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Birdman
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PostSubject: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:10 pm

Shall we move from playing out of the greenside bunker to out of a fairway bunker with next?

I for one would like to hear:

1. How most play out of the fairway bunker, the same technique as out of the greenside bunker or is there some other modification to set up?

2. How do the Pros play the shot out of the fairway bunker with such height and still get three quarters of the distance as a full shot off the fairway. Most of us are just happy moving the ball 50m out of the bunker, 100m is a bonus.

3. How would should we amateurs play a fairway bunker shot with our jalopy swing to get maximum distance?

4. How do we determine what is the right club that has enough loft to clear the front of the bunker. Anyone ever hit a great shot that just embeds itself further into the sidewall of the fairway bunker?

5. Is the old saying still true, "Wood in bunker means wood in head"? Can we use a wood out of a fairway bunker? And if yes, how do we play it?

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JonL_TK
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:19 pm

Birdman... Will these be in the next issue of the magazine?
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Birdman
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:36 pm

JonL_TK wrote:
Birdman... Will these be in the next issue of the magazine?

Playboy? Certainly not! They don't do golf, only golf girls! ROFL

Now back to the topic in hand... I mean.. at hand. Swing
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JonL_TK
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 6:05 pm

Q1. How most play out of the fairway bunker, the same technique as out of the greenside bunker or is there some other modification to set up?
A1. Generally if the bunker lip is fairly low and one is able to go for the green, i will play the ball like i would off the fairway except my ball placement will be slightly more towards the right foot (approximately 1 ball) as compared to the standard fairway setup. This is to avoid taking too much sand when swinging through the ball.

Imagination is also the key... visualizing the shot beforehand helps to execute the shot confidently

Q2. How do the Pros play the shot out of the fairway bunker with such height and still get three quarters of the distance as a full shot off the fairway. Most of us are just happy moving the ball 50m out of the bunker, 100m is a bonus.
A1. Ain't a Pro but i just look at it and if i feel that the risk percentage is low... i will go for it

Q3. How would should we amateurs play a fairway bunker shot with our jalopy swing to get maximum distance?
A3. Practice makes perfect... Start by hitting balls off the mat but place a obstruction maybe a grip length before the ball and closing the gap till you can hit the ball cleanly without hitting the obstacle. If one has access to practice bunkers, take this knowledge of striking it cleanly and adopt it into your fairway bunker approach

Q4. How do we determine what is the right club that has enough loft to clear the front of the bunker. Anyone ever hit a great shot that just embeds itself further into the sidewall of the fairway bunker?
A4. Again practice makes perfect... If one is already striking it cleanly, their ball trajectory will generally become quite uniform, from there just do a rough visual estimate as to whether your iron is able to clear the bunker. Remember to never try to "help" the ball up... By striking it cleanly, the compression of the ball should help to flight the ball clear of the bunker

Q5. Is the old saying still true, "Wood in bunker means wood in head"? Can we use a wood out of a fairway bunker? And if yes, how do we play it?
A5. Personally never tried it before but have seen it at TMCC when Rory Mcllroy used a fairway wood out of the right bunkers on the Hole Par 5 when he was down last year for a Golf Clinic just before the Barclays


Again... Practice makes perfect!!! If you want to improve and have access to a Practice Bunker try hitting full shots from the bunker instead of hitting it off the mats...
This will help with your striking overtime.

Don't give yourself the excuse that you have to drive 20-30mins to get to a practice facility... If one is serious about their game, traveling 20-30 mins in Singapore is not far at all
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asahi
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 7:57 pm

I concur with Jon. For such bunker, key for me is not Yo take too much sand and get it out of bunker with maximum distance.
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pushslice
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:18 pm

I cant find a place where can we practice fairway bunker shots. Greenside yes. Fairways?

The only practice i can get, is on the course. And i intentionally avoid fairway bunkers as much as i can.

bring old balls to east coast beach and hit balls towards the sea?

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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:28 pm

pushslice wrote:
I cant find a place where can we practice fairway bunker shots. Greenside yes. Fairways?

The only practice i can get, is on the course. And i intentionally avoid fairway bunkers as much as i can.

bring old balls to east coast beach and hit balls towards the sea?


Please watch out for divers coming up for air..... affraid lol! ROFL

titu
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Duval_S
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 8:30 pm

I think the key is really understand each of our swing. If we know where is our contact point, at what point we generate the power....i think things will work out for FW bunker shots.

So to practise, even at range, focus should to understand our swing.

