Chipping From Downhill Lies

By under Short Game

Not every chip shot that you are going to hit will be played from a nice, level surface.  There will be times when your ball is positioned so you have a downhill lie for your next shot (see chipping from uphill lies for the another scenario).  If you already have the fundamentals down with a solid setup and shot technique then these shots do not have to be a challenge for you.  Use the following chipping tips to make a few small adjustments and you’ll still be able to put the ball close enough to the hole to make your putt.

Effects

Two things happen when your ball is on a downhill slope.  One is that your balance is going to be off a little bit.  This is because your front foot is going to be lower than your back foot.  The other is that the golf ball will not have the same flight path and angle once it hits the green.  Let’s see how we deal with those two differences.

Setup

With your setup lets make a few minor changes.  The first will be to widen your stance in order to help improve your stability.  The next is to lean forward so your hips and shoulders and parallel to the ground and more of your weight is applied to the front foot.  This will ensure that your swing path is even with the ground and that you make solid contact with the ball.  You still want to play the ball back in your stance.

Execution

With your weight forward the club is going to be de-lofted.  This will cause the ball to come out low and hot.  Due to the extra roll, you are not going to have to hit these shots as hard as you would have to from an even lie.  You also might want to make an adjustment on what club to chip with.  If you normally would have chipped with a 7-iron then you might need to go to an 8, 9, or even pitching wedge in order to get the ball to land where you want to on the green.

With just a few practice shots chipping from a downhill lie you should be able to execute these shots with as much success as from a flat lie.


One Response to “Chipping From Downhill Lies”

  1. I don’t strike too many of these shots at my local golf course but this advice is spot on.

    It’s all about balance with the stance and hitting with the slope of the ball.

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