A poor grip is a major issue because you simply can’t swing a club correctly if you’re not dedicating the right amount of strength and pressure. Having the right grip will also allow you to fix your slice and ensure more consistent play every single time.
So, what are the secrets of professional golfers, and what type of grip is going to work best for you? What sets Tiger Woods apart from mere mortals? The following guide will acquaint you with a number of essential steps and techniques you have to master in order to enjoy a proper golf swing effortlessly.
The Importance of Proper Golf Grip
The way you position your hands on the club determines exactly how much control you’re going to have over it. A proper golf swing is dependent on two primary things – your grip and your posture. Today, we’re going to be discussing the first one.
A few additional reasons why a proper golf grip is so important include:
- Better strength and more control when moving the club
- Improved fluidity of motion
- A higher level of precision each time you swing
It’s important to start with a good grip as bad habits can be very difficult to break. In fact, the importance of a proper grip is so important that some of the top coaches don’t move on to any other lessons before the proper grip lesson gets mastered.
Correct Grip Essentials
Here are the key things you have to understand and practice in order to improve your grip.
Understand the Types of Golf Grips
There are two main kinds of golf grips. To determine whether you’re more prone to using the interlock grip or the overlap golf grip, you’ll simply need to hold a club and play around with it:
- Interlock grip: the pinkie and the index finger are interlocking
- Overlap golf grip: overlapping the pinkie on top of the index finger
As far as the perfect golf grip is concerned, these are two of the best options. They are widely prioritized by professionals but obviously, there are some exceptions, and an actual grip that differs from the two main varieties could be a good choice.
Jordan Spieth, for example, interlocks his left index finger with his pinkie. While this kind of grip is considered very unorthodox, it has delivered excellent results for Spieth.
So, the first step would be to hold a golf club and find out what feels natural. Once you have this sorted out, you can move on to exploring the in-depth essentials of a good technique. Alternative grips can work, as long as you’re not making common golf grip mistakes in terms of technique (placing hands too high or low, lacking consistent grip pressure, wrong wrist angles, etc.).
Here’s how to ensure correct hand placement:
- Always pick upthe golf club in your weaker hand first (that would be the left hand for a right-handed player and the right hand for left-handed golfers).
- Turn your hand over so that the two knuckles are visible. Your index finger and left thumb should create a “V” shape that needs to be pointing towards your alternate shoulder (right shoulder if you’re holding with the left hand or vice versa – left shoulder if you’re holding with the right hand).
- About half an inch of the golf club should be out of your grip on top.
- Now take your other hand and grip the club. Your left thumb should be sitting on top of the one that’s already on the handle of the club. It needs to be pointing downwards.
In terms of hand placement (grip strength), there are three prominent choices:
- Neutral grip: The technique described above (creating a “V” shape with your hands) creates a neutral grip. The neutral grip gives you a good foundation you can use to increase consistency.
- Strong grip: With a strong grip, the knuckles of the right hand (for right-handed players) are turned underneath the shaft and the knuckles of the left hand are visible to the player. The strong grip can be more difficult to master and is mainly preferred by players who want to draw the golf ball.
- Weak grip: A weak grip has the right hand turned on top of the golf club and it is often used by the golfers who try to hit a fade. With a weak grip, you will usually ensure an outside-to-inside swing path.
The Perfect Grip Pressure
A grip shouldn’t be too light, but you also don’t want to be gripping the golf club in a way that turns your knuckles white.
If you feel that your forearms tense up when you address the ball, chances are that too much pressure is being applied. The best advice on grip pressure is to not be too tight and rigid but also not let the club feel flimsy in your hands.
What’s the Best Golf Grip?
That question can be very difficult to answer with so many options available.
We’d recommend visiting a golf course and playing around with the golf club. A good grip should feel natural, and it should also be easy to sustain.
It’s also a good idea to work with a professional coach in order to address fundamental mistakes before these become a habit.
How a Good Grip Impacts Swing Mechanics
The grip style can impact golf swing mechanics in more than one way. If you want to have a proper golf swing, you will need the right balance of hand placement, strength, and pressure. These elements impact the entire swing in the following ways:
- Improved consistency, less tension: Grip size is playing a major role in this situation, and studies suggest that about 50 percent of golfers don’t have the right grip size. A standard-size grip may not necessarily be the right one for you. The following guide sheds light on preventing issues like oversized or undersized golf grips.
- Direct impact on the swing path: The swing path is directly correlated to the kind of grip you use. If you’re using a strong grip, the swing path will be too inside and the swing plane will generally be too flat. A weak grip causes an outside swing path and a steep plane.
Personal preference is important, but you still need to address position issues and maximize the use of the neutral grip position.
The neutral grip position is all about having a “V” created by the index finger and the thumb in a way that points to the right shoulder.
Learning to adjust your grip strengths will deliver visible results. Make sure to keep an eye on faulty hand placement – the sooner you address it, the easier you’ll find it to improve your grip.