Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Score From The Sand
Get Up and Down Every Time
NEED MORE PROOF? Because you swing along your open body line (open relative to the target), you have to keep the clubface open through the shot. It also helps get the ball airborne quickly, as well as imparts more spin for a quicker stop on the green.
That said, how much is too much? Eventually the hands will rotate, and the clubface will close. The key is in maintaining the rotation of your body. The more you rotate through the shot, the easier it is to keep the clubface open through the bunker shot.
Just remember, if your goal is to hit a high bunker shot that stops quickly, the trajectory and bite isn’t going to come from flipping your hands through impact. It’ll come from an aggressive rotation of the body through the shot with the clubface open.
DON’T DIG A HOLE IN THE SAND. Really, to hit solid shots out of the sand, the more you try to dig deep and use muscle to excavate the ball, the more likely you’ll find yourself hitting more than one shot from the same bunker.
The key is to think "speed," not "strength." By thinking speed, you’ll be more likely to make a more complete swing through the ball, as opposed to hitting down into the sand as you would in a chopping or hitting motion. And when it comes to speed, for that matter, we’re not just talking about the hands. As the previous tip alluded to, good bunker shots require the entire body to get activated and make a rotation.
The bigger the body rotation through the shot, the less the hands have to get involved. The less the hands are involved, the easier it is to hold the clubhead open through the shot and the better your bunker shots will be! So think speed, not strength. You’ll find that type of mentality will help prevent you from stabbing into the sand and instead swing right through it.
IN THE SEQUENCE ABOVE, check out my feet. Notice anything unusual? If you notice my back foot (my right foot), it stays flat-footed through the swing. I do this because first, by keeping a stable footing, I lessen the risk of slipping or sliding through the shot. Second, the more rigid my lower body is, the faster my upper body will rotate across the ball.
Try this technique the next time you’re practicing your bunker shots. Allow your weight to shift as it naturally would; just do it with both feet on the ground. I’ll bet you’ll pick up some upper-body speed in no time.
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