment stick on the ground to make sure you’re set up on track.

Hit 100 or so putts every night and you’ll make some crazy progress in the winter months.

The book works great because it gets the balls out of the way. You can also hit putts at different paces. Nobody says you need to hit the 4-footer like a 4-footer. Hit it like a 20-footer and see if you can hear the dime click each time.

Coin Chipping Drill

Make sure you set up some pillows to catch the balls. Don’t use a lob wedge…more like a 9 or 8-iron.

Lay down that alignment stick again. Hit some basic chip shots into the pillow.

Every once in a while…say every 10th chip, do the coin drill. 

Lay 1 coin about 3 inches behind the ball, and another 3 inches ahead of the ball. The goal is to miss the first coin, strike the ball, and then also strike the 2nd coin. Chips should be hit with a slight descending blow – ball then turf.

This gives you some great feedback to make sure you’re doing things right.

Swing in the Full Length Mirror

I’m not talking about 100% full swings. There’s a ton of value in slow motion swinging in a full length mirror.

Check out your posture, and where the club goes throughout your swing. You’ll notice what you’re doing and how it looks compared to pictures you’ve seen and the guys playing golf on TV.

It’s a great exercise to feel the positions where the club is balanced and how your body reacts.

Most importantly, focus on the lower half of your swing – 9:00 to 3:00. Get this part right and you’ll be able to swing as hard as you want and hit the ball straight.

Just a few minutes each night will go a long way toward dominating in the spring…I promise.