Practice the Umbrella Drill for Bunker Shots in Golf with Brandon Stooksbury

One of the Best Bunker Shots Tips

Hey golfers, Brandon Stooksbury here. This is one of the best tips I've got when it comes to bunkers, you're gonna have a series of bunker tips that you'll see come out.

I really want to talk about the biggest problem most folks have, and that's controlling the bottom. Bunkers really should be the easiest shot in the game for a lot of folks, but unfortunately it's not because they don't have control over the bottom. 

Sometimes the divot in front, sometimes it's behind, sometimes it's all over the place, and that makes bunker shots really tough.

Watch the video or follow along with the transcript beneath to get started.

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So here's my favorite drill I learned from Jim Mclean when I worked for him down in Miami many many years ago - it's called the Umbrella Drill.

So you're just going to draw one straight line, and then you're going to draw three different lines that come off that. It looks like an umbrella turned upside down.

Here's what it teaches you: it teaches you how to move your chest forward in the golf swing to control the divot.

The Umbrella Drill

You bring the first line, put it on the inside of your lead heel. You're just going to make one swing and erase that line. Pretty simple stuff.

Then you're going to take a small step forward. Now you're going to set up to the same line - we're trying to erase the second spoke of the umbrella. Gonna have a big forward movement of your chest here that makes you get up there to that second line. You can see the club entered way more forward.

Third and final, we're going after that third spoke of the umbrella. Kind of have a lot of chest moving here forward, right to get up there into that third spoke. Now, that's not really how you're going to move when you hit it, but it gives you the sensation of moving your chest forward instead of backward.

Benefits of This Bunker Shot Tip

This drill helps you to control where the club enters the sand, how much sand you take, and really improves the quality of your strike.

Gonna set it up to it, really move my chest forward when I hit it. Clean ball contact that rolled out to maybe four or five feet because I controlled where the club entered the sand.

Try the umbrella drill the next time you're out, it's going to dramatically improve the ball coming out of the bunker for you.

​​Featured: F2 Series Wave Wedge


Why are bunker shots so hard?

Bunker shots are so hard because most golfers don’t swing big enough to get the sand out of the bunker along with the golf ball. Learn how to easily hit bunker shots with our Short Game instructional videos.

How to spin bunker shots?

You spin bunker shots by playing with a 64° wedge and striking the ball with a Y-Type of chip motion. Learn how to create more spin with your wedges from John Novosel, Jr. in this instructional video.

What wedge for bunker shots?

The best wedge for bunker shots is the 56° F2 Series Wave Wedge. The F2’s face-forward design and wide, dual-bounce sole work wonders in the bunker.  

What loft for bunker shots?

The best loft for bunker shots is anything between  54° to 58°.

How to improve bunker shots?

You can improve bunker shots by practicing your technique regularly, creating spin, and hitting sand out of the bunker along with the golf ball. Learn how to improve bunker shots from the pros with our Short Game instructional videos.

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