Effects of Grip Features
- It's worth mentioning here the rule of thumb for determining
whether a grip is the right size for you. (The description appears, with
pictures, in the GolfWorks catalog.)
Take your normal grip, then remove your right hand (assuming a righty
golfer). Now look at the left hand, which is still gripping the club. If
the fingertips of your two middle fingers just touch your palm, the grip
is the right size. If they dig into the palm it's too small, and if they
miss by more than 1/8" it's too big.
So why (besides the above rule itself) would you opt for a larger or
- A larger grip inhibits the "release" of the hands through the ball; a
smaller grip facilitates this release. For this reason, a too-large
grip might cause a slice, and a too-small grip a hook. But have a pro
look at your swing before you decide this is the problem; it may be
something else, and trying to fix it by tweaking the grip diameter
could make matters worse.
- Since the large grip inhibits release, it may be inhibiting your
power as well as the ability to bring the clubface square to the
- Since the large grip inhibits release, it may be just the thing to
calm down your putting stroke if it's too "handsy".
- The large grip may be easier to hold for someone with arthritic
- Once upon a time, everyone used wrapped leather grips. When the
modern slip-on grip (a composite of rubber and cork) was introduced, it
quickly took over all but the very-low-handicap market. But the pros and
their imitators stayed with leather for a while because it seemed to give
a more intimate (i.e.- less resilient) contact with the shaft.
Today, even the pro-line clubs seem to be gripped with slip-ons. While
wrap-on leather grips still exist, they are expensive and harder to
install. I don't know whether the pros still use them, but few others do.
There are many grip patterns to choose from (pick what looks and feels
good to you), but really only one material choice left: do you want cord
embedded in your composite grip? The pluses and minuses of the cord grip:
|+||Holds with less slip, especially with wet or sweaty hands (in case
you play a lot in hot humidity or rain).|
|-||But your gloves (or hands) will wear out sooner; the improved
gripping power comes from increased friction, which means faster
abrasion of the surface it plays against.|
Last modified Dec 7, 1998