Grip style: Vardon (overlapping)Lee Westwood Vardon grip Hand position: NeutralLee Westwood Neutral grip Putting grip style / hand position: Cross-handed (left hand low)
Lee Westwood Cross-handed grip

Lee Westwood Grip
He may have a highly unusual (for a professional) “chicken wing” follow-through, but you can’t detect anything odd watching Lee Westwood grip the club.

The straight-hitting Englishman, long considered one of golf’s finest ballstrikers, sets up with his hands in ideal position. The back of his left hand nearly faces the target – call it an ever-so-slightly strong position – with the right hand a mirror image. This balanced grip allows Westwood to work shots in either direction as the situation calls for, a huge advantage over competitors who rely strictly on a draw or fade.

Given his struggles on the greens, it’s no surprise Lee Westwood’s grip with the putter has changed. He employed a standard reverse overlap style for much of his career, but – after briefly giving the belly putter a try – switched to the left hand low method.

While he’s never reached the ranks of golf’s best putters, the change seems to have steadied Westwood at the very least. He typically ranks among the European Tour’s top 30 or so in putts per greens in regulation, and shoots some very low scores when he gets hot with the flat stick.

Like many golfers who try the left hand low putting grip, Westwood benefits from better coordination between the hands, arms and shoulders. His stroke is less wristy, more consistent and therefore less prone to wild swings between good days and bad.


Golf Grip Terms
Note: All descriptions are for right-handed golfers.

Vardon / Overlapping Grip: Method of holding the club by placing the right pinky finger on top of the crease between the left index and middle fingers. Named for British golf legend Harry Vardon.
Interlocking Grip: Method of holding the club by wedging or locking the right pinky finger between the left index and middle fingers.
vardon grip interlocking grip
Neutral: Position in which the hands are directly aligned with the clubface. The golfer with a neutral grip can typically see two full knuckles on the back of the left hand when addressing the ball.
Weak: Position in which the hands are rotated left (toward the target) on the club’s handle. The golfer with a weak grip can typically see one full knuckle on the back of the left hand when addressing the ball.
neutral grip weak grip
Strong: Position in which the hands are rotated right (away from the target) on the club’s handle. The golfer with a strong grip can typically see more than two full knuckles on the back of the left hand when addressing the ball.
Reverse Overlap Putting Grip: Conventional putting grip style with the left hand above the right and the left index finger extending downward, on top of the fingers of the right hand.
strong grip reverse overlap
Cross-Handed / Left Hand Low Putting Grip: The right hand is placed at the top of the handle, above the left hand, the opposite of a conventional grip.
Claw Putting Grip: The left hand is placed in the conventional position, at the top of the handle, with the right hand lower on the handle and holding the club between the thumb (on the grip’s underside) and fingers.
cross handed Claw Grip