Golf Swing Tips: How to hit bunker shots

Golf Swing Tips: How to hit bunker shots

Have you ever been in a bunker and thought to yourself, what kind of shot will I be playing today?

Yet, its not a matter of a trajectory choice or how much spin you will put on the ball…

It’s whether or not you get out or blade it across the green.

Well, you’re in the right place to learn a few keys to get that ball up and out of the bunker every time.

Our goal here is to get the ball up and out onto the middle of the green. In the future, we will discuss a little more of the skill to hitting a sophisticated bunker shot.

Set-up Keys For Bunker Shots

  • Wide stance – wider than your hips
  • Set feet square to your target line
  • Dig your feet in
  • Since you dug your feet in - do not grip down on the club, this will assist in splashing the sand
  • Weight favors lead foot
  • Add knee flex so that the handle of the club is sitting lower – hands hang just above the height of your knees
  • Trail hand sits on the club a little weaker (more on top)(Helps engage the bounce of the club)
  • Club face must sit looking lofted (this is not open!) The face of the club will look like it is pointed directly to the sky
  • Ball position is slightly forward (inside lead heel) with hands centered at address (feels like they’re back slightly)

Swing Keys For Bunker Shots

  • Maintain weight left with very quiet hips
    • Weights starts left, stays left and finishes left
  • More of an arm and torso swing back and through
    • There are two types of swings – use the test below to figure out which one you are
      • V – swings steeper
      • U – swings shallower
  • Arms and torso on the way through, finishing with the torso square to your target, trail arm across the chest and the shaft vertical
  • Hips are a stabilizer and rotate very little on the follow through

Splash Test For Bunker Shots

  • Draw a line in the sand where the ball would be and take a swing
    • Did the club enter more than two inches behind the line
      • If you’re taking too much sand and hitting too far behind the ball, you need more of a V swing
    • Did you enter on or past the line
      • If you’re taking too little sand, hitting on top of the ball or picking it clean you need more a U swing
  • V-swing: Visualize that the V is the shape of your swing – you will have more hinge on the backswing getting the club vertical faster, match this up on the follow through.
  • U-swing: Visualize a wider arc, the V is formed by more hinge and the U is formed from less hinge (hands more quiet) and a wider swing arc. Match the follow-though with the backswing.

Mike Labella - PGA Pro

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.