Switched from strong to neutral grip and developed a slice!

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I decided to swap from my strong grip to a more neutral grip because it was limiting the radial deviation of my wrist and forcing me to do a lot of extension. For one thing, I was losing power but it was also starting to ache a lot after playing.

With a more neutral grip, the swing feels quite a lot more natural and I can feel the club head ‘wiping’ with more speed which is satisfying when I strike it right BUT, I’ve suddenly developed a slight tendency to hit some brutal slices.

It feels almost like the club slips slightly in the downswing and ends up striking the ball way more open than it was in the address.

It only seems to happen when I do a full-swing with wrist hinge at end of the backswing. When I’m doing half swings for warmup or with my pitching wedge I don’t have the same issue. Straight as an arrow with good ball connection (this grip has dramatically improved my short-game, actually).

Any ideas what it could be? I feel like it’s either the plane or my swing (something I have previously struggled with, especially when moving through different clubs with different lengths) or that I am twisting my wrist and opening the club face when I unwind that wrist hinge that I add at the top of the backswing.


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DataDude

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If you weaken your grip and change nothing else then you are effectively opening the face. This is not a surprising outcome right?
 

Molten

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If you weaken your grip and change nothing else then you are effectively opening the face. This is not a surprising outcome right?
Pretty much the post I was coming in to make. You will need to change something else to counteract your grip change.
 

luckydutch

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If you weaken your grip and change nothing else then you are effectively opening the face. This is not a surprising outcome right?
What should I be changing to adjust for the more neutral grip? Isn’t neutral what is generally recommended?


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luckydutch

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Pretty much the post I was coming in to make. You will need to change something else to counteract your grip change.
I did sometimes before hit slight hooks where I topped and hooked the ball. So I sort of hoped this would net-out at straight.

What could I adjust to counteract the slice? It only happens about 50% of the time. The other 50% of the time I hit belters.


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Is your wrist bowed or cupped at the top of your backswing?
 

DataDude

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What should I be changing to adjust for the more neutral grip? Isn’t neutral what is generally recommended?


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I have no idea on that. But I am just stating that moving your left hand counterclockwise around the grip with all else being the same will open the clubface. If you put the exact same swing on it then you are now open to path which causes a slice. Maybe go see an instructor. They can probably fix you up.
 

Blade Man

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I did sometimes before hit slight hooks where I topped and hooked the ball. So I sort of hoped this would net-out at straight.

What could I adjust to counteract the slice? It only happens about 50% of the time. The other 50% of the time I hit belters.


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If this is the case than something is different in your swing. Maybe rotation? Maybe club path? It takes time for these changes to take hold. I wouldn’t think to much of it other than figuring out the difference between the good and the bad and work on it. I’ve been working on a swing change for maybe 5 months and it’s just been the past few weeks where it’s starting to really come together.
 

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What should I be changing to adjust for the more neutral grip? Isn’t neutral what is generally recommended?


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Ball position slightly. A slice is cause by one of two things, a: open face at contact or b: coming across the ball from outside to in.
As @DataDude said you have effectively opened the face slightly without realizing it, so a minor ball position adjustment can correct it.
 

Lefty Moonshot

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I've had almost the opposite experience. I've always gripped the club like a baseball bat since I started playing at age 10. I'm 30 now and got my first lesson about a month ago and within 5 minutes my instructor "strengthened" my grip. It initially felt strange and felt like added tension on my wrist and forearm, but it is starting to feel more natural.

The only thing that has helped me is I take a shorter swing in both my backswing and follow through, which I dont know if this is the science behind it, but feels like I limit the twist/torsion on my wrists/forearms. I had a very long & high backswing previously, so trying to limit the length of the swing may only be unique to me.
 

McLovin

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sounds like you were getting away with a path issue by the bandaid of the strong grip. my guess is alignment and/or path need to be fixed.
 

luckydutch

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Is your wrist bowed or cupped at the top of your backswing?
Flat, I think. I flex it upwards (in the direction of the thumb) to create more power in the swing but I try not to bow or cup the wrist at all in the backswing. It’s possible that one of those two happens in the downswing though but it’s fast so I don’t know for sure


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luckydutch

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If this is the case than something is different in your swing. Maybe rotation? Maybe club path? It takes time for these changes to take hold. I wouldn’t think to much of it other than figuring out the difference between the good and the bad and work on it. I’ve been working on a swing change for maybe 5 months and it’s just been the past few weeks where it’s starting to really come together.
The only thing I can say is that when I hit the slice it feels like the club slips almost. I have a good grip on it so there’s no way it’s really slipping but my wrist position must be slipping in the downswing.