Previously, for now quite shallow FW bunker, I could not muster the courage to whack with my hybrid...but now, I keep my lower body still...and things are ok now....slightly shorter than on fairway of cos, but definitely a big improvement relative to where I was earlier.
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Gray
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:30 pm

This reminds me of yest when i kana a fairway bunker. I didnt want to use my irons as they are forged. What to do? Took my hybrid instead. Kns hit into the sand ball flew 10 m ahead but at least out of the friggin bunker. Cast irons in this situation are better. No heart pain when hit from bunker. Lesson? Season beginner dun itchy backside by forged. Just buy cast will do.
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Duval_S
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:41 pm

Quote :
Gray wrote:
This reminds me of yest when i kana a fairway bunker. I didnt want to use my irons as they are forged. What to do? Took my hybrid instead. Kns hit into the sand ball flew 10 m ahead but at least out of the friggin bunker. Cast irons in this situation are better. No heart pain when hit from bunker. Lesson? Season beginner dun itchy backside by forged. Just buy cast will do.



" Seasoned Beginner don buy forge ???...too late lah bro, I just switch to forge not too long ago....thanks for the tip though
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duffader
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:45 pm

Ok, i have been thought 1 technique, which i think i should share with you guys. I will put my ball slightly forward of my stance instead. do not step too deeply. roughly half of what you normally do in greenside bunkers. Choke down your club slightly, now the key move, keep the chin higher than usual. and try to clip the ball clean.

And such a move can be use on a fwd too if the lip is not too high.
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slinger
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:51 pm

in other words.... just try to top the ball in the bunker loh

think my english easy to understand....
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asahi
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:48 am

slinger wrote:
in other words.... just try to top the ball in the bunker loh

think my english easy to understand....

That is very well explained for f/w bunker shot. cheers
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skybobo
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sat Feb 26, 2011 1:00 am

1. How most play out of the fairway bunker, the same technique as out of the greenside bunker or is there some other modification to set up?

Shorthitter told me for f/wbunker, put the ball at the back of ur stance so u contact the ball first. Opp from g/sbunker. For g/sbunker, its more of a hands type of swing. For f/wbunker, coil

5. Is the old saying still true, "Wood in bunker means wood in head"? Can we use a wood out of a fairway bunker? And if yes, how do we play it?

If the lie is good and the lid is not high, play like normal. Confidence is key. A good lie in fwbunker is similar to on fairway
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JonL_TK
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sat Feb 26, 2011 11:12 pm

Don't quite understand the logic of not using forged clubs in the bunker...
Anyone care to explain further?
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Birdman
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sun Feb 27, 2011 8:35 am

JonL_TK wrote:
Don't quite understand the logic of not using forged clubs in the bunker...
Anyone care to explain further?

Afraid of putting dings on the clubhead?

It wasn't a bother for me in the past too, until I dinged my 8 iron playing from a waste bunker that was littered with small stones. I still play with my clubs out of the bunker, but now check for the presence of stones first.

The good news anyways, is that the dings smoothen out over time with regular use. They're still there, just not as obvious as before.
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JonL_TK
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sun Feb 27, 2011 11:49 am

Birdman wrote:
JonL_TK wrote:
Don't quite understand the logic of not using forged clubs in the bunker...
Anyone care to explain further?

Afraid of putting dings on the clubhead?

Like this then got excuse the change set mah!!! Wahahaha
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pushslice
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sun Feb 27, 2011 1:45 pm

Guess what? I found a fairway bunker to practice on...at Laguna range. its probably for members only bcoz ground level is restricted
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JonL_TK
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Sun Feb 27, 2011 1:59 pm

PS... If ur at Laguna u can try NSRCC (Changi)!
They have a fairway/greenside bunker which I think is very under utilised
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ngjw89
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:03 am

yup, try to top the ball a little. usually after a good fw bunker shot you wouldn't really be able to see much of a sand divot (if any at all).

also try to come into the ball shallower, with more of a sweeping stroke (earlier release as well) in contrast to an iron shot off the turf where you go down into it. but even so never try to scoop the ball up.

i think there are different opinions and methods on ball position, all of which work, but for myself i prefer to put the ball forward. when the ball is back in my stance i worry i might go down too steep into the ball and sand which is fine, but if the sand is soft it doesn't launch the ball very well i've noticed.

jurong country club has a fairway bunker practice area at the range. lower level, on the left side if you're facing out into the range (the bays where heartland golf school is).
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:51 pm

Would like to share my sequential thoughts on playing out of a fw bunker:

1. How high is the lip? - this will determine which club a can use and how far towards the green I can knock my next shot. Course knowledge is important as I would like to know where to land my next shot for a better approach shot.

