Golf is one of the most lucrative sports in the present day scenario. For an amateur who does not know how the Golf is played, it looks too simple. A bunch of people going around the park and hitting the ball into the hole. The concept of Golf is very simple. But the technique required is far too complicated. Golf is more of a mind game if not anything. People just don’t get paid in millions for putting a ball into some holes.
For someone who does not know anything about Golf, they may be unaware of what a “PUTTER” means. Well, a Putter is one of the many types "Golf clubs." Every Golf club has its own specific application. A typical golfer's bag has five different kinds of Golf clubs. The different types of Golf clubs are-
What does each Golf club do? How are they different from each other?
We will see each of their application in brief.
1. The woods
Firstly, no, it is not named after Tiger Woods (Golf joke). The name as suggested came from the fact that, traditionally the club head was made out of hardwoods (persimmon). This, however, does not remain true today as they are made mostly of iron. The woods have the longest shafts and largest heads. The reason is quite simple; they are used for "long shots."
2. The Irons
The irons are used for making the shots in multiple situations. They are used for hitting the ball from “teeing” ground (“teeing” refers to the area of the ground where the play commences/starts. “Tee” is the object that is used to lift the ball before striking it) on shorter holes. They can also be used from the "fairway" (it is one of the many parts of a golf course) as a player makes their way to the "green." The "irons" have shorter shafts compared to the "woods" and have smaller club heads. They are so called because the head of the "iron" is made from “steel” or “solid iron.”
3. The Hybrids
Hybrids are relatively new in golf. These golf clubs are generally a hybrid of both Irons and Woods, hence the name. Most players prefer “The Hybrid” because it is a more convenient choice that has both the characteristics of wood and iron. For most golfers using irons are not always convenient as they are difficult to hit well with. Woods are also not always convenient as their long shaft means that it is hard to achieve different "swing mechanics." The long shaft of woods also requires a lot of room for "swinging." These are the reasons why a golfer opts to use "Hybrid" instead of wood or iron.
4. The wedges
Wedges are different from other types of Golf clubs. They have their own categories of Golf club, such as,
- Gap wedge
- Sand wedge
- Lob wedge and
- Pitching wedge
The wedge can also be treated as a sub-set of the irons as they have the same club heads as the irons. The wedges are used for shorter shots into greens, playing out of sand bunkers or for chipping and pitching around the greens.
5. The putter
Putters are perhaps the most important type of Golf Clubs. They are an essential Golf Club, and every golfer is indispensable without them. The Putter comes in the most varieties in terms of Shapes and sizes. The reason why Putters are so important is that they are ultimately used for knocking the ball into the hole. They are used for “the last stroke” which ultimately dictates the result.
PUTTER: IT’S MORE THAN JUST “ANOTHER GOLF CLUB”
When it comes down to choosing a Putter, it is a completely personal affair. There is no such thing as “conventional putter” that every golfer agrees to. This part seems absurd, but every golfer has their own specific "right" putter. This may depend on how much a golfer is comfortable with that one specific putter. Choosing a putter is more to do with how confident and comfortable a golfer is with their particular Putter. For most golfers, finding the right putter gives them a mental advantage and confidence.
Now after finding the “right” putter, the next most vital step is finding “the right grip” (how a golfer holds the putter). The technique involved in using a “Putter” is more of a mental process. It does not matter if a golfer is hitting the ball well all day, ultimately it is the process of putting the ball into the hole that matters the most.
There is no such thing as a "conventional" or "general" method of gripping the Putter. The simple fact is that every golfer has their own techniques. When it comes to "gripping a putter," it is a much different ball game than all the other aspects of Golf.
There are mainly three techniques of gripping the putter that most golfer’s uses. These are
Reverse Overlap Grip
There is no such thing as a conventional method of “Gripping” however “Reverse Overlap Grip” is the method that most golfers are aware of. This is mostly because of how easy and convenient this method actually is.
Most professionals actually use this method and can be regarded as the regular choice of grip. “Tiger Woods” for example uses this technique of Grip. This grip is also called as "Right hand below Left Grip." The name as suggested is because right-hand goes below the left. The "index finger" of the left-hand overlaps the" back two or three" (depends from person to person) fingers of the right hand.
The Reverse Overlap is mostly favoured because it provides a better “speed” and “control," but that is not always true. Most golfers actually use this Grip because this method is more in tune with what they do in "full swing." This allows a golfer to get more accustomed to this method of Grip and find it easier to control the “Reverse Overlap Grip.”
Cross Handy Grip
This technique is opposite to the "Reverse Overlap Grip." Whereas in Reverse overlap the "right hand is below the left," in Cross Handy Grip the "left hand is below the right."
Many professionals like “Jordan Speith” use this technique. The process is very much the same as Reverse Overlap. The left-hand goes below the right hand, and the index finger of the right-hand overlaps the back two or three (depends on different people) fingers.
Since this technique is usually different from the way in which a golfer generally perform their “full swing” it is usually difficult for most golfers to get used to it. The golfers for which this technique works, it gives them a crucial advantage. Since the left-hand rest below the right, it allows them to have a more dominant effect during the swing and a more consistent stroke. This is one of the many merits of Cross Handy Grip.
Pencil Grip or Claw Grip
The Pencil or Claw Grip does not have one particular method of holding the Golf club. The fingers are not interlocked as opposed to the two previous techniques.
Many professionals such as “Chris DiMarco” and “Skip Kendall” are responsible for making this method famous. The “left hand” stays on top of the Grip and the “right hand” rest below the left hand (without overlap) and it is rotated in such a manner that the “thumb” is under the grip (similar to how a person holds a pencil).
Pencil grip/Claw Grip is very convenient, especially in case of a short put. It gives more the golfers confidence to guide the ball into the hole.
The above methods are just three of the many techniques involved in Gripping techniques. The Grip of the different golfers varies from person to person. It is not necessary that the above techniques have to suit a person. The Gripping of Putter is completely dependent on an individual. There are infinite numbers of ways that a golfer can choose to Grip the Putter depending on how they are comfortable with the technique.
If the above-mentioned techniques do not suit you, it's probably okay; you just need to find a method that you are comfortable with. The key element in Gripping is "Confidence." Find the technique that you are most comfortable and Confident with, because at the end of the day, Putter Gripping is more about being “mentally confident” than just “technique”