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blugold

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Something else is wrong in your swing. Figure that out, you might need to hire a professional, and fix that.
 

luckydutch

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Ball position slightly. A slice is cause by one of two things, a: open face at contact or b: coming across the ball from outside to in.
As @DataDude said you have effectively opened the face slightly without realizing it, so a minor ball position adjustment can correct it.
Could be coming outside to in. I’ve never been 100% comfortable on what the perfect plane of the swing should be. How vertical vs horizontal around my body it should be.


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golfinnut

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Ball position slightly. A slice is cause by one of two things, a: open face at contact or b: coming across the ball from outside to in.
As @DataDude said you have effectively opened the face slightly without realizing it, so a minor ball position adjustment can correct it.
Move the ball further back in your stance (y)
 

ShanksaloT

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sounds like you were getting away with a path issue by the bandaid of the strong grip. my guess is alignment and/or path need to be fixed.
My thoughts exactly.

Without seeing a video, I would go to the range and try to hit the back left quadrant of the ball. This should give the ball a straight to right-to-left flight .
 

DataDude

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Ball position slightly. A slice is cause by one of two things, a: open face at contact or b: coming across the ball from outside to in.
As @DataDude said you have effectively opened the face slightly without realizing it, so a minor ball position adjustment can correct it.
I agree with this. Ball position is the first thing to check a lot of times because it's easy to fix, fairly quick to adjust to, and oftentimes is the fix. We overthink golf sometimes LOL!
 

rocullen

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with a weaker grip(neutral weaker than strong) your hands might be wanting to stay open or take a move towards the sky instead of around body causing the face to stay open.
 

razaar

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A strong left hand grip doesn't require left forearm supination to square the clubface before impact. A neutral grip requires a counterclockwise rotation of the wrist in order to square the clubface at the bottom. You could try matching a neutral left hand grip with the left elbow facing the target at address so it faces the target through impact. The grip is only part of the story, the rotational position of the upper arm is the other half.
 

pattyboy21

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I change my grip from shot to shot, depending on the shot shape I want (I guess I'm old school in that I always curve every shot). Sometimes though, I'll weaken my grip if I find myself holding on through impact too much. The weaker grip lets me actively use my hands and get a fuller release without too much danger of snap-hooking a shot.
 

WLG1952

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Since the grip change is only effecting the longer clubs, I might suggest moving the ball farther forward in your stance. Do this until you start hitting pull, or hooks. Then move the ball back a little in your stance until the hooks disappear.

Chances are if you are hitting your short game shots well, your swing is not that bad.

I use a nuetral grip on all my shots. Something I do, is at address, I square my driver/3W club face up behind the ball on my intended target line. I then move the club back to my swing starting position. This of course makes the club face look like it's a little open. This is fine for my swing.

I know others who start their driver swing from a slightly closed club face condition. Just the opposite of what I do. By the time our club heads reach the ball, the club face is square to our target line. We basically hit the same ball flights.
 

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Best to see a video of your swing or maybe just check things out with a pro.

If you normally lead with your hands approaching impact and used a strong grip to square the clubface , changing to neutral will leave the clubface open. Having a slightly open clubface with your short irons won't make much difference to side spin because of their high loft angles (the vertical spin will be far more dominant factor than any side-spin).

You will need to learn to supinate your lead forearm a bit more to get the clubface square by impact or you will need to learn how to use a 'passive torque' club squaring method which is difficult to explain (if you don't have a physics background) . Check this article below if your interested but maybe a good way to learn it is to just swing with your lead arm only and feel it (ie. learning to shallow the club a bit in transition while your lead arm is swinging downplane).

I spent an entire season playing golf one-handed. Here's what I learned.
 
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RayG

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What should I be changing to adjust for the more neutral grip? Isn’t neutral what is generally recommended?


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Almost EVERY instructor will advise that you be able to see 2 or 3 knuckles of your left hand (for righties). this generally indicates a slightly strong grip.
 

Jmk202

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generally a slice is a face that is open compared to the club path! so there are two variables, the club path and the club face. A stronger grip helps the face be more closed at impact with les active wrists.

If you weren't having dramatic pulls you club path is likely ok (never seen you swing obviously) as an out to in path with a square face is a big pull. So that would leave you club face as the primary culprit. One thing that i've worked on is cupped wrist at top of the back swing (like a waiter holding a tray of drinks), and other is letting the club face release or close. I think of it as you right hand getting to the hand shaking position (thumb up and palm facing left) by waist high after contact. thinking about that in a few practice swing may help with the club face.

Overall a video helps us see whats going on, and a lesson with a good pro is the BEST way to make some major improvements.
 

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