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Strong Left Hand Weak Right Hand Grip: Everything You Need to Know

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The strong left hand weak right hand grip is an unorthodox hand positioning used by some golfers to control the clubface and prevent slicing. By strengthening the lead hand and relaxing the trail hand, this asymmetric grip helps square the clubface at impact. However, improper implementation can also lead to hooks and reduced feel. Careful grip adjustments and swing changes are required to master this unique technique that offers power and draw benefits for certain players.

The golf grip refers to how the hands are positioned on the golf club. Proper hand positioning is critical for control, consistency, and power. While many players use a neutral or overlapping grip, some utilize a strong left hand weak right hand grip instead. This unique grip can provide advantages for players who struggle with specific swing errors or shot shapes. However, it also comes with some potential drawbacks to be aware of.

A strong left weak right grip involves rotating the hands asymmetrically on the club. The left hand turns more clockwise into a stronger position, while the right hand remains relatively neutral and weaker. This contrasts with a neutral grip where both hands are placed symmetrically onto the club.

With a strong left weak right grip, the left thumb fits more on top of the handle. The left palm wraps more solidly around the front of the grip. This powerful left hand position promotes closing the clubface through impact.

Meanwhile, the right palm faces more vertically upward. The right hand does not rotate as far clockwise as normal. This weaker right hand allows the left hand to control the swing and release more freely.

The exact hand rotations will vary based on the golfer’s size and swing. Finding the optimal balance point is key to maximizing control and power with this uneven grip. The proper adjustments provide a stable yet left-hand dominant grip.

While unconventional, this asymmetric left hand strong, right hand weak grip can provide some potential benefits. The biased grip may help golfers who slice the ball find a more neutral or drawing ball flight. However, some discipline is required to avoid overdoing the strong left hand. Going too extreme can certainly cause hooks and other issues.

Benefits of the Strong Left Weak Right Golf Grip

The asymmetric strong left weak right grip certainly does not work for every golfer. However, it can provide some advantages for players who struggle with specific swing errors or shot shapes. Utilizing this unique grip to its maximum potential requires discipline and careful practice. When executed properly, it can help fix slices, increase power, and promote a controlled draw.

Prevents Slices

Without a doubt, the number one benefit of strengthening the left hand and weakening the right is preventing slices. This shot shape is the bane of many amateur golfers. It drains distance and sends the ball careening off target.

A slice is often caused by an open clubface relative to the swing path at impact. With the right hand weaker in the strong left weak right grip, it cannot overly rotate and open the face. Meanwhile, the stronger left hand is biased towards closing the face through impact.

Strengthening the left hand grip and relaxing the right counteracts the forces that open the clubface. This makes it much easier to square up the face properly at impact. With the face square, the ball will launch directly towards the target rather than slicing wildly right.

Generates More Power

In addition to better face control, the freedom of movement allowed by this grip enables greater clubhead speed. Power is essential for distance, but overrestricting the hands and wrists can reduce it.

With a weaker right hand, early release of the club is prevented. However, the right hand does not clamp down and inhibit the wrists either. This allows for a freer hinge and release through impact, maximizing clubhead speed.

The left hand is the powerhouse in a right-handed golfer’s swing. Strengthening the master hand allows it to rip through powerfully and aggressively without being overly restricted. This well-executed grip provides the perfect combination of control and explosive power.

Promotes a Draw Shot Shape

For players plagued by slicing spin, promoting a left-to-right draw can be an effective strategy. The closed clubface created by a strong left hand is conducive to hitting controlled draws.

With the left hand in command, it naturally rotates over and closes the face through impact. When combined with an in-to-out swing path, this produces consistent draws.

Drawing the ball can also help golfers pick up valuable extra yards. The counter-clockwise sidespin generated by a draw shot allows the ball to bore through the air more efficiently. For golfers seeking to move their tee shots past corners or hazards, promoting a draw is a smart play.

Executing repeatable draws does require managing the strong left hand carefully. Finding the optimal grip pressure is key to avoiding closing the face too much and hooking the ball. But for slicing sufferers, a dependable drawer is an excellent tool.

