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How Can I Hit Long Golf Greenside Bunker Shots?Long shots from greenside bunkers are really difficult to play if you can get caught in two minds. Do you play the shot as though it is like a pitch, or do you play it more like it is a bunker shot? The one thing you do not want to happen is that you are caught between these two ideas and you end up not committing to either one of them.

The best way to approach a long greenside bunker shot, thirty to forty yards, is to play the shot as though it is just a pitch off the fairway.

To do this, play the ball in the middle of your feet. Just slightly narrow the feet down more than you usually would for a full swing to encourage you to balance through the shot. Put your left foot back, if you are a right handed golfer, by about four to six inches. This will open up your hips and allow you to rotate through impact a lot more easily. This will then keep the club head travelling down the target line and allow you to hit a straighter and more accurate golf shot. Hold slightly further down the handle of the club and make sure that you have your hands forward. That means that as you are looking at the ball, the club head is on the right hand side of the ball and your hands are on the left hand side. You will have the shaft leaning forward, so that the handle of the club is closer to the target, than the club head.

Position your head so that your nose is just left of the ball and that should now, with the hand position, make you feel that you have got slightly more weight on your left side. It is really important that you have your weight in that position so that you strike downwards with the club head into the golf ball. As you swing the club head away from the golf ball, you will now pick the club head up and as you swing back towards the ball, the club head will strike down so that you catch the ball first and cleanly, just nipping it off the top of the sand.

Avoid hitting the sand first. Make sure that as you swing back you are hinging your wrist and then swing down, with this slightly steeper angle because of the set up position. Make sure that you are turning your body and rotating towards the target as you play the shot, and finish with a nice high follow through so that your follow through is at least the same length of movement as you saw the club moving away from the ball on the back swing. If you work on doing that you will hit the ball nice and crisply and you will make the green.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

This action will create a heavier contact and will result in high flying bunker shots that will reduce the length of the bunker shot.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

This is a risky action as bunker shots will often be struck fat or thin meaning distance control is incredible difficult.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

If you hit the sand first, as you would with a standard bunker shot, the club head is going to decelerate and one of the reasons you want to hit the sand on standard bunker shots, which are close to the green, is you do not want the ball to go too far. If the sand takes the impact from the club head, the club head will slow down and then the ball will not travel too far. If you do this on a long greenside bunker shot, you will only get halfway to the green, if that.

Play the shot as though it was a pitch, as you would off the fairway and you should find that you are making the green from those bunkers that are further out from the green.