Do you consider yourself to be a good bunker player?
If you do, congratulations. But if you don’t, it may be time to take on a new strategy.
Let’s face it, the number one objective when you find your ball in a bunker is to get the ball out on your first attempt. I can’t tell you how many strokes I see players waste away because they take multiple attempts before finally hitting their ball safely out of the sand.
Typically, bunkers will have a relatively high embankment on the side nearest the putting green. This presents a great challenge for hitting your shot high enough to clear the embankment and stop your ball on the putting green.
If you struggle with this shot, then it’s time to stop attempting it until you’ve had a chance to improve and are confident.
Just as the bunkers typically have that high embankment, they also have lower points. Your responsibility is to determine which lower point gives you the best opportunity to get your ball out of the bunker in one shot.
Making this type of decision requires tremendous discipline, but you will be rewarded with a less stressful round of golf.
Your ability to improve as a golfer is largely based on making smarter decisions on the course. Bunkers are designed to be challenging, and they are placed strategically around the putting greens to challenge your psyche. Instead of worrying about whether you can hit that shot out of the bunker and onto the green, just find your easiest way out, and get the ball out.
Golf isn’t always about hitting the shot you believe you are supposed to hit, it’s more about hitting the shot that gives you the best opportunity to be successful.
If you struggle with bunker shots, play it safe and you will begin lowering your scores.