This will be a pretty quick blog post but one that is very important to all golfers and one that I couldn't sit on for any longer. It is based upon years of observation and from seeing golfer struggle with a number of swing imperfections based upon the set up of their golf clubs.
Today, we discuss one I am beginning to see too often in the market, which is the propensity for using fat grips. Sorry Bryson, we know you don't care.
A key component of creating power is the ability for the wrists to work and to set properly in the back swing. The ability to get the club hinging has a number of benefits to the swing:
Stops the lateral motion of the weight shift back which happens very early in the swing
Creates motion in a movement upward and toward the target which helps us to create a natural kinematic sequence (weight shift forward with the lower body)
Allows us a few extra milliseconds to be able to fully engage our weight over to the left side (for right handed golfers)
Stores energy in the golf shaft
Prevents Injury to the Body as the club is not pulling us all over the place - handle dragging
Allows for an improved tempo & late release of the club
Improves launch conditions and ability to strike the ball first
Allows lower hands into the impact (see our impact about old Lindsey Lohan here).
Maximizes Smash Factor
Brings your into a Balanced Finish Position (see our blog about that here).
So it looks like there is very good reason to be able to have our wrists perform properly and to have the proper grip size to allow us to be able to achieve all of the positive things listed above.
Now I understand why most golfers get fatter grips. They think that their poor strike is because they are being too "Handsy." This in itself is a swing myth, as not using your hands is removing a massive power generator from the lever system used to rip drives up the fairway and generate major clubhead speed.
Here's a free tip: 90% of the power in the swing comes from the wrists. What you might think as being handsy is actually a good thing.
Here's some simple scientific proof:
Force = Mass x acceleration
Consider: Force as Clubhead speed/Smash Factor/Energy Transfer
Mass = Weight of your Body moving forward through the ball
Acceleration + Clubhead being accelerated into the ball through the use of your wrists.
So, if you think that using your hands is a bad thing, you are removing a complete component of the force equation. In short, That's bad!
Now, since the hands are holding the club, and they are attached to the grip, it would stand to reason that we should be getting the grip size sorted out asap.
Fat Grips have the following negative effects:
Make the Wrist Hinge Harder to Do
Make it Harder to Square the clubface
Make Your body require more grip strength force to hold the club in the fingers only whilst leaving the wrists loose enough to create speed.
Makes Turning or Squaring the Clubface must harder
Causes Pain in the Fingers
Slows your Clubhead speed Down
Can Cause a Pulled Shot
Negatively Affects the Swingweight (Balance) of your Clubs
So now how do we tell if it is correct or not?
Here's a useful guide to use on your own. Don't get Duped into the MCC+4 Midsize grips I've been seeing floating around the city like a nasty chemical cloud. That's a sure fire way to mess up your clubs and your game (Double Bad!)