When it comes to the grip in putting there are a variety of grips used, whether pro or amateur. This is something that is very personal to each golfer. Four of the more well known types of grips are the reverse overlap grip, the cross-handed grip ,the claw grip and the Bernhard Langer grip. However, in this lesson we a going to cover the Reverse Overlap Grip. This is not only the most common grip used but is the most fundamentally sound putting grip and the one I would recommend to new players.
Building the Reverse Overlap Grip
Place both of your hands on the putter handle so they are facing each other and then slide your right hand down about three inches. The club handle should rest under the butt of your left hand. Also, the palms should be facing each other and the back of your right hand should be parallel to the left hand.
- The right thumb extends down the club to just slightly below the right index finger. The left thumb will also face directly down the top of the shaft and will fit nicely into the palm of your right hand.
- The left middle finger will overlap the pinky finger of the right hand.
- There are three variations to the position of your left forefinger, which are, lay it around the little finger of your right hand, on top of your ring finger of your right hand or run it down on top of the ends of your right hand fingers. On the image to the right we are laying the left index finger across the fingers of the right hand. I prefer this method because it helps reduce wrist movement during your stoke.
- The reverse overlap grip will create a solid unity and you want your hands as close together as possible so they will work as one. This grip method also helps in preventing one of your hands from becoming to dominant during your stoke.
The lighter you grip the better you will be able to reduce any tension and have a better feel of the putter head. Hold the club just firmly enough to maintain control. On a scale of one to five, this would be about a two and half to three.
Experiment with different grip pressure variations on a practice green to find the one that works best for you. However, once you have decided, make sure to maintain the same pressure thru out the entire putting stroke. This is a very important fundamental for consistent putting is to keep the pressure from all of the fingers and the thumbs constant throughout the stoke.
If none of the above methods seem to work and you are still experiencing a jerky putting stoke, you may want to try the Bernhard Langer Grip.
This is where the position of the left and right hand are reversed and the right hand grips both the club and left arm at the same time. It is designed to help prevent as little wrist action as possible
Below: Jim Farrell, Head Golf Professional at Oakwood Country Club in Kansas City, Missouri, shares his putting tip for finding the right grip. http://www.odysseygolf.com/