Other Potential Benefits

Beyond fixing slices and enabling draws, the strong left weak right grip offers a few other subtle perks. The tension created in the hands and wrists can increase feel and feedback. With the left hand more active, golfers gain more awareness and control.

The grip can also help shallow out a too-steep downswing, especially when paired with an in-to-out swing path. Allowing the left hand to naturally drag the club inward reduces the angle of attack and spin.

For certain players, directing power and control through the left hand plays to their strengths. The grip compensates for limitations in their right hand dexterity or mobility. Matching the grip to the swing style and body type maximizes the positive impacts.

Potential Drawbacks of the Strong Left Weak Right Golf Grip

While the strong left weak right grip can provide some benefits for certain players, it does come with some inherent risks. It is an unorthodox style of grip that requires discipline and practice to execute properly. Overdoing the strong left hand or weak right hand can cause serious issues like hooks, reduced control, and wrist injury.

Can Lead to Hooks

Closing the clubface too much is a hazard of making the left hand overly strong. If the left hand overpowers and dominates the right, the face can slam closed through impact. This will send the ball rocketing left in a dramatic hook.

Hooking the ball leads to massive distance loss and accuracy issues. Large hooks can easily fly out of bounds or into hazards. Golfers with quick, powerful swings are especially prone to hooking if their left hand takes on too much control.

Finding the proper balance of grip pressure and hand rotation is critical. The left hand must be strong enough to prevent slices but not so dominant that hooks become the problem. Careful grip adjustments and swing changes are required to harness a hook-free draw.

Reduced Control and Consistency

Playing consistently good golf requires precise control over the clubface and ball flight. However, an uneven hand grip can make it more difficult to control the face through impact. This may lead to less consistent contact and ball-striking.

With only one hand in control, smaller errors are magnified. The passive right hand cannot compensate as easily for variances in the swing path and club delivery. Overall, an unbalanced grip demands more precision to achieve consistent results.

Errors like pushing, pulling, topping, and fat shots may become more prevalent. Without two hands working synergistically, fine-tuned swing adjustments are more challenging. This reduced control can be very frustrating for golfers seeking to improve their consistency.

Strain on the Wrists and Forearms

Placing one hand in an overly strong position increases strain through the wrists and forearms. Gripping too tightly or twisting the hands too severely can inflame tendons and cause damage over time.

The risk of injury is elevated for golfers with existing joint issues or arthritis. The unnatural hand position required for this grip places stressful loads on the tissues and joints during the swing.

Wrist and hand pain may arise even in healthy golfers. Proper conditioning and gradual implementation are key to avoiding damaging the vulnerable joints of the hands and wrists.

Difficulty with Certain Shots

The right-to-left ball flight bias caused by a strong left hand grip can make hitting certain shots more challenging. Fading the ball becomes problematic when the left hand grip is too dominant.

Around the greens, the grip can reduce feel and finesse on delicate pitch shots, chips, and bunker shots. The necessary touch and dexterity may need to be added.

To hit these specialty shots well, golfers often have to weaken the left hand grip and strengthen the right. However, adjusting back and forth leads to inconsistency and mental strain.

Some golfers choose to eliminate the strong left weak right grip entirely when chipping and putting. But switching grips frequently can also throw off rhythm and feel. There is no perfect solution.

Other Potential Issues

Besides hooking, reduced control, and wrist injury, a few other problems may arise from overdoing this grip. Excessive lowering or steering of the club on the downswing is common as the left hand dominates.

The right hand may also instinctively try to save the swing by flipping or casting if it feels powerless. This leads to erratic releases and clubface angles.

Some golfers struggle with the mental aspect of giving the right hand a passive role. Overcoming many years of muscle memory with an unbalanced grip is difficult.

Careful practice and monitoring of ball-flight tendencies are required to avoid these pitfalls. The strong left weak right grip certainly has risks, but they can be mitigated through awareness and discipline.

Determining If a Strong Left Weak Right Grip is Right For You

The strong left weak right grip will not be the ideal choice for every golfer. Certain swing characteristics and shot patterns indicate who can benefit most from adopting this unique grip. Careful experimentation and monitoring of results are needed to find if it is a good personal fit. Here are some key factors to consider when determining if the strong left weak right grip is right for your game.

