Are Your Golf Grips Fit Properly?

How to know if the size of your golf grips is holding back your game.


Perhaps no other piece of equipment in your arsenal is more important and more overlooked than properly fitted grips. How on earth do you know if you're properly fitted? Well, pretty much everybody just assumes that they just take a standard grip because it's standard for a reason, right? Not at all. Grips must be fit to your palm in order for you to be able to release the club properly and have control without having to death grip the thing. Now, first of all, before I even get into the grip size, I want to talk specifically about grip condition. You must replace your grips at least once a season. That's a minimum. Twice a season is more ideal. They're made out of rubber. The oils come out of the rubber over time. You keep wearing holes into them, pushing against the shaft and so on.

                Having new grips on the club is the cheapest and best upgrade you can do to your golf game because you can hold on to the club more and more lightly which makes it much easier to release the club, but if your grips are too big or too small, you're going to either over release the club or not be able to release it enough because your hands are working too hard to try and control the club. How do we know if our grips are properly fit for our hands? Everybody has different hand sizes. You have big palms and small fingers and big fingers and small palms and so on. It makes a huge impact on how your fingers wrap around the club. To check this, all you need is your left hand and you want to see where your left fingers touch your palm when you take your normal grip. If you find that your fingernails are digging in to your palm, your grips are way too small and there's two fixes for that.

                One, go and have them regripped and throw one extra wrap of tape under the grip. Your club builder will know what that means if you don't. That will raise it up about a 32nd of an inch. That's if your fingers are just starting to just fingernails are just digging in a little bit. They should not dig and they should just touch. Lightly touch, but they do need to touch. Now, if they're really digging in and you can't even seen your fingernails like this, you're probably going to need to go up a full grip size. That's critical because if you have really, really small grips, it's really easy to flip the club around and lose control over it. The opposite problem is if your fingers are nowhere near touching each other and you've got this big gap. The simple fix, you just need smaller grips or if you have extra wraps of tape in there, take the wraps out first and try the grip again. The grip might be okay. It might just be too many wraps of tape or too thick of tape.

                Simple fix, simple check. Make sure your fingernails or your fingertips are just lightly touching the inside of your palm of your left hand and if you're not sure about it, just move your hand down the grip and you'll be like, "Oh, wow. Okay I see what he's talking about here. If I move it way down, then my fingernails are really digging in. Up here they're just lightly touching." That is a perfectly fitted golf grip.

