|Golf Swing / Bunker Shots|
Golfing Tips - Bunkers
How to Play Bunker ShotsThe fairway bunker shot can be an intimidating shot for many inexperienced golfers. For starters, when playing out of fairway bunkers, it is wise to take one to two clubs more than normal. Begin by setting up normally, with your feet slightly dug in for stability and the ball positioned more toward the middle of your stance. Next, grip down slightly on the club for greater control.
Right before you begin your backswing, lift your chin off your chest. That raises your center of gravity and increases your ability to hit the ball first, which is crucial in executing the shot. Swing at 70 percent of your normal speed and there’s a good bet you’ll hit a clean, solid shot.
So, hitting a shot from a fairway bunker poses no great problem if the ball has a good lie. (Well, I am really just trying to build your confidence. I could say, you are in a bunker, you're score just went up three strokes!!!)
Long or middle irons as well as 3, 4, and 5 woods can be used with confidence in this situation.
Take a open stance, wider than normal. Work your feet into the sand for better balance. Play the ball back 1" to 2" to assure that the club hits the ball before the sand.
Choke down on the shaft.
Close your eyes (just kidding)
From an open stance, aim slightly to the left.
Swing Normal Speed
On long fairway bunker shots, try a 5 wood in preference to a long iron. Don't try to overpower this shot. Restrict your body turn and swing easy.
Now, if it is a BAD lie, then you need to play the course. Grab your club you are confident with, between a 7 and SW. Observe the course. Realize that you are not Tiger Woods. Realize the average golfer will clunk it out about 75 yards. Aim for a safe fairway shot to get you back into play. Shoot for the MIDDLE of the fairway, not left or right, 75 yards 'down bunker'.
Most importantly, follow through on your swing. Most weekend golfers, whether near the green or in a fairway bunker, STOP their swing on impact. Golf is simple. You ALWAYS need to follow through. Again, swing easy and follow through.
Michael Hamilton is an accomplished golfer, and editor of Golf Tips Weekly Newsletter. His most recent book can be found at:
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