If you’ve ever watched a golf tournament or just hung around a course, you’ve undoubtedly seen players wearing a single golf glove. This is not a Michael Jackson-like fashion statement. Except for rare exceptions, the one-glove look is standard, and it’s not difficult to figure out which hand should be covered.
Showing Your Hand
If you’re right-handed, the convention is to wear a glove on your left hand. The glove’s main purpose is to protect your hand and help to prevent blisters. In a standard interlocking grip, you hold the club with your left hand, across the base of your four fingers, and then place your right pinkie on top of your left hand. As a result, more of your left hand is in solid contact with the club’s grip, making it more vulnerable to blistering.
Get a Grip
A golf glove can help you maintain a better grip on your club. This is another reason to wear the glove on your left hand, because that hand controls the club, more so than your right. The glove is particularly helpful on hot days when your hands are sweaty. Playing gloveless with sweaty hands may permit the club to twist within your hands or even slip out of your grip. Even a slight twist of the club during your swing will alter the clubface’s orientation and may lead to a mishit shot.
It’s important to wear a golf glove that fits properly, but this doesn’t happen as often as you might think. Approximately 90 percent of golfers wear gloves that are too large, according to "Golf Digest" equipment expert Mike Stachura in an interview on the Golf Channel. When you put the glove on there should be no extra space at the ends of your fingers. Additionally, when you fasten the strap a bit of Velcro should remain exposed on the back of your hand. If the strap covers all the Velcro, try a smaller glove.
Two Gloves Are Better Than One?
Although it’s not customary, you can wear gloves on both of your hands. Consider doing so if your hands are sweatier than average, if you develop blisters on your right hand, or if you simply feel more comfortable with two gloves. PGA Tour golfer Tommy Gainey has the nickname “Two Gloves” because -- you guessed it -- he wears a glove on each hand. Gainey wore a pair of gloves while playing baseball and transferred the habit to the golf course. On the other hand, you don’t have to wear gloves at all. If it’s cool outside and you’re not sweating you may wish to play barehanded. Additionally, many players remove their glove on putts and short chips. Putting more skin in contact with the club’s grip can give you a better feel for the more delicate shots.
- Golf Training Aid and Teaching Tool.com: Golf Gloves
- The Golf Swing: It’s All in the Hands; James Lythgoe
- Golf Channel: Morning Drive Equipment: The Oft-Forgotten Glove
- How I Play Golf; Tiger Woods and the Editors of Golf Digest
- Golf Week: ‘Two Gloves’ Gainey is a True Rags-to-Riches Story