Continuing on from last weeks post Orlando Golf Lessons – Chipping, this weeks post is all about that glorious art form, pitching.
A super quick recap, Brendon Elliott is a local golf pro and he’s been giving me short game lessons. So far we’ve covered putting and chipping and those posts can be viewed below.
I’ve mentioned this before, but Brendon has the greatest backyard ever..
We conduct all of our lessons from here and it’s awesome.
To make the lesson even more enjoyable, we used the new VJ Singh mat and practiced pitching from his elevated back porch, the only thing missing was a fired grill and a couple of cold ones, preferably some Three Fellas Brew.
When pitching, typically you’ll use any wedge or a 9-iron. Here’s the setup (as best I can describe it)
- Use a full swing grip
- Distribute your weight evenly between your left & right foot
- Heels should be 10 to 12 inches apart
- Ball position is center or slightly back
- Square clubface
- Shaft angle slightly forward (around 1 o’clock)
- Stand closer to the ball
The swing involves turning your shoulders and coiling your upper body during the backswing. The greater the shoulder turn, the greater the swing speed.
During the backswing, there will be full setting of the wrists along with a fuller arm swing and shoulder turn. On the downswing, your body will uncoil while delivering the forward lean of the club shaft at impact. This forward lean of the club results from maintaining the wrist bend. It is of the utmost importance that the wrist is bent at impact so the clubhead is hitting down through impact. This results in the “hitting down on the ball.”
Once you get this down, all that remains is to control the distances. The best visual I can give is to imagine your arms are the hour hand on a clock. To hit a short shot, your backswing should take your arms to 8 o’clock and they finish at 4 o’clock. A medium shot will take your back swing to 9 o’clock, finishing at 3 o’clock. Last, a long shot takes your backswing to 10 o’clock and finishes at 2 o’clock.
I know how confusing the above might seem, so here’s a great video from Jeff Yurkiewicz.
Hopefully between my ramblings and this sweet video you can piece together something that will help your short game!