How to Stop Chunking the Golf Ball

Chunking the golf ball is a common problem among golfers, especially beginners. It occurs when a golfer’s club strikes the ground behind the ball, resulting in a loss of distance and accuracy. To eliminate chunking and improve your overall golf game , follow these steps and practice diligently.

  1. Proper stance and posture:

A stable and balanced stance is crucial for consistent ball striking. Ensure your feet are shoulder-width apart, with your weight distributed evenly on both feet. Slightly bend your knees and maintain a straight spine angle. Keep your arms hanging naturally from your shoulders as you grip the club.

  1. Correct ball position:

Place the ball in the proper position relative to your stance. For short irons, the ball should be in the middle of your stance. As the club gets longer, progressively move the ball forward in your stance, reaching its farthest point with the driver.

  1. Weight shift during the swing:

A proper weight shift is essential for solid contact. As you begin your backswing, transfer your weight to your back foot, allowing your body to coil. During the downswing, shift your weight towards your front foot while maintaining balance.

  1. Shallow your swing:

A steep swing can lead to chunking. To create a shallower swing, focus on keeping your right elbow (for right-handed golfers) close to your body during the downswing. This action will help you maintain a consistent swing plane, reducing the likelihood of hitting the ground before the ball.

  1. Maintain a steady head:

Keep your head steady throughout your swing to maintain a consistent spine angle. Avoid lifting or dipping your head, as these movements can lead to chunking. Focus on a spot on the back of the ball to help you maintain your head position.

  1. Practice proper wrist hinge:

Hinging your wrists correctly helps create an efficient swing that promotes solid ball contact. As you take the club back, hinge your wrists upward, creating a 90-degree angle between the club shaft and your lead forearm. Maintain this angle during the downswing until you naturally release the club through impact.

  1. Follow through:

An incomplete follow-through can lead to chunking. Ensure you finish your swing with your weight on your front foot, your hips rotated, and your chest facing the target. Your right shoulder (for right-handed golfers) should be closer to the target than your left shoulder.

  1. Practice drills:

Drills can help you eliminate chunking from your game. Try the towel drill, where you place a towel behind the ball, about 4 inches away. Your goal is to hit the ball without disturbing the towel. This practice encourages a more shallow swing and better contact.


Common Causes of Chunking

Cause #Swing Path IssueClubface AngleTiming ProblemWeight DistributionMental Factor
1Outside-inOpenEarly releaseWeight too far backLack of focus
2Inside-outClosedLate releaseWeight too far forwardOverthinking
3Steep downswingOver-rotatedRushed swingUneven weight distributionAnxiety
4Shallow downswingUnder-rotatedSlow swingPoor balanceTension
5Over-the-topSquareHesitationLeaning into the ballConfidence
6Under-the-planeHoodedPoor rhythmHanging backDistractions
7Over-the-planeToe-downInconsistent tempoSwayingFatigue
8SwayingHeel-downChopping motionSlidingNerves
9CastingFlippingCollapsing armsImproper footworkPressure
10ScoopingCuppingDeceleratingWeak lower bodyFear

 Setup Adjustments

Adjustment #Ball PositionStance WidthPostureGripAlignment
1Slightly backShoulder-widthUprightNeutralSquare
2CenteredWiderSlight bendStrongerParallel
3ForwardNarrowerMore bendWeakerOpen
4ConsistentComfortableStraight spineInterlockingClosed
5Off the heelStableChin upOverlappingAligned
6Off the toeBalancedRelaxed arms10-finger gripTargeted
7MiddleAdjustedAthletic stanceVardon gripProper
8Slightly forwardCustomizedNaturalProper pressureAligned with target
9AdjustedConsistentGood postureFirm gripCorrect
10OptimalPersonalizedNeutralSecure gripConsistent

Swing Adjustments

Adjustment #TakeawayBackswingTransitionDownswingFollow-through
2Low and slowCompactTempoShallowExtended
4Inside3/4 lengthWeight shiftLagFull
5ConnectedShorterPauseLate releaseRelaxed

Drills and Exercises

Drill/Exercise #Drill NameFocus AreaPurposeRepetitionsFrequency
1Divot drillImpactImprove contact with the ball10-15Daily
2Towel drillDownswingEliminate fat shots10-15Daily
3Weight transfer drillWeight shiftImprove balance and weight shift10-15Daily
4Impact bag drillImpact positionImprove clubface control10-15Daily
5Half swing drillSwing controlDevelop better control10-15Daily
6Tee drillBall strikingImprove ball striking consistency10-15Daily
7Step drillTimingImprove swing timing10-15Daily
8Split grip drillSwing pathImprove swing path10-15Daily
9Hinge-and-hold drillWrist hingeTrain proper wrist hinge10-15Daily
10One-arm drillBody rotationEnhance body rotation in the swing10-15Daily

Tips for Consistent Results

Tip #Pre-round RoutineCourse ManagementMental ApproachPractice RoutineEquipment Check
1Warm-upClub selectionVisualizationRegular practiceClub fitting
2StretchingCourse mappingBreathingShort game focusProper grips
3Putting practiceRisk assessmentPositive self-talkSwing drillsCorrect lie angles
4Chipping practiceShot selectionConfidenceMirror workShaft flex
5Range sessionTarget focusRelaxationQuality over quantityBall type
6Swing tempoPlay within yourselfFocusConsistent setupClub length
7Mental rehearsalAdapt to conditionsPatienceFeedbackClub condition
8Goals settingStrategyEmotional controlPurposeful practiceProper shoes
9NutritionPlaying percentagesMindfulnessChallenge yourselfComfortable clothing
10HydrationSmart decisionsCommitment to shotsProgress trackingGolf glove fit


Chunking the golf ball can be frustrating, but with the proper technique and practice, you can eliminate this issue from your game. Focus on your stance, ball position, weight shift, swing plane, head position, wrist hinge, and follow-through. By implementing these adjustments and practicing regularly, you will see improvements in your ball striking and overall golf game.


  • Ray Barnes

    Ray Barnes, our Senior Staff Writer and a Golf Analyst with a PhD in Sports Analytics, is a beacon of insight in the golfing world. With a deep understanding of the sport's nuances, statistical analysis, and a talent for demystifying complexities, he provides in-depth analysis and captivating narratives that engage golf enthusiasts worldwide.

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