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Benefits of Golf Gloves

Do Golf Gloves Really Make a Difference?

Is a leather golf glove the key to consistent golf? Does wearing one help you grip the golf club better? Do golf gloves really make that big of a difference? Should you wear two golf gloves?

There are all great questions and ones we’ll answer today. Ultimately, golfers wear them to improve their performance, but it is personal preference. You aren’t required to wear gloves by any means.

But the golf swing is a difficult motion and most players typically wear one for reduced grip pressure and avoid blisters. MyGolf Spy even found that golfers wearing a glove versus not increased swing speed. Even if you have a tacky grip on your clubs, you’ll have a superior grip with a glove.

Do Golf Gloves Help? 

A golf glove is an accessory that we don’t talk about enough. They’re used nearly swing for the majority of golfers, but a lot of players don’t understand the impact they can make. 

Key Takeaways

  • A golf glove is worn on the opposite of your dominant hand and can have a big role with how you grip the golf club.
  • Wearing a golf glove can help you grip the club more consistently, which can improve ball striking.
  • A glove can also help you maintain consistent grip pressure, have a lighter grip, and avoid blisters.
  • Some shots – like putting, chipping and short iron shots – might work better without a glove to improve feel. 

Keep reading to learn more about golf gloves so you can improve your game from tee to green.

History of Golf Gloves

Before getting into the benefits of wearing gloves and the best practices, let’s start with a quick history. If you watch old footage of golfers – in the days when they wore suits more than polos – you’ll notice they didn’t wear gloves.

So, when did golfers start wearing them? 

According to FootJoy research, the first glove dates back to 1898, but there is no photo evidence to back up this claim. Professional golfers didn’t wear them until the 1930s in tournaments. Certain golfers like Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan, and Walter Hagen never wore gloves.

But by the 1960s most golfers, both professionals and amateurs, wore golf gloves. Now Cabretta leather gloves are the norm in golf with both right and left-handed golfers.

How to Wash Golf Gloves

Benefits of Wearing Golf Gloves 

Now that you have a bit of history about the invention of golf gloves, let’s get into the top reasons why you should consider wearing one.

Improve Your Golf Grip

The first reason to wear a golf glove is to help you grip the club more consistently.

If you’ve played the game for a while, you know that the grip is one of the most important parts of a good swing. So many golfers have a weak or strong grip that leads to so many mishits like slices and hooks.

When you change your grip, you change your game! 

Wearing a glove will make it easy to get your hands in the same position with every swing. In fact, a glove will let you know if you’re gripping it incorrectly, too. 

For example, if the pad of your glove gets worn down or has holes, that might be a signal that you’re gripping in the palm, not your fingers. This can provide feedback and help improve your technique so you can start the swing from a better position.

Second, a golf glove will help you apply the same consistent grip pressure. Having the right grip pressure for a specific shot is key to avoiding tension and swinging freely. The key is to maintain that grip pressure throughout your swing for the best results.

Some shots – like hitting from the rough – require more grip pressure to help the hosel not close at impact. While others require less grip pressure to alleviate tension and swing with power. A glove can help maintain grip pressure and not grip it too tight during your swing. 

Third, a golf glove can prevent the golf club from slipping. This game is already hard enough, the last thing you want is the club to accidentally slip from not wearing a glove.

Protect Your Hands 

Aside from all the grip benefits of wearing a glove, they also protect your hands as well. If you’re someone that considers themselves a “range rat” it’s a good idea to wear a glove in practice and on the golf course.

Think about it, if you’re gripping your clubs 70-100x (or more) during a practice session, this could lead to blisters. And if you’ve ever tried to play golf with blisters on your hands, you know this is extremely challenging. 

Wearing a glove will protect your hands during practice and playing to avoid any injuries. 

Help With Injuries  

Best Golf Gloves

Some golf gloves are also beneficial for golfers with arthritis, like Bionic Gloves. These gloves are designed for extra support with twice as much of a pad and will help grip it lighter for all 18 holes.

Plus, unlike a lot of gloves, you can machine wash them as well. Learn how to wash golf gloves here.

Perform Better in Tough Conditions 

The final reason to wear a glove is to perform better when playing in difficult weather conditions. Golfers don’t let a little rain or extreme heat get in the way and the right glove(s) can make the experience a lot better. 

The right glove(s) can help beat the weather and play your best golf. Luckily, manufacturers make a pair for nearly every type of weather you will face on the golf course. 

When it’s hot outside, your hands will sweat more and make it harder to grip the club without slipping. A glove will help a ton and should be rotated every few holes when playing in the heat. This is why it’s a good idea to carry 2-3 (or more) gloves with you at all times.

Warm Weather Golf Glove

Or, you can even buy specific gloves for the warm weather, like the FootJoy TropiCool glove. These gloves are made with grip-control Nano lock fiber for better gripping power even if your hand is sweaty. They’re very lightweight, provide maximum breathability, and quick drying. 

Winter Golf Glove

When it’s cold outside, you might consider getting a pair designed for cold weather – like the  FootJoy WinterSof gloves. This glove comes as a pair to help your other hand stay warm and grip the club more consistently in the cold. 

These gloves are water-resistant and made of auto suede instead of leather. These are sold in pairs and will help when playing in cold, windy conditions. 

