How To Chip From An Upslope – 5 Golf Tips

Upturned saucers

Many greens will have slopes around them to punish wayward iron shots. If you miss a green with your approach shot, you will often find yourself either in a bunker or on a slope with the ball above or below the level of your feet. Chipping from an upslope presents its own unique challenge and most of the adjustments you need to make are in your set up.

Problems with chipping from an upslope

The two big dangers with chipping from an upslope is that:

  • You lose your balance and fall back down the slope

  • You dig the clubface into the face of the slope and pop the ball straight up in the air

To deal with the first problem, put more weight on your left leg and lean into the slope to get your balance and avoid falling backwards. To avoid digging the club into the face of the slope, you can collapse the left arm and elbow - but make sure to keep your left wrist firm so that you don't flip the club and thin the ball. Tip: shorten your grip and choke up on the club to avoid digging the club into the slope.

The swing

You'll need to take a longer backswing and hit the ball harder when you are chipping on an upslope for a couple of reasons:

  • Because of the slope, the ball will tend to travel upwards rather than forwards so you will need extra clubhead speed to propel the ball forwards.

  • If you under hit the ball on an upslope, the ball will roll back down to your feet. Make sure that you at least reach the flag. If you want to be conservative, pitch the ball past the flag and take your chances with the putter.

Club Selection

The ball will release a lot if the green is above the level of your head because the ball will arrive on the green on a much shallower angle, so you need to land the ball well short of the flag because it will run and run. Make sure you choose a club with lots of loft so that you don't hit the ball straight into the face of the bank. This will happen if you choose a 5 or 6-iron. To clear the lip safely, make sure you choose at least a pitching wedge or a sand wedge.