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Proper Grip Pressure (It's Firmer than You Might Think)


iacas

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Constantly flipping my ideas about golf upside down. Nice work. I would like to start seeing some links to these studies you talk about, a lot of it seems to just be your word. Not that I don't trust it, I would like to read for myself though.

Originally Posted by iacas

Christopher, what's the role of the rear hand? Do you believe it contributes nothing in terms of power to the golf swing? Why? What proof do you have of this, and what do you say to the many documents and studies which show otherwise? What do you think Ben Hogan meant when he said he wished he had three right hands (and arms)?

I have recently switched to a tighter left handed grip. My tight right hand seemed to be causing the club face to close. I could test this by just barely taking the club back 3 feet and bringing it back to the ball, in that small move the face would close. I started using more left hand and was able to bring the club face back square every time. Maybe it's just a sign that I need to weaken my left hand (as in rotation, not grip pressure). Obviously this isn't any kind of scientific data, but I always thought the left hand was key in bringing the club back to the same spot. Not saying that the right hand doesn't help some though.

Originally Posted by iacas

Blisters don't necessarily mean you were gripping the club too tightly. Oftentimes they mean the opposite, and the grip is moving around in your hands.

Do you have any proof of this? I've gone from horrible blisters to just calluses by lightening my grip some. The grip moves no matter how tightly you grip, and the tighter your grip is when that club moves, the more damage you do, is what I would think.

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One reason I seldom read or post on forums, no definition, no precision and guesswork in regard to golf.

99% increase pressure as they turn and go into impact.

The last procent are pro´s that learned the proper griptouch.

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Originally Posted by jshots

Constantly flipping my ideas about golf upside down. Nice work. I would like to start seeing some links to these studies you talk about, a lot of it seems to just be your word. Not that I don't trust it, I would like to read for myself though.

If I had them I'd link to them too. It was an older study from perhaps even the late 1990s. I always try to back up my thoughts when I can, but sometimes I have to fall back on the experience I have both as a pretty good player and having worked with and talked to some of the best players. Firm grip, but not firm forearms.

Originally Posted by jshots

Do you have any proof of this? I've gone from horrible blisters to just calluses by lightening my grip some. The grip moves no matter how tightly you grip, and the tighter your grip is when that club moves, the more damage you do, is what I would think.

What causes blisters? Rubbing. Rubbing is movement. So either one or both of these things is occurring:

  1. Your grip is too loose, which lets the club wiggle around (at the top of the backswing is common, but impact vibrations from hitting the ball and turf cause movement too).
  2. Your grip is poor, and the club isn't secured properly.

I've never seen a blister caused by a proper grip that's too firm (unless you just pound a ton of balls one day, like Ben Hogan might, in which case he'd get blisters all over just from the small vibrations of impact occurring a thousand times or whatever.

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Aside from short pitches, 'light is right' and 'baby bird' have never worked for me. I keep my arms relatively relaxed, but I gotta hold on to the club, and pretty tightly compared to holding a 'baby bird'. On a scale of 1-10 with ten being a death grip, I'm probably 4-5. Anything lighter and I just can't hit the ball consistently, though I've tried to lighten my grip pressure in the past.
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  • 1 year later...

It's a rather late bump but I'm hopefully bringing some news to the table.

I am currently working with a few colleagues of mine to try in some way get a more proper idea of how the grip pressure actually affects the ball flight and the ball flight laws. As a step in that work I am currently in contact with the person whom conducted the studies on the PGA Tour about grip pressure during the late 90s.

Hopefully I will be able to showcase the real work some time soon for you all to read if the author gives me the permission.

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A quick question for our resident pro's. If any part of the club during the downswing is allowed movement in the hands can this affect ball flight significantly? As swing speed gets higher with the woods in particular I'm finding I'm prone to a miss to the right. This doesn't happen with the irons I'm guessing my grip doesn't come loose shaft is shorter the swing speed is lower. I actually hit a soft draw. Sometimes with the 3 wood and driver I can hit a slight push sometimes with a fade. If I tighten my trigger finger it seems to iron out the most drastic of errors. Of course I will still miss but can the lack of grip pressure actually not allow the squaring of the club face coming into impact where swing speed is highest?
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What works for me is this simple formula;

On a "strength of grip scale" measured from 1-10,1 being the club virtually falling out of my hands, and 10 being the tightest I can grip the club;

All clubs, Driver to SW a 4-5. and the putter a 3.

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What works for me is this simple formula;

On a "strength of grip scale" measured from 1-10,1 being the club virtually falling out of my hands, and 10 being the tightest I can grip the club;

All clubs, Driver to SW a 4-5. and the putter a 3.

Here's the thing, what's your 5 compared to my 5? See how that tip doesn't work well. You can say, "Well grip it like a 5". Well if you hit a lot of golf balls and might work out, that could be some other amateur's 9.

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Here's the thing, what's your 5 compared to my 5? See how that tip doesn't work well. You can say, "Well grip it like a 5". Well if you hit a lot of golf balls and might work out, that could be some other amateur's 9.

You don't calibrate your grip pressure? You really should practice your pressure increments so that you can dial it in. 2 for short putts, 4 for long putts, sand shots, and pitches, and 9 for trying to reach par-5s in two. Will save you at least 3 shots a side.

