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Let’s be honest, the flop shot is one of the hardest shots in golf. Sure, we all see the pros on TV hit amazing flop shots which lead to a tap in birdie or a clutch par save that keeps the momentum going, but it takes commitment, trust and absolute confidence which only comes from repeated practice. When I was playing as a pro, this was something I practiced for 10-15 minutes a day before heading out for my round, and a separate session at least once a week for an hour or two.
There are a few fundamental thoughts that increase our chances of success with a flop shot. First, the flop shot should only be used when you have no other options to get close to the pin. The flop shot will always be a low percentage shot, and should be considered a shot of last resort.
The How: The flop shot should always be played with your highest lofted wedge, most likely a 60 degree or higher. Step 1: You open your stance with the ball placed off the heel of your front foot. 2) You will be aiming well left of your target (maybe 35 degrees) and must have the clubface wide open which helps with loft and lowering the toe slightly which helps slide the club under the ball. 3) Your weight should be slightly forward helping you drive the club into the ground and pop the ball straight into the air. 4) One of the most important fundamentals to remember is for your arm and club to accelerate together through impact, this will keep the clubface open increasing the loft of the club and increase your odds of success. Note: Unlike a normal swing, you don’t want to release your hands at impact.
The last thing we all must remember is you will need to practice using this shot in different lies (fairway or rough, upper, downhill or side lies). Pro Tip: It’s important to understand how the lie effects your angle of attack. On a flat fairway lie you will need a steeper angle of attack than from the rough. Good luck!