Calibrating your pitch shots

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According to golfers statistics, pitch shots are a strong point to work on to achieve lower scores. Pitch shots are challenging to master because of the various range of distances and wedges that you may choose and decide on. On the average, any distance between 20 to 100 yards is a good range to master with your wedges.

A pitch is always done with the wedges. Conceptually, a pitch shot is more of flying the ball more than it rolls. There are no other clubs that you can pitch with except with the wedges. The nine iron might also work for pitching but is dependent on the discretion of the player. Other than this, you may call it a chip shot, wherein you will roll the ball more than it flies.

Jordan Spieth hits a pitch shot to the 18th green. AFP PHOTO

Mastering your wedges will require distance control and direction. Assuming you have a pitching wedge, a gap wedge and sand wedge, then, you have three wedges to work with to find out the exact distances for each wedge, with at least four different swing sizes.

You can start with a quarter swing and use the three wedges with this particular swing size. Next, you can do a half swing with the same three wedges. The three quarter swing and the full swing follow.

Another important thing to consider is tempo. You can drill, for example, a pitching wedge with a quarter swing at a slow, medium and fast tempo. This will cause you to establish three different distances with the same swing size. Take note of it and memorize it.

By doing a half swing with a slow, medium and fast tempo, you will again establish three different distances for this particular swing size. This goes the same for the three quarter swing and full swing.

The two previous paragraphs indicate that you can also practice this manner with your gap wedge and sand wedge. By doing so, you will gain a wide variety of shots to choose from. A bit more creativity will also be an advantage.

So, a good way to calibrate your pitch shots is to do a quarter, half, three quarter and full swings for each of your wedge, with your usual tempo or swing speed. Establish the distances for each wedge with the four swing sizes.

After doing so, work on a slow, medium and fast tempo with each of your wedge, for each swing size. You can regard your usual tempo or swing speed as your medium tempo. Select a slow tempo for each swing size, and then establish the distances. Do the same thing with a fast tempo.

Getting better with your pitch shots will definitely cut strokes on chipping and putting. The context mentioned above is a good guide that you can engage with.

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