Re-grip To Catch Pitches Crisp

Saturday March 28th, 2009

If you're like most of my students and struggle with your pitch shots (i.e., you're making very poor contact and not getting them close), chances are you're holding the club with a death grip. Excess grip pressure is a surefire way to lose your touch around the greens. Asking you to relax and lighten up your grip, however, may not be much help. What I've found to work better is to change to a "feel" grip — it's helped many of my students improve their touch and feel on pitch swings.

\nYears ago my friend D.A. Weibring (now playing on the PGA Champions Tour), showed me the practice grip he uses to enhance his awareness of swing feel (as opposed to swing hit or execution mechanics) when he works on his pitching touch. D.A. switched from his regular interlocking grip (right photo) to a double-overlap grip (left photo) when he practiced pitching.

The double-overlap grip gives you less control of the clubhead through impact with your right hand, which is what you want. Keep pitching with this grip until you feel the swing of the wedge (with no hit from your hands) doing all the work for you.

Then, switch to your normal grip and hit some shots. See if the feel of the swing stays with you even with your normal grip.

After getting comfortable with this practice routine, bring it out to the course, using the feel grip for practice and your normal grip for execution.

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