Rain Golf Glove

Or, you can also invest in a pair of golf mittens to keep your hands warm between shots while riding in the golf cart. The Titleist Golf StaDry cart mitts which are available in white or black. Paired with the right golf cart heater, you’ll turn a cold winter day into a much more enjoyable round. 

If you’re playing golf in the rain, you’ll want to use a rain pair like the FootJoy RainGrip, Callaway Golf Opt-Grip or Finger Ten Rain Grip. These gloves come as a pair and are made of different materials to dry quickly and provide all day comfort. These grips are fantastic for rain and also double well when it’s humid outside too. 

Best Practices for Wearing Golf Gloves 

As you can tell, there are tons of benefits to wearing golf gloves and highly recommended for the majority of shots. Here are a few best practices for wearing gloves and when to take them off. 

Wear One Glove in Practice and on the Golf Course 

The first tip is to only wear one glove on your non-dominant hand. Almost no PGA Tour pro player wears two gloves and only rain gloves or cold weather gloves are sold in pairs. 

Instead, wear one glove on your non-dominant hand to improve your grip. Leave a glove off on the other hand to improve feel. 

Wear one anytime you’re hitting balls at the driving range, simulator, or on the golf course. Practice like you play to take your range game to the golf course. 

Clean and Replace Your Gloves Often

To keep your grips and hands in good condition, make sure to replace your gloves regularly. Otherwise, they get sort of crusty and might make it hard to grip the club.

You can also store them in a ziplock bag in your bag for best long term use. 

Remove When Putting 

Gloves provide incredible benefits for full swing shots, but would not recommend them for putting.

The only player I can think of that wore a glove on the greens was Jack Nicklaus – who obviously has the most major championships. So I guess it worked for the Golden Bear, but can’t say I’ve seen any other PGA Tour (or LIV golfer) wear it on the greens. 

Removing your glove on the greens will improve your grip pressure (lighter is better with putting) and increase your feel. This will help you make more consistent strokes and hopefully hit a lot better putts.

What is a Cadet Golf Glove

FAQs About Golf Gloves 

Do you have more questions about golf gloves and other accessories to help play your best? If so, keep reading through the most common questions and answers now. 

What is the correct way to wear a golf glove?

The proper way to wear a golf glove is on your non-dominant hand. For example, right-handed golfers will wear a glove on your left hand, as it has the biggest role in the grip. You can wear a glove on your other hand too, but this isn’t very common unless playing in the rain or extreme humidity. 

When should you use a golf glove?

You should use a golf glove for most golf shots during the round – excluding putting. When you’re hitting a driver, irons, wedges, and any full swing shot, it’s best to wear a glove. 

Some golfers prefer to take their glove off for short game shots around the green for better feel – like Tiger Woods. But we suggest always taking your glove off when putting to enhance feel and have light grip pressure on the greens. 

The same goes for practice, especially if you’re hitting a lot of golf balls at the driving range. If you don’t wear a glove, you can easily get blisters and wear down your grips faster. 

Why do men wear golf gloves?

Both male and female golfers wear gloves for a variety of reasons. They help with a consistent grip on the club, avoid blisters, and play better in difficult weather conditions.  

Do gloves prevent blisters?

Yes, wearing a golf glove can help prevent blisters and protect your hands. They can also help you learn more about your grip by making sure the wear patterns are in the right spots. 

How tight do you want your golf glove?

You want your glove tight but not suffocating your hand. You also want the fingers at the proper length so there isn’t excess material. If you have shorter fingers, it’s a good idea to get a cadet size glove which has the same size palm but shorter in the fingers. 

Do all pros wear golf gloves?

Not 100% of professional golfers wear gloves but the vast majority of them. Some of the notable names to not wear a glove include Fred Couples and Lucas Glover. 

In a Golf.com interview, Lucas Glover said, “Just never got into it. I’m a solid 10-handicap with a glove.” Also joking that unlike most pros who have sponsors, he doesn’t wear a glove as part of his deal.
“I’ve always said they should give a little more up front, since I don’t waste any money on gloves. But I haven’t gotten any traction on that.”

My Experience

After playing golf more than 25 years, I couldn’t imagine not wearing a glove. I use it for every shot from tee to green and then take it off once I’m on the green using a putter. 

Some golfers like to take them off with chipping/pitching, but I’m so used to a glove I choose to keep them on. Test out in practice how you perform with a glove and without a glove on short game shots to see what works best for you. 

I also suggest having a variety of gloves and having 3-6 in your bag at all times. This way you can rotate if your hands get sweaty or one gets a hole in it while playing.

The FootJoy rain gloves always live in my bag as they’re great for hot, humid days. I like the material so much more than leather and feel like they’re some of the most reliable gloves in golf. 

Final Thoughts 

There are numerous benefits to wearing a glove, but the key reason is you’ll have a better grip than bare hands. Additionally, a golf glove helps with moisture control, a more secure grip, more control, and hopefully lower scores.

Remove your grip for more friction around the greens if you want – some golfers love it, other golfers prefer a glove for short game shots. But almost all golfers ditch the glove on putting as golf gloves reduce feel.

Also find gloves that fit your hand!

Next, make sure to learn the best gloves for golf. And make sure to check out more about a Cadet golf glove here.

Picture of Michael Leonard

Michael Leonard

Michael is an avid golfer of 25 years who played in high school, college, and now competes in Arizona amateur events. He is a full-time writer, podcast host of Wicked Smart Golf, and mental golf coach.