How to Grip a Golf Club for Better Accuracy and Distance

by | Last updated Mar 11, 2024

how to grip a golf club

A proper golf grip is like the foundation of your house – get it wrong, and the rest of your swing can crumble. Want to hit those long, straight drives and laser-like iron shots? It all starts with how to grip a golf club.

Do you think you know the basics but need to see results? You might be making common errors. This article breaks down everything you need to know about gripping a golf club, including different grip techniques and how to identify where you might be going wrong.

The Essential Elements of a Good Golf Grip

Let’s focus on the fundamentals:

  • Hand Placement: Your lead hand (left hand for right-handed golfers) is your control hand; your trail hand (right hand) provides power.
  • Grip Type: The three basic types of golf grips are interlocking, overlapping (or Vardon), and the ten-finger (or baseball) grip.
  • Grip Pressure: Think of holding a small bird – firm enough it won’t escape, yet gentle enough not to crush it.

Breakdown: Lead Hand Grip

  1. Place the club handle across your left palm, crosswise from the base of your index finger towards the middle of your palm.
  2. Curl your fingers around the handle so your left thumb sits slightly right or center on the hold.
  3. You should see about two knuckles on your left hand when looking down.
golf grip

Breakdown: Trail Hand Grip

  1. Place the handle in your right hand, near the base of your center and ring fingers.
  2. Curl your fingers around, letting your pinky overlap or interlock with your left index finger, depending on your chosen grip style (more on that later).
  3. Your right thumb should rest diagonally on the handle. When looking down, you should see about two knuckles.

Common Mistakes and How to Fix Them

  • Too much in the palms: This weak holding makes it hard to square the club face at impact. Rotate your hands slightly on the club to position the grip more in your fingers.
  • Not enough pressure: A loose grip leads to a loss of control. You can test this by gently waggling the club—if the handle moves significantly in your hands, tighten your grip slightly.
  • Incorrect thumb positions: Ensure your left thumb is slightly right of center, and your right thumb runs diagonally across the hold. Incorrect placement affects how you release the club.

The Three Main Grip Styles

Each grip style has nuanced differences, and the best grip for you may come down to personal preference and what feels comfortable:

  • Interlocking: The pinky finger of your trail hand interlocks with the index and middle finger of the lead hand, promoting a unified feel in the hands.
  • Overlapping: The pinky of the trail hand rests on top of the gap between your lead hand’s index and middle finger. This is common for golfers with average-sized hands.
  • Ten-Finger: There is no overlap, and all fingers grip the handle. This method is often used by beginners or those with small hands or arthritis.

Grip Starts with a Purpose

Think about your golfing goals. Do you struggle with a slice? A firm grip (rotating your lead hand slightly clockwise) can help. Need more draw action? Try a weaker grip.

Golf grip

Beyond the Basics

The grip is individual; what works for Arnold Palmer might not work for you. Experiment, seek instruction, and watch videos from sources like the PGA or reputable golf instructors like Todd Kolb.

Remember, a seemingly minor grip adjustment can produce dramatic results on the course. So, give your grip some attention the next time you hit the range. It might be the secret to unlocking lower scores and more control in your golf game.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the perfect golf grip?

There’s no single “perfect” grip for every golfer. Hand size, swing style, and personal goals all come into play. However, a good golf grip should promote a neutral grip position, allowing you to square the clubface at impact for a consistent ball flight.

Is a ten-finger grip good for amateur golfers?

The ten-finger grip offers stability and can be a great starting point for beginners or golfers with smaller hands. Try the interlocking or overlapping grip for more power and feel as you progress.

How vital is grip strength in a golf swing?

Grip strength is essential, but avoid gripping too tightly. The best grip is holding the club firmly for control but loose enough to create a smooth, free-flowing swing. A tight grip can create tension and affect your release.

Where should my right ear be positioned about the golf ball?

The ideal position of your right ear varies slightly depending on the club. Aim to keep your right ear barely behind the ball at the address. This promotes a good spine angle and athletic posture.

What is a common sign of an incorrect golf grip?

You may have a weak grip if your shots consistently slice (curve right for right-handed golfers). Conversely, a chronic hook (turn left) could indicate a grip that is too firm. Keep trying with slight adjustments to find what works for you.

Fahim Joharder

Fahim Joharder


An avid golfer and author, merges his passion for the sport with insightful writing, offering readers a unique perspective on golf.

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