The Basics of Proper Approach Shot Set Up

All you need to know about approach shots

An approach shot in golf is the shot made to the green after the tee shot. (A tee shot refers to the first shot made from the teeing ground in a golf hole.) You need to swing your body completely to make an accurate approach shot. To master this shot while playing a moderately difficult game is quite easy. You become aware about your game’s improvement when you start making more ball marks towards the green. Most probably, it means that you are hitting the ball on the approach. This is your main objective.

Every time you play a golf game, you will definitely face such shots. You might be overwhelmed sometimes about how to deal with an approach shot. But there is nothing to panic. Even the master golfers face such situations. You just need to handle it correctly without messing up a beautiful round. There are some basics which you should keep in mind, while making an approach shot:

  • You should target the middle point of the green and ignore the flag. Aim for a pin placement, which you think you might miss. You might be left in a bunker or any other position. It might add more strokes to the round.
  • Do not focus on the distance; focus on alignment instead.

There are basically three types of approach shots that you will face during your golf rounds:

  1. The pitch shot: The most common type of approach shot is the pitch shot, generally hit from 50-100 yards away from the green. It is hit with a sand wedge or the pitching wedge. You need to open your stance somewhat more than with other golf shots. Align with the ball on your back foot. You should take a full swing. Avoid hitting a three quarters or a half shot. To reduce the travelling distance of the golf ball, choke down a couple of inches on the club.
  2. The chip shot: This shot is made from a shorter distance. The optimum method to hit a chip shot is to hit the ball only till 1/3rd of the total way to the hole. The rest 2/3rd distance is covered by the ball by rolling itself. A less lofted club like 7, 8 or 9 can be used.
  3. Put the ball in your stance and transfer your weight on the left side. Only a half swing is needed for this shot.
  4. The flop shot: This is a difficult shot to master. It is good if you have a slightly higher lofted club like a 60 degree wedge. You need to lift the ball to the maximum height possible and make it drop and stick wherever it lands. You need to have a wide stance and hit the ball from beneath. You should be very consistent with your golf practice to master this shot.

Alignment is the most important thing in golf. Since you might have experienced already that is not easy to become a master of approach shots, but if you adopt some methods listed above, you can highly improve the precision of your approach shots.