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What works for me is this simple formula;

On a "strength of grip scale" measured from 1-10,1 being the club virtually falling out of my hands, and 10 being the tightest I can grip the club;

All clubs, Driver to SW a 4-5. and the putter a 3.

Those are fine if you have a very firm grip.

Most amateurs grip the club too loosely. They may have (too) firm wrists and forearms, but their grips are too loose. Generally speaking.

A pro's "3" is often an amateur's "7."

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Most amateurs grip the club too loosely. They may have (too) firm wrists and forearms, but their grips are too loose. Generally speaking.

This seems to be a problem for me.  I read all the grip pressure "feels" (light, firm, etc.), but the club always seems to move in my hand a bit at impact.  Like many have mentioned, a grip pressure scale is very objective.  I started to grip firmer but was experiencing the same problems.  I think I have been firming up my wrists and forearms but leaving my grip loose (even though I thought it was harder).  I have to make a better effort of recognizing my grip pressure points while relaxing my wrists and forearms.

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This seems to be a problem for me.  I read all the grip pressure "feels" (light, firm, etc.), but the club always seems to move in my hand a bit at impact.  Like many have mentioned, a grip pressure scale is very objective.  I started to grip firmer but was experiencing the same problems.  I think I have been firming up my wrists and forearms but leaving my grip loose (even though I thought it was harder).  I have to make a better effort of recognizing my grip pressure points while relaxing my wrists and forearms.

Try gripping tight with only the middle and ring fingers of both hands while relaxing the wrists and other fingers.  Then swing the club back and forth.  Feel how you can grip hard and relax at the same time.

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Try gripping tight with only the middle and ring fingers of both hands while relaxing the wrists and other fingers.  Then swing the club back and forth.  Feel how you can grip hard and relax at the same time.

Thanks for the advice!  I will give it a go when I get out to the range today.

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Those are fine if you have a very firm grip.

Most amateurs grip the club too loosely. They may have (too) firm wrists and forearms, but their grips are too loose. Generally speaking.

A pro's "3" is often an amateur's "7."

Might want to check your facts.......most amateurs grip the clubs as if they are holding on for dear life.

Here's the thing, what's your 5 compared to my 5? See how that tip doesn't work well. You can say, "Well grip it like a 5". Well if you hit a lot of golf balls and might work out, that could be some other amateur's 9.

On a scale of 1-10; a 5 would represent  a 50% tighter grip  than 0 and a 50% looser grip than a 10.

I have no clue what you are trying to say with this statement;

"Well if you hit a lot of golf balls and might work out, that could be some other amateur's 9"

Sometimes math is hard......

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Might want to check your facts.......most amateurs grip the clubs as if they are holding on for dear life.

On a scale of 1-10; a 5 would represent  a 50% tighter grip  than 0 and a 50% looser grip than a 10.

I have no clue what you are trying to say with this statement;

"Well if you hit a lot of golf balls and might work out, that could be some other amateur's 9"

Sometimes math is hard......

Makes perfect sense. If you take a person who's never lifted weights, ask them to say what's heavy weight for them, lets say the bench press. Lets say they say 60 lbs. Now if you take a guy who's worked out 4 x a week for two years. Ask them what they say a heavy bench press is. They would probably say 150lb+. Now lets look at this by holding a club. What holds a club, Muscles. Your fingers have muscles, your forearms have muscles. So ask an amateur who rarely practices, who just goes out and plays what they think they hold the grip as. They might say 8. Ask a pro the same question, who's hit thousands upon thousands of golf balls. They would say 5 or less, hold it like a bird i think Tom Watson said. So, its the same thing. Pros have more strength in their hands. So, when they say, out of 1-10. That means much much more for an amateur.

Also, most amateurs probably don't grip the hell out of the ball. I can tell you i see no one do that in the leagues i play in. Most of them hold the club enough to hold the club. Maybe if they have worn grips, the might grip harder, but they don't death grip it. I rarely see people at the range death grip a club. Most people know that holding a grip tight doesn't feel right. Most amateurs actually grip to soft. Then what they do is, try to regrip during the swing.

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Makes perfect sense. If you take a person who's never lifted weights, ask them to say what's heavy weight for them, lets say the bench press. Lets say they say 60 lbs. Now if you take a guy who's worked out 4 x a week for two years. Ask them what they say a heavy bench press is. They would probably say 150lb+. Now lets look at this by holding a club. What holds a club, Muscles. Your fingers have muscles, your forearms have muscles. So ask an amateur who rarely practices, who just goes out and plays what they think they hold the grip as. They might say 8. Ask a pro the same question, who's hit thousands upon thousands of golf balls. They would say 5 or less, hold it like a bird i think Tom Watson said. So, its the same thing. Pros have more strength in their hands. So, when they say, out of 1-10. That means much much more for an amateur.

Also, most amateurs probably don't grip the hell out of the ball. I can tell you i see no one do that in the leagues i play in. Most of them hold the club enough to hold the club. Maybe if they have worn grips, the might grip harder, but they don't death grip it. I rarely see people at the range death grip a club. Most people know that holding a grip tight doesn't feel right. Most amateurs actually grip to soft. Then what they do is, try to regrip during the swing.

"Also, most amateurs probably don't grip the hell out of the ball. "

?????..............

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