Friday, January 20, 2012

Proper Left Hand Grip & Position in Golf Swing

With all the information available about the mechanics of the golf swing, it's easy to forget just how important grip pressure is to hitting successful shots. Additionally, each hand grips the club somewhat differently. Use of the left hand and the pressure involved in gripping the club with that hand involve several basic principles that will help to solidify your swing.
Proper Left Hand Grip
Ben Hogan writes that the golf club should be gripped in the fingers, not in the palm. The fingers provide the kind of control that is impossible to manage with the palm. The left hand's grip on the club should also be positioned so as to have the butt of the club extend past the pad of the palm -- that is, none of the hand should be positioned beyond the butt of the grip.
PGA professional Casey Bourque points out that a light grip is essential. In fact, he writes that you should only hold the club tight enough to control it -- approximately a 3 on a "tightness" scale of 1 to 10. You must also seek to apply the same grip pressure with both hands. If one hand grips the club tighter than the other, it becomes difficult, if not impossible, to make the proper transitions and club release at impact.
The Last Three Fingers
Hogan points out that the most important part of the left hand grip on the club is the last three fingers. The thumb and forefinger are simply along for the ride. In particular, the last three fingers of the left hand help to control the club through the change of direction that occurs in the transition from backswing to downswing.
Part of Generating Power
The proper pressure with the left hand and use of the last three fingers can be a key element in generating power. As Michael Hebron, a "Golf" magazine top 100 teacher, writes on, the process of pulling the golf club through the downswing to help keep the hands ahead of the club head until impact relies on a bent right wrist, left arm against the chest and right forefinger pressure as well as the pressure and control of the left hand's key three fingers.

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