The flop shot can be one of the most challenging golf shots to master! In some respects, you need to forget many of the things that you were taught about a proper golf swing in order to perform this type of shot.
The main reason why learning the flop shot is important is because it will allow you to hit the ball high over obstacles and land soft on the green. This shot can come in handy around the green when you are trying to hit over a sand trap, or if you simply don't want to put a lot of spin on the ball. If you are accurate, you can land the ball very close the the pin, and hopefully, it will stay put.
There are a few key things that you need to analyze before you try this shot. They are your lie, how far you want to hit the ball, and how high you want to hit the ball. Obviously, it will be much more difficult to hit the ball high, and with control, out of the deep rough than it will be from the fairway.
Depending on the lie, you make have to alter the amount of force that you produce with your swing in order to get the intended result. A ball that is in the rough, but propped up on grass, likely will not need as much power as a ball that is buried in deep grass.
Also, it is very important that you attempt this shot with a high lofted club such as a lob wedge. A loft of 60 degrees or more would be recommended for a true flop shot.
-At setup, you need to establish an open stance. Meaning, if you are right handed, your feet should be aiming to the left of your target. This stance is typical for normal chip and pitch shots as the open stance allows you to more effectively rotate your trunk at contact and the follow through.
-As with regular chip and pitch shots, the ball should be played from around the middle of your stance.
-Your club face should be open at address. If you are right handed, the face of the club should be pointing to the right. This also will "flatten" the club face so that you can get under the ball and launch it high into the air.
-Aim slightly behind the ball, similar to a sand shot, so that your club has the opportunity to travel under the ball.
-When you swing, the path of the club should be along your target line. To the left if you are right handed, to the right if you are left handed.
-The amount of back swing that you will need to take will depend on the factors that I mentioned above: lie, distance, and height. You will likely be taking a larger swing than you would if you were to chip or pitch the ball regularly but the fact that your club face is open will help balance things out by launching the ball in a vertical direction compared to a horizontal direction.
-You want a relatively steep swing in order to pull off this shot, so you will need to cock your wrists early in the swing It also is important to keep your hands and wrists loose throughout the swing. Since you are performing more wrist motion with this type of shot compared to a standard golf swing, stiff wrists will severely limit you ability to get the golf ball high into the air.
-One extremely important tip is that you need to accelerate
through the ball! This will ensure that the ball gets up in to the air.
If you hack at the ball and/or don't follow through completely, your
shot will likely be low and short.
The flop shot can be extremely difficult to master so don't worry if things don't go perfectly immediately. You have to put aside many things that you have learned about the proper golf swing in order to accomplish a good flop. Just keep practicing and you will get it!