Throwing better with 3 finger grip

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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby ManU » Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:16 pm

I was messing with this last night (not throwing just looking at the disc alignment in my hand) and it seemed that with 3 fingers I had more nose down than with 4

my pinky is kinda busted
I split the ligament in the middle knuckle joint playing ultimate and it never healed properly
my pinky is now "shortened" in that the ligament is a set length and no longer runs its proper course pulling the tip of the pinky back, it's also pretty crooked (I call it the "fish hook")

it's .5cm shorter than my other pinky, won't fully extend and won't fully flex

it may be creating a buggered grip with more nose up
but I won't be able to throw and check any flight differences until this weekend
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby Jsw » Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:32 pm

A bit anecdotal, but there is a local guy here who throws with three fingers and he absolutely BOMBS. I don't know if its a preference or necessity technically - I mean he says he just gets a lot more snap with 3 fingers.

I've thought about it but never really tried it out - maybe I'll give it a whirl.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby Blake_T » Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:53 pm

3-fingers has a different type of tendon flexibility than 4, but only really in reference to a power grip.

a fork grip has greater tendon flexibility than a power grip.
a fan grip has greater tendon flexibility than a fork grip.

etc.

you can find a case where at least 1 person achieves great results with any given grip.

my pinky is kinda busted
I split the ligament in the middle knuckle joint playing ultimate and it never healed properly


this would be a case of a physical handicap which is different from people who have a fully functioning pinkey.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby victorb » Fri Apr 23, 2010 5:00 pm

I'd love to get a few grip lessons from you then, Blake!

I try not to worry about it too much, since the pinky doesn't contribute much to grip strength...maybe I'll try to make it work in the field again this year.

edit: I messed around with a 4 finger grip while reading these posts. I have a really hard time getting my alignment right when I try a 4 finger power or stack grip - I can't seem to get the disc to a nose down position even when the disc is aligned above the seam in my hand. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, but it doesn't feel right at all.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby Blake_T » Fri Apr 23, 2010 6:23 pm

try a fork or a fan. those are the easiest towards getting it oriented correctly and getting the pinkey on.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby victorb » Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:16 pm

Blake_T wrote:try a fork or a fan. those are the easiest towards getting it oriented correctly and getting the pinkey on.


I throw nearly all my midranges and putters (drives and upshots) with a modified fan grip, but I'm not really certain if I put my pinky under the flight plate. I'll try to pay attention to that tomorrow.

I'm not sure if I can get the same power on my drives with that grip though.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby Dag » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:50 am

bit OT but...

The visual image of a bunch of folks measuring their fingers gave me a welcome smile on a gray morning. Pure DGR.

Thanks.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby StumperTX » Thu Apr 29, 2010 10:04 am

Blake_T wrote:
I'd argue that if everyone's anatomy was identical, but I for one have pinkies that are 1.75" shorter than my middle fingers, making a 4 finger grip with proper alignment impossible.

Anatomy of your hand can indeed make a difference in how you grip a disc.


my pinkey doesn't even make it to the last joint of my ring finger and is 1 11/16ths " shorter than my middle finger.

in 99% of cases where people think they need a 3-finger grip they have a grip that has a contact point that misses the intersection between the index and middle fingers. that is, instead of wedging the rim contact between that point they let the rim go above that point.

i've been giving lessons for almost a decade now and never come across someone who had 5 fingers on their throwing hand that couldn't do a 4-finger grip properly. i've worked with 40+ players who claimed they couldn't but they all had the same issue with disc alignment.


You have obviously never tried to give Brian Baldinger a lesson:
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby USAnarchy » Thu Apr 29, 2010 11:13 am

i bet he could fan grip a disc like a mofo

If you really want to learn and excel in disc golf, or any other sport or aspect of your life where thinking is involved, you have to get rid of this "Can't Do" attitude and start having a "Can Do" attitude.

adjust. adapt. overcome.

sure, you might not be able to use a power grip, but there are so many variations out there, you will find one that works.

dont think you can throw far with a fan grip, take a look at Scott Stokley. He could. He had long narrow fingers that didnt work for a power grip. A grip everyone told him he had to use to throw far. He went on to set a distance record with the fan grip. it can be done.

just dont be a negative nancy or a debbie downer. you have to be a confident cody or a positive paul.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby victorb » Fri May 14, 2010 7:37 pm

The last two rounds, I have been comfortable enough with the 4 finger grips (power, and modified fan) to use them throughout entire rounds, and I'll say that I'm impressed with the results. Accuracy is lights out, but Distance hasn't increased too much (still averaging ~375' with teebirds). Tied for first at league on thursday shooting (-4), and shot (-2) at Indian hills tonight tying my personal best.

