Golf Digest editors picks
2010 Hot List

The Right Grip

grips

November 2010
Many golfers don't give a second thought to the only part of their equipment they actually grip. A survey of 50 golfers at a public course in New York found that half had never regripped their clubs and that the average grip was five years old. Things need to change. So the Hot List judges called in 52 grips, reviewed their technology stories, installed them on identical 6-irons (Mizuno MX-1000) and had golfers with handicaps ranging from scratch to 15 rate each grip's playability and feel. Below are our top 10.

* Feel Ratings based on player review and manufacturer data.
GOLD

GOLF PRIDE
NEW DECADE MULTICOMPOUND

$8 | golfpride.com | Medium-firm*

This grip features two materials: cord-infused rubber on the upper half (for control and firmness under the gloved hand) and a soft rubber below (for better feel under the non-gloved hand). The combination offers durability, comfort and moisture control.
GOLD

LAMKIN N-DUR

$9 | lamkingrips.com | Medium-soft

This grip combines three technologies: a hexagon-patterned panel that's designed to prevent slipping, 3GEN material (a synthetic rubber compound) to dampen vibration, and a tapered shape to encourage proper hand action.
GOLD

LAMKIN
PERFORMANCE PLUS 3GEN

$7 | lamkingrips.com | Medium-soft

Made for metal woods and irons, this grip is slightly larger around its upper half than its lower half. This feature is designed to help players set the grip in their fingers and swing with less tension. The water-resistant 3GEN material is soft and tacky for better gripping.
GOLD

WINN PCI TL

$8 | winngrips.com | Medium

Firmer than previous Winn grips, the PCi TL combines polymer for comfort and cord for a better grip. The hundreds of triple-line embossments on the PCi TL are designed to improve traction in all weather conditions. The grip's alignment lines help set your hands at address.
SILVER

GOLF PRIDE DD2

$6 | golfpride.com | Medium-soft

This hybrid grip features two rubber compounds: The soft, colored rubber helps provide comfort under the fingers, and the firm, black rubber core is designed to reduce the grip's twisting at impact. The use of two colors also serves as a hand-position aid.
SILVER

GOLF PRIDE
TOUR VELVET BCT CORD

$8 | golfpride.com | Firm

The cord in this grip is made from a thin, tight weave of soft cotton strands. The purpose is to provide a more pleasant feel than the coarse cotton material traditionally used in cord grips. The new weave is designed to wick moisture from the grip surface.
SILVER

GOLF PRIDE TOUR WRAP 2G

$4 | golfpride.com | Medium-soft

Golf Pride first introduced the Tour Wrap 20 years ago. The 2010 version is made with a softer, tackier rubber and features traction marks to help improve grip. A tapered design is intended to promote a proper release. A larger version of the grip is available for players with arthritis.
SILVER

IOMIC X-EVOLUTION

$16 | iomicusa.com | Firm

This grip is made of dense elastomer (the same material used for some windshield wipers), making it firmer than many other grips. The material is also water-resistant and durable. The X-pattern that runs from top to bottom is meant to increase traction.
SILVER

LAMKIN CROSSLINE TOUR

$5 | lamkingrips.com | Medium

This grip features hundreds of indentations for optimal traction in all weather conditions and a softer rubber compound for better feel. This is the only Lamkin model with alignment lines that run down the front of the grip, meant to help golfers properly hold the club at address. It's available in rubber and full-cord.
SILVER

WINN LITE

$7 | winngrips.com | Medium-soft

This lightweight grip is designed to shift the balance point of the club downward to increase swing speed, launch angle and distance. The polymer material creates a slip-resistant surface, and hundreds of triple-line indentations are intended to maximize traction. The grip comes in three firmness ratings.

Q+A

WITH SO MANY GRIPS, WHICH ONE IS BEST FOR ME?
Personal preference takes precedence here. But consider where you live. Humid climates call for a firmer grip. Golfers in the Northeast can use a softer rubber grip. If you play frequently, opt for firmer, more durable grips. And as hands get more sensitive with age, softer grips might feel better.

WHAT SIZE SHOULD I USE?
The middle and ring fingers of your upper hand should barely touch your thumb. Grips that are too small increase hand action (good for slicers, who don't release their hands well). Big grips reduce hand action throughout the swing.

WHEN SHOULD I REGRIP?
Grips aren't designed to last forever: They'll begin to wear down under the pad of your upper hand and the thumb of your lower hand. If you play twice a week, change them every season.

SHOULD I REGRIP MYSELF?
Installing grips isn't difficult (all you need is a clamp and solvent), but the process can be tricky if the grip has a rib on the back or a graphic alignment feature on the front. Longtime clubfitter Dana Upshaw says: "If the grips are applied inconsistently, the hands and shots will be inconsistent."
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