Pitching and chipping.

Nothing ruined my pitch shots more than the clock method of Dave Pelz. All of that chart on the shaft nonsense got me so out of whack.

“Is this a 9 to 10:30 LW, or is it a 7:30 to 9 choked down 1/2″ SW?”

Either way it turned into laying the sod over it into the front bunker.

Using mechanical thoughts to control distance on pitching and chipping is a recipe for disaster. You obviously always want to be accelerating on these short shots and you need to vary your back swing to do so. However, how can you know the exact length of your back swing unless you watch it as you take it away…AWFUL…or have someone sit there and yell clock positions to you…maybe worse.

Let me put it this way. Let’s say you are trying to toss a crumpled up piece of paper into the trash can. Do you intellectually measure how far back you are going to swing your arm, how much angle you are going to have in your wrist and how far your arm is going to follow through in order to toss the paper the 8′ 10″ to the basket, that you measured with your tape measure?

If the answer is no, why are you using a laser to find out the pin is 46 yards away and you are going to take it back to 7:43, hit it 73.8% and follow through to 9:23?

How do you know if that swing makes the ball carry 42 yards that it is only going to release 4 yards?

When you throw the paper in the trash, you just kind of swing your arm and toss it about…”that hard.”

Pitches and chips should be done the same way. If you practice a lot, you have developed a feel on how long to swing and how hard to hit these shots. If you don’t practice very much, you have no chance of knowing exactly how to do a 9 to 10:30 swing and how far that is going to go.

So either way, look at the pin and the terrain, grab a club and hit it about…”that hard.”




  1. geoff duncan

    About 10 years ago I bought The Short Game Bible and actually tried the 4 wedge 3 position system for about a week. Nobody can hit a pitch shot from the 9:00 position. A chip maybe. So I quit, but since I had added a 56 and a 60 I kept using them and my short game got better. So maybe Pelz helped me inadvertantly. Later, as Pelz gained fame and became a Golf Channel fixture, his personality came to the forefront. He’s an asshole.

    • Monte Scheinblum

      LOL. I wouldn’t call him an a-hole as much as a piece of feminine hygiene equipment.

  2. Shakey Focus Lou

    Just how good of players themselves are these superstar teachers/gurus/douchebags/tampax? If they have all the answers, why haven’t I seen any of them play in the PGA, Masters, or the Open? Or the tour or senior tour? Seems like if you had the talent and ability, you could make more money and more fun doing that instead of instructing. Perhaps I’m wrong. Mike Myles, a SoCal professional golf instructor qualified for both the Masters and the PGA this year. If I were taking lessons, I’d probably take his advice over the name brands.

    • Monte Scheinblum

      Most of them are terrible golfers, relative to how much people listen to them.

      Miles made the Open and the PGA. He was on the PGA tour a few times as well.

  3. mygolfer

    My 2 cents on this, well the thing with pelz he tells you what to do, but not nearly how to do it. The principles though in controlling distance is very much accurate though.

    • Monte Scheinblum

      I have no problem with any of Dave Pelz’s science, but I agree with you in that science is no good without practical application.


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