Obtaining a Better Golf Grip
Understanding the basics to a better golf grip can significantly lower your scores and best of all, improve your control. Starting with the left hand, this hand is responsible for gripping the club handle. The fingers of the left hand forms the base grip. This is of course aimed at right handed golfers. Those who are left handed golfers would switch the entire process to adjust to their predominant hand.
Most people have heard the analogy that you want to grip the golf club as though you are shaking hands with it. While it is a good analogy in getting people to reach for the club in the appropriate manner, there is a lot of play in that golfing advice. Let’s add a more specific notion of shaking hands with the golf club and meeting the knuckles of your left middle joint of the forefinger reaching approximately two inches from the top of the club handle and the bottom three fingers approaching the base of the club.
The right hand is then going to join in on the action and take its grasp around the golf handle. The club handle should rest right at the knuckle/palm intersection of the hand. You don’t want the club to be too far toward the finger tips and you want the club to rest firmly toward the base of the fingers toward the hand.
Now you successfully have both hands on the club. Looking down at their position you should be able to find a V shape created by the thumb and forefinger on the left hand. This V shape should have a direction. It should be aimed toward the right shoulder, pointing right about the middle of the shoulder to be precise. Adjust your grip until you have the club lying toward the base of your fingers toward the palm and the V shape of the left thumb and forefinger pointing directly toward the middle of the right shoulder. This seems like an awkward position, but once you adjust the grip accordingly, it should actually have a mildly normal feel to it. Get comfortable with it and practice getting just those basics of the golf grip down without having to spend twenty minutes adjusting your grip every time you pick up a club. You should be able to get it to the point where this part of gripping the golf club is natural and automatic.
Once you have mastered this basic approach to gripping the golf club, start to take notice of some finer details in your grip. There should be a little flex to your left wrist. The wrist should take on a mild angle that resembles a “cupping” angle. Relax your wrists until you find that motion and angle.
The V shape that your right forefinger and thumb produce should be aimed up toward the right ear. All of these “aiming” suggestions are assuming that you are gripping the golf club in the stance you take just prior to swinging the golf club.
The palm of the right hand is basically responsible for the direction the ball will go once it is in the air. While you are standing there adjusting your grip on your golf club and finding the stance that works best for you, you want to keep in mind that your goal is to “aim” the golf ball with the palm of your right hand. This of course only works if your grip on the golf club is accurate and your hands mold together as one cohesive unit.
When gripping your golf club, you want your hands to be able to work together. Aside from that, you want your hands to work in sync with the rest of your body. By developing a natural but distinct grip on the golf club you can encourage your entire body to work cohesively all the way through to the end of the golf club and produce a swing that will carry the ball both the distance and the direction you are aiming for.
Practice your swing often and carry your follow through all the way through your body. This will help eliminate chop shots that result from an uncomfortable grip on the golf club. Spending a little time at the driving range is always a good idea when making even minor adjustments to your swing. Practicing the adjustments for the first time on the fairway with a bunch of golfing associates is typically a frustrating maneuver.
White knuckling the club is a common mistake when learning new procedures to gripping the golf club. A golfer tends to get nervous about his new technique or small adjustments and wraps the club in an all out death grip. Relax a little and enjoy the challenge of creating a better golf swing.
On the opposite end of the scale avoid gripping the golf club with limp hands. This eliminates the control you are gaining by adjusting your grip in the first place and creates a very sloppy swing and follow through.
You want to grip the club firmly in your grasp and hold it with confidence. This confident but relaxed grip can help to flatten the head of the golf club as it makes contact with the golf ball, which can ultimately assist in cleaning up a slice.
The basics of gripping a golf club, while often an ignored or barely recognized intricacy of improving a golf game, is really only the beginning of overhauling an entire golf game. From grips to stances to head movement issues there is a chronic plethora of advice and tips floating around out there on the internet and in golfing magazines. How do you assess which tips are worthwhile and which ones will simply destroy what golf skill you have picked up over time?
Not all golf tips apply to all people. Just because one set of tip is completely useless to you doesn’t mean they won’t help someone else recover a lost game. Every individual’s physical body is different, so sometimes just a small adjustment in the tip makes it a valuable one to add to your game. Perhaps you are taller than average or smaller than average. Most golf tips are written with the average body in mind. If you have particularly long arms, you may have to take that into account as you read through golf tips.
If you have been golfing for years and you have developed particular habits that are hard to break, remember that often the initial habit breaking period will lead to a decline in your golf game. This is actually true in any sport. If the unusual habit is working well for you, there may not be a need to change it. If it isn’t working well for you and you decide to change it, be patient with yourself. It will take time to see any actual improvement.