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How to get out of a Bunker 

The sand bunker shot is far easier than we make the shot out to be. This shot should be played like every other shot rather than adopting an open club face/open stance. By doing this you are using the correct loft and bounce as the club is designed. By taking an open face approach you are showing the leading edge to the ball causing a higher tariff shot resulting in many ‘thinned’ shots.

How to get out of a bunker:

  1. Take the appropriate club to clear the lip of the bunker (only open the stance and club face if more loft is required to clear the lip)

  2. Dig your feet in to gauge the depth and consistency of sand

  3. Make the swing length appropriate to the amount of sand needed to take

  4. Strike down on the ball taking sand before impact

  5. Make sure the follow through completes to where you envisaged

  6. Force + Sand = ball out of bunker

Distance control

Controlling the length is dependent on the above. Remember to commit to the follow through length.

How much sand should I take?

Amount of sand is another constant question asked. In all cases sand must still be taken:

  • With a bunker that had solid (not much) sand this is to be played like a chip shot. This is down to the fact that the sand will not take anything ‘off’ of the shot and the ball will react the same way as it would do from a very tight lie on a fairway. Therefore the swing will be shorter in length.

  • On the other hand a bunker with plenty of sand will need a much larger swing to get the club head to travel through the sand (heavy)

Any questions

Please feel free to email me on

Lee Andrews PGA professional showing posture, stance and ball position for a sand bunker shot
Lee Andrews PGA professional showing finish position after hitting a golf ball out of a sand bunker
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