How to Stop Hitting Wedges off the Toe (Simple Fixes!)

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Missing the sweet spot of the clubface can cause lots of inconsistencies in the golf swing, impacting both distance control and the ability to control straight ball flights.

In this article, you’ll learn how to stop hitting wedges off the toe, with actionable tips to get you striking the center of the clubface every single time.

Ready to perfect that impact position? Let’s go!

Hitting Wedges off the Toe

Hitting wedges off the toe can negatively impact both distance and accuracy. To prevent toe strikes, first ensure you’re standing the correct distance from the ball. Also, focus on swinging from the inside, and avoid extending too early in the swing. Finally, try to maintain good balance throughout the swing.

what happens when you hit it off the toe

What Happens When You Hit it off the Toe?

Hitting the ball off the toe of the club is one of the most common ball-striking problems, and it affects two things: distance and accuracy.


Put simply, toe strikes reduce the distance of your wedge shots.

When the club strikes the ball with the toe, you lose efficiency at impact. Not only does this reduce the overall distance of your shots, but it also affects your consistency.

Conversely, striking with the center of the clubface will allow you to compress the ball more, effortlessly increasing distance. Furthermore, it will improve your distance control and add more consistency to your game.


Toe strikes also affect accuracy, often causing the ball to hook in the air.

When you strike the ball off-center, something called the gear effect takes place. Essentially, the toe impact causes the club head to twist, resulting in the ball curving in the opposite direction — producing a hook.

When you strike with the sweet spot, however, you have more control over ball flight. This means you can control a draw or fade using your swing path, rather than an inconsistent impact position.

how to stop hitting wedges off the toe

How to Stop Hitting Wedges off the Toe

The obvious solution to stop hitting wedges off the toe is to stand closer to the ball.

Sometimes, amateur golfers stand too far away from the ball in their setup. This causes the swing plane to fall inside the ball at impact, resulting in toe strikes.

You are standing the ideal distance from the golf ball when your arms are hanging freely, and the butt of the club is pointing at your belt buckle.

However, most golfers actually address the ball pretty well. Instead, toe strikes tend to occur as a by-product of three common swing problems:

  1. Coming out of posture
  2. Pulling hands in at impact
  3. Dropping the trail shoulder early

Let’s dive into the solutions for each of these problems, in some more detail.

Reason 1: Coming Out of Posture

Firstly, a common reason for hitting wedges off the toe is when the body raises up through impact. This is known as “early extension”, and is the failure to maintain your spine angle throughout the golf swing.

Coming out of your posture too early in the swing will raise your hands at impact, exposing the toe of the club head. Furthermore, this motion can often result in a thin shot, as the club raises off the ground at impact.

Solution: Keep Your Chest Over the Ball

To solve this, stay in posture and keep your chest over the ball throughout the impact. Don’t extend up until after impact, as you rotate through your follow-through.

PRO TIP: A great drill to maintain spine angle is to place an alignment stick under your trailing arm. Aim to keep the stick pointed diagonally toward the ground throughout the entirety of the swing.

Note how Rory McIlroy maintains his posture throughout impact.

Reason 2: Pulling Hands in at Impact

Another cause of toe hits is when golfers pull their hands in through impact. This causes the club head to come inside, exposing the toe of the clubface.

Furthermore, even just a slight movement inside the ball at impact is enough to cause the impact position to be towards the toe — missing the sweet spot.

Solution: Swing From the Inside

To fix this, focus on extending your arms through impact while rotating through. This will naturally arc the club around your body, preventing the need to pull the hands through.

PRO TIP: A good feedback drill is to place a ball between your arms. Aim to keep the ball between your arms throughout—and after—impact with the ball.

Reason 3: Dropping the Trail Shoulder Early

Finally, another cause for hitting wedges off the toe is dropping the trail shoulder early. This causes golfers to get “stuck” in the swing, exposing the toe of the clubface.

Solution: Drop the Trail Shoulder Through Impact

To solve this, aim to drop the trail shoulder through impact — and no sooner. This enables you to rotate and compress the ball, without trapping the club behind you.

PRO TIP: To fix this shoulder problem, place an alignment stick under your trailing arm and aim to keep it pointing diagonally toward the ground. If you drop your shoulder too early, the stick will point directly forwards.

The video below—by Jonathan Chown—demonstrates these three common swing faults, along with useful drills to help you find the center of the clubface.


In summary, hitting wedges off the toe will affect both the distance and accuracy of your approach shots into the green – and your overall consistency.

Here are three common problems with the golf swing that causes toe strikes, and the quick solutions to help you find the center of the clubface:

  1. Coming out of posture – Keep your chest over the ball
  2. Pulling hands in at impact – Swing from the inside
  3. Dropping the trail shoulder – Keep your shoulder up until impact

Remember — the clubface is small! Even a small hint of these problems can be enough to miss the sweet spot. Focus on the drills for each, and you’ll make better contact in no time.

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Hailing from the South West of England, Jake has been playing golf for over a decade. He founded Pitchmarks with the aim of helping everyday golfers like himself learn more about the game, through instructional content and honest gear reviews. He has a degree in Architecture and a passion for golf course design, along with a lofty goal to play the world's top 100 courses.