The first time I heard anyone say the word transition was during a golf lesson I had with my father when I was about ten years-old. As I remember it, dad was demonstrating the various ways in which to grip the club and explaining their advantages and disadvantages; when he used that term to highlight the fact that once I became a little bigger and stronger my current method of gripping the club would transition from interlock to overlap.
Over the next several years, I got really comfortable with that interlocking grip and during that time my golf game had progressed rather nicely. So, on that fateful day when dad made it clear that he was going to modify my grip, I can honestly say that I was not in favor of any stupid transition.
Nonetheless, by the age of thirteen my hands had gotten stronger and according to dad the moment was at hand. My teacher had me place the little finger on my right hand on top of the forefinger of my left hand. Then, he stepped back and told me to “let her go.”
I wish I could tell you that with one swing I felt the magic. Well, I can’t. That would be a lie. But, I can tell you that with one swing I felt the shank. I actually shanked about twenty in a row! I shanked so many that it became almost impossible to see the ball through all the tears pouring from my eyes. In my utter despair, I accused my father of purposely and intentionally trying to ruin my game. And, I meant it!
Looking back, I’m sure that dad felt bad, too. He knew how serious I had become about golf. After a slight chuckle, he said, “No Dickie, I’m not trying to ruin your game. I’d never do anything like that. Let’s just keep going with this new grip and things will get a lot better. I just know they will.” My father was right, things did get better. Before long, the shanking stopped and my tears disappeared. I’m happy to report that ever since that day, I have used the overlap grip. And, the dreaded transition is now a fond memory.