Shaving strokes by sinking more putts is what every golfer strives to do. One way any golfer may achieve this goal is by using an oversized grip on their putter.
Not only can such an addition be a huge benefit to any amateur’s game, it has also been proven to pay big dividends for the pros as well!
Table of Contents
- Oversized Putter Grips
- Benefits of an Oversized Putter Grip; Should You Use One?
- Advantages Of Oversized Putter Grips
- The Takeaway – “Should I use an oversized putter grip?”
Oversized Putter Grips
We all know that professional golfers achieved their level of status in clubhouses around the world by figuring it out around the putting green.
Through tireless practice sessions and grueling hours hitting seven-footers, they developed lucrative techniques that enabled them to send the ball to its home. That certain “touch” they possess around the dance floor is what separates the men from the boys.
For those of us who still hesitate to approach a looming four-foot putt for par in hopes of receiving a “good, good” call from our playing partner, we need all the help we can get when it comes to putting.
For most weekend hackers, purchasing the next big gadget from a Golf Channel infomercial was the quick-fix solution to shaving off a few strokes.
Maybe you bought the “Golf Swing Shirt” hoping to keep your arms in tight for a more compacted swing.
Or perhaps you acquired your very own “Mr. Chip” yearning to get up-and-down in an easier fashion.
In any case, you’d be surprised to learn that you are not alone–even the professionals are watching the same wacky ads we are, searching for any help they can get.
Back in 2007, the beloved K.J. Choi was doing the same thing when he saw an infomercial for an oversized putter grip. Low and behold, Choi’s decision to employ his new and “ugly” putter grip would yield an amazing return on his investment.
It was only a few weeks later he would go on to win the AT&T National and start a serious and beneficial trend on the PGA Tour.
Benefits of an Oversized Putter Grip; Should You Use One?
Like most answers to a self-help golf inquiry, there exist a myriad of advantages to the oversized putter grip, yet the bulk of them are subjective.
In this article, we’ll explore and expand on these benefits and lay out some potential drawbacks to help aid in your decision as to whether you should re-grip the leather or not.
But first, let’s define what an oversized putter grip really is.
Unlike its brothers in the rest of your bag, the putter grip is unique.
According to the Equipment Rules of the United States Golf Association (USGA), the maximum diameter of the putter’s grip must not exceed 1.75 inches (44.45 mm). The standard to midsize grips fall between 1.0-1.4 inches. Anything larger than 1.4 inches in diameter is considered an “oversized” putter grip.
Advantages Of Oversized Putter Grips
Say Goodbye to the Yips
The general premise of an oversized, or jumbo, putter grip is to quiet a golfer’s hands and minimize any wrist action during the putting stroke.
Sturdy wrists are a hallmark of good putting stroke. Generally, a larger grip on your putter has the ability to reduce any manipulation of the putter face at impact of the putt.
Players who lack consistency when the putter connects with the golf ball typically have this problem. Simply put, a larger grip on your putter can help reduce those dreaded putts that were pulled or pushed by a mile.
Feel Good, Play Good
As with most things in golf, comfort is immensely important. When it comes to your clubs, you want your club to feel like it belongs in your hands.
If you’re anything like my buddy Jace, who stands a bold 6’7” and once used his grizzly-sized paws to haul in NFL passes (so, probably not), an oversized putter grip will provide that added level of comfort.
Having a larger surface area for your hands will help you feel the ball as you make your stroke.
Reduced Grip Pressure
Some of the greatest players in the history of the game were known to caress their putters with soft, delicate hands.
Oftentimes, the average amateur grips the putter too tight. This strangulation of the grip tends to cause errand putts. Or worse, a potential three-putt.
Alleviating grip pressure and tension throughout your fingertips with a larger grip on the putter shaft is superb for correcting these inaccuracies and mis-hits on the dance floor.
Smooth, pendulum-like putting strokes is what every golfer strives to possess. Unfortunately, everyone who’s ever teed it up understands that this is not an easy feat to accomplish. Nor is it effortless to produce round after round.
Procuring a finer and thorough understanding of your putting accuracy is key to sinking more fist-pump worthy putts.
An oversized grip has the capability of encouraging and strengthening the larger muscles in your arms to ensure your stroke is more consistent and better resembles a pendulum clock.
Additionally, larger grips may correct your stance and alignment by straightening your hips and torso to the cup.
Small curative measures such as these may boost your overall confidence when addressing the ball and give you a psychological advantage before hitting each putt.
Are there any drawbacks to oversized putter grips?
Potentially. But again, these are subjective.
Sometimes, the route to getting better at putting doesn’t include adding a larger grip. Tinkering with or making alterations to the physical make-up of one’s putter may not be the answer for everyone.
By adding a jumbo grip to a putter, you are inherently adding more mass to the overall weight of the putter. Some people find this added weight to be uncomfortable resulting in the putter feeling too “top-heavy”.
Others find the unequal distribution of weight to be merely distracting or disruptive to their stroke.
Conversely, the added weight atop the putter may negatively affect your ability to feel the head of the club. Heavier contributions to the grip tend to leave the putter head feeling much lighter. The natural differences in weight may take more time to get used to than you’d probably prefer.
Lastly, a foreseeable risk in utilizing an oversized putter grip may be that it clearly feels different from the rest of your clubs. As previously mentioned, this potential con is purely subjective and is in the palms of the beholder.
How do I know what’s the right grip?
Thanks to the successful careers of professional golfers, namely Jason Dufner and Jordan Speith, today’s market boasts a variety of options related to the aesthetics of the grips such as color and texture.
There are also numerous options based on weight, and of course, size.
You wouldn’t be wrong if you chose a jumbo grip solely based on its black and blue color scheme, which you find appealing. Nor would you be remiss if you decided on a grip with a 1.6 inch diameter as opposed to one that is 1.7 inches.
It’s evident that such an array of different options may cause some hesitation or second-guessing.
However, no matter what oversized grip you decide to put into service, the primary goal when it comes to making your final decision should be based on how it feels in your hands.
The Takeaway – “Should I use an oversized putter grip?”
There are many benefits to using an oversized grip on your putter. As a reminder, these benefits include:
- Quieting the hands and wrists during the putting stroke.
- Minimizing the manipulation of the putter head as it makes impact with the golf ball.
- Alleviating grip pressure.
- Larger surface area for overall comfort.
- Stabilizing your putting stroke by strengthening the larger muscles in your arms.
- Correcting your stance and alignment when addressing a putt.
Whether or not your game on the putting surface needs an overhaul is entirely up to you.
Testing out various styles and sizes and developing a sense for how oversize grips feel in your hands is imperative before using one.
However, there’s no doubt jumbo grips have their benefits, and they might just be exactly what the caddie ordered!