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Gary C
I have a question regarding the potential pros or cons of playing a slightly smaller size grip. I wear a medium glove and recently I started wearing a glove that I really like that has more padding than most gloves (it’s a bionic relief grip glove). I plan to keep playing this glove but I am noticing that with the slightly thicker padding I find that it’s more difficult for me to get the club properly placed in my left hand unless I grip way down on the club where it’s smaller. I am considering trying out the same grip model but in undersize (or women’s?) instead of standard. I am curious if this might present any significant advantages or drawbacks. I have heard playing a grip that’s too small can cause you to grip too tightly but I currently feel that the standard grip with the slightly thicker glove is currently making me feel as though I have to grip harder to get it into the correct spot and not letting it rest too far down into my left palm. When I grip down on the club I feel like the club rests nicely and easily at the base of my fingers and everything falls into place correctly, quickly and easily. I also feel that my grip is much more relaxed when I choke down. I am hoping that the slightly smaller grip will feel more like the standard choked down.
March 25, 2021
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gary. A smaller grip can tend to make you grip too tightly, but with the thicker glove. It should negate each other. I would rather you error small for your issues. Because too thick will limit the wrists and potential energy from lag.
March 26, 2021
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Gary C
I am thinking of switching to golf pride mcc grips and I am curious if the grip benefits expressed for the mcc plus 4 are accurate and beneficial. Would having a thicker grip in the right hand as the plus 4 has (versus the mcc) have any potential negative effects for the RST method of gripping the club? Is it just a matter of personal preference? I’m currently playing Winn dri tac grips but don’t want to do anything in a grip change that will have negative effects on the grip I’ve been working on.
April 23, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gary. Just a personal preference. It won't hinder what you are trying to achieve with RST. Winn grips tend to make me grip firmer. LOL.
April 23, 2020
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Gary C
I watched this video and took a look at my setup and noticed that my fingers do not touch my palm when I grip the club. I have standard grips on my clubs and I usually wear a size medium glove, or lately I’ve been wearing the Bionic glove in a Cadet ML. Since I’m playing with standard size grips but my fingers don’t touch I’m not sure where to go from here. Are there smaller grips than standard or do I need a women’s standard grip? Also, I know the bionic glove has more padding so I wonder if that might be throwing this measurement off... What are your thoughts or suggestions?
January 17, 2020
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Gary. It could be the padding from the Bionic glove, but you could just have too many wraps of tape underneath your current grip. They do make smaller grips and I would go test drive a few at your local golf store.
January 17, 2020
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Ted
Hi Craig. Have any advice for sizing if you have arthritic hands? I use standard size grips but with all the reps I've put in for the DEAD drill workshop, my fingers/hands are really feeling it. I use the interlock grip. Wondering if changing to the 10 finger would be better and if you've had students use jumbo or arthritic grips with success? Or do I just cut down on the reps?
September 30, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Ted. I've had better experience with 10 finger/overlap, or slightly larger grips to accommodate for arthritic conditions.
October 1, 2019
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john
Hello all, when I do this test my middle and ring fingers reach my other hand, but my pinkie and pointer fingers are pretty short of touching my left. Is the video talking about all your finger-nails touching or just the middle two?
March 24, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. The pinky may stay a little bit shy depending on hand size. But, if all the fingers are digging in. You definitely need larger grips. If you have just some awareness of touching with the middle and ring finger you should be fine. The main thing is that the fingernails aren't digging into the skin.
March 24, 2019
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john
Hey Craig, its actually just the opposite of that. My middle and ring fingers touch but don't dig in. The pinkie and pointer fingers are both short of being able to touch. If I go undersize (had one lying around) the pointer finger touches but the pinkie is still short. So its basically undersize the ring and middle nail digs but the pointer touches, standard the pinkie and pointer are short of touching by a decent amount and the pointer and ring just touch, no dig. May be over thinking it, but I want to get this right, especially since starting to do the level shoulders drill every day and seeing some pretty insane results. Thanks in advance. Should the left-hand fingers touch during your swing (wrap all the way around so the entire grip is covered)?
March 25, 2019
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello John. Ideally, the last three fingers will lightly touch. I would check how you are holding the club. It may be wrong grip placement.
March 25, 2019
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Stephen
Hey, Just curious to know if you guys recommend a particular grip? As i need to replace my grips as summer has arrived, which means sweaty hands. I was considering getting half cord? Any advice? Also should i consider DIY'ing them myself? Any advice is appreciated.
December 4, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Stephen. If you have the equipment you may DIY. Grips are pretty personal. Whichever ones allow you to hold on to the club without requiring a death grip. I prefer corded. But, I know some players that absolutely hate them.
December 4, 2018
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Mark
Since I'm 5'8" would it be appropriate to have clubs cut down since I recall seeing in the SetUp videos needing to hold the club at the end vs choking down? I can get current shafts re-gripped but the club face will still set up at an angle at address (vs club face flat).
November 27, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Mark. Cutting the shaft down slightly and having your lie angles bent shouldn't be very expensive. I would recommend that to be your best bet.
November 27, 2018
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Paul
When I hold the club up like chuck is in this video my fingers barely touch but when i address the ball my fingers don’t touch at all in which position do you check?
