What Is a Strong Golf Grip & How It Can Impact Your Swing
Your grip plays a massive role in your total golf swing.
So many swing issues arise from how you hold the golf club. Yet, a lot of times players try to change everything else from tempo, transition, and takeaway.
When in reality, a slight grip change can do wonders to improve your swing and ball striking. Let’s dive into why you might need to strengthen your grip to start hitting it longer and straighter.
Strong Golf Grip 101
Most golfers have a weak grip.
But let me clarify that when you hear that a grip is strong or weak, that is not related to grip pressure. Instead, it’s referring to the hand position on the grip that determines if it’s strong, weak, or neutral. Don’t get me wrong, grip pressure is important but the style of grip you use is arguably the most important part.
Let’s define the three common types of grips to help you better understand.
Three Types of Grips
The first type of grip is known as a weak grip.
This is probably the most common grip among the average, everyday amateur golfer. If you’re a right-handed golfer, that means your left hand is more under the club and your right hand is more over the club.
The V’s of your left hand will be more to the left of your head.
A weak grip isn’t necessarily bad, but the hand positions do lead to a cut (or slice) swing, instead of a neutral or draw swing. It also usually doesn’t allow as much distance as a strong grip.
The second type of grip is a neutral grip. This grip position makes it easier to change your swing plane and other adjustments to flight the golf ball both ways.
The V of your left hand is pointed directly at your nose. This is a preferred grip that a lot of instructors teach as you have more control over ball flight.
Finally, the last type of grip position is known as a strong grip. Again, this isn’t referring to pressure on the club but hand position.
The V of your left hand will be more to the right side of your head at address position. You can usually spot three knuckles on your lead hand in this position.
If you’re a right-handed golfer, your left hand will be more over the golf club and your right hand will also be more under the club. With a strong grip, it’s easier to draw the ball and tends to yield a more powerful swing as well.
Why You Should Strengthen Your Grip
You should consider a stronger grip for two reasons: a straighter ball flight and/or more distance.
Reduce Your Slice
If you’re like most amateur golfers, you probably struggle with a left to right shot more often you want. A cut is one thing, but a slice can lead to some big misses and the ball goes a fraction of the distance as normal.
One of the biggest culprits of the left to right miss is a weak grip. A weak grip leads to more out to in swing and makes it easier to get steep on the downswing.
So if you struggle with a slice, then it might be time to strengthen your grip. Even if you don’t have a “strong” grip, strengthening to a neutral position can help big time. Then, once that feels comfortable, you can strengthen it even more to a true strong golf grip.
Add More Distance
Another massive benefit from strengthening your grip is extra distance with each club in the bag. A stronger grip makes it easier to reduce the loft of the club which instantly adds distance to your game. Plus, a stronger grip can also help you improve ball striking as it’s easier to create more lag as well.
This is why most of the guys on the PGA and European Tour use a stronger grip. It makes it easier for them to flush irons and max out their distances as well.
For example, one of the longest pound for pound hitters is Rory McIlroy. Even though he’s far from the biggest guy on tour, he hits bombs thanks to solid fundamentals, including his grip.
Rory has a stronger grip that allows him to have extra arm movement and shoulders. This leads to some of the biggest drives and one of the most gorgeous swings you’ll ever see.
Changing Your Grip
Before you go changing your grip tomorrow at the range, I want to point out that it’s a big change. If you do embark on the journey of changing your grip, just be prepared for some hiccups along the way. Changing your grip will change other parts of your swing so it will take time to adjust.
Whenever you make grip changes, make sure to:
- Hit a lot of balls on the range. Repetition is the key to mastering any swing change.
- Don’t judge early results. It will take some time to get your mind and body on board with the changes, trust the process.
- Grip a club at home. The good news is that when you change your grip, you can do it without hitting golf balls. As you’re watching TV or listening to music at home, grip a club with your new, stronger grip to get more comfortable.
Regardless of which method you choose, always remember two things:
- Make sure the grip is your fingers and not your palms.
- Maintain the same grip pressure throughout the swing.
A strong golf grip can help your game in more ways than one.
But just remember, changing your grip will take some time getting used too. Don’t read this, then go out and try it during a round tomorrow.
Instead, make the necessary adjustments on the driving range, get comfortable with your swing there, then take it to the golf course.
Finally, go easy on yourself as you make these changes.
There’s always a weird, awkward transition period before you start to see results. But I can promise that it’s one of the best changes you can make to your game.
Trust the process so you can groove a more consistent, powerful golf swing for the rest of your life.
Do you play with a strong, neutral, or weak grip? Are you trying to change it?
Let us know in the comments below!