Travelers Championship

TPC River Highlands


Instruction

Short Game

Hit better bunker shots with Michael Breed's simple tips

November 30, 2020

J.D. Cuban

I can always tell when golfers are nervous in the sand: They make no body turn through the shot—it’s just a fast swipe with the hands. And when the hands get active, they tend to close the clubface, which makes the leading edge dig. You want to do just the opposite: Slide the clubhead through on its back edge, called the bounce. As long as the body keeps turning, using the bounce is easy.

Now, here’s how to check your rotation. Focus on turning your chest through so it points left of the target at the finish (above). Another thing to confirm is that your arms are extended in the follow-through, with your hands away from your body. When the body turns, the arms can extend; when the body stalls, the arms break down. So these two keys work together: Turn and extend. That’s a great swing thought.

Last tip, this one about the bounce. How do you know if you’re using it correctly? When the clubhead is sliding as it should, the sand will feel very light, like you’re swinging through powder. When the leading edge is digging, the sand will feel heavy. So keep it light, and you’ll pop the ball out. —with Peter Morrice