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There are two main drills that I use all the time to fix the shank shot for my students and we’re going to fix it for you.
The biggest thing that I see that leads to a shank is an error with people and where their weight goes in their feet. When I take my normal setup the weight is dead middle of my feet and I have that golf ball in the middle of my club. If I make my weight go more towards my toes, my club is going to move away from me, which introduces the heel to the golf ball. You shouldn’t have your weight going more towards your toes at any point in the swing.
If you want to quick fix a shank we can use a drill that’ll give you feedback.
Start with a short iron for this drill, like an 8 iron, and work your way up. Even if you only hit shank shots with your driver, still start with a short iron first.
The first item I’ll use is a range bucket. I put the bucket right outside of the golf ball – maybe about a 16th of an inch outside the ball. I don’t have a lot of room at all. If I typically hit a shank – which will be my club head center mass too far outside of the golf ball – I would clip the basket. For this drill I need to do a couple of short practice swings and hit a couple of golf balls and I need to feel whatever I need to feel to NOT hit the bucket. The same drill works in a similar way with a golf club box or shoebox. I set up the box much like the bucket and do the same pieces.
Drill number two is more of a feel-based thing, but it turns into a drill. A lot of people have the butt of the club, the handle, and their working too far to the right during their downswing and that makes the hosel hit the ball. Certainly the club head’s going to move to the right some amount during the downswing, but your hands, your handle, the grip needs to work left.
During the downswing, once you get your club somewhere by your right thigh, you need to feel your hands and the grip ripping left. It needs to feel like you’re hitting yourself in the left thigh on the way through. What does that do? Well, if I take my normal setup and I rip my grip and my hands up and left, that would make the club comes more towards me and would get the hosel away from the golf ball. Hit some short and slow to start – like 100 yard shots – and feel your hands and grip ripping as far left as you can possible make it go. You might even hit one or two off the toe with this drill which is a beautiful problem if you have issues with the shank.
So the main points here:
-If you are struggling with shank shots, reference your weight in your feet and distance away. Anything overly towards the toe is an issue and any kind of path that’s crazy outside of normal is an issue as well.
-You can fix a good portion of the weight issue with the bucket or box drill. Set the bucket or box up just outside of the ball and do short, slow practice shots with a goal of not hitting the bucket or box.
-The sensation of everything – your hands, the grip, the butt of the club – ripping up and left is going to get you off the shank.
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