Take Note of Your Current Shot Patterns

Analyzing your typical ball flight and missed shot tendencies provides clues on whether a strong left hand could help. Golfers who consistently slice drives, approach shots, and tee shots are prime candidates for this grip. Strengthening the left hand to close the clubface is an antidote for open-faced slices.

However, golfers whose miss is a hook or draw should be wary. Adding a strong left hand when you already hook the ball will exacerbate the problem. You will likely need to weaken the left hand instead.

Make changes incrementally and track results. If your ball flight straightens out, you are on the right path. If you start hooking more, it is time to back off the strong left hand.

Experiment and Find What Feels Comfortable

Do not rush into a full-blown strong left weak right grip immediately. Make progressive adjustments during practice sessions to find your optimal grip position.

Gradually strengthen the left hand while relaxing the right hand over multiple range sessions. After each adjustment, check your ball striking for control and launch direction.

There is no standardized hand position – find what works for your swing mechanics and hand size. Let comfort and results guide you to your personalized grip.

Check Hand and Wrist Alignment

Classic strong left weak right position points the V’s formed by the thumbs and forefingers to the right of the right shoulder. But your optimal alignment may vary.

Check that the right palm faces slightly skyward – not forced upright or flat. Avoid excess right hand supination or pronation.

Setting up a neutral grip first can help establish proper hand placement before making adjustments.

Pay Attention to Strain and Tension

The grip should feel stable yet relaxed. Seek a firm left hand without squeezing or tension. The right hand should drape loosely over the handle.

If your hands, wrists, or forearms feel strained or fatigued, you likely need to ease off the left hand strength. Seek an effortless, athletic grip.

Soreness or injuries after practice indicate it is time to reassess grip pressure. Do not ignore warning signs of overexertion.

Monitor Consistency of Ball Striking

Try the grip on the course and keep statistics to spot any decline in ball-striking consistency. Control issues like pushes, pulls, and erratic distance indicate the left hand needs weakening.

Conversely, if you strike the ball purely with control of shot shape, you have likely found a good grip balance for your swing. Consistency is king – adjust based on real-world results.

By carefully monitoring feedback and making incremental changes, you can determine if the unorthodox strong left weak right grip offers you advantages. Blend objective analysis with subjective comfort to find your optimal hand positioning. While not a cure-all, this grip can be the missing piece to elevate your ball striking.

Swing Adjustments for the Strong Left Weak Right Golf Grip

Implementing a strong left weak right grip may require making some adaptations throughout the swing. The biased grip influences clubface control, release, and swing path. Being aware of these effects can help optimize delivery of the clubhead to the ball. Here are key swing adjustments to pair with the strong left weak right hand positioning.

Focus on Squaring the Clubface

With a dominant left hand, the clubface easily closes too soon before impact. Avoid over-rolling the wrists and forearms early in the downswing. Maintaining proper wrist angles during the transition and downswing is critical for controlling clubface position. As we covered in our in-depth guide on the reverse overlap grip, allowing the wrists to collapse or flip excessively through impact can lead to major delivery issues. Focus on maintaining the wrist angles established at the top of the backswing well into the downswing.

Let the big muscles provide power while the arms and hands control face angle. Keep the grip light during transition to avoid closing too rapidly. Allow the club to shallow out before releasing through impact.

Limit Right Hand Action

The weaker right hand with this grip should play a passive role. Work to keep it quiet, avoiding any flipping, casting or early releasing. Keep the clubface square by rotating the body, not through hand or wrist action.

Allow the left hand and arm to power the swing while the right hand goes along for the ride. Keep the right palm facing the target longer before impact to prevent any flipping.

Allow the Club to Release

While limiting early right hand action, still allows the club to release fully through impact. Do not hold off on the release too long. Maintain lag but unleash the club naturally.

Keeping the clubface closed too long reduces speed. Allow the right hand to naturally match the left hand at impact. Balancing control and power maximizes clubhead speed.

Emphasize Shoulder Rotation

Compensate for the right hand’s reduced role by emphasizing upper body rotation. Ensure the shoulders rotate fully on the backswing and downswing.

Avoid excess vertical shoulder tilt by keeping the shoulders level. Rotate around a fixed spine angle to deliver maximum power while controlling face angle.

