3 Effective Tips to Help You Swing Out of the Bunker
Spending your time on the beach during summer might sound fun, but if you’re in a golf course, then sand would be one of your worst enemies. Sand traps, likewise known as bunkers, have always been a staple of golf. After all, they’re always present in every golf course out there.
However, bunkers can be really intimidating for beginners and even experienced golfers simply because escaping them can be a pain in the butt. Probably the easiest way you can get out of them is to avoid them in the first place.
But in the unfortunate event that you fall into one, don’t lose hope just yet. There are actually a few ways you can swing out of the bunker, and that’s what we’re going to talk about here.
But first, let’s talk about the basics of bunker play.
Bunker Play Basics
Since most golfers avoided the bunkers anyway, a lot of them don’t really have a concept of how they should swing out of it. However, since sand traps are common in golf courses, learning the basics is important so you won’t have a hard time swinging out of those traps in the event you come across one.
So what are these basics anyway? They are as follows:
- Open the clubhead’s face after you grip the club (this is the most important part you should remember)
- Maintain an open stance
- Create a solid base by wiggling your feet a bit into the sand
- Hit the sand just an inch behind the ball
- Go for a full swing
- Don’t decelerate while swinging
By now, you already have an idea as to how you can make a proper shot while in a bunker. That said, let’s now talk about the following tips you want to follow to successfully swing out of the bunker:
Tip #1: Check the position of your ball
If you’ve been through countless bunkers (which isn’t really something to be ashamed of), then you should already know that in order to swing your ball out of a bunker, you need to hit the sand first.
How much distance you should hit behind the ball is up for debate; however, as a rule of thumb, it should be somewhere between 2 and 5 inches depending on the type of sand.
To achieve this, you should check the ball’s position and make sure it’s in relation to your body. It should be even with your left armpit, or whichever arm is facing forward.
Through this, you can have the clubhead entering the sand shortly before the bottom of the swing. As a result, the club will end up slightly hitting behind the ball.
If you positioned the ball too far back, your club will end up digging into the sand. On the other hand, if you position the ball too far forward, you’ll end up hitting behind the ball, causing you to catch the shot thin.
Tip #2: Swing big
Even though most of the bunker shots you’re going to make are just a few yards from the green, it doesn’t mean that you can just make a small, soft swing.
If you really want to swing out of the bunker, you have to swing it big. This will allow you to slide the club under your ball easily, hence causing the ball to swing out of the sand and land onto the green.
The reason for this is pretty simple: the sand that’s sitting under your ball is dense.
Compared to a normal shot where you just have to contact the back of the ball using your club, a big swing (referred to as explosion shot) will require you to miss the ball and hit the sand instead.
However, you don’t want to make the sand your target. Instead, your target is still the ball, but this time, you’ll be using the sand to move it toward the hole.
To achieve this, you’ll have to swing really hard and aggressively. This might take a bit of practice, but it shouldn’t take you too long to at least understand why it’s necessary.
Tip #3: Accelerate through your ball
If you tried the first two tips only to find that your ball is still in the sand, then this could be due to one particular problem: you decelerated during your swing. Fortunately, you can easily solve this by accelerating through your ball.
Ideally, you should swing hard at the ball then make sure to follow through. This will allow your club to slide under the ball, allowing it to swing out of the bunker.
Most amateurs tend to fall victim to this. Instead of following through, they tend to stick their club into the sand, making it even harder for them to swing their ball out of the bunker.
Always remember that as long as you follow through, your ball will have enough power to finally fly out of the sand and onto the green.
Bunker shots are really intimidating, even for experienced golfers. However, as long as you keep these tips into account and be confident to make your swing, it will become a lot easier for you to swing out of the bunker.
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