The importance of a good grip cannot be understated. Too strong or too weak and you’ll find it difficult to square the clubface up at impact, which can lead to a succession of hooks and slices. Here, we take a look at certain checkpoints to help you on your way to the perfect golf grip.
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It’s a part of the game where personal preference can take over but we’re going to focus on keeping it neutral and the steps you need to take to get there.
Step 1: The left hand
The first thing to do is analyse how the left hand (right for left-handers) sits on the grip – you want it to be in the fingers. If it isn’t, set the club on the ground with the face pointing towards the target and the toe raised slightly off the ground.
Then, with an open hand, ensure the grip runs from the middle joint of your index finger through to the fleshy pad at the bottom of your hand. And once you’ve done that, wrap the fingers round and roll the thumb in place.
With the left hand on, you’ll notice a line has formed between the thumb and forefinger which should point towards your right ear.
If done correctly, you want to see somewhere between two and three knuckles on your lead hand when looking down. If this isn’t the case, repeat the process until this is achieved.
Step 2: Decisions, decisions…
This is where you have the choice of overlapping, interlocking or employing the baseball grip. There is no right or wrong, it’s all down to personal preference. There is one key to remember, though: make sure you grip it in the fingers.
The interlock variation, famously used by Tiger Woods to pretty devastating effect, involves interlocking the index finger of the left hand with the little finger on the right hand, as shown below.
Arguably the most popular, the overlap sees the right little finger sit between the index and second fingers on the left hand whereas, as should be quite self-explanatory, the fingers underneath the club are separated in the baseball grip.
Step 3: The right hand
Whatever your preferred method, it’s important to get the right hand in the appropriate position so the two can work together as a solid unit – this will help you get more power in your golf swing.
Place the fingers on the underside of the grip and then wrap the hand over so the left thumb is sitting cosily beneath the palm of the right hand.
Once again, a line will be visible between the thumb and forefinger that should point towards your right ear.
The finishing touch is to shift the index finger down the grip slightly which will act as a trigger. Put all this together and you have the perfect golf grip.
There are two main issues that people tend to struggle with when it comes to this basic fundamental: having too weak or too strong a grip.
A strong grip, in which the lead hand is on top of the club, most commonly leads to hooks as the face wants to turn over through impact. An easy way to find out if this is your issue is to check how many knuckles on your lead hand are visible. If you can see more than three then you’d have what is considered a strong grip and it would be worth spending some time trying to weaken it.
By contrast, if you have a weak grip you might be plagued by a dreaded slice in which the face is open to the path at impact. To check, once again look down at the knuckles on show. If less than two it would be a good idea to strengthen it slightly and regain some control over the clubface.