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Hinge and Hold Short Game Technique


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#1 mj49

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 05:30 PM

Hi all,

I’ve been practicing my short game using Mickelson’s hinge and hold technique. Just had a couple of newbie related questions.

1.    Is he using the term chipping to refer to both chipping and pitching. I know some people say there is a distinction where chipping is bounce and run shot whereas pitching is a shot that stays in the air longer. I’m assuming when he goes into the the 30/50 yard “chip” shots, these are in reality pitch shots?

2.    I’ve been having some consistency issues striking the ball; I’m hinging wrists and then doing a putting body motion. Keeping the lower body fairly still, and rocking the shoulders. This is for like 10-15 yard shot. Is this the correct overall movement? I’m having a hard time conceptualizing the hinge as well. In a normal golf shot, one would never break the wrist and do a backward hinge of the wrists, then why is it applied to short yard shot?

Any input is greatly appreciated!!


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#2 ferrispgm

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 05:53 PM

1.  For all shots, but less hinge for chip shots....if you did a full hinge it would be very difficult to control your speed enough to only fly the ball a few feet and roll out

2.  the movement is a pronation of the forearms and a backwards bending of the right wrist. it's basically a normal backswing with a quicker hinge...and yes you should be hinging on the backswing, just most people don't like to hinge so much and so quickly for a full swing as it feels really quick and awkward. The downswing should consist of a slight shift from the lower body...basically everything you do in a full swing except quicker with the wrist hinge and shorter with the arm swing.

On a side note....this is not an easy method..it has it's purpose but using the bounce gives you much more room for error.  When you hinge/hold you are only working with the leading edge and it's very easy to skull or chunk it if you aren't precise, plus it can be hard to judge distance unless you practice with it a lot.
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#3 dpb5031

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 05:56 PM

IMO, youre struggling because there's something missing in Phil's video.  He doesn't discuss pivot, knee work, body rotation and overall connection.  He clearly does it, but does not emphasize these critical aspects in his videos. It works much better if you stay connected and employ a gentle pivot.  Static lower body/all arms is a recipe for disaster.
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#4 Joelness

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 06:02 PM

My $.02..... Short game has to be taught in person, especially concerning the basics of the primary shots and theories.  The biggest thing I can say is to find someone local. In this case it doesn't have to be a PGA pro, but at least someone that is <4 hcp.

Short game more than any other part has many subtle nuances and adjustments you can make in order to hit different trajectories. The key to short game is controlling trajectory. All the subtle nuances such as shaft lean, body lean, wrist hinge, etc. are what controls trajectory. It REALLY helps to have hands on with someone that knows and can help the subtle feelings that change all of these variables.

Edited by Joelness, 05 December 2016 - 06:02 PM.

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#5 mj49

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 06:07 PM

Good info thanks guys. I am planning on taking lessons, do you guys know which method most pga pros teach? Just so I can familiarize myself before hand.


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#6 ferrispgm

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 06:22 PM

View Postmj49, on 05 December 2016 - 06:07 PM, said:

Good info thanks guys. I am planning on taking lessons, do you guys know which method most pga pros teach? Just so I can familiarize myself before hand.

I would ask the pro before signing up for a lesson....a large majority will teach somewhere between hinge/hold and using the bounce...usually use leading edge for chips and bounce for pitches.  Quite honestly, look up Monte Scheinblum's video on using the bounce and Wedge it close...he has them on sale right now and I think you will find them very beneficial, especially use the bounce.

Stan Utley is another bounce guy but I found his method to be a little too rounded and manipulative for my liking.
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#7 mj49

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 06:40 PM

You know, I did purchase and watch Montes video. But using the bounce seems so awkward to me from close distance. The feeling of going throw a full swing motion but at slow speed throws me off.

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#8 ferrispgm

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 06:51 PM

for shorter shots use a smaller swing or use less loft for a lower shot...it can feel weird at first but once you get used to it, it's sooo much easier to hit quality shots, especially if you don't get to work on it all the time.
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#9 hurricanes7

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 07:04 PM

how exactly does he hinge and hold
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#10 ferrispgm

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 07:18 PM

Who?

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#11 NCHACK85

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Posted 05 December 2016 - 08:07 PM

View Postmj49, on 05 December 2016 - 06:40 PM, said:

You know, I did purchase and watch Montes video. But using the bounce seems so awkward to me from close distance. The feeling of going throw a full swing motion but at slow speed throws me off.

You don't have to use a full swing. You can use chest and waist high. Just do the follow through to the top of you have a habit of stalling the trail arm. If it's really close l, you can use the chipping motion he shows you where you stand closer to the ball and ball off the back big toe and the club is a little raised/ on its toe. All you have to do is keep trail arm moving until after the ball is gone and let it release.

Edited by NCHACK85, 05 December 2016 - 08:08 PM.


