3 ways the shape of your putter grip matters more than you think
Every week, in collaboration with our affiliate-company True Spec Golf, our in-house team of equipment experts host the Fully Equipped podcast. It’s where we break down the most interesting equipment news in golf, from the most authoritative voices in the game. New in 2021, we’re going to be highlighting many of those same Fully Equipped voices on GOLF.com as part of an expanded series of articles, sharing the best equipment insight around, and helping you play better golf as a result.
This week, we’re asking the experts about the grips on our putters — and how it matters more than you think.
1. It can influence your stroke
Andrew Tursky, Senior Equipment Editor: The shape of your putter grip helps dictate where your hands fit on the grip, how your arms hang, and can actually influence the path of your stroke. The weight of grips can vary widely, too, which influences overall weight of the putter and swing weight of the head.
If you look at the grips used by players on the PGA Tour, there’s not a one-shape-fits-all that works for everybody. My best advice is to simply try as many different shapes and sizes for grips that you can get your hands on and see what makes you most comfortable.
2. It can lead to more (or less) wrist hinge
Jonathan Wall, Managing Equipment Editor: Depending on what you’re trying to accomplish, it can affect your stroke. As Tursky mentioned, you should try a myriad of options before settling on a grip. A smaller grip like the Ping PP58 model Tiger Woods used for years is going to make the hands and wrists more active during the stroke. If you’re a putter who prioritizes feel to determine distance and direction, something on the smaller side would be the best option. However, most amateur golfers — unless you’re a single-digit with a strong short game — struggle with feel at times and see massive improvements when they quiet the hands with a larger grip that engages the larger muscles during the stroke. With so many size and shape options in the marketplace, there’s no excuse for using a grip that doesn’t match your stroke.
3. It can affect your aim
Luke Kerr-Dineen, Game Improvement Editor: Jonathan and Tursky are spot on. The size and shape of your putter grip can have a big influence on your stroke, but not only that: It can also have a big impact on your aim. Putter-maker David Edel has dived deep into this, but in a nutshell: Some golfers don’t aim the putter with the putterhead; their aim is more influenced by the way their hands are positioned on the grip. If you’re having trouble aiming, therefore, it could be a matter of you grabbing a grip that’s not right for you.