Here's How to Stop Hitting Heel Shots

By Ed Ibarguen

We are back with common faults and we are going to talk about a scary one, it is called hitting on the heel. What makes this shot so scary is that if I am hitting a lot of heel shots I am very close to hitting the ball on the hosel.

Causes of Shanks

Now we all know what that is called, I am not even going to say the word, but it is a shot that goes out to the right in places we don't even want to go. Let's try to figure out what causes these heel hits but maybe even what causes the, I hate to even use the word but I don't want to confuse anybody, the shank.

Shanks happen, and heel shots happen, sometimes when people throw the club over the top they throw it out so much that as they begin to yank it back they will come back in and pull across it and hit it either on the heel, which is an off-center hit and of course depending on where the clubface is that is where the ball is going to go.

Clubface Direction and Shanks

So if the clubface is pointing left that ball is going that way and if the clubface is pointing right that ball is going this way. If they are not careful they might come down and pull across it and actually lay the hosel on the ball.

That swing obviously went off plane, out across the line, and was cast out across in a very bad position. That shot usually creates toe shots.

Overcorrecting Your Aim

What I see more often in the good players is that in their attempt to bring that club from in the inside they will often bring the club too far from the inside and get the club stuck behind them and now they are swinging on a very severe angle across the target line, across the straight plane line.

Now this is dangerous because this club is moving from in to out and I call that a good player shank. A good player shank is when you are coming from the inside and you are coming this way. Basic shanks are going to be coming in too far inside or casting out across the outside, often where the club will get to the ball before the hands do. See this position.


What is the thing you have learned from our lessons? That is a bad shaft angle. We want the shaft forward. How do you fix that, what is the cure? We talked about if your swing is too far inside you can put a headcover down.

You can get really simple and basic, put a tee, you have one in your pocket, put a tee right behind and inside the ball. What I want you to do is say when I am coming in, instead of coming over where I am crossing over that tee, see how I broke that tee coming from the inside, you want to try and simply say I am going to come more down the line. Inside, down the line, contact, back to inside. A simple tee can help you stop that inside out heel shot. Try those cures and best of luck.

Sub Categories: Downswing, Hands, Swing Plane

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