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The bunker shot: Even the pros fear it. Hitting your ball into the sand trap can be a death sentence if you don’t know how to handle it.

But, with the right strategy, you can escape the bunker and land the ball on the green, keeping your scores right where you want them. Make sure you have the right wedge in all your golf club sets, and use these tips to go from sand to grass in one shot.

Dig in with a Wide Open Stance

Like any other shot, start your bunker escape by focusing on your stance.

First, widen your stance. Place your feet just outside of shoulder-width. This helps add stability to your swing and lowers your club so you can hit the sand underneath the ball.

Then, open your stance by pointing your feet just to the left of your target if you’re right-handed and to the right if you’re left-handed. This will help line up your shot so the clubface is more in line with the flag.

Finally, dig your feet into the sand. This will add stability to your shot and bring you even closer to the ball, helping you get underneath it when you swing.

Choke Down and Open Up Your Grip

Now, it’s time to turn to your grip.

You’ll want to choke down on the club with your fingers wrapping around the bottom of the grip instead of the top. While this cuts down on your power, it gives you the extra control to guide the club under the ball and out of the bunker.

Also, open up your clubface more than you would on a regular shot. If the face is pointed slightly to the outside, instead of square with the ball, you add more loft to the shot and bounce, keeping the ball on the green when it escapes the sand.

Determine Your Distance with Your Backswing

Overshooting the green is the last thing you want to do on a bunker shot. Best case scenario, you have a few more chips in your future; worst case, you land in another bunker or the rough.

To adjust the distance of your escape, focus on how much backswing you add to your swing. If the bunker is further from the green, pull your club back closer to your shoulders. If you’re right next to the flag, a half-backswing that only just gets past your waist should be enough.

Follow Through with Speed

While you might be tempted to slow down your swing to ensure you hit the ball accurately, power is crucial to escaping the bunker. You need to trust your natural swing mechanics and pre-shot setup if you want to get out of the bunker on the first try. Go slower on your backswing if needed, but remember to speed up your club as you cut into the sand to get under the ball and pop it up.

Pick the Right Club for the Situation

Finally, it’s important to bring the right club to the bunker.

You’ll want a wedge that has around 56 degrees of loft. Sand wedges are a great choice, but if you have custom, high-loft wedges built for your swing, they can help you control your shot and get the perfect amount of pop and bounce.

Or, if the ball is lying on a flat patch of sand, you can even use one of the best hybrid golf clubs to get it out. Hybrids are easier to hit and can give you the bump-and-run shot that rolls up onto the green, even out of the sand.

With these tips, bunker shots will be easier than ever before.

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Original Source: https://bit.ly/48snuVk

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