Golf not only requires physical ability and endurance, but requires the right mental frame of mind and discipline. It can be hard to at times to concentrate for a four to five hour round of golf. Along with trying to keep your head into the round for so long, you also have to overcome the shots that you really have a problem with. The problem may be it getting out of sand, playing in the wind, or hitting over water.
Hitting out of the sand is a real problem for most average golfers. Number one, you really don't practice this shot. Yeah, don't kid yourself. But hitting a few balls from a practice bunker doesn't really count. The tour pro hits hundreds of practice sand shots every week and they never have to put up with the crappy bunkers like we do. There are a lot of reasons we suck in the sand. It could be that the sand might not be sand; but in fact it is just dirt! Disregarding this, even if it has good sand, few golfers like to hit out of a bunker. The best way to be a GREAT sand player is to NOT get into the bunker in the first place. This is why I am a good bunker player. I avoid them at all cost.
Unfortunately we all get in the sand once in a while. I have found that the best way to deal with this is to make sure you are using the right club. If the sand is hard you don't want to use your sand wedge as it has a lot of bound, which is the worst thing you could use. When the sand is hard you need to pick a club that has less bounce; like a nine iron or lob wedge.
When you are not in a greenside bunker you most likely don't what to use your sand wedge. Depending on the height of the lip, you have to make sure you use the correct lofted iron to clear the bunker. After you determine which club you need to clear the bunker, make sure you get good solid contact with the ball. It doesn't make sense to take the club you may need to reach the green if it doesn't get the ball out of the bunker. Just take you licks and go on.
Remember you want to hit just behind the ball - not hit the ball. The sand between the ball and club face will get the ball out. The exception would be when you are in fairway bunker you need to hit the ball and sand at the same time. At this time I am not going into details about this shot, but I will cover this at a later time.