Gear Review – FX-Sport VC Golf Headphones

We recently had the chance to review a new golf product called the VC Golf Headphones by FX-Sport based out of the UK.

Who Are They

First lets take a look at the company behind the product.  FX-Sport is centered around coaching and training and puts together audio for wireless headphones that you wear while you work out and train.

They have several products that are geared toward workouts and weight training.  They have several conditioning coaches and personal trainers who have recorded audio and you can upload them onto their VRX model.  The selection is pretty extensive ranging from basketball, cardio, triathlon, and swimming.  We took a look at the VC-Golf product specifically and wanted to share our geek thoughts on it.

For their VC-Golf Headphones they got a A-team of golf and sport psychologist and trainers to create the content.  Check out their crack team:

Dr. Morris Pickens – Sports Psychologist with a strength in competitive performance enhancement.  Clients have a combined 27 PGA Tour victories.

David MacKenzie – Founder of ‘Golf State of Mind’ and a 10 year performance coach.  Students include PGA, LPGA, and NCAA golfers.

Karen Palacios-Jansen – Golf Digest’s Top Female Instructors, owner of Swing Blade Enterprises, and a Nike Golf Performance Specialist and created Cardiogolf.

Dr. Mark Smith – Advisory Board Member for TPI and has a doctorate in exercise physiology and owns The Spa and Sports Center in California.

Needless to say, they know what they are talking about and provide the best coaching and insights in golf available.

Why You Need Them

Mental toughness is a crucial component in any sport, but especially golf.  Being able to concentrate and focus on the shot and swing in the moment is a skill and it does NOT come naturally.  You must practice and be aware of this in able to improve.  I personally think the earlier you practice mental toughness, the better off you will be…like I mean as soon as you think you want to start playing golf.  The sooner the better.

In our multiple gadget world of blue light, the art of focusing on a single task can be lost.  This is why I personally love to play golf..the quietness and calmness of the course.

Now on a professional level, the pressure is a lot different.  Money is on the line and rankings are fluid.

For amateur golfers like myself, concentration can lead to a happy golf round..and therefor a happier overall day!  For professionals, its higher standings and more confidence going into the next tournament.

 

How It Works

Ok, lets get into the nitty gritty of these headphones.

Physically, the headphones are nice with no wires to get tangled.  They are water-resistant and sweat-proof.  They are pretty comfortable and do not squish your ears too much (if you have big ears like me, this happens a lot).  After swinging and walking for a long period of time, they did not move or fall off.

Most of the tracks that are pre-loaded on them are all about preparing yourself mentally for the game of golf, boosting your confidence, bettering your body language, and be able to relax in the moment.  These are great to listen to while at the range or right before a round.

There are also workout drills.  These are challenging scenarios that are intended to simulate a tricky shot in order to prepare your nerves for the real thing.

The only con I have with them is that they are a little tricky to figure out at first.  Since they don’t have a screen or display to show what is playing or to scroll through the tracks, it can get a little confusing.  After a few minutes though you get the hang of it.

The workout drills can play simultaneously  with the psychological tracks which is also a little confusing.  The drills are meant to be used in real time so the other tracks (music or audio) can fill the void if you don’t want the silence.

They do have a USB port and you are able to transfer your MP3’s onto the headphones although you must use their software to do this.  Downloading is easy for Mac or PC.

Some other key features:

  • 5 hour battery life from a lithium ion battery (included) – more than enough time for a round of golf or practice.  And don’t worry..no fires or explosions!
  • Compatible with other workouts from FX-Sports including swimming, basketball, weight training, and cardio to name a few.
  • The Cardiogolf warm up and workouts – Keep loose!  I mean how else is Phil still playing…
  • Comes with USB cord and storage case
  • Able to customize your own workouts – With the FX-Sport software, you can upload your own personal drills and commentary..if your not sick of your own voice

 

How To Make It Useful

Ok, so think of these headphones as the equivalent as a personal psychological and golf coach standing right behind you giving you valuable advice.  FX-Sports have done a great job of getting the best coaches and doctors in the industry to put together a training and practice routine for everyday golfers.

Personally, I would use these while at the range or putting green and maybe right before going out for a round.  Again, these are for the (beginning and intermediate level ) golfers who are more serious about getting better at the game than most.  It is a tool to better your golfing mindset and get focused on lowering that score and having for fun out there!

 

 

The Best Practice Golf Balls

When you can’t get to the range for whatever reason, there is a variety of equipment to help you practice your swing — in your basement, garage, family room or the backyard.  Perhaps, the simplest of all training tools is the practice golf ball.

