Golf Basics - Check Your Grip
First things first; if you’re going to take up learning the game of golf, the first thing that you actually and literally come in contact with is your golf club. So it seems only logical that we start with the grip. Understanding and establishing a proper grip is your first step. The grip sets the tone for all else to come. A good grip allows you to swing your club with control during full swings with maximum speed. It allows for you to bring the clubface squarely through the impact zone, and determines how much you club face rotation you get.
You’ll want to find a grip pressure that allows you to deliver enough force to the ball without the club twisting at impact; yet you don’t want your hands and forearms overly tight and stiff. Grip pressure was once described by Sam Snead as though you are holding a bird in your hands and you want to hold tight enough that the bird can’t fly away yet not so tight as to hurt the bird. For our purposes here and especially you are just learning how to grip the golf club, we’ll discuss gripping the club with a neutral type grip (neither favoring a draw or a fade). In this position the “V’s” created with the thumb and forefinger as you address the golf ball will point just to the right of your chin (right handed golfer). In fact, with this grip, someone standing directly across from you would see only the first two knuckles of your left hand.
So, two knuckles of the left hand showing and your “V’s” pointing to just right of your chin and you have a neutral - traditional type golf grip. With your forefinger and little finger that meet underneath the club grip; you can either choose to overlap these to fingers or you can interlock them; whichever is more comfortable to you and gives you the most confidence. Hold the club more toward your fingers than back in the palm of the hand. We want to be able to get a good natural wrist cock. When you are first just introducing a golf club to your hands, don’t worry about whacking golf balls right away. Rather, get used to the grip first. As you next begin to learn about address and set up, spend time just swinging the club back and forth and get used to how the club and the grip feel. Don’t worry too much hitting a ball at this early juncture. Down the road of your learning curve just bit, you’ll no doubt become curious about ‘drawing’ and or ‘fading’ the golf ball. Drawing or fading the golf ball begins with your grip.
Although drawing or fading your golf shot goes beyond the scope of this article, I want to touch on this as it relates to our discussion on the grip. Remembering your initial neutral grip that we discussed; if you want to grip to draw the ball you’ll rotate your hands/grip slightly clockwise. In other words, this will produce a three knuckle grip. up from your two knuckle grip we talked about earlier. To grip to fade the ball, you’ll go a knuckle the other way. So, you will reduce your neutral two knuckle grip down one to a one knuckle grip. I mention this, not to imply that you will want to immediately want to begin working your golf shots from right to left and left to right; rather I want to give you a basic understanding how the golf grip works first from the neutral hand position. Start building your golf swing with your teaching professional by laying a good foundation that starts with - - - the grip.