Grip style: InterlockingRickie Fowler interlocking grip Hand position: NeutralRickie Fowler Neutral grip Putting grip style / hand position: Cross-handed (left hand low) for short putts, reverse overlap / neutral for long putts
Rickie Fowler cross handed grip

Rickie Fowler

He may have changed his famously looping swing, but Rickie Fowler’s grip remains as solid as ever.

The swing changes, instituted with the help of super teacher Butch Harmon, are credited with propelling Fowler to four top-5 finishes in the 2014 major championships. Fortunately for Fowler, the tweaks required little if any grip revision. (Changing one’s grip, even a tiny bit, can be an awkward and drawn-out process.)

While his swing has always been unorthodox, Fowler’s grip is pretty standard. He interlocks the fingers, a la Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, with the right and left hands in a neutral position on the handle. This likely helped him adapt more easily to his re-routed backswing.

Now onto the greens, where the Rickie Fowler grip method takes a turn for the intriguing. In 2012, Fowler switched from a conventional grip style to the left hand low technique. While it worked well – he claimed his first PGA Tour win after switching – Fowler wasn’t as comfortable stroking long putts this way. The answer: Cross-handed for short to mid-range putts, conventional beyond that.

Fowler displayed his putting prowess at the 2014 PGA Championship, holing putt after putt inside 10 feet with the cross-handed grip, and draining a 29-footer (among others) on Sunday’s final nine with his traditional style.

Moral of the story: Sometimes, the grip that feels best works best.

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