5 tools to improve your golf game
5 tools to improve your golf game
People love the game of golf for a variety of reasons. Some people love the feeling of being outdoors. Some love the competition and the occasional wager between friends. Some (at least those who will admit it) love the beverage cart.
The game has evolved with technology. And the gear we've detailed here can help you play the game better and experience more success when making those occasional wagers.
Most golf problems start with your swing. Unfortunately, when you're playing the game, it's impossible for you to see your swing without the help of video or a teaching pro.
But in this age of sophisticated analytics, plenty of measurement tools exist that can help you have more success with your swing. For example, you can receive data on whether you're twisting the face of the driver just slightly at the last minute, causing you to slice your tee shots regularly.
We really like the Blast Golf-Motion Sensor Swing Analyzer for golfers of all skill levels, as they can receive immediate feedback on a smartphone or tablet screen. You'll see the swing measurement data on an app.
Sensors for most swing analyzers fit on the end of a putter or club, and they're small enough to be out of the way, meaning the sensor won't affect your game ... or perhaps we should say, the sensor will be small enough that you can't blame it for that 4-iron you shanked into the lake.
Even though a growing number of golf carts have GPS technology and display screens built into them, helping you pinpoint your exact location on the golf course, a rangefinder should still have a place in your golf gear. A rangefinder is handy if you like to walk the course or if you just happen to find yourself in such a remote part of the course after an errant drive that even GPS can't help you.
A rangefinder uses laser technology to create accurate measurements from your position to the flag. And when you use one of our favorite rangefinders, the Bushnell Tour V4 JOLT, it'll measure the distance to the pin accurately, even if it's up to 1,000 yards away.
The Bushnell V4 JOLT has multiple high-end features that are important for a rangefinder, including 5x magnification so you can easily see the flagstick. The JOLT's focus mechanism works fast, so you don't have to spend several seconds trying to see the target before you can begin lining up your shot, with the delay frustrating your playing partners.
No matter what kind of athletic training you do, you need the right shoes. Basketball players need support for jumping and landing on a hard floor. Football players need cleats that dig into the ground for making sharp cuts.
Golfers need a mix of features in their shoes. A gripping tread and small cleats on the sole of the shoe help keep the feet in place when you're generating a lot of torque during your swing. But these shoes also have to be comfortable, as a walking golfer travels roughly five miles during an 18-hole round.
Most modern golf shoes look like athletic shoes and provide the support needed for walking and making well-balanced swings. One of the best models is the Puma Titantour Golf Shoe, which has perfectly placed cleats to provide support in the area of the shoe that takes the most stress during a golf shot. The perforated panels on the sides of the shoe create airflow to keep your feet cool and comfortable.
If you're the kind of golfer who spends the day playing golf, practicing golf, or thinking about playing and practicing golf, you will want a swing trainer to eat up those hours between tee times.
A good swing trainer perfectly simulates the feel and size of a golf club, meaning the work you're doing at home will translate nicely to the driving range and golf course. Because it has a realistic feel, the swing trainer helps you learn to shift your balance properly, which is another key to a proper golf swing.
Many golfers will even use a swing trainer a few minutes before hitting the first tee as a warmup exercise to stretch the appropriate muscles.
We like the realistic feel of the SKLZ Gold Flex Golf Trainer, but it also builds stronger muscles in specific areas that will help you when playing golf. If you constantly find yourself wearing down around holes 13 and 14 on the back nine, the SKLZ trainer is a smart option to help you maintain your strength throughout the entire round.
Putting training aids are available in many designs and at many price points. We've outlined two common designs here.
Because many golfers struggle to keep the putter head in a straight alignment to the target on the backswing and follow through, you'll find that a lot of putting trainer designs give you a visual cue to keep your putter head on line. As you repeat this motion with the putter head during practice with the training device, the idea is that muscle memory will take over when you are on the greens at the golf course.
Some other putting trainers attempt to help you align your stance correctly over the ball, which means you'll line up your putter head correctly to the ball and target. These trainers use a mirror, so you can see a reflection of your eyes when you're directly lined up over the ball. Again, the idea behind this style of trainer is that after enough practice, muscle memory will take over on the golf course, allowing you to line up correctly.
Improve your game
If you're looking to have more fun on the golf course, improving your shot-making ability is a surefire way to do it. Making use of the tools we've listed here would certainly be a step in the right direction.
Of course, to get the most out of your investment, you're going to have to spend more time practicing and playing golf. So if your significant other dislikes the idea of you playing more golf, you have permission to blame us. Or, better yet, invite your significant other along, as he or she is sure to fall in love with the game after using these gadgets, too.
Kyle is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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