Frank’s bunker play

He hit it really well today. Things really lined up. He is turning his right hip deeper, giving his right elbow more room to get in front, which allows his turn to go hard left.

I believe he is out of repair and into maintenance. I cannot discern a difference between his swing when he won and now…and it feels good and produces good results.

I made two unreal up and downs from the sand and after he hit a poor one I looked at him and said, “That is horrific. How can a guy who hits 5-10 footers as well as you spend his career finishing 100-150th in sand saves. You look like a 25 hitting out if the sand and have looked that way since 1993.”

Instead if punching me in the face, he agreed and told me horror stories about how he was told to do it and some of the poor shots he hit in his career.

I am known for two things on the golf course. I hit it far and I can get it up and down from almost anywhere in the sand. Playing the PGA West courses for 10 years taught me that…and even through my struggles, I could still hit me some sand shots.

He is a fantastic pitcher around the green, so being a good sand player should follow suit, only he has never done it correctly. He doesn’t open the face enough, adds loft at impact and has to use a lot of speed.

This means lots of checking well to the right and lots of spin.

I made a few adjustments and told him he was allowed to release the club and he didn’t need so much speed.

He spent the next half hour lipping out and holing shots.

When the ball is above his feet in the sand, he actually has problems leaving it in the bunker. He did that twice when he finished 13th at the Valero a few weeks ago.

I put 10 balls waist high and he hit 9 of them within 5 feet on about a 30 foot shot with 10 feet of sand to carry.

I told him when he regains his tour card, it’s going to be fun for him finishing in the top 10 in sand saves.




  1. James

    Hi monte. Can you give us any advice for bunker shots above the feet?

    • Monte Scheinblum

      Stand far enough away from it is the big one. Aim more to the right.

  2. theMIKE

    I hope only that with the right elbow in front, you did not add annother shenanigan into his swing. have a match with him to set him really under pressure and see if he starts hooking, pushing and so on. ‘too much instruction for touring pros..’

      • theMIKE

        as it can cause you to get terribly from underneath, but that you know probably better than anyone…

        I always felt that this one qualifies for a big fat rant, but i am still learning..

  3. Robert Johansson

    Its all about having big balls.
    Sand shots that are so easy to do?

    What kind of guys have given him advice really?
    and why did he listen to them?

  4. Robin

    Monte, can you do a video on your preferred bunker technique? Are you more Utley (wide feet, lots of speed), Mickleson (hinge and hold)…?

    • Monte Scheinblum

      I will. Not a big fan of Phil’s hinge and hold. He is obviously great at it, but it is hard to do correctly.

      It’s funny what you said about Utley and a lot of speed. I am a believer in less speed and frank took Tobit immediately.

      It’s this simple. Start with an open face so the bounce hits the sand first, then don’t change the loft of the club face during the swing.

  5. Joe

    Search Pete Cowen bunker play on YouTube, it changed my sand play completely. I am sure Monte is awesome also, but that video was a game changer for me.


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