WATCH: Master this one shot to lower your scores and become more competitive
Mastering the wedge is the one area that golfers at any level can work on to start shooting lower scores.
Golf coach Brian Manzella believes that too many players overcomplicate their short game.
Manzella believes that simplicity is the key to mastering the pitch and getting those scores down.
“All you have to be able to do, even if you just hit an average tee shot, and an average second shot, and now you’re 30-40 yards from the green or even 30-40 feet from the green, is just take a pitching wedge or a gap wedge — stay away from the Tour wedges — and just take a normal wedge shot with a normal, square stance, a little bit choked up. Play the ball in the middle of your stance, and just make a back-and-forth motion sweeping the grass,” Manzella told Golf.com.
“That’s it. Just hit a normal pitch and get it in the air.”
Manzella claims to witness a number of golfers who make decent shots from the tee and fairway but falter around the green due to a lack of fundamental wedge abilities.
He feels that getting your pitch to carry 30-40 yards is the basic fundamental that any golfer can master which will put them on the path to greatly improved scores.
Striking the ball first and the ground second is crucial for obtaining a good strike on your pitch strokes. Obviously, the best method to achieve this is to lower the club down into the back of the ball time and again.
“It doesn’t have to be a sand wedge — a pitching wedge or gap wedge works fine,” Manzella says. “And if you get good with that 30-, 40-yard swing, everything that made that swing work — which you can teach a beginner today — that swing can be made longer on both sides, and you can stick another club in your hands.”
Manzella says should consider your usual swing to be only an extension of that tiny pitch. It’s also the most practical stroke you can master, even if you’re not a big golfer.
He feels that the popularity of the scramble format also makes being able to hit a solid pitch shot a great asset for a player at any level of the game.
“If you can pitch the ball 30-40 yards, they’re going to use your shot in a scramble,” Manzella says.
There are plenty of helpful drills that you can employ to ensure that you maintain a smooth swing on the pitch.
Paying attention to key areas can secure remarkable gains for players in a very short space of time.
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