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Grip Survey: Strong, Neutral, or Weak?

Grip position  

29 members have voted

  1. 1. My grip is

    • Very Weak
      0
    • Weak
      2
    • Neutral
      15
    • Strong
      11
    • Very Strong
      1


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I just picked up Brandel's book this past week, and he (like a number of instructors throughout golf history) is an advocate of a strong grip. My tendency has been a neutral-to-weak grip in the past, so I've been tinkering with a stronger grip. One thing I've noticed: it's much easier to get my forearms properly oriented on the downswing with a stronger grip. Simple experiment: turn you trail hand grip to a weaker position, and notice that it immediately encourages your trail arm to move above (rather than under) you lead arm.

So I'm continuing this experiment.

But I wanted to ask: how would you characterize your own grip?

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In general, my grip is pretty strong. I have dabbled with weakening my grip at various times to see what happens but the stronger grip feels more natural to me.

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I am fairly neutral in my grip; it seems to help me control rotation a bit.

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Still on the strong side but a lot weaker than it used to be. I was unable to ever hit a cut with my old grip and made the change to be able to work the ball both ways.


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Slightly strong - I used to be extremely strong and weakening my grip was one of the hardest swing changes I've ever made

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Like others it is still on the strong side but has weakened over the years. 

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Strong but nothing crazy. I went stronger to help square the face when I was struggling with slicing and now it’s just become so natural I wouldn’t change it. It’s become a comfort thing, even though I’m drawing the ball now, going weaker really messes me up. I lose what feel I do have.


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Strong. That’s what was recommended when I took lessons so I’ve stuck with it.


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Neutral-ish. But I'm wanting to start using a stronger grip off the tee, so that'll start next season.

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Neutral grip.  

I've tried a little stronger thinking it will help me turn the ball over a little more, but if my timing is slightly off, it's a duck hook.  I also noticed that it puts more tension in my arms which results in shorter distance, and I can't afford to give up any more distance!!

 

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I use to play with a neutral grip and then my instructor converted me to a strong grip. It played havoc with my game for about a month this past summer - but I'm glad I changed it. Definitely had positive results by the end of the season. 

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Going into the season I was playing with a very weak grip, which was quickly addressed by my instructor and have switched to a slightly strong grip now.  It took a while to get used to, maybe a month before it really settled in to "normal".  Ball striking improved throughout the bag and my game got over a hurdle or two after the change.

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6 hours ago, jlukes said:

Slightly strong - I used to be extremely strong and weakening my grip was one of the hardest swing changes I've ever made

 

... It really is jlukes. This was one of my first discoveries when I started teaching. Since the grip is your only contact with your clubs it is by far the hardest to change. Moving your feet or changing your posture or ball position and even your swing path is a little awkward but changing the grip is instantly uncomfortable and disorienting. I had several students with poor grips start their first lesson telling me they don't want to change their grip because they tried it with another instructor and it ruined their swing. I was able to get a few to change their minds once I had their confidence but most stuck to their guns and did not want to change. 

... That said I have seen some pretty radical grips work for a player, but I do think a proper grip for your swing is a must for consistency as well as minimizing compensations.  

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Here's my opinion on a strong grip.  I know nobody asked for it, but here it is anyway.  

People can play a strong grip, but in doing so it's compensating for some other swing issue.  Yes, some pros play a strong grip but Hey! they are pros and practice their swing a lot more than most of us.

Why do I think it's a problem?  A strong grip tends to close the club face; that's why we've been told to do it... to help fix a problem.  The direction of the ball is primarily determined by where the club face is pointed at impact, and we all know by now what happens if the club face is open or closed relative to the path.  Yes, it's possible to slice with a closed club face; I did it for years!  Sure, a closed face can be played straight but it requires other things to happen in fractions of a second in the downswing; fast body rotation and/or hand manipulation.  Most amateurs have a hard time repeating a swing anyway without including other compensations; I know I do!!

If you have strong grip for your full swing, do you also use it for short game swings; chipping, pitching, bunker play?  Ahh, bunkers... when in a bunker, open up the club face then take your grip, right?  If that grip is strong, the result is likely delofting the club that you just opened up and the leading edge of the club digs.  If you use a more neutral grip for short game, then you have introduced variability in your swing... do you always use the same grip for each shot, or is it slightly different than the last grip you used?

As I said before, I prefer a neutral grip because if I can get back to square at impact, I know the ball will head toward my target.  If it doesn't, it's because I did something wrong in the backswing, transition, or downswing that needs to be fixed.  I can deal with that.  If I start out with a grip that closes the club face at impact, I have introduced another variable that makes it difficult to get my swing on plane.

OK, ramblings of an old man has stopped.  Sorry for the interruption, please continue.

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Umm, I feel like I should know the answer to this question, but as I reflect, I have no earthly idea what my grip looks like. For my only connection to the club, I really need to diagnose what my grip is, and if it needs changed.

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8 hours ago, GB13 said:

Umm, I feel like I should know the answer to this question, but as I reflect, I have no earthly idea what my grip looks like. For my only connection to the club, I really need to diagnose what my grip is, and if it needs changed.

I heard it said that the golf ball is the best teacher. So if you're hitting it straight why change. On the other hand...........

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I would think that for Brandel's sake and most instructors, 2 of the more difficult moves in the golf swing are turning the club head over, and the in-to-out club path. Of those 2, the club path is probably the hardest to correct so starting with a stronger grip than usual can at least help get the ball off the ground and moving forward for many.

I'm not an instructor but I have an eye for grip, swing path, and their impact (literally) on the ball. All of this from breaking down and building up of my own swing like a man possessed. I play with my dad and friends and see a lot of 90° strong action because at some point they were all instructed to do so or somehow it feels more natural. Many repeated times they can't figure out why the duck hook shows up. Then I have to play grip police and remind them to go more neutral and it works.

The great thing about the grip is that it can be a fine tuning mechanism for when the rest of your swing seems to be stuck in the mud. Normally I try to keep a neutral to 1 o'clock strong grip. If my shoulders or hips are playing lazy, I can just move to a 2 or 3 o'clock strong and it seems to do the trick. Once the rest of me is warmed up, back to 1 o'clock.

the more I practice, the luckier I seem to get..
 

Edited by azstu324
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Neutral but it gets weaker as I move towards the longer clubs.

I have a tendency to have more of a draw as I move towards the driver. The weaker grip helps me reduce the lefts.

Of course it depends on how the day is going as well


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