HITTING the ball out of the bunker can sometimes seem like an overwhelming task, however bunker shots are actually not as difficult as they seem if you use the proper technique with confidence. 

When practising your green side bunker shots, keep in mind the approach will be different than a fairway bunker shot.

Adjusting your set up is a key component to ensure a good bunker shot. 

Your stance should be a little wider than your standard pitch shot and I recommend digging your feet in a little under the surface to create a stable base and lower point of the swing arc. 

Make sure your feet are level in the sand; do not dig your heels deeper than your toes.

Ball placement is also very important when hitting out of the bunker. When hitting out of a greenside bunker, you always want to hit the sand first instead of the ball. 

The ball should be placed about an inch forward from the centre of your stance. 

To get the best result out of a bunker shot you have to use the bounce of the club and not the leading edge. When done correctly, the club will bounce on the sand and not dig in like it would if you hit the sand with the leading edge (like digging with a shovel). 

A good way to tell if you hit the ball correctly is to check your divot after your shot. An ideal divot should resemble the size and shape of a small stack of £10 notes.

One of my favourite bunker drills is the rake drill. This is a great drill for you to get the feel of the acceleration of your club. 

Lie the rake face down in the sand in line with your swing path and hit the handle of the rake with your club. You will feel the club bouncing and accelerating when you hit on top of the rake. 

This is exactly how you should feel when you hit a green side bunker shot.

Feel the club accelerating through the sand when you use the correct swing and the bounce of the club. You should hear a pop sound when you hit the sand, not a thud.

Bunkers are the form of most golf courses’ protection. Nail this down before the season starts and see your sand save percentage shoot up.
Thanks to Alan Todd for your greenside bunker tip request. All submissions can be sent to bhgolf@outlook.com