Out to In Swing Path in a Greenside Bunker
Another sand game tip is to focus on having a correct swing path. Your swing in a greenside bunker should have a slight out to in swing path. This will help to generate more spin out of the sand and will also help you hit in higher and get it out of the bunker more easily. Make sure to setup up correctly with an open stance and open clubface, this will help promote the proper swing path out of the bunker. Then simply start the swing along the same line as your feet which will take the club outside. On the followthrough, you'll come back down more along the inside path so you'll swing along the line on which your clubface is open. This swing path creates a slight loop in your swing. The out to in swing path will help to generate spin with your bunker shots out of the sand.
Hit Down on the Sand Behind the Golf Ball
If you are keeping your weight on your left side or on your front foot, you will naturally be able to hit down on the sand. Pick a shot about two inches behind the ball and hit that spot. It can help to focus on a spot of sand behind the ball instead of looking at the ball as you make your swing.
You want to make a pretty full backswing and then through impact try and hit down on the sand but also accelerate and follow through. Don't just chop at the ball. You are still making a swing, just hit down on the sand during impact instead of trying to hit the ball.
Keeping your weight on your left side will help you to hit down on the sand behind the golf ball. Also, your hands will be able to lead slightly ahead of the golf ball at impact. Make sure your hands are leading the clubhead slightly when hitting out of the sand and keep your wrists firm. A lot of the basic swing fundamentals that I focus on will still apply to sand shots.
How To Control Your Distance Out Of The Sand
Once you are successfully able to get out of the sand most of the time, the next step to improving your bunker game is to control your distance.
An easy way to control your distance is by VARYING THE LENGTH OF YOUR FOLLOWTHROUGH. You simply make your normal backswing, but for a short bunker shot try and stop your followthrough so it only goes about halfway. You do not need to make a big long followthrough over your shoulder for just a short bunker shot.
On a long bunker shot, you will make your normal backswing but then make sure to followthrough all the way and swing the club over your left shoulder. Keep the same tempo and everything else the same but just vary the length of your followthrough and you will be able to control your distance out of any greenside bunker much more easily.
One more tip for a long bunker shot: You can adjust your setup slightly so that your feet and the clubface are not quite as open in your setup. This will help you get a little extra distance. Just make sure the clubface is still a little open and it is open to the same degree that your feet are open in your stance.