Golf rules: Is this a bunker? What constitutes a bunker?

Is this a bunker? What do the golf rules officially say about bunkers? Find out here. 

Ben Smith's picture
Fri, 21 Jan 2022

Golf rules: Is this a bunker? What constitutes a bunker?

Golf rules. Those are two words that provoke so much discussion in clubs around the world. 

There are hundreds upon hundreds of golf rules and understanding them and applying them can be difficult at times. 

At GolfMagic, we get sent hundreds of questions and at this point we have seen pretty much everything. 

From seeing players hit shots off icy lakes, off lilypads to scooping the ball over your shoulder on the green. 

This latest one is also quite interesting and has already provoked a lively debate. 

Related: Is bifurcating golf's rules really necesarry?

Related: Can I tee my ball up like this?

Let's take a look 

Watch: Phil Mickelson smash a driver out of a fairway bunker

The answer, at least in my opinion, isn't immediately obvious. 

As per the rules of golf, a bunker is: A specially prepared area of sand, which is often a hollow from which turf or soil was removed.

So in answer to the question: yes this is a bunker. Heaven knows the arguments from golf club members about inverted bunkers. 

Fans not convinced

Of course, there were a few people in the comments who think this is still sketchy. 

Comments included:

"It looks like grass"

"I still wouldn't be able to get out" 

"Courses love inverted bunkers, super easy to maintain"

Struggle with bunkers? Check out this bunker masterclass.

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