Most of amateurs have the wrong concept when pitching from the fairway. They treat it just like a normal full swing and try to trap the Ball against the turf with the hands in front. This can cause serious problems if your not careful! Why? Because it often produces fat shot or thin shot after the mind starts racing with different ways to correct the problem. It’s a vicious cycle and I see it all the time.
Essentially, this is what you have to do.
Play the ball in the middle of your stance with the shaft vertical to the ground. That means your hands are not in front or behind, the hands are directly above the Club. This is called “no shaft lean.” As you take the club back be sure to keep your chest moving along with the club head. This will connect the upper body to the swing. What about the hinge? You don’t have to try and hinge, allow the softness in your hands and arms to naturally create the hinge. This is a big piece of the puzzle that I always work on with my students. Next, think about getting the bottom of the club to the ground first. That means you have to arrive at impact with your hands above the club (not in front) so there is no shaft lean. That’s the big key. For some this is easy, especially those with an early release. However, some people may have to feel the club head passing the hands because they tend to lag the club too much. The idea is to produce a low point directly under the ball (not in front of the ball) with no shaft lean. This will create good height and spin to land the ball softly on any type of putting surface. How much should you follow through? About the same distance you swung the club back. Keep it simple.
Why is “no shaft lean” so important? It uses the bottom of the club as a “cushion” and keeps the leading edge from acting like a shovel. So remember, don’t trap the ball when pitching from the fairway.