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Could Changing to a 10 Finger Grip Improve Your Golf?

By editor - Posted on 29 August 2008

I just thought I'd share with you this really useful piece of advice I received this week from Dave Wilkinson of the renowned Knightsbridge Golf School in London.  I hope some of you may find it useful too this weekend. Do post here and let me know what you think of the idea and if you have tried it?

Recently I have been lacking a good quality consistent ball strike, so this week I had a refresher lesson with Dave Wilkinson.  I had sought answers to my ills by looking at my backswing, my downswing, my takeaway and posture; but in fact whilst I may not have the prettiest swing Dave reassured me that technically my fundamentals were pretty sound. However, it soon transpired that my interlocking grip was not helping me apply pressure correctly through impact with my right side (hand, forearm and body) and it was this breakdown in my grip which was causing my problems. 

So Dave suggested I change to the 10 finger grip.

The results were fabulous and instantly made a huge difference!  From the same setup, backswing and downswing I started hitting the ball squarely out of the middle of the clubface with a decent powerful strike. I felt rejuvenated and it is with some excitement and a huge degree of confidence that I head off to play tomorrow. 

If you are struggling, why not give it a go this weekend?
It is an easy swing change to make and it could produce instant results for you too.  If you do try it and it works then please do add a post in our golf instruction forum, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the merits of the 10 finger grip.

Here's a brief extract from the Knightsbridge Golf School Pocketshots Golf Swing Fundamentals Lesson - it covers how to grip the club and hopefully will be a nice reminder to check your basics even if you decide not to go down the 10 finger route.

#1 - Golf Tip For This Weekend
By Steve Gould & Andy Pharro Knightsbridge Golf School

Could Changing To a 10 Finger Grip Help Your Game?

10 Finger Golf GripOverlapping Golf GripInterlocking Golf Grip

Top Tip:
Why not try playing this weekend with a 10 finger grip?  Legendary ball striker Moe Norman had all 10 fingers on the club so it might just work for you too!  I found it gave me more control of the club head through the impact zone.
It may take a bit of getting used to, so do spend 20 minutes hitting balls on the practice range first.

Get the Grip Right and Stick with It

The hands play an understated but essential part in the golf swing.  Experienced players can use their hands skilfully in the short or long game to control the spin, direction and force at which the ball is propelled.  If you want to progress to a stage where you can control the ball flight and direction then you must understand the role of the hands in the swing, and to do this you must first understand how you use the hands to form the best grip on the club.

This grip will enable you to swing the club back on forth on the correct plane and along the desired line of flight of the ball producing consistent shots off the centre of the clubface.

Remember:  Get the grip right and stick with it
If in doubt ask your local professional to take a look.

Stage 1—Left Hand—Angle of Shaft
Position the club square to the ball in front of you.  Open your left hand and let the shaft fall neatly across the base of your fingers.   The club shaft should run “diagonally” across the base of your fingers from the middle knuckle of your forefinger to a point just below the base of your little finger.  The club should not rest in your palms nor be across the middle of your fingers.

Stage 2—Left Hand—Spacing of the Fingers
Close your fingers around the shaft.  Keep your last three fingers together with a small gap to your forefinger to help it support your thumb.

Stage 3—Left Hand—Don’t Throttle The Club!

You only need to grip the club gently enough to feel that you can control it.  Try lifting the club with your thumb off the club.  Your fingers should be holding the shaft against the fleshy pad at the heel of your hand.

Stage 4—What You Should See!

When you place your hand on the shaft keep the back of your left hand square to the clubface, which should squarely face the target.
Ensure you turn your entire left hand to the right slightly to position your thumb on the top of the shaft but to the right side of the centre of the shaft.  This promotes a better connection between your left hand, wrist and forearm.

Stage 5—Right Hand—Don’t Throttle The Club!

Now you can add your right hand to your left.  Place the open palm of your right hand next to the shaft so that the palm squarely faces the target.  Remember the right palm and the face of the club should be aligned at all times.

Now close your fingers around the shaft. Starting with your middle two fingers which should be pulled closely against the forefinger of your left hand.  Now lock your right little finger over your left forefinger so that it rests in the space between the first two fingers of your left hand.  This is known as the Vardon overlapping grip.  Now let your right forefinger fit snugly under the shaft slightly separated from your other fingers.

Your right thumb rests diagonally across the top the shaft with its tip close to or touching the tip of your right forefinger.  The right thumb must not lie directly on top of the shaft.

If you open your hands the club should run “diagonally” across your right hand from the base of your little finger to the middle knuckle of your right forefinger.

You now have the perfect grip.  The control of the grip, especially your right hand should mainly be felt in your fingers; principally in the last three fingers of your left hand and the middle two fingers of your right hand.

You can of course interlock the little finger of your right hand between the middle and index fingers of your left hand - this is called the Interlocking Grip.  But one of the easiest ways to grip the club is with all 10 fingers on the shaft - this is called the Baseball grip.

Try the Baseball grip this weekend, and let me know how you get on! Post your comments here.

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