JohnHayesGolf.com Newsletter Golf Tip – February 2016
For your golf game: Do you need to produce a different swing to hit bunker shots? I don’t believe that you have to and, in fact, I think it is best not to change the swing at all. As Manuel de la Torre suggests in his book, Understanding the Golf Swing, if you keep the swing the same then it will not create problemsfor your swing for the rest of your game. You can practice bunker shots for 30 minutes and go right back to hitting normal shots and it will not be a problem. The better your swing in the bunker – the better your swing becomes everywhere in your golf game.
One problem that I work with on students in the bunker is when they use their hands in a scooping action. The club goes open in the ball area to face-up (clubface pointing up at the sky when the shaft points at the target rather than having the toe of the clubhead pointing up toward the sky at this same point in the swing) as the club swings at the target and, because the loft on the club is being increased, the shot never leaves the bunker. It just goes short of the hole and to the right of the target (for a right-hander). Try scraping the sand and letting the clubface return to square in the ball area and then let it continue toe-up when the shaft of the club is pointing at your target. This is the correct pattern for the club in a correct swing from the fairway and it will also work fine on a bunker shot. When you swing in this normal way both the sand and the ball is sent forward, not upward, so the ball leaves the bunker and goes toward the target.
If you want a little higher shot that doesn’t roll as much when it lands on the green then you can open the blade at address. If you open the blade by 15 degrees then the blade should be 15 degrees open when it returns to the ball area and it should be 15 degrees open from toe-up when the shaft is pointing at your target. You do not need to add more loft using your hands during the swing. When you open the blade at address then the ball will go a little to the right of your swing direction (for a right-hander) so you must align and swing to the left of the target to compensate for this.
As always, go to the practice range and try these things for yourself and observe yourself!
Upcoming clinics and events: I will conduct a GET GOLF READY LADIES BOOT CAMP on Thur., February 4th through Sunday, February 7th. There will be 4 hours of golf clinics (Thur. & Fri. from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and on Sat. from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.) and then we will finish on the golf course on Sun. from 2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. This is perfect for beginners who want to feel comfortable on the golf course in a short time. Total cost is only $99 and includes everything!
My next LADIES-ONLY GOLF CLINIC will be held on 2 consecutive Weekends – February 20, 21, 27 and 28 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on all four days (Sat., Sun., Sat. & Sun.) Cost is only $40 total for all 4 sessions! It is good for beginners or newly dedicated golfers.
My next specialty clinic will be a SHORT GAME BOOT CAMP for 2 hours held on Saturday, March 19th from Noon to 2:00 p.m. I will cover pitching/chipping, bunker play, putting, and fun games to practice effectively! Men or Ladies welcome. This is NOT for new beginners. There is a limit of only 3 students so call or email to sign up. Total cost is only $55.
Please call, text (727) 692-4679 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org, to sign up as space is limited for all clinics. Go to www.johnhayesgolf.com for more details.
As always, please contact me with any questions or comments and I hope to see you soon on the lesson tee at the Chi Chi Golf Range & Family Sports Complex in beautiful Clearwater in the Tampa, FL area.