The 3 finger power/fan grips that I was using before don't feel natural now, after just 2 rounds of committing to 4 finger style grips.

Thanks to Blake for the words of wisdom, it inspired me to keep at it, and I think it will heavily benefit my game in the long run.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby Blake_T » Mon May 17, 2010 1:08 am

cool. thanks for sharing. it takes some time to make the adjustments but giving yourself the biggest possible advantage/greatest chance for success makes sense in the long run.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby iacas » Sun Oct 28, 2012 8:15 pm

Blake_T wrote:if you can't get all 4 fingers comfortably on the rim then there is an inherent flaw with the resting point in your hand. 3-fingers only yields more nose down than a 4-finger grip if you have an inherently flawed 4-finger grip.

I've recently been experimenting with more of a three-finger grip due to the way my pinky fingers bend (permanently and all on their own): http://nslog.com/2006/08/10/my_bent_pinky_fingers . I can grip with four fingers but sometimes if I don't pay attention my pinky finger will overlap my ring finger slightly.

My current experimenting grip is somewhat like this one:
Image

Sometimes my four-finger grip is like this one but with the pinky a little more overlapping the ring finger:
Image

Blake_T wrote:throwing well with 3 and crappy with 4 is not a choice and indicates problems in the fundamentals of the grip.

there's a huge difference between preference and necessity.

So you ONLY recommend a four-finger grip? Or has your opinion changed in the past two years?

Blake_T wrote:i've been giving lessons for almost a decade now and never come across someone who had 5 fingers on their throwing hand that couldn't do a 4-finger grip properly. i've worked with 40+ players who claimed they couldn't but they all had the same issue with disc alignment.

Do you still feel the same? I'll include some video of my grip in the next submission. I don't feel like my pinky does much to help me, and it's sometimes annoying when it overlaps, but I can make sure it doesn't and use all four fingers if there's some real advantage, too.

Everywhere I go people seem to disagree on three or four fingers. For every person that says 4 gives them more power and control someone else will say 3 gives them more power and control.
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Re: Throwing better with 3 finger grip

Postby JR » Mon Oct 29, 2012 1:40 am

I think that personal differences and not getting to know one or the other fully enough leads to too hastily formed opinions. That may explain the differences in experiences and opinions between people. Blake didn't mention the difference in tendon flexibility and muscle looseness in the forearm between the three and four finger grip in the previous post he made. Or two fingers for that matter. I don't recall when i pointed tendon flexibility and added muscle relaxation related arm speed and acceleration increases it may have occurred after that post. He is certainly aware of the benefits now.

The fewer fingers you have the more critical the timing becomes and you need more hand and finger strength the fewer fingers hold the disc. That is bound to explain a part of the differing results.

Stacking the pinky on the ring finger is no problem in my experience and there are plenty of stacked grips.

I don't have enough grip strength in cold weather even with electrical heating warming up my skin in the fingers to hold on to discs at full power with a two finger grip. Three is doable above freezing temps but i need to see how cold it gets when even the three finger grip gets too weak. I'm using the Jenkins grip for the thumb in 48F at the coldest so far (below freezing now sick can't throw) and got left misses from slips. In 54F i had to concentrate and really squash the disc to be able to keep the disc on line consistently. Not concentrating in 58F produced poor results with occasional slips. Semi concentration was enough to avoid all slips. I was using grippy discs for these tests. I will keep on experimenting at different temperatures but i think that 3 finger grips get exceedingly hard to hold the disc with at below freezing temperatures judging by how quickly the discs got slicker with such small temperature drops.

In summer i've thrown farthest with two finger grip Jenkins or not thumb placement with the bottom of the disc in the outermost joint of the index and middle finger. According to radar that added at least 3 MPH and on average 4 MPH to my throwing speed vs traditional disc placement in the fingers. It has got to be a slip grip half hit just like my other throws 99 % of the time at least. The disc flies in the correct direction but without pivoting fully slipping out on line. It is easy for me to feel the difference in acceleration and forearm power generation. I've paid a lot of attention to that over the years so i think for a first time thrower in this way the difference might not feel as obvious as it is to me. I'm much better at listening to the body feedback than i was in the beginning.

I'd experiment with 2,3 and 4 finger grips on the field and with the traditional and outer joint positioning with the disc to see which gives you the most distance and what is needed now for not allowing the disc to slip out to the left. And after that if you are able to get a full pivot. None of these ways work for me for a full pivot without dropping the speed big time. And at the moment anyway i'm losing distance if i do that. A full pivot for me needs about the same super slow speed as the water bottle drill done successfully.
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