November 16, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Paul. If they're not touching when the club is set on the ground. You might need to make an adjustment. The upright position sounds like you have a lot of wrist set which is allowing them to touch. But, when you lose some of the angle your fingers are not able to reach.
November 18, 2018
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Michael
I have stiffness in my hand, more so in my fingers after a round of golf or from the practice range and about 4 weeks ago I had a miss hit off the Tee's (nothing unusual) but tweaked my trailing hand, middle finger, middle knuckle.  The discomfort was bad enough to give it a rest.   I did not put a club in my hand since then until yesterday and went to the practice range.  My stiffness is back and the pain in the knuckle returned.  The one thing I noticed is the knuckle pain is greater when I release my grip, but it quick second.  The stiffness doesn't show until later.  I maybe exasperating the issue with the grip, because my right hand is on a computer mouse 8-10 hrs a day.   I have watch all the grip videos and realized my grips were too small and that has been resolved and yesterdays practice was with those new grips.  I use an overlapping grip.  What I did notice at the range with my swing, the knuckle pain was at impact area / the post up area / when the hands should rotate over.  Plus; I noticed if I do the "Vijay type follow thru" the knuckle pain is almost gone or if let my pointing finger and thumb float off the grip the pain is not as bad.  But doing this with the thumb and pointing finger my right hand is not over/ married/cupped on the lead hand thumb.  I know you are not doctors and therefore not asking for a diagnosis for what is up with my hand and knuckle, but what do you think I am doing wrong to cause this.  Thank you! MO
August 5, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Michael. Sounds like a very strong trail hand influence. It doesn't take much to hurt your hand with golf. One swing with too much force in the wrong direction, or striking the ground can complicate matters. I think a combined use of too much mouse and just plain over use of the trail tweaked a muscle/ligament. I have seen fractured wrist, fingers, etc. solely from normal practice off of golf mats. Sadly, a little rest, or practicing lead arm only (which is a good thing) should start to help it over time.
August 6, 2018
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Michael
Thank you! I had a feeling you were gonna say that....too tight, and pushing with my trail. I am currently on the lead arm drill with in the 5 step series. Well appreciate your time and the help.
August 7, 2018
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Barry
How do you feel about the Golfpride Grips MCC PLUS4 ALIGN . Not so much the rib . I am referring to the fact they are bigger where your right hands rest : Is that ok ??
February 20, 2018
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Barry. Sam below is referring to those same grips.
February 20, 2018
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Samuel
Thank you for this video. Last year I replaced my grips with Golf Pride Aligns gray color, which is a larger +4 grip. My fingers do not touch. I will purchase smaller size grips. Any opinion on the Golf Pride "Align" grips? Thanks you.
December 12, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Sam. I haven't messed around much with the grips. However, the premise behind using the larger-lower end to reduce grip pressure may help. You will tend to see players with fatter grips be less handsy and wristy. My grips were actually too large when I first started with Rotary. Too much wrap was effecting the full setting of my wrists.
December 12, 2017
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Erik
My little - and ringfinger do not touch but my longfinger does. I am considered to have quite big hands. For my littlefinger and ringfinger to touch the palm I should need a lot smaller grip. I will get new grips that are smaller and see how it works. Thank you.
December 10, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Erik. It can be tricky due to genetics. But, I think you are on the right track.
December 11, 2017
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Konstantin
I have read an article about a study of determining the grip size. This one was actually the only one that was based on a research at least. The conclusion was that we don't have any other method right now to determine the right grip size but trying/testing as many different ones as possible. However, this isn't really available option for average golfers. I would like to know opinion on this article, please. http://www.golf.com/instruction/youre-playing-wrong-size-grips Many thanks!
October 11, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Konstantin. Yes, sadly trying out multitudes of different sized grips, same club, data, etc. is hard for the average golfer. At this point, the video above is trying to make the sole focus on having the ability to use the last three lead fingers properly and keep in control. Better players in recent years have been experimenting exactly as stated in that article to try and gain an advantage with a better grip for their swing. Not very cost effective though.
October 11, 2017
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Konstantin
Thank you, Craig! I was into the subject because from the beginning my grips were chosen by measuring my hand and fingers etc. However my feelings were that this size was too large (size gold from Ping) I had quite a big gap between my palm and my fingertips and the clubs kept sliding into the middle of my palm. Once I borrowed my friend's driver with smaller grip and it felt so mauch better. I thought I needed smaller grips and found this video. Changing grip size after 10 years!
October 11, 2017
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Manny (Certified RST Instructor)
Other than the nails digging into your left hand to indicate needing larger grips, what are some performance factors which would or may show up during the swing, especially at impact and after if your grips are the wrong size?
October 6, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Manuel. If the grips are too large you will notice a lack of wrist setting and roll release. Too small (the digging) the tendency to get very floppy/handsy with cupping in the release.
October 6, 2017
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James
I have pretty severe arthritis in my hands & for that reason even though my fingers are on the shorter size I do need to have mid sized grips. When the grip is smaller I tend to squeeze more & causes my fingers to lock up. Doesn't happen at all with the mid sized grip.
October 4, 2017
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Craig (Certified RST Instructor)
Hello Jim. I understand there may be some variances for genetic and physical limitations. Sorry to hear about your arthritis.
October 5, 2017

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