Out of the Bunker: Taking a rehearsal swing

Metro Creative

Do you take a practice swing? I’m sure most of you probably do. I’m also sure a few of you probably don’t. Whichever the case, it’s important that you do what is best for you.

I would like to rename the “practice swing” to “rehearsal swing.” By doing so, you can change the approach to your pre-shot routine.

I see too many players routinely take a meaningless “practice swing” before their shot. By meaningless, I am referring to a swing that is nothing more than a waste of energy. There is no purpose behind it.

Let’s change that.

Rather than taking the same old “practice swing” that you always take, let’s start taking a “rehearsal swing” that serves a purpose.

To do this, it’s important that you have a goal in mind before every shot. For example, let’s say you are on a hole that requires a right-to-left tee shot.


Your rehearsal swing should focus on creating the feel for the shape of shot you are attempting to hit.

As you get closer to the green, let’s imagine that you need to hit a flop shot near the green to stop your ball quickly. Your rehearsal swing should focus on the clubface angle and the ball position that is required to pull off that difficult shot.

Many of you may be thinking that these examples are beyond your capabilities as a golfer. Rather than focusing on properly shaping your shot around a dogleg, or flopping your shot over a bunker, you just want to make solid contact and hit the ball straight.

If this is you, your rehearsal swing should simply focus on feeling proper rhythm and balance in your swing.

If you aren’t going to focus on a specific idea during your rehearsal swing, you are better off not even taking one. Learn to be a more efficient golfer, otherwise you are just exerting unnecessary energy.

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