A lot of golfers hate being in a green side bunker. They get tense. They lose their confidence. They lose their focus and they are afraid to follow through on the shot.
Recently, I had a super lesson on executing this shot with PGA Teaching Pro and my friend and colleague John Manos.
Over the years, John and I have worked with many of the same golfers. John teaches the mechanical parts of the game and I teach the mental parts of this sport. As you know, these two components of golf overlap all the time on the course and especially during competition.
John made the explosion shot very simple for me. Here are his major tips on the green side bunker shot.
1. Line the ball up close to the big toe on your front foot.
2. Hit two inches behind the ball.
3. Start with a sand wedge and be sure to follow through. A lot of golfers fail to trust their club and their swing when they land in a trap.
4. Remember, you can use a pitching wedge or lob wedge when you need more loft and less distance.
5. Imagine that your are moving the sand, not the ball to your landing target. This visualization is quite helpful and it should be easy for many golfers to use when they want to get their ball onto the green and close to the hole.
After these five simple tips and five minutes of instruction, I was able to hit a dozen terrific sand shots in a row.
Where the mental side of this shot is concerned, be sure that you have a pre-shot routine that helps you to be calm, confident and focused before you strike the ball.
For more golf tips, self-help programs and information about our counseling services, visit. www.StayInTheZone.com'
Jay P. Granat, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist, author and founder of StayInTheZone.com. He was named one of America's Top Mental Gurus By Golf Digest Magazine.