John Phillips Tuition Series: Pitching
Swing / High Pitch Shots / Lower Pitch Shots
The pitch shot an be played from 100 yards out all the way to the edge of the green. These shots are not just played with a pitching wedge, as lots of golfers think. A lot of tour pros carry three wedges in their bags, a pitching wedge (loft of 46.5°), approach wedge (loft of 52°) and a lob wedge (loft of 60°).
All three clubs can be used depending on the distance to the flag and where the flag is positioned on the green and how the player seizes the shot.
First you need to know how far you hit each club with a smooth controlled swing, because distance and accuracy are the main goals, and more shots are wasted from 100 yards than in any other part of the game.
Here are a few tips on how to save shots from varying distance up to 100 yards. To play a 100 yard pitch shot align your knees, hips and shoulders parallel to the target, play the ball in the middle of your stance and make a 3/4 swing. Never try to lift the ball into the air, always strike down and through the ball.
As you get closer to the green, you can open your stance left of the target, grip the club lower down and make a slightly shorter backswing. Never let the club slow down through impact and always remember to make a bigger follow through than backswing.
Think of the swing of the pitch shots like the hands on a clock face:
5 to,to 5 past = 100 yards approx.
1/4 to, to 10 past = 50 yards approx.
20 to, to 1/4 past = 20 yards approx.
Pitching: Swing / High Pitch Shots / Lower Pitch Shots