Golf Lessons: The Wet Sand
For years the thought of landing in a sand trap filled with wet packed down sand was one of my greatest fears on the golf course. There was no need for it. There are now times that I find the wet sand is a little more manageable for me, depending on the height of the trap. Now that I understand how simple the technique is, it is no longer a great concern of mine.
I am not trying to downplay landing in the bunker. There is a good reason they call the sand bunker a hazard. You can come across a wide variety of of lies in the sand trap. Each of them can require a somewhat unique strategy.
Some golf courses have a light and fluffy sand in there bunkers however the course a mile away might have sand traps loaded with a very heavy and course type of sand. Some bunkers have heaps of sand while the others will only have a thinner covering. All that being said if the bunkers are wet due to rain or in the path of a rotating sprinkler, you are working with another factor all together.
The powers that be in golf do not permit you to tryout the texture of a sand trap with a golf club, so you will have to depend on your feet to deliver any feedback regarding the depth of the sand, the texture and the consistency.
Your sand wedge typically has a particular amount of bounce. The bounce is found on the sole of the golf club head. The bounce provides the ” lift ” required to burst the golf ball out of the bunker under regular or dry conditions. In cases when the sand is flattened by dampness, the bounce that assisted you to hit the golf ball out of the dried out sand can lead you to blade or skull the golf ball…hitting it thin from wet sand.
If you are in green side bunker, you should consider using a lob wedge. A lob wedge has more loft but does not have as much bounce. If you do not have a lob wedge, try a few practice shots with your pitching wedge, it also has less bounce.
The approach from wet sand is not quite the same as from dry sand. Utilizing this approach, the golf ball will come out a little hotter and fly a bit further than a typical sand shot.
Open your stance, however not as much as with a standard sand shot. Open the face of the club, but not as much as in typical conditions. Keep most of your body weight on your lead foot. Shorten your back swing. You will not want to strike as far behind the golf ball as you would if the sand was dry. Swing the wedge a tiny bit harder than normal. It is vital that you follow through or the ball may stay in the trap. When executed correctly you will hear a ” thump ” when the sole of the club hits the sand. Listen for the ” thump ” when you rehearse this shot.
Your short sticks are your scoring clubs. And this is one of the shots you need to have in your bag. If you don’t have one, think about getting a lob wedge.
Good luck and hit’em straight from Golf Quick Fix.
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