We all struggle with putts in our own little ways, but ever since the anchoring ban came about in 2016, many golfers have been looking for a way to get back on track. So far, two styles have proven to be most effective – cross-handed (left-hand-low) and claw grip. For our part, this best putters for claw grip review will be looking into two things here – the claw grip itself and the best putters for that claw grip. Let’s get stuck in.
What Is a Claw Grip?
We’ll kick off the article by answering one simple question – what is a claw grip, aka pencil grip? Of course, there are lots of variations of the claw grip, and you might even develop your own, but the basic principle is the same.
The idea is to take the normal grip with your non-dominant hand (left, for most players), and have the other hand just sit to the side of the shaft. What this does is get you in pretty good alignment with your shoulders, which makes for a better putt. This goes a long way to helping those of you who feel you get a little wristy or have problems with forward lean.
This is an unnatural way to putt, to be sure, but it just might work for those golfers who have reached the point where they are ready to do anything to get rid of the yips.
Not for Slower Greens
On a related note, this technique is less than ideal for slower greens, as you need a bit more effort making the putt, and it’s not really possible with one of your hands barely leaning against the shaft. That said, the slower the greens you’re playing, the more loft you’ll need (think 4 and more).
On the flipside, given how today’s greens are on average faster than they used to be, the claw grip is ideal, because of the same reason we mentioned above – you’ve got one of your hands only barely on the shaft (or grip, rather). In other words, your touch will be a lot better because your bottom hand is gently pushing the putter through as it goes.
Best Putters for Claw Grip Comparison Table
Ping Vault Voss Putter
Best Putters for Claw Grip Review
Recommending something as personal as a putter is always a thankless task, seeing as there is very few objective criteria we have to work with. However, assuming the averages, we shortlisted seven of what we think are the best claw grip putters on the market (as of writing this).
The Callaway Odyssey White Hot RX Rossie is a nice choice if you’re looking for a good putter for claw grip. Though, come to think of it, the considerable Moment of Inertia (MOI) of this mallet should help with a wristy stroke all on its own, so you might not even have to use the claw.
The face balance also helps with getting the stroke going without using too much force, which suits the claw perfectly.
Other than that, perhaps the single most important selling point of the Rossie is the White Hot RX insert, which builds upon the old White Hot and makes for an even softer feeling face. Coupled with the oval pattern, this gives you a decent amount of accuracy and good, tight roll across the board.
Odyssey is pretty much a household name when it comes to putters, and their O-Works #9 (and the entire O-Works family, for that matter) showcase why.
What makes this puppy one of the best claw grip putters is the microhinge insert (it’s exactly what it sounds like), which adds just the right amount of bounce you need on slower greens (which is where the claw grip is at a disadvantage).
Other than this, the putter features Odyssey’s trademarked Versa alignment system, which makes, well, aligning the putt ridiculously easy. Granted, it doesn’t make it the pretties putter out there, either.
The Scotty Cameron Select Newport 2 is a nice choice when it comes to putters for golfers with claw grip, albeit a pricey one (think of it as the iPhone of golf putters). That said, the superb craftsmanship of the Newport 2 is undeniable.
The key feature here is the vibration-dampening system that sits between the stainless steel inlay and the matching body, the goal here being to soften up the feel as much as possible.
Other than that, what sets the Newport 2 and Scotty’s putters as a whole is the slightly higher face angle than you might be used to – 3.5 degrees. It’s not much, but it does help with forward press.
The interesting part about the Newport is that each of the three shaft lengths (33, 34, and 35 inches) has weights specific to it (2x20gr, 2x15gr, and 2x10gr, respectively), which are there to increase the stability.
The Bettinardi Studio Stock #8 is very much the average golfer’s dream putter (for claw grip or any other style, to be honest). The entire series looks the business, but if you have your heart set on a blade, this is the way to go.
If you’ve ever played their Queen B series, you’ll recognise the F. I. T. milling, which goes a long way to softening up the feel and sound to a nice, muted thud, but also makes the sweet spot appear bigger when you compare it to the old Bettinardi honeycomb milling.
Couple this with the surprisingly high MOI (for a blade), and you get a rather nice, borderline GI putter (albeit a pricy one).
The TaylorMade TP Chaska is one of the newly-added members of the TP family, along with the Ardmore (both mallets), so they’re not as present as Berwick, but the season is still young.
Chaska, for its part, has a rather unique design, reminiscent of the earlier TaylorMade Corza Ghost, but that’s not the most interesting bit.
Unlike the rest of the TP series, Chaska is made from an aluminum-zinc alloy, which makes it quite soft on the one hand, but on the other, it also means a shorter life span.
6. Ping Vault Voss Putter
The Ping Vault Voss is a rather classical-looking blade from Ping, and one of the two such heads in their Vault line (along with the Anser 2, which is much closer to the iconic Anser of Karsten Solheim’s).
Neither is better in terms of technology or performance than the other, but if we’re being subjective, the Voss does have smoother lines and cleaner look thanks to the scalloped back bumpers, which also help with increasing the MOI to an extent.
Both, however, are rather good choices if you’re looking for a blade for claw grip putting (mostly thanks to being somewhat lightweight, at least by today’s standards).
The Voss, much like the rest of the line, features the True Roll grooves on the face, which go a long way to keeping the ball speed constant no matter where you hit it. Centre hits go pretty much where you want them to, and even off-centre ones will roll in within the tap-in range.
At 355 grams of weight (not counting the dead weight), the Ray Cook Blue Goose BG50 is a rather nice choice if you need a mallet putter for claw grip (if you prefer blades, there’s the BG40).
If you’re a Scotty fan, you’ll probably know that the original Blue Goose was his design, way back in the 1990s when he worked for the company, so you know the design is sound.
The most interesting feature about the BG50 (and its blade counterpart) is the double milled face which enables you to have a surprisingly good distance control for the price. Factor in the high MOI design, and you’ve got yourself a beautiful entry-level mallet.
The Final Word
And there you have it, the top seven putters for claw grip. Granted, none of these were made specifically with this style in mind, but they do pop up the most when you compare the PGA pros, their grips and bags (hint hint).
Of course, the same old caveat applies here as with anything putting-related – you just might not “feel” any of the flatsticks on our list, and that’s fine. Still, it wouldn’t hurt to get to your local retailers and take some of them for a whirl, see if you 3-putt less, eh? And whatever you do, don’t get stuck on the 19th!