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What is the best way to hold the putter? Top 100 teacher dishes on his way

Stan Utley in 2004.

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There is traditional.

And cross-hand.

And a nail.

And the anchor on the wrist.

And so on. There are many catches, and each has its merits.

But Stan Utley wants you to know about his, too.

Utley? He is an authority. Golf Magazine's Top 100 Instructors. A one-time professional. Short game gossip. Charles Barkley the swing fixer. That's a resume. And his catch, he says in a video he posted on social media this week, puts the stroke in flight, which should be the last play of any catch.

The opposite overlap, and you can watch Utley explain his beauty in his video here. Below are a few words.

In the video, Utley gave this instruction:

— “I'm trying to get the lifeline in my left hand to go right down the middle left of my grip.” (Confused about where your lifeline is? This website here has a picture.)

— “Left thumb to right over grip.”

— “My arm, my wrist and my hand are all in the plane of the shaft.”

Now on the right hand side.

— “I will place my right hand lifeline on the last knuckle of my middle (left) finger so that it sits square to the club face, but parallel to the left hand.”

— “I put all my fingers in the grip except the left index finger.”

The result?

“You can see now that my forearms are even and aligned with the shaft when I lean over the ball,” Utley said. “That makes it easier to fly.”

What is the catch of placing the opposite overlap (and how can it help your game)?


Luke Kerr-Dineen

Some notes. This reporter, a 14-handicap disabled person, tried it after watching the video a few times, and there was both comfort and stability. It's worth the trip.

That being said, if you are satisfied with your current holding, don't stray from it.

Notably, too, also wrote about the opposite overlap in 2019, and that story can be read here, or below.


I was having a conversation with a friend the other day where – shocker – the topic of golf. To put it, specifically. We were talking about different types of grips, and I mentioned that I've been using a textbook, standard reverse-overlap grip all my life.

“What is that?” he said.

I was surprised, so I asked a few others and the answer was the same. I even posted the question on Twitter and the results told the same story. Turns out I had a blind spot. Despite being the most commonly used grip on Tour, the reverse backswing grip is not something most golfers know about.

So, what is inverse overlap? It's a common grip used to put that feel: the reverse stacking grip that many golfers use in their full swing. Instead of your pinky finger resting just above your index finger, your index finger moves to pass your pinky and index fingers.

What is the point of this? However, the theory is that the overlapping grip is designed, more than anything else, to help the hands work together to release the club as you swing. The reverse-overlap grip helps prevent potential hand-rolling and keeps more grip on each palm for added control.

It has become the standard, mostly because it has been around for so long, and is used by professionals far and wide, from Tiger Woods to Rory McIlroy and everyone in between.

If you're reading this and now wondering if you should switch to a reverse putting grip, I wouldn't lose any sleep over it – especially if you're already a good putter. There are many variations in technique placement because it is a deceptively simple art. When it comes to choosing a specific grip, follow David Orr's golden rule: The first thing they need to decide is what style of grip makes them feel the most connected.

Nick Piastowski

Nick Piastowski Editor

Nick Piastowski is a Senior Editor at and Golf Magazine. In his role, he is responsible for planning, writing and promoting news on the golf course. And when he's not writing about how to hit the golf ball forward and straight, the Milwaukee native is probably playing the game, hitting the ball left, right and short, and drinking a cold beer to wash down his scores. You can contact him about any of these topics – his news, his game or his beer – at [email protected].

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