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#12 dlam

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 02:53 AM

View Postmj49, on 05 December 2016 - 05:30 PM, said:

Hi all,

Iíve been practicing my short game using Mickelsonís hinge and hold technique. Just had a couple of newbie related questions.

1.       Is he using the term chipping to refer to both chipping and pitching. I know some people say there is a distinction where chipping is bounce and run shot whereas pitching is a shot that stays in the air longer. Iím assuming when he goes into the the 30/50 yard ďchipĒ shots, these are in reality pitch shots?

2.       Iíve been having some consistency issues striking the ball; Iím hinging wrists and then doing a putting body motion. Keeping the lower body fairly still, and rocking the shoulders. This is for like 10-15 yard shot. Is this the correct overall movement? Iím having a hard time conceptualizing the hinge as well. In a normal golf shot, one would never break the wrist and do a backward hinge of the wrists, then why is it applied to short yard shot?

Any input is greatly appreciated!!

In his DVD I think he uses the term flop/lob to distinguish that from  chipping.  The big difference is the release is full in the flop/lob whereas in chipping the release is "held off" or he calls it the "hinge and hold"

From 50 yards away I believe he calls it pitching which I think he describes it as just a long chip shot   It  looks like a longer version of the  H&H

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#13 SurfDuffer

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 07:19 AM

Trying to use Phil's video screwed me up for about 2 seasons.  Tom Watson't videos fixed it.
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#14 Joelness

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 09:17 AM

There's a large part of this bounce vs. stub that I'm reading above that I think needs some clarification. Each one has it's place depending on the grass (and lie) you're playing on.

Here in Colorado it's more useful to have a more downward strike with the hands forward using the leading edge more.  That's because we have bent and poa annua grasses.

Try those shots on into the grain bermuda and you're going to be one angry person. Even for a guy like me that practices 6 days a week I will still stub a chip 3 feet every couple of rounds when i try my stock leading edge bump and run in Florida.

Having said that, the methods that use more bounce to the shot (i.e. less or no forward shaft lean) are going to be more versatile on all types of grasses. Also, you're always going to need to know those shots to be consistent on tight lies on all grasses. Therefore, if you're not going to learn consistency with all of the shots (i.e. how to manipulate shaft lean and angle of attack at impact) then you will have better luck in the long run using the bounce a bit more.

Edited by Joelness, 06 December 2016 - 09:18 AM.

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#15 NCHACK85

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 09:34 AM

View PostJoelness, on 06 December 2016 - 09:17 AM, said:

There's a large part of this bounce vs. stub that I'm reading above that I think needs some clarification. Each one has it's place depending on the grass (and lie) you're playing on.

Here in Colorado it's more useful to have a more downward strike with the hands forward using the leading edge more.  That's because we have bent and poa annua grasses.

Try those shots on into the grain bermuda and you're going to be one angry person. Even for a guy like me that practices 6 days a week I will still stub a chip 3 feet every couple of rounds when i try my stock leading edge bump and run in Florida.

Having said that, the methods that use more bounce to the shot (i.e. less or no forward shaft lean) are going to be more versatile on all types of grasses. Also, you're always going to need to know those shots to be consistent on tight lies on all grasses. Therefore, if you're not going to learn consistency with all of the shots (i.e. how to manipulate shaft lean and angle of attack at impact) then you will have better luck in the long run using the bounce a bit more.

If you don't mind me being the Devils advocate, then why don't you just use the bounce? You can use it for all grass and lies? Granted the bump and run is different, but you could spend less time and put the time saved into something that needs work on. Unless you're like me, I've spent time using the bounce on 9 and 8i just to see how it will look and I've use it during the round.


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#16 dap

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 10:19 AM

Phil uses a 60 deg wedge with a wide sole for his hinge and hold. It's the wide sole that prevents the club digging and not so much the bounce. Phil reckons for a 60 deg wedge it doesn't matter if the bounce is 6 or 12 deg. If you watch Phil hinge and hold, the club never digs.

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#17 swhogan35

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 10:24 AM

I don't see really any players that use the hinge and hold method that are any good.  Of late I have seen Phil doing less of it as well.  Best short game players freely use their wrists and I longer shots or high lobs have a very similar look to the golf swing in terms of sequence and overall motion.  Hinge and hold is a great way to dig the leading edge and lead to shanking chips.

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#18 Joelness

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 10:42 AM

View PostNCHACK85, on 06 December 2016 - 09:34 AM, said:

View PostJoelness, on 06 December 2016 - 09:17 AM, said:

There's a large part of this bounce vs. stub that I'm reading above that I think needs some clarification. Each one has it's place depending on the grass (and lie) you're playing on.

Here in Colorado it's more useful to have a more downward strike with the hands forward using the leading edge more.  That's because we have bent and poa annua grasses.

