Many amateur players have very active hands and wrist when putting. This activity causes many inconsistencies in their putting and leads to putts short of the hole or rolling the ball well past the hole. They tend to throw the club head back first on the backswing and then flip the right hand through the ball on the downswing. This develops too much face rotation and poor tempo, which are two of the major cause of bad putting.
The Pistol with the thumb up (Photo 1) is a long thumb position on the grip and tends to relax the hands and wrists, which adds to these inconsistencies of the stroke.
The Pistol with the thumb along the side of the index finger is a short thumb (Photo 2). This locks the wrist and helps to prevent the hands and wrist from becoming too relaxed and out of control. This will help to reduce the face rotation and poor tempo.
The “long” thumb position leads to a looser relationship between it and the index finger, as in Photo 3. By squeezing the inside of the thumbs against the outside of the index fingers on both hands, as in Photo 4, you will create a slight tightness of the wrist which will help to eliminate the flipping of the hands. Then take the handle of the club back with the club face at the same time and you will keep the face square to the arc.
Stan Moore is a PGA teacher based in Boca Raton, Florida. Reach him at email@example.com or visit www.bocaratongolflesson.com