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Sand Trap Tips
By Lee MacRae
Following are some tips to help improve your golf game.
If you find yourself in a sand bunker position where the ball is above your feet remember: do not simply lean back or attempt your swing on a flatter plane. You need to stand as you would for a normal lie. But now you choke down to the bottom of your grip to counter the change in elevation. With the clubface open , take the club back and outside your target line, now swing through along the line of your open stance. If you let your right hand pass over the left, the slope will send the ball left, so keep your hands quiet as the club cuts through the sand.
A good way to gauge distance on a sand shot is to think of hitting the ball twice as far. Let's say you have a sand shot of 25 feet. Hit it with the same power that you would use for a fairway shot of 50 feet. A word of warning; this system works well on medium to long sand shots. On the short touch shots you're better off practicing to get a feel for finesse. After all, you may well have a 6 foot long sand shot, but how many 12 foot long fairway shots do you ever have?
Don't take digging and planting your feet for granted. Digging your feet into sand will give you a firm base with which to hit the shot. Have Also it will tell you what you're dealing with: how softer or course the sand is, how deep it is, whether there is a layer of hardpan just under the surface. But be careful when digging in, however. If you dig in it too deeply, and then fill in your footprints, you will be guilty of "building a stance&&, which is a breach of rule 13-3. The penalty is two strokes in stroke play or loss or hole in match play.
The average golfer usually fears the shot from a sand bunker and is defeated before they even attempt one. With practice, keeping in mind the proper technique and a few tips and hints, sand play will be a lot easier than you imagined. And your golf game will be better for it.
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Quick Golf Ideas
Tee the Ball Higher. The old adage has always been that the top of the driver should be about halfway up the ball when it is teed up. However, with a 460cc driver, I like to see you set the ball high enough on a peg such that the top of the driver is no more than one-third of the way up the ball. Of course, this means that the standard 2 1/8-inch tee will not be long enough to accommodate. You will need a tee at least 3 inches in length, but likely a little longer than this.
Maintain Your Angles
Stability improves torque and produces consistency. The keys to stability during the backswing are a constant knee flex and steady spine angle.
...Golf Tips magazine
Ben Crenshaw is one of the world's finest. He holds the putter so lightly he sometimes drops it - but this is how he achieves the 'touch' behind a smooth rhythm.
Wood Game Tip
Many people complain about not being able to hit the ball well with their woods (or metals), and in particular their driver. From what I've seen poor quality contact is a major problem for many of these players. Put a tee in the ground (without a ball) sticking up approximately 1 to 1.5 inches. You should be able to strike the tee consistently without hitting, or even brushing, the ground at all. If you miss the tee, or touch the ground in any way, don't wonder any longer why you can't hit your driver. Remember -- the longer the club, the more precision required. Practice this exercise until you can consistently clip the tee without touching the ground (or even the grass). Once you get quality contact handled the feedback you get from your shots becomes meaningful. Then you can work on directional control.
...PGA professional golf
To check to see if the wrists are in the proper position that was mentioned above, swing the club half-way back about hip-level high with the clubshaft in the position horizontal to the ground. If the left wrist is in this flat position the clubface will be parallel to the target line, or the toe of the club will be pointing vertically towards the sky. Half-way through the forward swing with the shaft horizontal to the ground again the clubface should be parallel to your target line or toe facing upwards towards the sky. In these positions the left wrist has remained in the flat position throughout your entire swing which translates into a solid straight shot on line to your target. Finally, remember that any attempt to hit the ball with your hands will force the wrists out of position, and the cause them to break down which results in wayward shots.
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