Putting Grip Pressure
I am confused by my friends and by all the articles I read in instructional magazines. Some tell me to hold the putter very lightly while others tell me to grip it tightly so that my hands and wrists stay locked. I find myself changing my grip pressure several times during a round. Every change seems to make things worse. What should I do?
Dear Mr./Ms. Confused:
However, the modern trend is to eliminate most, if not all hand action. Those of us who no longer have, or never had, the fearless and foolish nerves of youth or the touch and feel of a Tiger Woods, would be wise to employ a one piece putting stroke that eliminates all hand action. The reverse or cross handed grip, which is an excellent grip for nearly all players, or the Langer style grip, or even the EOB grip (which is Dr. Putt's innovation), all are designed to reduce, if not eliminate hand action--and all employ relatively greater grip pressure. Exactly how much depends on what is necessary to eliminate hand action for a particular player. In general, use the minimal amount to eliminate the wrists cocking and releasing. On a scale of one to ten, with ten as tight as one can grip the putter, begin with a five. The only caveat is that on special grips, like the EOB grip, one should exert greater grip pressure with the left hand, allowing the right hand to simply "go along for the ride." But in all cases, once one has determined grip pressure, do not change it throughout the stroke. Commit to a certain pressure and then concentrate on distance and direction. Putting is difficult enough without making changes in the middle of a stroke. And do not change it during a round on the course. Making stroke changes during a round of play only increases inconsistency. That is for the putting green. One must give any technique a fair test. Missing one or two or even three putts is not a fair test.
Therefore, Dear Mr./Ms. Confused, first choose a technique and grip then employ the grip pressure to match that technique. Grip pressure depends on the putting grip and technique one employs.