What is Shaft Lean

What is Shaft Lean and How You Can Get It!

by Coach Erik Schjolberg

Why Golfers Need Shaft Lean: Unlocking Consistency and Power in Your Swing

The Importance of Shaft Lean in Golf

Shaft lean is a critical component of an effective golf swing, yet it’s often misunderstood or overlooked by many golfers. Achieving proper shaft lean can drastically improve your ball striking, consistency, and overall performance on the course. To understand why golfers need shaft lean, it's essential to delve into what it is, how it impacts your swing, and the benefits it brings. This is what you will find in my blog series on Shaft Lean!

What is Shaft Lean?

Shaft lean refers to the angle of the golf club’s shaft at the moment of impact. When a golfer achieves proper shaft lean, the hands are ahead of the clubhead, with the shaft leaning towards the target. This position is crucial for ensuring that the clubface strikes the ball with a descending blow, leading to better compression, control, and distance.

How Shaft Lean Impacts Your Swing

1. Ball Striking: Proper shaft lean ensures that the clubface contacts the ball with a descending blow. This downward strike compresses the ball against the clubface, resulting in a more solid and powerful shot. Without proper shaft lean, golfers often struggle with thin or fat shots, leading to inconsistent performance.

2. Spin and Control: Shaft lean influences the amount of spin imparted on the ball. A forward shaft lean at impact increases backspin, which helps control the ball’s flight and landing. This is particularly important for approach shots, where stopping the ball quickly on the green can be the difference between a birdie and a bogey.

3. Distance: By compressing the ball more effectively, proper shaft lean allows golfers to transfer more energy into the shot, resulting in greater distance. This is especially beneficial for longer clubs, where maximizing distance without sacrificing control is key.

4. Consistency: Achieving and maintaining proper shaft lean leads to a more repeatable and reliable swing. Consistency is the hallmark of a good golfer, and shaft lean plays a pivotal role in ensuring that each shot is struck solidly and predictably.

The Benefits of Proper Shaft Lean

1. Improved Accuracy:Proper shaft lean helps ensure that the club face is square to the target at impact, leading to straighter shots. This accuracy is crucial for navigating challenging course layouts and avoiding hazards.

2. Enhanced Ball Flight:With the correct shaft lean, golfers can achieve a more controlled and penetrating ball flight. This is particularly advantageous in windy conditions, where keeping the ball low and stable is essential.

3. Greater Confidence: Knowing that you have the technique to strike the ball solidly and consistently builds confidence. This mental edge is invaluable, allowing you to focus more on strategy and less on swing mechanics during your round.

4. Versatility:Proper shaft lean enables you to execute a variety of shots with different clubs. Whether you’re hitting a driver off the tee or a delicate chip around the green, maintaining the correct shaft lean helps you adapt to various situations on the course.

Old Wives Tales

Golf is a sport riddled with Old Wives Tales that have permeated the game for generations, making it difficult for golfers to discern truth from fiction. These myths, often passed down without scrutiny, have taken root so deeply that they overshadow evidence-based techniques. For instance, one common misconception is the belief that "keeping your head down" will improve your swing. In reality, this advice can lead to tension and restricted movement, ultimately harming a golfer’s performance. Another prevalent myth is the notion that swinging harder translates not hitting the ball so well. Many have heard we need to slow it down when there has been a poor strike. This flawed advice overlooks the importance of technique, timing, and body mechanics, which are crucial. Or, that we need a certain amount of shaft lean. You will read in here that shaft lean percentage changes quite dramatically from golfer to golfer and throughout the golf bag.

What You Will Find in this Blog

In the upcoming 30-part series on shaft lean, I will delve into the intricate details and mechanics behind achieving the perfect shaft lean in your golf swing. Each post will meticulously break down various aspects of shaft lean, from its fundamental principles to advanced techniques for optimizing your ball striking. Expect comprehensive analyses, supported by data and real-world examples, illustrating how proper shaft lean can dramatically improve your swing efficiency, power, and accuracy.

Throughout this series, I will also provide actionable insights and step-by-step drills tailored to golfers of all skill levels. You will learn how to diagnose common faults, make necessary adjustments, and develop a consistent practice routine to master shaft lean. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned golfer, this series will equip you with the knowledge and tools needed to conquer shaft lean and elevate your game to new heights.

You can have SHAFT LEAN!

Through regular practice, professional guidance, and utilizing these resources, golfers can master shaft lean and achieve their golfing goals. So, read on and become a master at shaft lean with proper understanding!

