How to Stop Shanking

Before you start panicking and think you have contracted some vicious disease, rest assured that there is a cure for the shanks.  There are only five causes for a shank.  We just have to determine which one is occurring to produce this type of shot.  First off, a shank is simply impact on the heel of the club rather than on the face.  Somehow the heel of the club moved closer to the ball than intended.  Let’s examine the possibilities.

  • I’m standing too close to the ball.
  • My clubs are too long.
  • My swing is too flat.
  • My arms swung farther out to the ball than they should have.
  • Somewhere I moved closer to the ball during my swing (lowering or leaning towards ball).
  • My right shoulder moved outward on the downswing causing my arms to be too close to the ball.
Impact of shot
Standing too close
Flat swing
Moved in closer to the ball
Swung shoulder and club farther out towards ball

Once you have established the cause or combination of reasons for the shank, you need to simply eliminate it / them from your swing.  Remember that if you were getting too close with the heel, you need to be working to get the heel farther away from the ball at impact.  One way to quickly change this is to put a tee on the inside of the ball and focus on hitting the tee rather than the ball.