Should You Use a Long or a Short Left Thumb Grip?

Enrique Martínez Luque October 10 2023

The age-old debate in the world of golf continues to rage on: should one adopt a long left thumb grip or opt for a short left thumb grip?

This perennial inquiry has piqued the interest of golfers across the whole spectrum, from seasoned professionals to fledgling enthusiasts, each striving to uncover the elusive truth.

This is why we are going to compare these two specific approaches to the golf grip and elucidate their respective merits and demerits.

By the time we reach our conclusion, you will have a deeper understanding of whether a long or short left thumb grip is the key to unlocking your golfing potential.

Significance of Selecting the Right Grip

Significance of Selecting the Right Grip golf

Before diving into the intricacies of thumb grips, it's paramount to appreciate the essence of determining the right grip in golf.

Unlike many other sports where physical prowess takes center stage, golf places a premium on one's ability to master the art of wielding a golf club.

Your choice of grip can be the difference between ranking among the pros or languishing as a beginner. Moreover, it's vital to point out that there is not a one-size-fits-all rule governing which grip suits an individual best.

The ideal grip is a subjective matter, contingent on what feels most comfortable and effective for you personally. Now, let's get acquainted with long and short left thumb grips.

The Long Left Thumb Grip

The Long Left Thumb Grip

Let's start with the ubiquitous long left thumb grip, a choice favored by many golfers around the world. The most discernible feature of this grip is the placement of the left thumb, which extends significantly downward compared to the other fingers.

It's essentially the antithesis of the finger grip, with the left thumb occupying the limelight while the other fingers remain relatively concealed.

Additionally, the knuckles of the golfer lie almost flat in this configuration. One of the key advantages of the long left thumb grip is its capacity to engage all fingers of the hand, thanks to the extended thumb providing support. This setup facilitates hinge-based shots with ease, especially from the pinnacle of the club.

Flexibility Index of the Long Left Thumb Grip

Flexibility Index of the Long Left Thumb Grip

The flexibility index of the long left thumb grip is notably high. With all fingers engaged, you can harness the full range of motion in your grip, leading to optimal swing performance.

This flexibility also makes the long left thumb grip an excellent choice for executing intricate shots, as the extended thumb provides crucial support.

However, it's imperative to acknowledge that mastering the long left thumb grip demands dedication and practice, particularly for beginners. Achieving proficiency with this gripping style necessitates considerable effort.

The Short Left Thumb Grip

In stark contrast to the long left thumb grip, the short left thumb grip offers a more accessible and straightforward pattern that can be embraced regardless of your skill level.

The hallmark feature of this grip is the position of the left thumb, which remains more contracted compared to its long-thumb counterpart.

With the thumb positioned toward the rear, the finger grip assumes prominence at the front. This arrangement empowers the thumb to play a pivotal role in generating power.

Flexibility Index of the Short Left Thumb Grip

Flexibility Index of the Short Left Thumb Grip

The flexibility index of the short left thumb grip is positive, especially if your goal is to unleash a more forceful swing. This grip allows you to maximize power with less effort dedicated to power-hitting mechanics. However, precision may become a challenge in the long run without adequate practice.

The Influence of Club Grip on Your Game

It's fundamental to recognize that the grip of your golf club wields considerable influence over your game. The right grip offers the necessary flexibility and control to execute impactful shots. Conversely, a loose or overly stiff grip can hamper your ability to achieve the desired results.

In the grand scheme of things, practice is the cornerstone of golfing success. The legends of the game are forged through relentless dedication and goal-oriented practice.

This journey also involves meticulous evaluation of your progress and identifying your strengths and weaknesses, including the critical decision of selecting the right grip.

Final Thoughts

As we reach the culmination of our exploration, the question remains: should you employ a long or a short left thumb grip? The answer lies within you, for the choice ultimately hinges on what feels most natural and adaptable to your unique golfing style.

We cannot tell you that there is only one right way of playing golf, because it is not true. In the end, your path to becoming a great golfer is a reflection of your dedication, practice, and the grip that resonates with your game.

So, whether you favor the extended allure of the long left thumb grip or the accessible power of the short left thumb grip, your golfing destiny lies in your capable hands.

Enrique Martínez Luque

Enrique Martínez Luque is the Argentina-based golf expert and professional writer. He built his career in the world of golf taking a number of positions. Enrique was the manager of a golf club, director at a federation level, an agent for professional golfers and director institutional relations on the Argentinian Tour. Assissted the professional golfers on major tours for almost 20 years. Worked as the press officer of national and international golf tournaments.

Follow me