While I had one of my best months of golf ever in July 2015 (five eagles and a hole in one) I knew it was going to come to a screeching halt soon enough. It did with a back nine of shanks a few Sundays ago. Anyone that has had the “s” word knows how mentally debilitating it can be. You have absolutely no confidence at impact and it makes it nearly impossible to get the ball out of the rough. Even though I had the dreaded shanks I still shot an 86 but it was because of putting and chipping. So, to remedy these problem I quickly went to the driving range.
I grabbed my 8 iron and decided I needed to hit a few punch shots at half speed. I put all my weight on my front foot and made solid contact the very first swing. I proceeded to hit about 10 more 8 irons and all of them were crisp if I made certain my weight was on my front foot. I grabbed a pitching wedge, put all my weight on my front foot and full swung. Bingo. Solid contact and my normal trajectory. I went out and played another 18 holes after the dreaded shank 9 and ended up shooting a 38 on the back 9.
A word of warning. if you do this you are going to find your irons are about one club shorter. What you normally hit a 9 iron you will have to hit an 8 iron. In fact, I have found that my wedge distances are a little random at this point. That said, I am not shanking the ball and getting the proper trajectory. Over time I am certain I will gain confidence and no longer put all my weight on my front foot but for now, I will be happy to make solid contact and get the feet of hitting the ball correctly again.
My assumption is the weight transfer was the reason for the shank. I was obviously sitting back to much and couldn’t get my weight forward. This cause me to come in with the hosel and shank the ball. If you just practice chipping with your weight on your front foot you will find that it is nearly impossible to shank the ball; unless you are just that bad. If you are that bad I cannot help you. Seriously.
Have you ever had the shanks? What did you do to remedy them?