Play Better Golf

Mastering The Knuckle Ball Flop Shot

Have you seen Phil Mickelson and other top-tier pros execute those flop shots every time? What makes them pretty sure about this delicate, tricky shot?

Whenever there’s little green to work with, the flop shot can become very useful. For example, you are off the green side with a tucked pin, then you will need a shot that sticks as quickly as it lands. A  shot that doesn’t spin and stops dead as it hits the green. Apart from adding diversity to the shot, this shot can also be impressive to watch when done properly.

Here are the tips on which club to use, how to grip the club, and how to exactly execute the shot that will make the ball land on the green without rolling out:

The Setup

Use a 60-degree wedge or the most lofted club you have. Open the face and stance, similar to what you will do when making a bunker shot. (See Photo 1). Make your grip weaker. If you are a right hander, turn both of your hands counterclockwise on the grip. You will have a “v” formation between your thumb and first finger and make sure the “v” points to your lead shoulder. (See Photo 2) gripping the club weakly makes sure that the face does not rotate close as you make your shot.

The Shot

In photos 3-8, you will see the proper flop shot technique. During the backswing, see to it that the wrists hinge quickly, setting up a downswing that lets the face of the club to slide underneath the ball. Beyond impact, the face will remain pointing to the sky, with the ball hardly spinning off the face and will land on the green without rolling out. Imagine how little a knuckle ball in baseball spins.

Practicing this shot regularly helps you master how Phil makes his knuckle ball flop shot in no time.