Golf Putt Secret | Sam Snead Grip and More

By: Aidan Sugrue

There are basically three ways to grip a putter and the most common of these is known as the "conventional grip". Other methods include the "cross-hand grip" and the "one-hand grip" which is used with an especially long putter.

Although the conventional grip is the most widely used, the cross-hand grip is often preferred by more experienced golfers. The one hand grip, which was made famous by the legendary golfer Sam Snead, has also proven to be very successful.

Many golf enthusiasts are now familiar with this grip after Snead demonstrated how they could place their dominant hand at the bottom of the shaft and their weaker hand at the top. Snead bent over and essentially used only one hand to make his putting stroke extremely successful.

In terms of the conventional grip, golfer's often use this method because it simply feels natural to place your dominant hand below your weaker hand on the golf club. This is the same way a baseball player would typically hold a bat and it is the way most players hold all their other clubs.

In terms of head and eye movement during a putt, however, this grip may not be the best. Scientists have actually determined that the cross-hand grip, which places the dominant hand at the top of the putter and the weaker hand at the bottom, is more likely to minimize the eye movement during long putts. This is an especially good tendency since the eyes on the ball make for much better putting.

Similar to the prevention of eye movement during the the cross-hand grip, scientists have also determined that the movement of the head is considerably less during cross-hand short putts. This was also shown to be the case for the one-hand grip although fewer players incorporate the one hand grip into their game.

The one hand grip is extremely odd and takes a lot of time to get used to but can be very successful as Sam Snead demonstrated. Regardless of the strangeness of the grips, these scientific discoveries have been recently published in a book entitled "Biomedical Engineering Principles in Sports". The book shows how both computers and biomechanics can demonstrate that certain golf grips simply tend to work better for certain golfers.

Whether you feel comfortable with the conventional grip, cross-hand grip or one-hand grip, it is important to try all of them before you settle into the one that is most successful for you. Some grips take a little getting used to but may still be more successful after you give them a chance.

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