How to Pitch From Deep Rough
Take practice swings to feel how to knife through the grass
By David Glenz
Top 100 Teacher
This story is for you if...
• You think you have to chop the ball out when pitching from rough.
• Your pitch swing is an arms-only swing.
Your ball has landed in thick rough (you can barely see the top of it) 20 yards short of the green. To save par, you have to dig it out and land it close. That's a tall order.
Because the ball is deep in the grass, you think you have to chop it out with your arms, but that's a sure recipe for inconsistent contact. The key is to turn your body with your swing. Practice this move from a similar lie until you're confident in your ability to cut through the grass. It's very similar to a bunker shot in that you want to get the club through the grass and underneath the ball.
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HOW TO DIG IT OUT AND PITCH IT CLOSE
A lot of golfers get to this spot in two and then walk off the green with a double. The swing shown here, however, gives you a consistent feel, so you should get the ball within 10 feet every time.
With your sand or lob wedge, line up square to the target line in a balanced stance, with the ball positioned slightly forward of center.
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Take the club back easy so that your hands are at least waist-high when the shaft points straight up.
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Turn your body through the ball and swing through to a finish that's a mirror image of your backswing: hands waist high and the shaft pointing straight up. This will help you create a more consistent result and add feel to the shot.
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