Check Alignment at Setup

The closed clubface at impact with this grip means an alignment adjustment is needed. Aim the feet, knees, hips and shoulders parallel left of the target line.

This open stance relative to the target compensates for the clubface closing through impact. It promotes an in-to-out swing path for ideal compression and launch.

Other Setup Considerations

Widening the stance slightly adds stability to compensate for the uneven grip pressure. Move the ball an inch or two forward to encourage an in-to-out swing path.

Increase spine tilt away from the target to allow clearance for the strong left hand. Check alignments and ball position with various clubs.

Modify Swing Plane

A flatter, more around-the-body swing plane helps prevent hooks and encourages drawing the ball. Keep the club outside the hands on the backswing and downswing to shallow the angle.

Let the grip and stance alignment promote an in-to-out path. Avoid allowing the left hand to steepen and overly close the face.

Check Grip Pressure

Loosen the tension in the left hand and right hand before each shot. Starting too tight makes it harder to release and square the clubface up. Establish the grip lightly at address.

After impact, the grip pressure should have increased only moderately. Excess tension impedes speed and adds manipulation.

By integrating the proper swing adjustments, you can maximize the benefits of the strong left weak right grip. Keep practicing to blend optimal face control and powerful releasing for consistent ball striking.

Examples of Strong Left Hand Weak Right Hand Grips

While the optimal strong left weak right grip varies from golfer to golfer, examining how the pros utilize this unorthodox style can provide useful illustrations. Here are examples from top players who employ a version of the strong left weak right grip to power their world-class swings.

Rory McIlroy

Strong Left Hand Weak Right Hand
image: NBC Sports

Rory McIlroy anchors his swing with an extremely strong left hand combined with a slightly weaker right. His left thumb fits well down the shaft, allowing him to unwind his body for tremendous clubhead speed.

The freedom provided by his right hand being less dominant promotes the inside-out swing path McIlroy utilizes. This allows him to rip drives on tight lines with a power draw.

Matching his hand positioning with his swing style and flexible body enables McIlroy to maximize distance without sacrificing control.

Dustin Johnson

Strong Left Hand Weak Right Hand Grip
image: SportsNet

Another bomber renowned for his length, Dustin Johnson also utilizes a notably strong left hand grip. His right hand is exceptionally weak, with his right palm almost facing vertically skyward.

This grip bias allows Johnson’s supple wrists to hinge powerfully on the backswing and release fully through impact. He generates tremendous clubhead speed while minimizing slices.

Johnson’s grip exemplifies a strong left and ultra-weak right hand position. This gives his left hand free rein to overpower the ball and launch towering shots.

Lexi Thompson

Strong Left Hand Weak Right Hand Grip
image: The Sporting News

On the LPGA Tour, Lexi Thompson stands out with her downward-pointing left thumb grip. This allows her to get the clubface closing hard through impact.

Thompson’s extremely strong left hand promotes repeating pure draws. Her right side remains loose to maximize the speed of her athletic swing.

The freedom Thompson’s left hand enjoys promotes aggressively ripping through the ball. This helps her generate effortless power while controlling the clubface.

Adam Scott

strong left hand weak right hand grip
Image: NBC Sports

Masters champ Adam Scott utilizes a more subtle version of the strong left weak right grip. His left thumb lies slightly on top of the shaft while his right palm points relatively vertically.

This refined grip gives Scott complete control over the clubface through impact. The neutral left hand provides both finesse and power when called upon.

Scott’s grip highlights how small changes from neutral can yield positive impacts. A slightly biased left hand is integral to his world-class ball striking.

Modifying the Grip for Different Shots

While a constant grip helps ingrain swing mechanics, the strong left weak right grip may require adjustments for certain shot types. Fades, short game shots, and putting demand adaptations to the biased hand positioning. Making situation-specific grip changes can expand this grip’s versatility.

Weaken the Left Hand for Fades

The strong left hand’s natural shot shape is a draw, as it closes the clubface through impact. But occasionally, a fade or slight cut shape is preferred for positioning.

To hit a fade, rotate the left hand slightly counter-clockwise at address. Find the minimal grip change required to prevent the left hand from closing the face. This makes it easier to keep the face open relative to the swing path.

