The hardest part about perfecting a good golf swing is the grip.
Have a good look at Ernie’s or Tiger’s grip and you will see what you have to do if you’re remotely serious about playing this game well.
For a golfer, looking at a great grip is a bit like looking at a fine piece of art.
It is so wonderful to see hands that look like they were made to hold a golf club.
Study very carefully the grips of the good players like Severiano Ballesteros, who, when he was starting out, looked like he came into the world with a 7 iron in his hands.
His grip was so perfect and a good shot with that grip was purely a formality.
With the perfect grip you can do things with the ball that other players can only dream about.
You can play left to right or right to left with an adjustment of only a fraction of an inch.
But if you are unfortunate to be born without a good grip, it can require a lot of willpower and a lot of practice to get it right.
It is very rare in our game to come across a player who has that perfect grip and the kids who come into the game for the first time with thoughts of turning professional are nearly in tears when they realise their goal will never be achieved without changing their grip.
The first picture (Grip A) shows what we call a weak grip and will lead to your shot heading to the right and the second picture (Grip B) shows a player who likes to see the left hand side of the golf course.
If you are serious about playing to your full potential, you need to find a balance between the two.
The third picture (Grip C) shows the perfect grip.
Someone once said about golf “There is some secret which, if discovered, would make our driving infallible is a belief which dies hard.
“Stroke upon stroke is tried day after day, and hope is quickly followed by a despairing desire to break the whole set or spitefully to present them to a friend, so that he too may suffer.”
One sunny Friday morning on the first hole of a busy course, my friend Bill was beginning his pre-shot routine, visualizing his upcoming shot, when a piercing voice came over the clubhouse loudspeaker.
“Would the pair on the women’s tee come back up to the men’s tee please,” it blared, and everyone on the course turned to look at Bill.
Bill was still deep into his routine, seemingly impervious to the interruption when the Tannoy burst into life once again.
“Would the pair on the ladies tee kindly start from the men’s tee,” screamed the announcer.
Bill ignored the announcement and kept concentrating, until once more, the message came over the loudspeakers.
“Would the man standing on the ladies’ tee please go back to the men’s tee.”
Bill stopped, turned and looked up to the clubhouse window where the man was standing.
He cupped his hands and shouted: “Would the idiot with the microphone kindly shut up and let me play my second shot.”
* Brett Brasier is a member of six PGA’s including the British, Australian and German, and the first foreign PGA Professional to become an honorary member of the PGA of Thailand. He won the Australian Open in 1978.