Try those shots on into the grain bermuda and you're going to be one angry person. Even for a guy like me that practices 6 days a week I will still stub a chip 3 feet every couple of rounds when i try my stock leading edge bump and run in Florida.

Having said that, the methods that use more bounce to the shot (i.e. less or no forward shaft lean) are going to be more versatile on all types of grasses. Also, you're always going to need to know those shots to be consistent on tight lies on all grasses. Therefore, if you're not going to learn consistency with all of the shots (i.e. how to manipulate shaft lean and angle of attack at impact) then you will have better luck in the long run using the bounce a bit more.

If you don't mind me being the Devils advocate, then why don't you just use the bounce? You can use it for all grass and lies? Granted the bump and run is different, but you could spend less time and put the time saved into something that needs work on. Unless you're like me, I've spent time using the bounce on 9 and 8i just to see how it will look and I've use it during the round.

Great question and I'm glad you asked. The full answer will take some time so bear with me if my condensed version isn't good enough. The shortest answer I can think of is to be the best golfer you can be you need to have all tools in the bag.

First off, I misspoke just a little. You can use a more bouncy shot for all grass and most lies BUT that doesn't mean it's going to be the most consistent shot selected in all scenarios you will face. A more bouncy shot will 1. tend to be a mid to higher lofted shot and 2. does not minimize the amount of grass between your clubface and the ball at impact.

Speaking more on 1 above: I have grown up being taught that the lowest trajectory shot and the smallest swing will produce the most consistency (by default also room for error). Hence, shots that tend to fly further are not my first option.

Speaking more about number 2: Consistency in short game shots is always helped by minimizing this, the biggest X factor in short game. The steeper you get, the more you will minimize getting grass between the clubface and the ball.

One last thing, you mentioned spending less time and put it into something that needs work.  I can't speak for everyone, but once you get to the bogey-golf skill level and better I think I can say this without hesitation... Everyone would save the most shots by working on short game (including putting) over the full swing. Nobody, even the best in the world, hits it well every day.  The biggest key to this game is saving pars when you're missing greens.

Edited by Joelness, 06 December 2016 - 12:03 PM.

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#19 David C

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 12:47 PM

He doesn't 'hold' anything and 'uses the bounce'. He accelerates his lead hand faster, as opposed to his trail hand or pivot, and his low point is more opposite his lead shoulder and not constantly moving with his right elbow; his ball position is more forward therefore, but he absolutely uses the bounce.

If you look at his wedges and the wedges he has collorated with callaway on, they range from low to high bounce, but all have a certain camber and even the low effective bounce wedges (even more so actually) have a high bounce angle.

As he says and as you can see on video when he says 'hold' he means 'accelerate going through'.

Stan Utley, Brett Rumford - same if not more shaft lean than Phil Mickelson. From what I see, they just keep the right hand moving as it works under, from a more central ball position as opposed to left.

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#20 dpb5031

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Posted 06 December 2016 - 02:16 PM

View PostDavid C, on 06 December 2016 - 12:47 PM, said:

He doesn't 'hold' anything and 'uses the bounce'. He accelerates his lead hand faster, as opposed to his trail hand or pivot, and his low point is more opposite his lead shoulder and not constantly moving with his right elbow; his ball position is more forward therefore, but he absolutely uses the bounce.

If you look at his wedges and the wedges he has collorated with callaway on, they range from low to high bounce, but all have a certain camber and even the low effective bounce wedges (even more so actually) have a high bounce angle.

As he says and as you can see on video when he says 'hold' he means 'accelerate going through'.

Stan Utley, Brett Rumford - same if not more shaft lean than Phil Mickelson. From what I see, they just keep the right hand moving as it works under, from a more central ball position as opposed to left.

Agreed, and he also does not have a still/static lower body nor does he use any motion similar to a putting stroke.  

His upper arms are connected to his torso slightly down from arm pits, and he uses body rotation as well as arm motion.  This means the lower body needs to be engaged and you have to keep the motion/rotation going.  Do it right and you create a nice flat spot at the bottom of the swing arc.

Keeping your legs and body static, or even stalling midway thru and just using hands and arms typically results in a higher probability of chunks and skulls.

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#21 bassman1308

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 11:35 PM

I use, what I understand, as the fundamentals of the hinge and hold.  Feet close together, slightly open, weight forward, ball off back foot. I take away LOW with a VERY quick right wrist set and rotate through the ball with my body, lead hand dominant. For short chips, your hands will not move off the ball much at all. Just break your wrists, keep them set and rotate through. Hands must finish ahead of club. Normally use 52* but If ball sitting down or heavy rough, use 60*/64*.   I play a lot and practice to spots in my back yard ,  My up & downs are around 75%.  That's up to 30 yards.  IMO , the secret is making consistent contact and this style works great for me.

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