Gripping a golf club is fundamental to a good swing. How we grip a club is a much talked about topic. It is one of the most popular posts at The Grateful Golfer and continues to grow in popularity. The mechanics of holding a club is very much a personal choice. There really is no right or wrong answer if the grip works for you. However, as less talked about topic is to how tightly to grip a golf club. How much pressure his applied to the grip to ensure the maximum movement and flexibility of our hands and wrists to maximize power during contact?
That is a very good question because it is the second, and equally important, topic of the golf grip. Regardless if you use the 10-finger, interlocking, or overlapping grip, how much pressure applied while initially holding the club is critical to a successful stroke. I have a rule of thumb that I use and it works extremely well for all my clubs.
My guideline is very straight forward and can be checked anytime during your round. My rule is simple: grab your putter, adopt your putting grip, and lift the club off the ground 1/2 inch. The pressure required to lift the club is the same pressure that you use to hold your club during your address. It is not any tighter than that; your putter pressure is how tight you should hold your club just prior to starting your drawback.
Now, some are saying that this pressure will not be tight enough to hold their club during the entire swing. And your statement would be partially correct. What many overlook or do not understand is that our grip will increase and decrease as required during their swing. Our hands will innately adjust according to the requirement. It is not something we need to think about and nor should we. The self-adjusting pressure is a natural phenomenon, so do not fight it!
The other important factor regarding the pressure of your grip is tempo. The faster the tempo, the tighter the grip. The tighter the grip the poorer are the results. Everyone has different tempo when swing a golf club. In my case, I have a slightly faster tempo than most, but it is consistent throughout my entire swing. If my tempo speeds up, I grip the club tighter than normal and my wrists lock; the results is my tendency to hook the ball. Conversely, if my tempo is too slow, my pressure is too light, my wrists are loosey-goosey; the results is my tendency to push or slice the ball.
When my grip pressure and tempo are spot-on, I hit the ball straight and long. I have great confidence and at I am at the top of my game. These two points are directly related to a successful golf swing.
If you are curious about your grip pressure during your round, try this quick test. Grab your putter and go through the motions as stated above. Lift and lower your putter about 5 times, then grab your driver with the same grip pressure use a moment ago and swing away. You will find that you are holding your driver more comfortably. As a result, you should make better contact with the ball.
Grip pressure is important. I recommend that you experiment the next time you hit the range (or on the course if you do practice). You will be pleasantly surprised at the results.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!