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Why Do I Shank My Golf Chip Shots Under Pressure?Many players when tense or nervous around the green with a wedge can hit the dreaded shank shot.

A shank occurs when the ball is hit with the hosel of the golf club and shoots violently right. Its a shot which has its roots in technical faults, however, it can equally become a mental problem because golfers will always fear hitting another.

On chip shots, the most likely cause of hitting a shank is too much tension in the hands and body caused by the worry of what might happen. The first thing to do is clear the mind, focus on the shot and use these popular maxims to create a good grip pressure.

  • Imagine you are holding a small, live bird. Imagine holding the bird with enough strength to stop it flying away but soft enough so you dont hurt it. This imagery can be carried over on to the golf club, light enough so the club doesnt fly away but firm enough that control is maintained
  • Secondly, imagine you are swinging a tube of toothpaste. It needs to be held tightly enough so it remains in the hands, but lightly enough so toothpaste didnt fly from the end. This again can be transferred on to the club
  • Golfers should try to grip the club using one of these thoughts to help relax the body and hands. If this does not quite fix the problem, practice chipping using this drill
  • With a wedge, set up the golf ball ensuring you are standing far enough away from the ball
  • Place a plastic cup, bottle or something which wont be damaged just outside the toe of the club
  • Hit shots avoiding the object on the outside of the ball. By hitting shots in this way golfers will groove a better swing path through the ball

When under pressure, take your time, relax your grip and pick the spot you want to land the ball on the green.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

If you are hitting the shank first see if you are standing too close to the ball. This is one of the simplest reasons for hitting a shank. Its very hard to hit a shank if you stand a long way from the ball.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

Trying to chip quickly and rushing the technique can cause inconsistent striking from across the club face not just the shank. Take your time and establish a good tempo when chipping.

Sorry Try Again! - See Explanation Below

Many golfers are unsympathetic to someone struggling with the shanks especially if they havent been through the ordeal themselves and attribute the fault to cowardice. This could not be further from the truth; shanks are first routed in technique not the mind.