Golf Training Tips
Pitching and Bunker Shots
Why do many tour players prefer bunker shots to chip shots? Bunker shots provide more consistency and opportunities to spin the ball and get it closer to the pin. You can practice making bunker shots even if the weather turns for the worse; just follow on your chipping drills and increase your distance gradually.
- Practice from a green side bunker. For short, high bunker shots with reduced roll, you must widen and open up your stance. Grip the club lightly.
- As you prepare for the swing, take a half-swing then follow-through equal to your back swing. Open your clubface through impact.
- On the second day, practice in a 20-yard bunker and repeat your drill. Now this is a bit farther and a classic trick still works. Picture your ball on a dollar bill; your club should enter the sand on one side of the bill and pass through the ball to exit the other side.
Pitching is often not practiced and can be very important when setting yourself up for a tap in putt. Most pros would tell you that a good pitch can make a huge difference between a birdie on a par 5 and a bogey. A good pitch will also save par on a par 4 if you lack approach. Practicing pitching is all about knowing how far your ball will go with different length swings. Both on the fly and roll out.
- Start to hit shots from 30 to 40 yards. Make 5 in a row inside 8 feet from the hole. Pitch shots should be accurate so to make your shots accurate, bring the club to the back of the ball with a squared face to a path following your target line. Repeat your initial drills with all clubs you may potentially use.
- Avoid moving your lower body too much to make your pitches more precise and less stressful. Put your weight forward and make sure that it is distributed evenly from the heel to the toe of your front foot. Remember that your swing paths changes as your balance changes.
- After mastering 40 yard shots, you can confidently continue on to 50, 75 and till 100 yards. Practice getting comfortable but consistent with these distances.
- Focus on being accuracy and ball flight. These are the shots that make you feel like a pro. At the end of this week, you will surely have more control of your pitch shots.
Consistent, concentrated practice will bring results quickly.
Stop Thinking. Start Swinging.