The Gorilla Grip

Here’s a golf instruction myth about the grip that can’t die soon enough. The myth states that you should grip the golf club based on however your hands naturally hang when standing normally. In this video, I''ll show you how standing in correct anatomic posture will get steer you into the correct grip on the golf club.

  • Standing in correct posture will have the palms face the side of the thighs
  • Do not allow the shoulders to roll forward when you are gripping the club
  • Unlock power in your golf swing by gripping the club the correct way

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Eric
This is a big problem for me. I started playing better golf when I started focusing on a relaxed left shoulder without an internally rotated shoulder left hand gorilla grip. I watched Chris Tyler’s pro tour set up in 60 seconds. There is a subtle nuance. I can do the posture shrug to shoulders and then roll forward into a gorilla grip. I THINK my solution in Chris Tyler’s set up drill is lean the club against my body and not grab it with my left hand until the posture is correct (after the shrug). This puts the right hand on the club correctly (non-gorilla grip) and then I bend forward from my hips. Does this make sense?
May 12, 2021
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Eric. Yes, that will help with hand placement and staying in the box when grabbing the club.
May 12, 2021
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Frank
Wow, great to find this video. Suggest redoing or renaming video to emphasize injury aspect! If it’s TrueType #1 cause of injury, left shoulder impingement the shoulder position such be highlighted in various setup videos. I find on various utube video the shoulder impingement is major issue in general as the world of shoulder slumpers grow thanks to computers and desk work. You might even want to suggest some drills to help us numerous shoulder slumpers. Thanks again. This helps.
July 2, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Frank. Glad you like the video and thanks for the suggestion. Shoulder impingement is a huge problem in the golf industry.
July 2, 2020
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David
Lifting weight through high school, college, and into the Marines gave me a gorilla grip on a golf club. My muscles "fire" while i'm in my back swing and then over compensate on the down swing where I lose a lot of yardage and accuracy. Watching the video on the cause of my golf grip has helped me understand how to bend at the hips and my shoulders slightly shrugged wil help. Thanks, DaveW.
February 16, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Dave. Great. Looking forward to you curing the dreaded Gorilla!
February 16, 2019
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Lucas
Watching this videos changed my whole perception on proper posture and alignment. My shoulders would lean over like this thinking I'm keeping eveything balanced when in fact I created an impingement in the left shoulder after i noticed pain hitting a bunch balls like that. I'm actually still going through physio for that exact injury and to watch this video makes me understand exactly what I did wrong. Thank you
January 2, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Lucas. Great. Love hearing that you have gained new insight.
January 3, 2019
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greg
Hi there. I definitely have the gorilla grip! My problem is, due to a broad chest area, I have to let my shoulders drop with gravity in order to have a relaxed grip and bend free arms at address. My chest gets in the way otherwise. I can pull my shoulder back a little and maintain a sound enough grip with no bend in the arms but I do feel a bit of tension in the shoulders and arms which I feel i would have to maintain throughout the swing to keep the desired position. So, Is it ok to have this tension and something I should get used to? Cheers!
September 2, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Greg. When you have a really broad chest. It can be a little tough to get the setup. If you feel a little retraction in the shoulders to maintain position. That is fine. But, if you start getting overly tense. It will affect your overall rotation and swing. Let's monitor if you can keep it relatively low. Report back to me if you start getting too tense.
September 2, 2018
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greg
Thanks Craig. I've been working on it and I'm managing to keep my shoulders up far better than before without too much tension so it's something i can work on.
September 3, 2018
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tim
Hi, like many others I now realize that my grip is too tight. I can easily manage the '2 out of 10' at address but this brings about a feeling (reality?) of 'looseness' at the top/transition of the swing. Is this something that the golfer should aim to manage consciously or do you simply let the natural mechanics take over once the backswing begins (i.e. just roll with it when the grip loosens and tightens as the swing progresses)?
May 24, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Tim. You don't want to go "gumby," or "dead" at the top. You still need to have some control. If you monitor keeping the pressure light. It will naturally increase throughout the swing. Just shy away from the death grip.
May 24, 2018
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chris
Understanding that light grip pressure is preferable, my question is how does grip pressure change as the swing is completed? Does it stay the same throughout the swing? I tend to grip it a little tighter as I start my downswing.
April 8, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Chris. A tour study was performed on this exact topic. A typical tour pro on a scale of 1-10 (1 being lightest and 10 strongest). Will start around a 2 at address and end up around an 8 at impact.
April 8, 2018
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Wayne
What is recommended as far as grip pressure is concerned? I think my grip is too tight. How can I tell if it is or isn't?
March 27, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Wayne. Enough to hold the club, but not steer it. Usually players are much too tight. It is tough for me to tell you exactly how to feel when it is correct because feel is too subjective. However, a study on tour (1-10 Scale with 1 being lightest) most tour players said they started around a 2 at address.
March 27, 2018
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Wayne
Thank you so much Craig. That tells me what I need to know (that I have been gripping the club way too tightly.) Wayne
March 27, 2018
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John
Note about the term. The internal rotation of the limb is called pronation not protraction. And for interest in the injury you mentioned on the injury to the brachial plexus nerves, they get pinched between the first rib and the pronating shoulder girdle. And this is great ideas and video.
November 4, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Thanks John for your post.
November 11, 2017
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Matt
This is great. I've had a gorilla grip for years...upon years. Thanks so much, RST gang.
May 24, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hell Matt. Our pleasure. Glad the video helped.
May 25, 2017

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