I was teaching a student last week, and was asked this question. My answer was simple – “there is no perfect putting grip”. As long you incorporate some basic grip fundamentals, your putting grip can be as unique as your swing. This fact is proven on tour, where you will see a multitude of different grips being employed.
When trying to choose a putting grip that works for you… just go with whatever works and gives you confidence on the greens. It may take some time to find your perfect grip… but stick with it. I’ll get into some of these types of grips to try shortly… but first, I want to go over the few “must-haves” for your putting grip.
Must Have Grip Fundamental #1
A Loose Grip – tension in hands and wrists during a putting stroke is conducive to good putting. Your hands and wrists should be just along for the ride initiated by the rocking of your shoulders. Tension can lead to bad putting habits, like steering it, and even the yips.
Must Have Grip Fundamental #2
Actually that’s about it…
Putting grips come in many forms, from the traditional, to the bizarre. I’m going to go through how to use some of the most common ones:
1) Cross-handed – this one doesn’t likely need explaining. For right-handers, this is also known as left hand low. Basically, you just switch your hands and putt cross-handed. You can interlock your pink and index finger if you like… or not, it’s up to you.
2) Reverse-overlap – The reverse overlap grip has the index finger of the top hand, overlapping the pink and ring finger of your lower hand. The exact opposite of the traditional overlapping or “Vardon” grip.
3) Split Grip – Split grip putting strokes also come in many forms, most commonly you will see this employed for a long putter. There are exceptions, “The Claw”, by Vijay Singh (shown in the middle image), and Bernhard Langer’s Grip (shown at right below) are also commonly used on tour.
Apart from grips there’s a multitude of other things you can fiddle with, from ball position, putting stroke, alignment, setup and routine. Again, just find something that works and stick with it.