Video Series

Video Transcript

How can you master golf bunker shots? It’s a part of the game that gets us all at some point, going in a bunker, not being able to get the ball out. But if you’re a really good bunker player, it’ll improve your scores and improve your confidence. And actually, when you’re standing back down the fairway looking at 160 yards into a green, you’ll have the confidence to take the flag on knowing that if by chance you do not get in the bunker because you’re a master of the golf bunker shot, you’ll be able to clip it back out on the green and hold up for par most times anyway.

As I’m setting up to my shot here, a couple of things I’ve got to consider with a bunker that’s different to a normal golf shot. If I was playing a normal chip shot, I would play the ball from the center of my stance with my sand wedge and I’d play it nice and square. But in a bunker, I need a bit more loft, a bit more bounce, and I need to just hit the ground slightly behind the ball. So, I generate more loft by angling the club slightly. So, I’m going to set it vertical, then I’m going to twist it to one o’clock, then I’m going to hold it with my hands. And as I bring that club down, that club now points more to the right-hand side. So, now, I have more loft.

Now, that actually also by doing that, creates more bounce. Bounce is the fact that the bottom edge of the golf club sits below the leading edge and it’s bounced through a bunk shot that stops the club digging down too deep and submarining underneath the ball. So, I’ve got plenty of loft, plenty of bounce. I then make my nice set up again.

Next thing to consider here is that when you hit a bunker shot, you shouldn’t actually aim to hit the ball first. You should aim to hit the sand first. Now, when we’re chipping, we’re quite used to hitting the middle of our stance and striking the ground around there. So, what we’re going to do here is we’re still going to hit the middle of our stance, it’s just the ball is not going to be there. The ball is going to be two inches ahead of that central position. So, I’m going to move the ball across to this area. I’m then going to set up. I’m going to keep my clubface nice and open. Now, that’s going to send the ball to the right of the target. I’m going to shift myself to the left of the target. So, I aim left, the club aim is right, the ball should come out quite nicely down the centerline.

I then set with my open clubface, make a nice smooth swing, hit two inches behind the golf ball effectively fatting the ball deliberately. But the loft and the bounce are going to work nicely to keep that club sliding underneath the ball and pop it nicely high and after the bunker. Not perfect example here because I’m hitting from a mat. But I’ll go ahead and play it slightly fat, slide underneath the ball, ball comes out really high, lands really soft. And that’s the best way to become a master in bunkers.