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+ Freedom Formula + Chip shot Stand and Deliver


High-level short game players understand the nuances associated with playing greenside shots. One cool technical element to take note of is how basic


posture changes through the progression of chipping, pitching and sand shots. When chipping, consider standing closer and taller than normal. This adjustment makes the club sit more “toe down” ensuring an easier glide through the grass, while mini- mizing the amount of arc in the swing–two important factors in producing clean contact and on-target hits. Pitch shots adopt a more traditional posture, with the club


soled naturally to the turf, whereas bunker shots require a substan- tially lowered body position. Take note of the sink in my knees and low position of the handle. These are two position changes that help produce a shallow cut, leading to high, soft spinners.


Sand shot


Bunker shots require a substantially lowered body position.


Pitch shot


Here’s the deal. People are at their best when they feel their best. If you’re going to play your best golf, you


need to consistently be operating from an el- evated mood. The great news is you control your mood. How? Through the thoughts you choose. The “Freedom Formula” is understanding the connection between thoughts, feelings, actions and results. Positive thoughts elevate our mood, leading to the greatest access to our “best stuff.” Conversely, negative thinking lowers our mood, leading to mostly garbage, or at best, a lesser version of what we’re capable of. The challenge is to practice kick starting the formula on each and every shot by thinking of something that makes you feel pumped. It doesn’t even have to be rooted in reality. If it gets you excited, any thought is fair game. Following your shot, learn to suspend judgment of the outcome. Mentally tough athletes understand that judging an out- come in a negative way lowers their mood, which will in turn possibly have a negative affect on their ability to perform on the next shot.


Poppy Hills Director of Instruction Jeff Ritter appeared on The Golf Channel in June, talking with host Lauren Thompson and demonstrating to “The Golf Channel Morning Drive” audience technique elements of the top players.


To connect with Jeff Ritter for the MTT Performance/Golf Channel Academy experience at Poppy Hills, visit mttperformance.com.


SUMMER 2015 / NCGA.ORG / 49


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