It's All About The Grip

When you are starting to play golf, there is one important thing that you need to get right. The way you grip your golf club can have a heavy impact on not only your swing, but the way you strike the ball, and ultimately the final score you write down on your card.

There are two key aspects to the grip of your clubs, both which are of equal importance, both as individual considerations and interrelated facets of your game.

The grips that you have placed on your clubs should be carefully considered before you decide on the set of clubs that you are going to buy.

There are multiple avenues of the grip that should be considered. You have firm grips and soft grips, textured and smooth. Each one plays a unique role in things, and the wrong choice can easily cost you 3 or 4 shots per round. For us golfing beginners, that number can easily be multiplied, but at least two, if not more.

Man with Golf Club

The Soft Approach Can Pay Off

Swing speed plays a part in the grip selection process. A fast swing will be of better benefit when a firmer grip is used. For the majority of amateur golfers, like you and me a soft grip is the more recommended. Our swings are not that fast, not compared to the professionals and the scratch players. The only drawback of a softer grip is that for a player who is focused on improving their game, the tendency can be to grip the club too tight, and thus luck up your swing a little more than would be advised.

Playing with a Firm Hand

A firm grip will naturally encourage a softer hand pressure on the club and an increased club stability through the swing and transition from downswing, through ball contact and follow through.

The thing to bear in mind however is that to benefit fully from a firm grip, you should make sure that your swing is forceful enough to reap the rewards that are there or the taking.

Me personally, I use a firm grip on my clubs, but that is because I am a big guy. The power in my swing is capable of dealing with it. Make sure the choice you make is based on reason, and not the desire for one of the potential benefits.

 Golf Club Grips

The Look and the Feel Play a Part

After thinking about the fundamental quality of your clubs’ grip, there is one more factor to be considered. Do you want a smooth finish or a textured one? Again, both have their benefits and drawbacks, in equal measure, and strongly depend on both your style of play and your own personal comfort.

If you play without a glove, you might be more inclined to go for a smoother grip, however, if you are, such as I am, prone to sweaty hands, a textured grip will benefit you as the rounds go on. The textured surface will increase your grip on the club without increasing hand pressure, and give you a more confident feel.

The Power is in the Palm of Your Hand

Not only does the grip you place on your club impact your game, but the manner in which you hold the club is also something that can influence your game both for better and for worse.

For those looking to start playing golf, there are three different hand positions that you should learn about. The one you ultimately choose is by and large based around the feel and preference, but certain grips are better suited to certain players.

Big Hands Like to Overlap

The most common grip amongst professionals and experienced amateurs would be the Vardon grip, otherwise known as the overlap grip.

In this grip the little finger of the lower hand (the right hand for right handed players) lies on the crease between the forefinger and middle finger of the left hand. This grip is more suited to players with large hands because it helps to keep their hands in position, but also frees them up to fully release the club at the moment of impact.

Interlock for More Control

If you have smaller hands, or are yet to develop the power in your wrists and forearms to truly grip it and rip it with success, then the interlocked grip might be the best choice for you. The preferred grip of such legends as Jack Nicklaus, it sees you hook the little finger of the lower hand around the forefinger of the upper positioned hand. This gives you a better grip on the club, without tightening your grip too much in itself.

A grip that has mixed feelings in many golfers, they find the control that is gained is outweighed by the awkward feel. As your strength increases, the interlocking grip is easily transitioned into the Vardon grip, which allows your game that extra level of evolution.

 How to golf club

Grabbing it like a Bat

The final grip is the baseball grip. A common grip for first timers and those who have severely weakened hands, such as could be seen as a result of arthritis, this grip allows you the maximum contact with the club and increases your swing by counterbalancing the potential lack of strength with an increased area of grip on the club.

Whatever happens, the choices you make will need to fit both your game and your comfort levels. So take your time, look around, and don’t let yourself be rushed into anything that you haven’t taken the time to consider in the larger context of your ever improving style of play.

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