Beat Sand With a New Perspective

Beat Sand With a New Perspective

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Trying to hit an imaginary ball positioned four to five inches behind the real one helps you create the perfect divot.
Leonard Kamsler

Year after year we receive
questions and concerns
from students and readers
about how to consistently
and reliably escape
from greenside sand. This
isn’t very surprising — in
an extensive poll taken
exclusively for my new
book, Golf Without Fear,
players just like you voted
the bunker shot one of the
most feared shots in golf.

In this instruction manual
I tackle the ten most feared
shots using a unique
perspective, brought to life
with the “golfer’s-eye view”
camera angle developed by
Leonard Kamsler, a legendary
photographer who has
shot most of my instruction
over the years. We use the
golfer’s-eye view because seeing shots from a
new perspective may be just
what you need to shake up
your game and get you back
on the right track, especially
if you’ve been struggling
with shots on the course.

Take, for example, the standard bunker blast
from a good lie in sand. Instead of just walking
into the hazard and addressing your ball as it
lies there, try addressing a second, imaginary
ball behind the real one. Set your
imaginary ball about 4 to 5 inches behind the
real ball, and address it as though it were sitting
on an imaginary line running out from
the middle of your stance.
This will automatically
position the real ball forward
in your stance.

Next, rotate the face of
your wedge open (to the
right) and regrip it in the
new position. Aim your
stance slightly left of the
flagstick, and then try to
hit the imaginary ball while
swinging along your stance
line using a three-quarter
motion. Make sure you hit
the imaginary ball flush,
not behind it, just like you
would for a normal wedge
shot from grass.

Notice how this
technique leaves a divot
just beyond where the imaginary ball was sitting —
but directly underneath the real ball. This
is textbook. And because the clubface was open,
it easily scooted under and past the real ball
without digging, floating it up and out on a
nice cushion of sand.