How to Hit a Flop Shot

Golf Tips on the Flop ShotHere’s how to hit a Phil Mickelson ‘flop shot’ on the golf course.

The flop shot is very useful when you have a hazard between you and the pin and little green to work with.

Executed correctly, you’ll be able to stop the ball very quickly and give yourself a good chance of getting up and down. However there are a couple of caveats to bear in mind…

Firstly, remember that poor course management skills cost club-level golfers far more shots than an inability to play the flop shot. In other words, if you’re not really confident over this shot (i.e. you haven’t spent time practising it), then take your medicine and go for a safer option.

Secondly, if you have anything other than a very good lie (i.e. the golf ball is not sat on a tightsloping or heavy lie) then opt for a safe shot selection.

With that in mind, see the video below for tips on playing the Mickelson flop shot:

How to Hit a Flop Shot – Step-By-Step

  • Flop Shot - Use a Lob WedgeTake the most lofted club in your bag (ideally a 60 degree lob wedge).

  • Flop Shot - Place the ball in the center of your stance or a little forwardPlay the ball from the middle of your stance, or slightly forward.

  • Flop Shot - Open the clubfaceOpen the club so that you feel as though you could balance a glass of wine on the club face.

  • Flop Shot - Open your stanceThe club face will be aiming well right of the target (for the right-handed golfer) so aim your feet, hips and shoulders well left to compensate.

  • Flop Shot - Steep out-to-in swing path will lead to high shotThis set up position will lead to a very steep, out-to-in swing path but the ball should fly quite on a high, straight path towards your target.

  • Flop Shot - Swing along your shouldersWhen practising this shot, place a club along the line of the club face (that aims well right of target) and one that aims along the line of your feet (well left of target). Focus on swinging the club along the line of your feet and trust that the club face will send the ball towards the pin.