What Is the Key to Good Chipping from a Downslope?
When trying to chip on a downslope your body may find itself in an uncomfortable position. At times this is the problem since your body automatically tries to establish a form of balance. Then you have issues with how the ball will travel. Because the ground is uneven the ball may move too quickly or too slowly depending on how you swing and your stance. Because of the elements of gravity there may be more to this than just being able to hit the ball in the right direction. Here are some elements to help you pinpoint the key issue in chipping from a downslope.
Proper Set Up for Hitting the Ball
A good setup can help you get off to a good start when chipping. When you get ready to swing the club should be behind the ball. Check your stance. Your legs should be spread apart but a little wider than you normally stand. This would place the ball roughly at the midway point of your stance. Keep in mind the steeper the slope the easier it should be to make good contact with the ball from behind. It may help to have the ball positioned further away from you (your stance).
Good Body Positioning behind the Ball
Have shoulders and your stance parallel with each other. This helps your swing move in the direction of the slope or travel in the same way the slope is made. When the slope is steeper you can shift your body weight toward your lead foot when you set up for your shot. A good 60 percent of your weight would transfer at this point. More weight would shift to your lead leg when the hill is steeper. Think about how your swing will actually travel with the slope as you follow through your shot.
Solid Swing Action
Solid swing action includes good movement in the hips and smooth swinging motion as you move in to hit the ball. You may need to consider changing clubs and going up one iron. This will help you give the ball more flight. Others may suggest going up two irons since some slopes may cause the ball to travel lower unless you can give it good speed and loft. Also note the direction the ball may travel depending on the steepness of the slope.