2. How is the lie? - this will determine if I have a good chance to make clean contact with the ball. Quality of contact determines how far I can hit my next shot with the club I have chosen.

3. Once club has been selected, some things to note when executing the shot:
- assuming good lie, swing mechanics are like a normal fairway shot. Agree with previous post that to catch minimal/no sand, we should feel like we are topping the shot
- it our feet are in the bunker as well, we will be standing a little shorter than usual because our shoes will sink into the sand. Grip down a little on the club to compensate for this.
- keeping the lower body still is even more important because the slippery sand beneath will increase the chance of us losing our balance

In some instances, we may have to play it like a greenside bunker shot (e.g. bad lie, extremely high lip, tree in the front, etc). We still have the option to play out to our favourite approach distance, hit a good approach and one putt for our par.

I recall reading an article once where a pro was quoted as saying that if he can't make a particular shot 7 out of 10 times, he probably will not play it.

Hope the above helps...
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Wed Aug 03, 2011 3:58 pm

try to place the ball 1-ball off mid stance. imagine topping the ball to hit it clean (no divot please).

try to take extra 1-2 club since you'll lose 20-30m. if the lips low, you can even hit 3-wood.

finally commit the swing and follow-through. remember, bunker make easy.
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Thu Aug 04, 2011 12:42 am

Great comments from Jon and thanks to everyone who's weighed in on this topic, which is not as well discussed for the simple reason that we try to avoid fairway bunkers. And when we do land in them, we are not sure what is the lowest lofted club to use for the best combination of height to clear the lip, and distance that gets us to within striking range of the pin. All because we don't practice it at all or don't have the necessary playing experience out of fairway bunkers to make a confident decision and execute a confident swing.

I used to fear and avoid them like the plague too until I discovered what some here have said.

To check if the club has enough loft to clear the fairway bunker, lay a club down on the ground outside of the bunker that's on the same level as the sand (since you can't lay the club in the bunker). The grip of the club points in the direction of where you want to hit, the clubhead points away in the opposite direction. Approach from behind and step on the clubface till it lies flat on the ground. The shaft of the club will rise up, and if the shaft is at an angle that's higher than the lip of the bunker, it has enough loft to get the ball over the lip. It's a good approximation that also allows you to learn the necessary loft required and take some of the guess-timation out of the equation.

The swing with an iron for me is less of a sweep and more of a descending blow to trap the ball against the sand. As mentioned by others here, it's imperative to make contact ball first, the feel is almost a top, but with a definite descending blow. The weight starts on the left and stays there, shaft leaning forward, ball an inch back of center, three quarter swing pulling hard into the back of the ball. It sounds counterintuitive and indeed felt so when I first executed it, but the results showed. Instead of a low skimming screamer that might not clear the bunker lip, the ball rises to clear the lip and I get about 75% of the distance that I normally do with the same club from the fairway. If I feel the hardness of the ball at impact first I know I've pulled the shot off without looking. If I feel the sand first instead.... trouble.

I used to also think it was impossible to hit fairway wood from the bunker, the old saying was "wood in bunker = wood in head". That was until recently when I experimented with hitting my 5 wood out of the fairway bunker with the same technique I described above, still descending into the back of the ball first, but with a little more sweeping action. I was amazed that it worked just as well (of course there should not be a lip guarding the bunker). I haven't yet got the confidence to try a 3 wood, I suspect that the margin for error may be too small. But one day I shall, just to see if it works. Very Happy



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JGoh
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:01 am

I carry a 24 deg wood in my bag, longer shaft than a 9-wood, primarily for getting out of trouble in the rough and fairway bunkers. If need more loft, open club some more, and aim left, expecting a slice. i rate it 60%...Almost always use it unless the bunker is too deep, so just hit out with the sand or pitching wedge for safety lor! my 1ct
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PostSubject: Re: Fairway Bunker Shots   Thu Aug 04, 2011 8:24 am

Birdman wrote:
I used to also think it was impossible to hit fairway wood from the bunker, the old saying was "wood in bunker = wood in head". That was until recently when I experimented with hitting my 5 wood out of the fairway bunker with the same technique I described above, still descending into the back of the ball first, but with a little more sweeping action. I was amazed that it worked just as well (of course there should not be a lip guarding the bunker). I haven't yet got the confidence to try a 3 wood, I suspect that the margin for error may be too small. But one day I shall, just to see if it works. Very Happy

Bridie, try using a 7 wood or mid/short length hybrid, you will be surprised by the result. Very Happy
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