Golf Grip Pressure Guide – Get The Proper Grip Pressure Today
Go to any driving range around the world and I guarantee you that you will be able to find a few golfers who are gripping the club too tightly.
There is a fear out there among new golfers that they will let go of the club and hurl it out among the balls, this fear can cripple your swing.
Getting grip pressure right can bring huge benefits to you game and is one of the most important fundamentals. From brand new golfers to those who have played for years, we should all consider our grip pressure.
Read on to find out more and make sure you’re not choking your game.
What Is Golf Grip Pressure And Why It Is So Important?
The simple explanation is how hard you squeeze the grip with your hands before and during the swing.
Excess tension in the hands during the golf swing can cause issues right through your body. This video explains nicely how you can get grip pressure correct and what you should feel.
To illustrate what gripping too tight can do to your game, think about a time when you hit shots under pressure.
I imagine you didn’t hit the ball quite as good as usual. This is the tension you are feeling with the pressure causing you to grip it too tight which is restricting your swing’s flow.
What Other Effects Can Pressure Have On Your Game?
Your hands are the only part of your body that actually has direct contact with the club during the swing.
Squeezing the grip with too much pressure has effects that run through many aspects of the game.
Let’s look at some of the issues that can arise in more detail.
Gripping too tightly can restrict the rotation of the face of the club through impact which often leads to an exaggerated left to right ball flight. Reduced control of the ball is one of the worst issues that gripping too tightly can cause.
If you don’t grip the club tightly enough then you obviously run the risk of it coming out of your hands.
There is no other worry of gripping too lightly though, Fred couples has one of the lightest grip pressures in golf which contributes to the fluidity of his swing.
To build on the content above, excess grip pressure can cause you to block the club and pop the ball up in the air.
Free-flowing wrists help you get the hands in a nice position through the ball which helps produce a stronger trajectory and more spin on the ball.
Tips For Finding The Right Pressure
Ideally you should grip the club just enough to hold onto during the full swing.
However, one great way of getting the right pressure is to squeeze the club as much as you can is to grab a tube of toothpaste. Stay with me. Hold the tube like a golf club and make a swing, does any escape?
If your pressure is good then you should be able to make a full speed swing without squeezing any toothpaste out of the tube.
This is something that is all about feel and so drills like the one in this video can really help you get that feeling ingrained.
Where To Apply The Pressure
To add another layer to this issue, the amount of pressure you grip the club with is an important part of the grip equation but so is where in your hands you apply that pressure.
The club should lie between the middle knuckles of your left hand and you should feel pressure there.
You should also feel it on the pad of your left hand. Your right hand (these points are for right handers and the opposite is true for lefties) shouldn’t feel much pressure at all.
Maybe between your trigger finger and your thumb, other than that it should feel very relaxed.
What Happens If Your Grip Is Too Loose?
If you don’t grip the club enough then, of course, you could lose it which would be embarrassing, especially at the driving range.
The other issue you can face is that you just don’t have enough control over the club. This will lead to inconsistency of strike and flight in the shot.
What Problems Can Occur?
If you grip the club too lightly you may feel the need to re-grip the club mid-swing.
This really isn’t a good position to find yourself in because you will never find consistency playing this way.
Another issue is that you could lose the structural tension in your wrists.
Whilst gripping too tightly is bad for wrist movement, the correct grip pressure allows your wrists to wrists collapsing. This also makes it very difficult to create a consistent and solid strike on the ball.
Tips For Tightening Up
I am a big fan of the pre-shot waggle.
This small movement of waggling the club just before you play allows you to feel that the club is secure but that your not choking it.
It also allows you to remove tension from your arms and wrists. Build this into your pre-shot routine.
What Happens If Your Grip Is Too Tight?
This leads to a lot of tension throughout your whole body and can restrict the movement of everything from your wrists to your shoulders and beyond.
Your hands and body will get tired quickly and you will struggle with inconsistency in your strike.
We have covered a lot of these issues earlier in this article as gripping too tightly is a more common fault than too loose.
Your wrists need to be free to properly rotate the clubface through the ball and this is the first and worst issue with gripping too tightly.
Tips For Loosening Up
The remedy is the same and tightening up, add a club waggle into your pre-shot routine.
In this case you want to feel your wrists being allowed to be loose and free, this can only happen if you loosen your grip a little. Once you get that feeling then you are ready to swing it.
Another thing you could try, although far more drastic, is to replace your grips with larger grips.
Adding extra tape or even mid-sized grips can force you to reduce your grip pressure as larger grips are harder to grip too tightly. This is a last resort though and you should speak to your pro.
