Should you play golf left- or right-handed? Here is what Jordan Spieth says

It’s a decision golfers usually arrive at by accident. And once you make it, it’s virtually impossible to go back. It’s one golfers give almost no thought to — if any at all — yet it arguably impacts our golf game more than anything else we will ever do throughout at any point during our golf career.

The question: Should you play golf left-handed or right-handed?

There have been a number of high-profile switch-hitters over the years, with the right-handed Phil Mickelson the most notable. As GOLF Top 100 Teacher Terry Rowles explains here, there’s no right or wrong way of doing it. When a right-handed plays golf left-handed, or vice-versa, your dominant arm becomes your lead arm, which can make it harder to release the club.

“Playing the other way around will make it harder to release the club, because your lead arm is stronger,” Rowles says, citing Spieth, who plays baseball left-handed but swings a golf club right-handed, as another example. “Jordan Spieth is the other way around…they tend to hold their angle [between their wrists and arms] for longer as their stronger lead arm is pulling the club down.”

Rowles mentioned Spieth there, who throws left-handed but swings right-handed. He’s probably best-classed as ambidextrous, and after his opening-round, five-under 65 at Royal St. George’s, he was asked an interesting righty-lefty question:

“If you’re talking to a young player who’s left-handed or right-handed, do you tell them to go with that hand when they start to play golf?,” the reporter asked.

Spieth’s advice to juniors

“You know, I throw and shoot left-handed. My dad is left-handed, my brother plays golf left-handed, and I somehow hit right-handed in baseball, and golf righty,” Spieth says. “You probably have more club options right-handed, but if you like the Masters, Augusta is a nice left-handed golf course, left-hander’s golf course.”

But all jokes aside, Spieth said if you’re a junior golfer wondering which side to swing from, he says to try both and adopt whatever feels the most powerful.

“I think whichever one you feel like you’ve got more power with is the better way to go right now,” Spieth says.

More important than which side you swing from, Spieth says, is learning how to swing fast and build-up your golf muscles. Make that your priority while your young, he said, and learn how to straighten it out later.

“As you get older, you can learn to control it,” he says.

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Luke Kerr-Dineen

Golf.com Contributor

Luke Kerr-Dineen is the Game Improvement Editor at GOLF Magazine and GOLF.com. In his role he oversees all the brand’s service journalism spanning instruction, equipment, health and fitness, across all of GOLF’s multimedia platforms.

An alumni of the International Junior Golf Academy and the University of South Carolina–Beaufort golf team, where he helped them to No. 1 in the national NAIA rankings, Luke moved to New York in 2012 to pursue his Masters degree in Journalism from Columbia University and in 2017 was named News Media Alliance’s “Rising Star.” His work has also appeared in USA Today, Golf Digest, Newsweek and The Daily Beast.