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What Is A “Chip-In” In Golf? – Explained!

what is a chip-in in golf
what is a chip-in in golf

Golf is known to be a technical sport full of technical terms that you may not know the meaning of. One of those golf terms sometimes mentioned on golf courses and TV broadcasts is the term “Chip-In”.

If you are reading this article, you may wonder: What exactly is a “Chip-In” in golf?

In this article, we will explain to you exactly what the term “Chip-In” means in golf.

What Is A “Chip-In” In Golf?

In golf, a “Chip-In” is a special case of a “Chip” shot in which the ball ends up in the hole after landing. A “Chip” shot counts as a “Chip-In” whether the ball lands directly in the hole, or rolls into it after landing or bouncing a few times.

In the great game of golf, the expression “Chip-In” is mentioned on golf courses and on TV broadcasts every now and then.

In golf, the term “Chip-In” is the name given to a special case of “Chip” shot. In fact, a “Chip-In” shot is a “Chip” shot that sends the golf ball into the hole, whether it lands directly in it, or rolls or bounces into it.

As a “Chip” shot special case, a “Chip-In” typically gives the ball a parabolic trajectory over a relatively-small distance, before landing, bouncing, and rolling into the hole.

It is extremely rare for a “Chip-In” shot to land the golf ball directly into the golf hole without bouncing or rolling.

In many cases, a “Chip-In” shot’s rolling distance will be superior to its carry distance, as the maximum height reached by the ball is typically not that significant.

The golf ball will often spend more time rolling on the turf than travelling in the air during a “Chip-In” shot.

“Chip-In” shots in golf usually occur near or on the putting green. These shots are notorious for being difficult to pull off, and will raise the cheer of spectators.

 “Chip-In” shots are easier to hit with certain types of golf clubs, such as wedges and short irons. However, “Chip-In” shots can potentially be achieved with just about any club.

When you “Chip-In” the ball in golf, you do not use full power, as it is a finesse-based type of shot. For this reason, the club head should often only be raised up to knee level during the backswing of a “Chip-In” shot.

Down below you can see an example of a “Chip-In” shot’s trajectory.

Example of a "Chip-In" Golf Shot
Example of a “Chip-In” Golf Shot

As you can see in the image above, a “Chip-In” shot’s trajectory often features a parabolic ball path over a short distance that quickly turns to bouncing, and finally, rolling into the hole.

If you would like to perform more “Chip-In” shots and improve your golf score, you can read our guide: How To Improve Your Golf Score? – 9 Pro Tips.

Origin Of The Term “Chip-In”

The origin of the expression “Chip-In” in golf is quite simple, and is based in the English language.

The verb “to chip” in English means “to cut or break a small piece from something”.

In golf, when you swing to hit a “Chip” shot, you actually dig up a piece of turf out of the ground, creating a divot. This movement “breaks” the integrity of the turf, resulting in chipping.

During a “Chip-In” shot, you both “chip” the golf ball, and hit it “in” the golf hole, which is the definition of a “Chip-In” shot.

Therefore, it makes perfect sense where the term “Chip-In” shot got its name from in golf, as it is effectively the act of “chipping in” the golf ball into the hole.


There you go! After reading this article, you have learned exactly what a “Chip-In” is in golf.

Do you have any other golf expressions you wish to know more about? Have you ever managed to perform a “Chip-In”? How often do you pull off a “Chip-In” when you play golf? Let us know in the comments down below!

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