- Erik Schjolberg, EJS Golf

Become Your Best

Check out my Blog Series on Shaft Lean

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My Podcast: The Truth About Golf

Episode #1 - Hugh Marr

Dive deep into the world of golf coaching, learning, diagnosis and more with European PGA Tour Coach, mentor and more, Hugh Marr. ! Discover expert insights on the most provocative topics in golf coaching, learning, and student success. Unlock the secrets to becoming a better golfer with these proven strategies. Don't miss this exclusive opportunity to learn from the best!

Episode #2 - Dr. Mark Bull

Coach Erik Schjolberg, located at the renowned EJS Golf Academy in Scottsdale, AZ, brings you expert insights from Dr. Mark Bull. Discover valuable tips and strategies to enhance your golf game as Dr. Bull shares his extensive knowledge on mastering your swing and optimizing your mental game. Join us on this captivating journey to unlock the secrets of becoming a better golfer.

Episode #4 - Kerrod Gray

Welcome to an exclusive podcast hosted by yours truly, Coach Erik Schjolberg, coming to your from the EJS Golf Academy in Scottsdale, AZ and my special guest, Kerrod Gray. Kerrod right now is on a journey that you will learn more about that his traveling all over the world. Get ready to embark on a transformative golfing journey with this podcast that will take your skills to unprecedented heights.

Episode #5 - Tim Tucker

Tim Tucker, Bryson DeChambeau's Caddie, is going to blow your mind with how you can become a much better putter. He has a tool that will make this easier than you think. Get ready to putt and not be too far off those guys you see on the TV over the weekends.

Golf Smarter Podcast Episodes

Listen to each episode by clicking the link in orange.

Golf Smarter Podcast Episode #793

"If You’re Not Practicing Golf with Feedback…DON’T Practice!"

episode #793

Golf Smarter Podcast Episode #807

"Simple Advice on How to Score Lower By Playing Golf Smarter" episode #807

Golf Smarter Podcast Episode #850

"Most Golfers Don’t Know What They’re Thinking About When Swinging a Golf Club"

episode #850

Golf Smarter Podcast Episode #921

"Learn To Close Your Clubface Properly for Better Ballflight"

episode #921

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Scottsdale Lessons

Take lessons at the exclusive practice area for the EJS Golf Academy at McCormick Ranch Golf Course in Scottsdale, AZ featuring an indoor bay that opens up to the driving range, driving range, bunkers and three practice greens.​​

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What My Students Say...


I am constantly learning about all aspects of golf because I want to make sure that information gets to YOU as my student to help you be a better golfer!​

PGA - As an associate of the PGA (Professional Golfers' Association), the most trusted association in golf, I am dedicated to keep my knowledge and understanding up to date as new information and technology becomes available.

TPI Level 1 and 2 - TPI (Titleist Performance Institute) is "the world's leading educational organization dedicated to the study of how the human body functions in relation to the golf swing." Completing Level 1 certification and now finishing Level 2 has given me a greater understanding of identifying physical limitations of my students and how to adapt their swing to continue to enjoy the game while maintaining healthy movements for their individual situation.​

Trackman Certified - Trackman Certification denotes a profound understanding of ball flight laws, essential for diagnosing and improving swings. It also reflects mastery in utilizing Trackman technology for detailed swing analysis, enhancing both the teaching and learning experience. This level of expertise signifies a commitment to continual education in a field that’s ever-evolving with new techniques and technologies.​

Dr. Kwon's Biomechanics Level I and II - Applying science to the golf game has allowed us to understand the golf swing like we never have before. Dr. Kwon is a leader in biomechanics and allows me to simplify this information for students to gain the benefits of biomechanics in golf.

Scott Cowx Certified Level I and Advanced - The anatomy of the golfer. Matching up conditions to the golfer allowing for specific and personal swings that make sense to the golfer.​

Boditrak - Using a pressure mat is essential in helping student understand and see what pressure they create before and during their swing. Gaining my Boditrak certification has helped me better understand ground reaction forces and how to help my students apply it to gain distance throughout their game.​

Titleist Club Fitting - Having the proper tools makes such a difference for my students! Being a certified fitter for Titleist irons, drivers/fairway woods, and hybrids allows my students to get quality information to invest in clubs that will make the most of their game. It also saves them money and time from having to make an appointment at an expensive golf fitting outfit.​

Titleist Golf Ball Fitting & Ball Flight - Being able to understand the characteristics of the various balls offered by Titlest along with their ball flight patterns allows me to help my students pick a ball that will maximize their performance on the course.​

PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) - Introducing golf to Veterans with disabilities to enhance their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.​

Sportsbox AI - An AI -powered technology company using patent-pending 3D Motion Analysis and Kinematic AI technology. Allows me to help online students like never before to see your swing from all angles instead of the one view that a video shows.

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