Bunkered? Don’t change a thing : Maintain the status quo for better bunker play – Brief Article
If you’re like most average golfers, the worst possible place you can hit your approach shot is into a greenside bunker. That’s because you–like most golfers–have trouble escaping from them. Very rarely do you execute the shot correctly–hitting the sand behind the ball to get the ball out of the bunker.
And the instruction articles and TV segments all give you approximately the same tips when it comes to hitting bunker shots: Open the clubface, open your stance, make a steep swing along your feet line–not the target line–and hit two inches behind the ball.
Well, I’m here to suggest another method. I want you to treat a bunker shot the same as any other shot. Here’s how and why.
Don’t open your stance or clubface
The reason everybody wants you to open your stance and setup (insets above) is so you can use the bounce of your sand wedge. This feature allows the club to cut through, rather than dig into, the sand, propelling the ball out in the process. However, most players have a swing that already has the face open at impact. Opening the face at address will make the club too open at impact, giving it too much loft. It won’t hit the ball far enough to get to the hole. So don’t bother worrying about your clubface or stance. Just take a normal setup (big pictures above) and rely on your everyday swing.
Take a normal swing
Again, if you’re like most golfers, you probably have a steep, out-to-in swing path. That’s not great for drives, but it’s perfect for greenside bunker shots. It will allow you to hit the shot almost perfectly. But by altering your setup and trying to make an out-to-in swing, you’ll invariably overdo it. You’ll dig in too much behind the ball with too much loft and take too much sand. There won’t be sufficient force left to make the ball fly far enough and onto the green.
From a square stance, take your normal, full swing (big pictures above). Just worry about hitting the sand behind the ball. Wherever your sand divot is, the ball should have been in the middle of it (inset). Try this non-technique; it should help.
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