Does The Optimal Grip Pressure Differ With Different Clubs?
Grip pressure doesn’t change with different clubs, in particular, but it does change with different shots.
If you are playing a full shot with a driver then you will have to hold onto the club with a little more pressure than you will with a short pitch, for example.
Playing shots around and on the green requires the lightest of grip pressures.
Tiger Woods has been celebrated for his impressive control of grip pressure and many credit a lot of his world-beating golf skills with how well he controlled his grip pressure.
Golf Grip Pressure Drills
There are many ways to improve your grip pressure and to ensure you are gripping the club efficiently.
Let’s have a look at some simple drills you can try right away.
Squeeze And Release
This is a really simple but effective one. Grab your club and take your usual golf grip.
Now you will squeeze the club as hard as you can and feel how tight that is, then release that grip slowly until it feels like the club could just fall out of your hands.
Now tighten up to the point it feels stable.
This is you taking a grip pressure up to ten out of ten, down to one out of ten and then finding that sweet spot of about four out of ten.
Overdoing it, then undergoing it can really get grip pressures in your head.
This drill was used by Jack Nicklaus so it comes with an impressive seal of approval.
This is also one that you can build into your pre-shot routine to help you keep your grip pressure right.
During your routine, stand behind the ball and put the club in your strong hand, gently swing the club.
I’m not talking about full swings, this is about up to knee height forward and back.
It lets you feel the weight of the club and you should do this with a grip pressure that is as light as possible.
After this, take your usual grip and swing away keeping that feeling in your head.
What Is The Best Grip For The Right Pressure?
One of the main reasons for gripping the club too tightly is that you don’t feel secure with your grip.
If you have small hands then a baseball grip will help you feel secure and should help you lighten your grip.
Many feel that the interlock grip provides more stability too.
Have a try at that grip and see if it helps you to loosen off your grip pressure and see what happens to your golf game.
Does The Size Of The Grip Make A Big Difference?
Yes, it does and this is a vital part of this whole equation.
You should be properly fitted for golf grips by an expert to make sure you have the correct size for your hands.
An extra layer of tape can be enough to get your grip size perfect for you or you could try mid-size or even jumbo grips.
Having a grip that is too small for your hands leads to that insecure feeling which can lead to you gripping tighter.
A thicker grip can help you loosen off your grip and get your pressure right.
Don’t overdo it though, too thick a grip can restrict your swing too, get fitted properly.
What’s A Golf Grip Pressure Sensor? Do They Work?
Everything in this article has talked about pressure in a less than quantifiable way.
It has all been about scales of feeling like “ten out of ten pressure” but sometimes that isn’t enough.
You may feel like you are gripping lightly but in reality it is still too much pressure.
These are great investments for those who struggle with using purely feel to get your pressure correct.
Best Grip Pressure Training Aids On Amazon
A small rubber band that fits over your glove, the GripSolid is all about making you feel pressure through tactile rubber pressure fins.
This let’s you feel where the pressure is in your hands and it is useable with every club in the bag. GripSolid also fits in your pocket and is very good value.
The cons with this is that if you don’t fit it correctly to your grip you could be learning wrong. It could also make your club feel weird in your hands.
Overall Score: 94/100
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SKLZ Smart Glove
SKLZ make a load of fantastic training aids for golf and this is no exception.
The Smart Glove isn’t completely focused on grip pressure, however, one feature is great for helping you get your pressure right.
A black band on the palm side makes sure that the club is in your hand properly
Getting the grip pressure right is one thing but it isn’t great if you have the club in the wrong part of your hand.
This glove sorts that out which could really help you out.
Overall Score: 92/100
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Gary Wiren Grip Wrap
One issue that people have that causes them to grip too tightly is that they don’t trust that they will hold onto the club.
The Grip Wrap helps solve this issue by taking that fear away and letting you focus on developing a featherlight grip pressure.
Sometimes aids like this one can take a lot of getting used to, especially when you try hitting balls without them.
This is a great place aid to get you started and get good habits ingrained as a foundation.
Overall Score: 93/100
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Grip pressure is so fundamental to golfing performance yet it is something that a lot of golfers overlook when thinking of their grip.
When a frequent compliment to two of the finest golfers in history, Tiger and Jack, is that they had enviable grip pressure then you know it’s key.
Getting your pressure right can also help you keep your cool under pressure.
By focusing on getting this right you can reduce your stress levels.
Think about your grip pressure, be honest with yourself, speak to a pro and work on getting that right and use an aid, it could change your game.