Many golfers will tell you the shot they dread most is the greenside sand shot. This has always surprised me a little because this is the one shot in golf where you don't actually have to hit the ball. That fact alone should alleviate some anxiety, but a lot of golfers don't understand how the club and sand should interact on these “blast” shots.
If they understood that this shot requires a “Scoot-and-Spin” technique rather than a “Dig-and-Push,” they would see it's really pretty easy to get out of bunkers if you follow a few simple rules.
The actual swing you make in the sand is a lot like a finesse wedge swing in which the length of your backswing controls how far the ball travels and you complete the swing with a full finish. However, there are a few set up differences that are critical to your success in the sand. Put these keys into practice and you'll be on your way to becoming a better bunker player:
From this position and set up you should be able to make your normal finesse wedge swing to a high, full finish that leaves you with 99 percent of your weight on your front foot. That’s a backswing to the “9 O’Clock” position and fluid follow-through to a full, “hands-high” finish position.
We call this the “Scoot-and-Spin” blast shot because your club head scoots under and past the ball, blasting it out high and soft, and with a fair amount of spin. The force that moves the ball is actually applied by the sand, not the club. In fact, the club never touches the ball in a properly executed sand blast.
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