Assess the risk
The spinning chip shot is a very satisfying shot when it comes off, but one that also has a high element of risk.
It’s a great option when you’re looking to take a big slope out of play, or when you have plenty of room past the pin, but very little in front of it.
If you decide to use this shot out on the course, make sure you’ve practised it plenty of times and are confident in your ability to play it.
One of the keys to playing it successfully is being committed, as any hesitation will result in a less-than-pure strike. If you can get the technique right, it’s a super weapon to have in your armoury.
Focus on set-up
Setting up correctly will help to produce added spin on the ball so that it checks up quickly when it lands. Start by standing with your feet slightly open, as you would on a regular chip.
Importantly, you should position your weight and hands slightly more forward than normal at address. This is the perfect set-up to produce the desired spin.
Set the wrists
Your initial movement away from the ball will play a key role in helping you to achieve added spin. You are looking for a steeper angle of attack to get the ball rolling up the face and spinning.
To do this, you should start the backswing by hinging your wrists almost immediately as you take the club away.
Notice how different my wrist position is on a normal chip shot compared to a spinning one. Focus on maintaining this position and holding the angle through the shot to produce the extra spin.
Trap the ball
The aggressive nature of the spinning chip means that you’re looking to trap the ball between the club and the turf.
As a result, you’ll pop the ball up in the air with lots of spin on it. A great way of understanding this feeling is to imagine you’re striking a match.
Think of the club hitting firmly into the turf, but without digging in and catching the shot heavy. This will compress the ball and get it spinning up the face.
Don’t be afraid to produce an aggressive downswing – remember, more speed equals more spin. Thinking about striking a match will also discourage deceleration, a common cause of catching the shot fat.
Think about flight
The angle of attack, combined with your forward weight position and early wrist hinge, means that the ball will fly very differently compared to a normal chip.
It will come out higher and land further up the green, but obviously won’t run as much. The only way you can get used to this flight and improve your distance control is to practise the shot.
It’s an enjoyable shot to play, so working on it shouldn’t feel like a chore. Practising the shot will also help you to appreciate how positive you can be through the ball.