They all had bunkers though, and from Augusta National's pristine pools of pure white quartz to the deep, straight-faced pot bunkers of many Open Championship venues, I naively saw them as over-sized sandboxes where you might even find a child's pail and shovel, or a plastic starfish.
Then I started playing the game... and I quickly developed an major aversion to any kind of sand on a golf course. I soon began to see bunkers as hazards to be avoided, and with my limited skills there was no way I could consciously avoid anything. So I struggled to understand the dynamics of a sand shot. I listened to the advice of instructors and took tips from random strangers who seemed to get up and down with ease. Everyone told me it was simple, but it wasn't. Not for me. I tried it all and no nothing worked, Until I started doing what some of my friends did: deftly picking up the ball and gently tossing it out of the hazard. You see, being a purely social golfer I had that option.
Golf for Beginners editor Stacy Solomon and saw her confidently execute a sand save from a deep, green-side bunker, I naturally
Apparently that tip's been around for a while, but I'd never heard it before, and it somehow enabled me to put into affect much of the other advice I'd gotten. For me it was just a really good visual, and I find that a good visual is often the key to understanding a concept in golf.
Speaking of good visuals here's the gorgeous (major understatement) Suzanne Haney making up-and-down look easy, while husband Hank narrates.
Check out Suzanne's YouTube channel for more excellent golf tip videos.