Peter Uihlein Short Game Lessons: Bunker Shot
In this exclusive Peter Uihlein Short Game Lessons series, the American explains how to play the simple, greenside bunker shot
More Short Game Lessons from Peter Uihlein How to hit:
The 40-yard pitch Flop shot Chip and run Long splash shot
In the bunker, lower body stability is probably the most important thing. Having good knee flex and maintaining knee flex throughout the entire bunker shot will help maintain more solid contact and help you control the distance.
The basic greenside splash shot is very similar to the flop shot in the setup. So I'd advise a wider base, knees forward and probably a little bit more 60-40 on your left side. In the bunker as well I prefer to use the bounce of my wedge to play the shot so I like to use a shallow angle of attack and feel like the club head is being casted in the downswing.
As you take the club away, again feel like the club is rotating going back and that you swing back down towards the ball with an accelerated force. Maintain the knee flex throughout the entire swing, especially the left knee. By doing that it’ll shallow out the swing arc and make it easier to control your distance.
One really impotant thing to think about is how much before the ball you should strike the sand and I’d say it depends on how far you want to hit the shot. You hear some pros say they hit ‘the chunk and run’ there; if they do that they probably hit around 1.5-2 inches behind the ball. This approach (of taking alot of sand through impact) gets the ball to release when it lands, runing up towards the hole. For me, I like to come close to picking it clean so I strike the sand very close to the ball. Almost feeling like I’m just brushing the sand. Some amateurs get too steep on it and try and help it out with a digging action whereas you just have to let the wedge do the work.
In his current role, Neil is responsible for testing drivers and golf balls. Having been a part of the Golf Monthly team for over 15 years and playing off a handicap of 3, he has the experience to compare performance between models, brands and generations. For 2022 he thinks the main trend in drivers is: "In a word, consistency. Whilst all the brands are talking about ball speed (and the new drivers are certainly long), my biggest finding has been how much more consistent the ball flights are. Mishits don't seem to be causing the same level of drop-off or increase in the spin numbers. This means that more shots seem to be flying the way you want them to!" As far as golf balls are concerned the biggest development is in the, "three piece, non-Tour, urethane-covered section. For regular golfers, these models offer superb performance at both ends of the bag without denting your wallet quite as much as the premium Tour-played options."
Originally working with the best coaches in the UK to produce instruction content, he is now the brand's Digital Editor and covers everything from Tour player interviews to gear reviews. In his time at Golf Monthly, he has covered equipment launches that date back well over a decade. He clearly remembers the launch of the Callaway and Nike square drivers as well as the white TaylorMade driver families, such as the RocketBallz! If you take a look at the Golf Monthly YouTube channel, you'll see his equipment videos dating back over a decade! He has also conducted 'What's In The Bag' interviews with many of the game's best players like Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm. Over the years, Neil has tested a vast array of products in each category and at drastically different price-points.
Neil is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade Stealth Plus Fairway Wood: Titleist TSR2 Hybrid: Titleist TS3 Irons (4-9): Mizuno JPX 919 Forged Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 46˚, 50˚, 54˚, 60˚ Putter: Odyssey Triple Track Ten Ball: Titleist Pro V1X
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