Be careful not to weaken the left hand excessively, as this can lead to slices. Make only small reductions in left hand strength to promote slight fades.

Strengthen the Right Hand for Chipping and Pitching

Finesse shots around the green require maximum feel and control. For these delicate shots, strengthen the typically weak right hand to gain enhanced touch.

Allow the right hand to exert more influence, evening out the grip pressure. This provides the precision needed for crisp contact on chips, pitches and lob shots.

Keep the left hand strong enough to control face angle through impact on these short swings. Find the optimal balance of left and right hand strength for distance control and accuracy.

Use a Neutral Grip for Putting

Most golfers utilize a neutral, evenly balanced grip for putting to enhance feel and consistency. The biased strong left weak right positioning is less suitable on the greens.

Eliminate any dominant hand by gripping the putter with symmetrical pressure. This allows both hands to work together to improve touch, distance control and face awareness.

A neutral putting grip improves alignment by ensuring the putter face sets up square. Take time to ingrain this different grip during practice to avoid confusion.

For more on Neutral Grip, see our article on the neutral golf grip left hand.

Adjust Appropriately for Specialty Shots

Certain specialty shots like bump-and-runs, splash shots and explosion shots from trouble may warrant grip adjustments as well.

Analyze the demands of each shot and determine if weakening the left or strengthening the right could improve execution. Make purposeful, minimal changes to expand versatility.

Allow Time to Re-Grip

When changing grips for different shots, ensure you allocate enough time to properly adjust your hands on the club. Rushing the re-gripping process can lead to poor execution.

Maintain your normal pre-shot routine rhythm when incorporating grip changes. Get comfortable with the necessary modifications through deliberate repetitions of the range.

With practice, personalized grip variations become second nature. Mastering nuanced grip changes expands the capabilities of the strong left weak right hand positioning.

Consider Keeping the Strong Left Weak Right Grip

While grip changes can be beneficial in certain situations, some top players do utilize a strong left weak right grip for all shots.

Limiting variations simplifies the mental side of the game. Consistency also builds faster with a singular grip.

For most mid-to-long-range shots, the biased grip is certainly viable if controlled properly. Evaluate whether making modifications is necessary or beneficial for your game.

Mastering one constant grip or tailoring the grip strategically both offer potential paths to success. Carefully consider which approach best complements your strengths and preferences.


The unorthodox strong left hand weak right hand grip certainly deviates from conventional technique, but it can offer advantages for certain players. While not a universal quick-fix, a disciplined approach to implementing this unique grip can elevate ball striking and consistency for those suited to its asymmetric nature.

By strengthening the lead hand and relaxing the trail hand, the tendency to slice can be reduced or eliminated. The new grip bias assists in squaring the clubface through impact to enable powerful draws. Generating more speed is also possible as hand action is freer and less restricted.

However, the non-traditional hand positioning does require adaptations. Avoiding hooks and loss of control necessitates honing new swing motions and feels. Changing any long-ingrained habit takes practice and patience to master.

Determining if this strong left weak right grip could benefit your game involves careful experimentation. An analytical approach to tracking real results helps find your optimal personalized hand positioning.

Integrating complementary adjustments throughout the swing helps maximize the upside of the biased grip. Emphasize turning the body to square the clubface, allow a freer release, and compensate alignment for the closing clubface.

While excellent for full shots, modifying the grip is wise for finesse shots, fades, and putting. The optimal pressure balance shifts depending on the shot’s demands. Expanding versatility requires learning multiple specialized grips.

In the end, only diligent practice can yield mastery of the strong left and weak right hand positioning. Finding the proper grip intensities and synthesizing the necessary swing changes does require dedication. But for players whose flaws match the grip’s strengths, the journey can be well worthwhile.

The strong left weak right grip may seem unconventional, but its strategic application gave rise to legends like Ben Hogan and modern stars like Rory McIlroy. Creatively integrating this unique grip into your own swing could take your ball striking to the next level.

Andrew is a 38 year old golf enthusiast turned instructor from Chicago. For the past 7 years he has offered private golf lessons, helping students refine their skills. Andrew shares his passion for golf through instructional articles for

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