Thursday, 21 January 2010
A genius, a man who probably left us more than any other player in the games history. Unknown to many, the great gift Mr Vardon blessed the modern game with was not actually of his own experimentation. First invented by a champion Scottish amateur golfer by the name of Johnny Laidlay, it was however Vardon who first adopted it in his quest for golfing dominance.
What Harry Vardon adopted was a revolutionary new method of holding the golf club in search of that vital formation of the hands on the grip. This great man was the first to fully respect and appreciate the essential function of the hands as they rule the leadership over everything else in golf.
The hands are your only connection with the golf club and the golf club is what influences the golf ball. Which is why they say, Mr Vardon had complete mastery over his hands at all times. His grip was a major contribution to the progress of the game.
Complete mastery of the hands is complete control of the club face.
Don't think for one second this great man depended on his hands to 'save' a shot or ever find need to manipulate the club face with his hands anywhere in the downswing. Through a deep respect for a perfect hold on the golf club, Harry Vardon understood the hands would need to simply perform as efficiently as possible as they delivered the golf club through impact, which is why he desired absolutely no conscious thought to activate the hands as they reach their maximum speed at the bottom of the swing. A free wheeling golf club, one traveling without force created by himself would be much faster, more online and consistently effective than when consciously inflicted with the force of his own muscle.
In developing the Vardon Hold, (where by the last finger of the bottom hand on the grip simply overlaps the index finger of the top hand), Harry had created a connection with the golf club that promoted exquisite blending of both hands to form a balanced unit. When formed correctly they allowed the clubs handle to fit securely though without any need for tension across any point in the hands, wrists or forearms.
To this day the Vardon hold is still the most popular method of holding the golf club amongst Touring Professionals. Of the three principle methods, to label one better than the other would be pointless. It really is a matter of individual hand size, feel and personal preference as to what you are looking to achieve with the flight of your golf shots. As such a highly individual discipline that golf is, finding the most efficient hold is down to you, the best advice one could share though would have to be, stick with it and accept nothing short of perfect. The correct function in the hands as they connect with the golf club really is the most influential element of golf you will ever find yourself engaged in.
Take the time to master it and forever feel the benefit.