Reverse Overlap Putting Grip: Ultimate Guide (with Pictures)

Reverse overlap putting grip demonstration

Erik Schjolberg

By Coach Erik Schjolberg – Jun 13, 2023

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Surprised to hear that the putting grip that is considered STANDARD is not the same as your grip for the other clubs in your bag??

Some amateur golfers find this shocking and are excited to get out on the course and give this reverse overlap putting grip a try.

Key Takeaways

  • The reverse overlap putting grip is one of the most common putting method in the game of golf
  • Tiger Woods has used the reverse overlap putting grip
  • If you use the reverse putting grip, expect to have lower grip pressure and an easier time controlling the putter face with your left hand
  • Both arc style and straight back straight through players can benefit from the reverse overlap putting grip

I have experimented with the reverse overlap grip and found it to be really helpful in keeping my right hand in control. Whether you are a low or high handicap, the reverse overlap putting grip can be a great option. Take a look at the benefits, how to reverse overlap, and which pros are sporting this putting grip.


What Is the Reverse Putting Grip?

The reverse overlap grip is one of the most common putting grips in the game. The grip is just a slight variation of a standard overlap golf grip. Instead of a right-handed golfer placing the right pinky on the left index finger, the right pinky goes on the putter grip, and the left index finger overlaps the pinky finger.

This is why it’s called a reverse overlap.

If you used this for a full swing shot, you would not have enough control with the right hand. However, on the putting green, it leaves a player much more prepared to make a consistent stroke.


Who the Reverse Putter Grip is For

One of my favorite things about the reverse putter grip is that it will work for the arc style putting stroke and the straight back straight through style putting stroke. In addition, if you use a mallet or blade putter, it won’t matter if you have the reverse overlap grip in place.

If you switch to the reverse putting grip, you will notice that the dominant hand has more control and that you can keep the putter head more on the target line. In addition, if you clutch the club a little too tight on those shorter putts for par, the reverse overlap often loosens up the grip pressure (and having a light grip pressure is one of my top putting tips I teach my amateurs).


How to Use a Reverse Overlap Putting Grip?

The reverse overlap putting grip is actually quite simple. If you already grip the club with a standard overlap grip, this one just takes a second to switch to. Here are the steps for a right-handed golfer.

Step 1: Put The Left Hand On The Club

The left hand takes the standard position it always would in a putting grip; your thumb points straight down the putter shaft, and the putter face is square when you grip it.

Left hand only for the reverse putter grip

Step 2: Place the Right Hand and Reverse The Overlap

As you place your right hand directly under your left hand on the putter, ensure your left index finger ends up on top of the right hand. Some golfers feel the left index finger on top of the pinky. Others feel it in between the right pinkie finger and the ring finger.

Bottom view of the reverse overlap putter grip

Either way is acceptable; it’s a matter of finding something that works for you.

Step 3: The Putting Stroke

The key to a successful putting stroke with the reverse putter grip is to ensure you are not gripping the club tightly. With this positioning of your hands, try to relax any tension you have in your left forearm.

Side view of the overlap putting grip

In addition, feel your right elbow tuck in just a little bit now that the right-hand does not need to take as active of a roll in the stroke.


Pros and Cons of the Reverse Overlap Putting Grip

There are lots of putting grips out there, like the claw grip, cross handed grip, saw grip, pencil grip putting, and even locked arm putting. Before you make the change to the reverse overlap, make sure it is the proper putting grip for your game (our list of all the common putting grips right here).

Pros

  • The left hand will be more active in your putting stroke
  • It’s not too much of a change from a standard overlap grip
  • Grip pressure can be lower than with a conventional grip in golf
  • Feels more traditional than the left hand low grip but has many of the same benefits

Cons

  • Some golfers just forget to do it on the green and putt with the standard overlap – easy to fix if your’e practicing putting at home or even with an office putting mat
  • If your left index finger starts to dig and look for a spot, the grip pressure can increase

Front on view of the overlap putting grip


Professionals Who Use Reverse Overlap Golf Grip

The reverse overlap golf grip is among the most popular putting grips on the PGA Tour. As you can imagine, one of the contributing factors to this is the fact that Tiger Woods uses the reverse overlap putter grip.

If you haven’t noticed, Tiger is a bit of a trendsetter.

In addition to Tiger, you will also see Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Jason Day, and others using the reverse overlap grip style.


FAQ

Here are a few of the most commonly asked questions about the reverse overlap grip and whether or not it makes sense to switch to this in your golf game.

Why do you reverse grip putt?

The best reason to reverse overlap your grip is to lighten the grip pressure and be sure that the dominant hand does not take too much of a roll in controlling the putter face.

Can you play golf with a reverse grip?

I would not recommend playing all your clubs with the reverse overlap grip. Still, it is a great solution for golfers working on improving their accuracy and consistency on the greens.

What is the best putter grip method?

The most well-known and highly regarded putter grip method is the reverse overlap putting grip (the one we’ve been talking about in this article). Golfers find consistency and accuracy when switching to this style grip.

Should you reverse overlap your golf grip?

An overlapping golf grip can be a great solution for golfers that have larger hands or need to reduce the grip pressure they have on the club.


Final Thoughts

I highly encourage every golfer that is still using the same grip from the golf course to the putting green to at least give the reverse grip putting stroke a try.

My favorite thing about having a slightly different grip for putting is the fact that it works almost as a mental trigger. When I step onto the green and have to change my grip style, it’s like my brain knows that we have entered putting mode.

Such a great way to promote a strong and repeatable pre-shot routine is to make a slight grip change like this (or even experiment with different types of golf putters as well).

About the Author

Erik Schjolberg

By Coach Erik Schjolberg – Last Updated Jun 13, 2023

Expertise:            

                  

Coach Erik actively coaches several PGA Tour Professionals. He’s the head golf instructor and writer here at Swing Yard, was voted the “#1 Golf Coach in Scottsdale, Arizona”, and has been coaching for over 20+ years. Erik also owns and operates his own online golf school, EJS Golf Academy. His other credentials include: Active PGA Coaches Membership, Titleist TPI Level 1 and 2, Trackman Certified Level 1, Dr. Kwon’s Biomechanics Level I and II, Scott Cowx Certified Level I Advanced, BodiTrack and V1 Sports Pressure Mat Certified, Titleist Club Fitting and Ball Fitting Certified, PGA Hope, and Sportsbox AI. Check out Erik’s full bio and certifications for more info.


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