*Part of a series on Full Golf Swing Fundamentals adapted from a PurePoint Golf eBook. Click banner below for details
When you pick up a golf club your hands are the only part of your body that touch the club. For many years the hands (grip) have often been referred to as the steering wheel of the golf swing. I don’t believe this could be more true. Gripping the golf club correctly makes playing this game a much better experience.
Gripping the golf club at first glance does not seem like a very difficult thing to do, however, it can take a lot of trial and error to figure out the correct grip for you. This is a very interesting aspect to the game of golf. Gripping the golf club is a VERY INDIVIDUAL thing for everyone that plays golf. There are no two grips alike. You can only find what works for you through hitting golf balls. I can and will guide you, but ultimately, results on the golf course speak louder than me.
- Place the golf club up in your left hand, the golf club goes across the left palm- from the base of the forefinger to the pad above the pinky.
- Now, hold the handle steady with your left fingers and wrap your palm around the top of the grip.
1. Club Goes Across the Left Palm
2. Wrap Palm Around Top of the Grip
The grip does more to effect actual ball flight than anything else in the game. That’s why we’ve started with the grip. It’s the foundation of the swing, and a quick fix for those of you that have undesirable ball flight patterns.
The more you grip the golf club in the fingers, the faster you can swing the golf club and the quicker the clubface will close. If you grip the golf club further up in the palm, the slower the golf club will travel and the longer it takes for the clubface to close. If you are slicing the golf ball, you will want to move the grip more into the fingers (the base of the fingers), if you are hooking the golf ball, you will want to move the grip more into the palm area (higher up in the left hand).
- With your right hand on the side of your right leg, slowly bring it towards the bottom of the golf club.
- The right hand will be placed on the golf club more in the fingers than the palm. You will simply fold the right hand around the fingers of the left.
- BOTH PALMS MUST ALWAYS FACE EACH OTHER. It is not a difficult thing to do but it is mandatory, no gray area.
3. Bring your Right Hand Towards the Bottom of your Left Hand
4. Fold your Right Hand Around the Fingers of the Left Hand
5. Both Palms MUST Face Each Other
Congratulations, you have now GRIPPED the golf club. But hold on a second, there is a good chance this is not the correct grip for you, so you will have to experiment. However, I have given you a great starting point. The placement of the hands on the golf club controls what the clubface will do during the golf swing and ultimately what the clubface will look like at impact.
In the next section I will show you some variations of the grip that will help you find the one that works best for you.
**SPECIAL NOTE Most golf clubs either have a “ladies” grip or a “men’s” grip on the golf club. If you have small hands it is very important to make sure you have your clubs gripped with a ladies grip, it doesn’t matter if you own men’s clubs. If you have large hands you should have your clubs gripped with men’s grips. There are a couple more options, if your hands are really small you can have “junior” grips placed on your clubs or if you have x-large hands or arthritis you can have “jumbo” grips placed on your clubs. The grip size also effects ball flight. Large grips tend to make a person fade the ball and small grips tend to make a person draw the ball.**
For starters, if you have small hands and fingers, the interlocking grip will probably work best for you. It helps you wrap your fingers and palm around the grip handle.
On the other hand, if you have large hands, the overlapping grip will probably work best for you.
The above-mentioned grips are the proper way to hold a club- however there are three different ways you can apply them to the golf club.
You can grip the golf club in a weak position (no knuckles of the left hand showing), neutral (one knuckle of the left hand showing) or the strong position (2 or 3 knuckles of the left hand showing).
During your experimenting, if the golf ball has a tendency to curve to the right, you will want to move BOTH hands to the right (strong). When you move the hands make sure you do it slowly. If the golf ball has a tendency to curve to the left, you will want to move BOTH hands slowly to the left (weak). Now, if the golf ball is flying without a curve, you have the correct grip for you. DO NOT EXPERIMENT WITH ANY OTHER GRIP.
OK, you have found the correct grip for you. There is one last item we need to deal with. The amount of pressure you apply to the club plays a major role in how you swing the golf club. The tighter you grip the golf club the slower your arms will swing and the longer the clubface will take to release in the downswing (causing a slice). This is a good thing if you HOOK the golf ball. This will definitely stop the ball from curving from right to left. On the other hand if you have problems SLICING the golf ball this amount of grip pressure will make the ball slice more.
If you are struggling with slicing the golf ball, you will have to hold the golf club like you were holding a baby’s hand. Gently, the lighter you grip the golf club the faster the club will swing and the quicker the club will release in the downswing. If you do not have any problems with the ball curving, you have found the correct amount of grip pressure.
Full Golf Swing Fundamentals Series