Symptom: Slicing, poor follow through, losing your balance, incomplete shoulder turn. Especially, if you think that the longer clubs must be gripped more tightly, so you can hit them farther! WRONG!
Overview: Figure out how loosely you can hold the club on a full swing without having the club fly out of your hands. You will be surprised at how little grip pressure this takes! Then grip the club slightly harder than this, and execute your swing.
Why it works: Too much grip pressure puts tension into your arms, and prevents you from keeping your wrists cocked on the downswing. Most importantly, a tight grip encourages you to swing with your hands and arms instead of your big muscles in your lower body. This dooms your swing before you've even begun.
Have a look as Fred Couples nonchalantly win a long drive contest, sans a golf glove. Do you see any tension in his hands and arms? No way. See how the motion looks effortless? It's because all his power comes from his big muscles, and his hands stay quiet. Have a look:
You must keep your wrists cocked (or increase the wrist cock) to preserve the "lag" during your downswing. The wrist cock keeps your clubhead on an inside path and prevents "casting" and an "over the top" motion, allowing you to hit the ball at the four o'clock position, and avoid the dreaded slice. Indeed, if you try flinging a stick underhand, you probably won't grip the stick as tightly as you are gripping your golf club!
One final note: If you have old, worn, slick grips, you will tend to hold on tighter that you would with newer, softer grips. But this grip pressure is bad news for your swing. That's why your best investment in golf equipment is probably to get your clubs regripped, not to get new clubs! I guarantee you Fred's grips are new and fresh!
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