Tired of Skulling Chip Shots?

Off-season means time to start making those improvements. Here, Storey Creek's Teaching Professional Adam Haddad takes you through a step-by-step process to improve your chipping...

Over my many years of teaching and playing golf, I am amazed how so many players of different skill levels waste multiple shots around the green when chipping. It is an important part of the game as even the best players in the world cannot avoid having to chip.

A skulled chip shot is the most common problem I normally see, and it happens at the worst times when you don’t have much green to work with and the ball goes racing across the green.

What causes this problem is that most players try to lift the ball into the air which ends up resulting in a skulled shot.

What ends up getting the ball air born is the loft of the golf club, that’s why a wedge has a lot more loft on the face, to get the ball airborne you need to create a chipping motion that is similar to your putting stroke but with a few little changes to the set-up position.

#1. When setting up, start by having a more upright posture, position the ball in the middle of your stance and place most of your weight on your front foot. This will help keep your lower body quiet and keep your body from swaying. 

#2. Next, open your stance slightly and push your hands a little bit ahead of the ball. These adjustments in the set-up position will place you in position to create a proper motion through the ball and prevent you from skulling the ball.

#3. Once in the set-up position, simply swing your arms from your shoulder sockets, while making sure that your hands stay nice and quiet. By doing this you should really feel how engaged your shoulders are while your lower body should stay nice and still. The length of the backswing should be the same as the length of the follow through to allow good tempo and distance control.

If executed properly, the ball should just "pop" into the air. As you practice the chipping motion, you will quickly learn how far back to take the club to hit these shots different distances.

The most important thing to remember on this shot is allowing the club to create a proper strike on the ball to allow it to get airborne, don't try to lift the ball into the air (that's what causes a skull).

If you use this technique, practice, and most of all, "always" let the loft of the club face get the ball into the air, you will eliminate the skull shot from your game forever.

Adam Haddad can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.