The Effectiveness of the Bump and Run

We all know perfect rounds in golf don't exist, therefore, the bump and run shot is going to be called on occasionally when you miss greens. Before you decide to use this shot you will first need a pretty good idea on what situations to use the chip and run.

The chip and run should only be used when you are just laying off the green. A good estimate would be no further than 5-10 yards for most courses. However, links courses would be an exception where it is not uncommon to use the shot for 20-30 yards.

Ideally it is best for the ball to be laying on the fringe or the fairway within 10 yards of the green. However, if it is laying in the rough and you feel the rough isn't thick enough to alter a bump and run shot then you can still use it.

Once you have come to a conclusion that your situation calls for a chip and run, you can now use the same setup from chipping tips to hit this shot.

Here are some situations and clubs to use:

5-15 feet

Bump and Run Tiger Wood
  • Use either a Sand wedge or Pitching wedge that you can deloft

15-30 feet

bump and ru
  • Use either a 8 or 9 iron with little deloft of the face

30 feet plus

chip shot annika sorensta
  • Use either a 7 iron, 5 iron, or even a hybrid

There are two major things to consider; the focus on a landing area and approximating how far the bump and run will run out.

Some key factors that will influence your landing area and roll out will be whether the green is uphill, flat, downhill, wind conditions, and the speed of the green.

To determine the speed of the green you would use what is called a Stimpmeter. A Stimpmeter is an aluminum bar that is 3 feet long with a built in rack where the golf ball can roll safely out of.

Once positioned on a level surface of the putting green, the golf course Superintendent will slowly raise one side of the bar to about 20 degrees at which gravity will roll the ball down the bar and out onto the green. The Superintendent would then measure in feet the distance from the edge of the Stimpmeter to the resting spot of the ball.

Below you will find Jim Furyk demonstrating the landing of his bump and run as well as the roll out of his ball.

chip shot jim fury

A great visual to use in determining where to land a shot and the amount of roll out the ball will have is a GPS' "Estimated time of arrival" feature.

David Orr likes to use this analogy in putting and it can show the difference in timing it takes a ball to get to the hole.

For example, if you have an uphill chip and run, the time it takes the ball to get to the hole will be quicker than a downhill chip and run due to the uphill chip shot having a faster speed.

The following video on Putting Speed features a putt uphill and a putt downhill to show the timing differences between the two. This concept can be used for all of your chip shots to help you determine how much break you should play when your balls roll out.

To become a better short game player you will need to understand green reading, to learn more about how green reading can affect your chip shot, visit Green Reading.

By addressing these factors you will now have a pretty good grip on how to approach whatever situation you may face around the greens. It is my hope as you practice it will become one of your strengths!

Return From Bump and Run to Chipping Tips

Return from Bump and Run to Bo Knows Golf Tips

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Bo, I wanted to thank you for your help so far with my golf game. I wanted to let you know that I shot a 75 the other day in a tournament round, my best round ever. I had 32 total putts and NO 3 putts. I definitely couldn't have done that before. Thanks again and I'll be back in touch soon to get some more lessons lined up.


Bo I just wanted to tell you about another tournament I played in. I went out and played and shot a 75 which is one of my best rounds this year so I think everything is coming together. I've been making alot of birdies lately and just wanted to thank you for everything!

Adam Mikhalko

Hey Bo when I got back from camp I played really well I’m putting great and I’m hitting the ball well. Thank you for everything at camp.


Hey Bo!!! I have been playing my best in golf, mostly because of you!!! two days ago I shot an 80 in my club tourney and came in 3rd place.

Brandtley Taylor

I played in a tournament when I got back from camp and shot 76 and came in fourth. I feel much more confident on the course with my mental thoughts. I used the tips you wrote down on that sheet and they have helped me alot.

Freddy Weber