What Are the Benefits of the Double Overlap Golf Grip?

By Mike Southern
The start point for most beginners is learning a grip option that feels most comfortable.
The start point for most beginners is learning a grip option that feels most comfortable.

If you search the Internet for “double-overlap grip,” chances are good that you will get a lot of hits for the words “overlap” and “grip”… and virtually no useful information on the double-overlap grip itself. But the grip is used by PGA Tour professional Jim Furyk, who rarely drops out of the Top10 in the world rankings, so it is worth understanding why he prefers it.

Unified Hands

The more common overlap grip, also known as the Vardon grip, overlaps the pinky finger of the right hand over the index finger of the left hand.

Furyk’s double-overlap places overlaps both the right pinky and ring fingers over the left index and middle fingers. This creates a compact grip; the wrists are extremely close to each other and can function more as a unit. This minimizes the chance for one hand to “take over” the swing.

Left-Hand Control

Feel is a crucial part of any golfer’s swing. In fact, although we do most things by feel, most weekend players struggle to feel their swing in a consistent way from day-to-day.

The double-overlap grip prevents the right hand from having any major contact with the grip of the club, almost forcing Furyk to feel as if his swing is being controlled totally by his left hand and the left side of his body. This reinforces a more consistent feel each time he plays.

Minimize Hooks

Furyk has made reference to this benefit in the past. Many golfers struggle against a hook, which is generally caused by flipping the right hand at the moment they contact the ball.

By placing the left hand in such a dominant position, a double-overlap grip prevents the right hand from “taking over” as referred to earlier. Because of this, Furyk generally plays a controlled fade, which is a left-to-right shot

Encourage a Swing

Short-game guru Dave Pelz has mentioned using the double-overlap grip during pitching practice to encourage lighter pressure when using your regular grip.

Because the right hand can only support the left hand in a double-overlap grip--it is unable to apply its grip pressure directly to the club--it becomes harder for the player to hit at the ball. He is forced to let the club do more of the work, which teaches him a more flowing swing that takes less effort.

Learn to Let Go

If you try the double-overlap grip, your most likely reaction will be one of helplessness. No matter how hard you try, you cannot escape the feeling that you do not have full control of the club.

Even if you decide not to use the grip during a round, practicing with it can help you learn to just let go and swing the club. It can help you develop more flow and rhythm, as well as showing you just how little effort it takes to get solid contact with the ball.

Swinging with the double-overlap grip can help you learn to just swing the club, and for most players, that might be its greatest benefit.

About the Author

North Carolina native Mike Southern has been writing since 1979. He is the author of the instructional golf book "Ruthless Putting" and edited a collection of swashbuckling novels. Southern was trained in electronics at Forsyth Technical Community College and is also an occasional woodworker.

Photo Credits

  • Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images
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