Saturday, October 25, 2014

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Power Thumb Grip

by Joe Davidson

Power Thumb Grip

Top Hand Grip (The Left Hand Grip for Right Handed Golfers.)
The top hand PowerThumb Grip is a key element of the Symple Swing because it allows you to keep your club on-plane with the clubface square all through the swing. The top hand grip is significantly different from a traditional grip. It does not hold the club in all the fingers. The top hand and forearm are in a completely different orientation from that of a traditional golf grip. It is NOT a strong grip. It is a completely different way of gripping the club. We call it the “PowerThumb Grip.” It is a flat wrested grip. The “flat wrist” refers to the back of the hand being flat (or aligned) with the wrist throughout the swing)

Advantages of the Power Thumb grip

Keeping the club face square to the swing plane is a huge improvement over the traditional grip. When you use the Power Thumb grip you don’t have to open the club on the backswing and then struggle to get the club face back to square again on the downswing. Correctly opening and closing the club face requires great timing and coordination. That’ s fine one day when “you’re one” then then terrible the next day when your coordination is not so sharp and the ball is flying off in all directions. The Power Thumb is a much simple grip which keeps the club face square to the swing plane on the backswing and the downswing. Our simulator testing has shown the Simple Swing reduces your shot dispersion pattern by 50%. That means if you normally spray the ball between 30 yards right and 30 yards left then with Simple Swing your balls will only be going between 15 yards right and 15 yards left. That alone will pretty much keep you out of the woods and mostly in the short grass. No other golf swing’s grip including grips of the traditional golf swing, natural golf grip, heard grip, graves golf grip or any other grip can keep the club face square like we do.

How To Do The Power Thumb Grip

1. Extend your left arm down again with your elbow joint on-plane. Grab the club in a pinching motion between your thumb and index finger. The back of your hand (near your index finger) will point almost straight up (12 o’clock position).

Power Thumb grip

Power Thumb Grip - Thumb At 3 o'clock

Club in middle of palm up against the thumb and thumb pad

Club in middle of palm up against the thumb and thumb pad

2. You should feel a slight groove forming at the base of your thumb, where your palm joins your wrist. The grip of your club will go in that groove

The club goes right up the middle of the palm with the grip pressing against the whole thumb (thumb and thumb pad)

The club goes right up the middle of the palm with the grip pressing against the whole thumb (thumb and thumb pad)

The hand is turned here showing the whole thumb (thumb and thumb pad at the base of the thumb) positioned up against the grip

The hand is turned here showing the whole thumb (thumb and thumb pad at the base of the thumb) positioned up against the grip

Your thumb and the large pad at the base of your thumb should be against the grip at the 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock position
(for a right handed golfer) on the back side (away from the target) of the grip. The pad at the base of your top hand index
finger should be right on the top of the shaft.

The top thumb fits in the groove of the bottom hand

The top thumb fits in the groove of the bottom hand

Then you let your fingers grab the club to hold it securely. It’s okay to have a small gap between the base of your little
finger of your top hand and the grip.

3. The left thumb (for a right handed player) and the golf club travel back “on-plane” during the backswing and it is also
“on-plane” during the downswing.

BOTTOM HAND Grip (The Right Hand Grip for Right Handed Golfers)

A two finger overlap grip is strongly recommended although other bottom grips can be used if used with the “pinch”
modification.

The “Pinch”
With all the grips it is very important that the thumb and index finger of the bottom hand are “pinched” together. The
fingerprint pad (opposite the thumb nail) of your bottom hand thumb should be resting against the fingerprint pad of the
bottom hand index finger. You are in effect pinching your thumb and first finger together around the club. The purpose of
this “pinch” modification is to slightly weaken the tendency of the bottom hand to tense up and overpower the top hand
and roll it over closing the clubface at impact.

The top thumb fits in the groove of the bottom hand

The top thumb fits in the groove of the bottom hand and the beginning of "the pinch"

Note The "Pinch" With The Two Fingered Overlap Grip

Note The "Pinch" With The Two Fingered Overlap Grip

Put your top hand on the club first.

When you take your grip the club is directly in-line with your forearm

When you take your grip the club is directly in-line with your forearm

Both hands on the club.

Both hands on the club with the Power Thumb grip

Both hands on the club with the Power Thumb grip

If you have any questions about the Power Thumb grip please feel free to submit the questions through our Simple Golf helpdesk system at http://www.SimpleGolf.com/helpdesk That’s actually the quickest way to ask a question and get a  prompt response because everything is tracked. We get so much e-mail (most of it spam) that sometimes I can miss an e-mail but that doesn’t happen with the helpdesk. You can also call us directly at 203-794-4900.

The History Of The Power Thumb Grip

When developing Simple Swing we tested all kinds of different ways to grip the club. We were looking for something simple yet powerful. One of the things I noticed was that when I asked a student to do the old drill where you turn the club upside down grab the shaft just under the club head with your leading (or front) hand and swing the shaft with one hand, that they often grabbed the club with their thumb in the 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock position behind the club. They did this despite the fact their normal grip position was keeping their thumb up near the 12 o’clock position.

I repeated testing this many times with students using an upside down club or a 36 inch dowel rod. At this point I noticed that the students kept the whole length of their thumb, from the top of the thumb right down to the pad at the base of the thumb, in contact with the rod/shaft.  Traditional golf thinking always suggested that keeping the club in the fingers (rather than the palm) was the best way to generate club head speed. Yet our testing was finding that holding the club  or the dowel in their palm with the whole thumb against the shaft repeatedly give faster swing times. When we asked the students to put their thumb in the traditional golf grip position with their thumbs near 12 o’clock they found they couldn’t swing the club anywhere near as fast.

Doing some quick testing indicated that everyone was putting their thumb in this unusual position because it allowed them to swing the club much faster.  Next we had them try swinging a club and hitting a rubber tee (club right side up now) with just their lead hand with the thumb in the 2 o’clock to three o’clock position. Again they could swing the club significantly faster with their thumb in a 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock position. (Note: The ideal thumb position for an individual can vary from 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock because of differences in anatomy and flexibility.

When we continued having students swinging the club with their thumbs in the 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock position with one arm and then putting the bottom hand on the grip we discovered something amazing. The students didn’t need to open the club face on the backswing and close it on the downswing. That made the whole swing much simpler because it eliminated all the timing and coordination necessary to open the club face on the backswing and then try to close the club face and square the club face up at impact.

With the whole thumb (thumb and thumb pad) up against the grip and the thumb in the 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock position (now referred to as the Power Thumb position) the club face stayed square to the swing plane on the backswing and the downswing. This made the swing much simpler. It took much less timing and coordination to make a good swing.

Next, we tested this on the range and with swing analyzers. The first thing we found was that the student’s shot dispersion patterns shrunk by 50%. We checked that about a dozen times before we believed it. Then the students noticed they weren’t slicing anymore. This was because the Power Thumb grip prevents the club from opening through impact.

After some range practice the students next took the Power Thumb Grip to the course. The results held true. They sprayed the ball much, much less and they pretty much never sliced so they were delighted as their scores started dropping. That also started reporting that they were losing many fewer golf balls. At that point it was obvious to all that the Power Thumb Grip was something important that really helped golfers.

If you’d like to make any comments about the Power Thumb grip you can do that below in the comment section.

Joe Davidson
Simple Golf

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