Proper Stance for a Downhill Fairway Bunker Shot

By Denis Pugh

Well, you come out on the golf course and sometimes it all does not go according to plan. You can get lucky, but sometimes you get very unlucky, and this is an example of some really bad luck. Not only are we in the fairway bunker that in itself is not ideal—but we are in a down-slope in the fairway bunker, the target is quite a long way away. We need to make up ground and we have a pretty tough shot.

How to Set Up a Downhill Bunker Shot

So how to go about it? Primarily it is done in the setup. Think about the problem. I am going to have to get my weight over here on the left side and try to get my body line so that I am sort of parallel to the angle of the slope. The ball is on this down-slope and I am going to want to sort of cut it out of this lie so I am going to aim left.

So my weight is on my left side, I am aiming to the left and am going to have to cut it out. Now as I swing through, as I pick the ball off of the sand and I drive it through, I am going to have to drive down the slope and walkthrough. It is not a very pretty shot but it can be pretty effective.

Let's see if I can show you how. OK, it worked. But let's see why. The three key points of this shot:

  • Set up
  • Get your shoulders level to the slope
  • Aim left of the target.

The shoulders level to the slope and aiming left because I going to try to make sure that I cut the ball out of the sand. I can not pick it cleanly off the sand; I have to drive it forward. So as I drive forward I walk through. It is not a very pretty shot but it is pretty effective.


Category: Bunker Play

About the Instructor