The best practice golf balls simulate hitting a real golf ball, but do not travel as far, and are usually made of softer material.   This allows you to practice your swing in a small area (i.e. your backyard, basement, local park, etc.) without worrying about damaging nearby houses, cars, or people.  Just make sure you have enough space to swing (and watch out for lights)!

Here are some factors to consider when you are looking for the best golf practice balls:

  • Construction and design – Practice golf balls are made with a variety of materials and designs. The best ones will not damage property (cars, windows, etc.) or injure anyone when you hit an errant shot.
  • Distance – Not all practice golf balls travel the same distance when hit. Some will be better suited for the backyard, others for the public park and some for indoor use.
  • Feel and flight – Some balls give very little feedback and does not mimic real ball travel very well. Look for ones that do this well.

The Best Practice Golf Balls — Top 5

Callaway HX Practice Balls

callaway hx best practice golf ballsYou can practice your swing to your heart’s content with these Callaway practice balls. They simulate actual ball flight flawlessly thanks to the patented HEX dimple pattern. They are safe to use anywhere thanks to the soft foam construction which will not damage any nearby buildings (or break your windows).  The material is also durable, and will not crack after a few hits like some other cheap practice balls.

The HX Practice Balls fly about 30% to 50% of the distance of normal golf balls.  So, make sure you have enough space if you are taking a full swing.

You can buy the Callaway HX Practice Balls in either packs of 9 or 18 and and in a variety of colors (orange, yellow, or pink).  Overall, the realistic ball flight, durability, and soft/safe material makes this one of the best practice golf balls on the market.

Buy the Callaway HX Practice Balls here!

Orlimar 36 Practice Balls (24 with Holes, 12 Foam)

orlimar practice golf ballsWant cheap? These balls from Orlimar Golf come in a giant pack of 36 — 24 plastic balls with air holes (wiffle balls) and 12 balls made from high density foam. You can use them inside and outside and you’ll definitely improve your swing without inflicting damage on your surroundings.

These balls are perfect for the backyard as their distance is limited. Unfortunately they sacrifice some of that “real feel” and you don’t get an idea of the distance and trajectory of the ball, especially on the plastic “wiffle” balls. But overall they are great for practicing your swing at home, and keeping in shape during winter months.

One downside is that the plastic balls tend to get damaged quite easily.  For just around 30 cents per ball though, you won’t find much cheaper practice golf balls than these.

Buy the Orlimar Practice Golf Balls here!

BirdieBall 

birdieball best practice golf ballsWhat the h*ll is this?  You’ll be forgiven for looking at this bracelet shaped object with some serious apprehension.

Despite its odd shape, the Birdie Ball is one of the best practice golf balls out there.  Hitting it feels like hitting a real golf ball, and it even flies on a realistic trajectory.    Since it acts just like a real ball you can even practice a variety of shots with it. Draw it, fade it, and spin it…just like a real golf ball!

The only difference is that the Birdie Ball is limited to fly around 40 yards, so it is great for taking to your local park or even in your own backyard (if its big enough).  You can take a full swing and not worry about it flying 200 yards away.

The ball itself is made from a “super polymer” which will not cause damage to windows, people, or anything else in case you mishit.   It is also extremely durable and will not break easily like the cheaper plastic wiffle balls.

The only downside is that these are a bit expensive relative to other practice golf balls.  The 12 ball pack should last you a very long time though, so you can look at it as a long term investment.

As unconventional as the Birdie Ball may look, they are probably the best practice golf balls on the market.  Give them a shot!

Buy the BirdieBall here!

PrideSports Practice Foam Golf Balls

pridesports practice foam golf ballsJust want something that is cheap and practical?

Then, these practice golf balls from PrideSports may be for you.  Made from soft dimpled foam, these balls are great for indoor and outdoor use.  The soft material makes them fairly safe to hit anywhere as they won’t damage anything or hurt anyone.  The balls fly straight if hit properly, so you can get an idea if you are making correct ball contact.  They can also carry a fair distance if hit well, so be careful when taking full swings!

One downside is that they are a bit too soft for some golfers, so they lack the “real feel” of impacting a golf ball.  Despite this, they are still great for practicing your swing overall and keeping fit in your off time. They are especially great for practicing indoors on a rainy day.

Currently on sale for a ridiculously low price of only $7 for 12 balls, you can’t really go wrong with these.

Buy the PrideSports Practice Foam Golf Balls here!

SKLZ LF30 Limited Flight Practice Golf Balls

sklz lf30 practice golf balls

The LF30 Practice Golf Balls are just another great training product from SKLZ.

These bright yellow orbs are painted with alignment stripes to help you improve your setup consistency.  They also allow you to see how the ball spins when you are practicing your short game.

The LF30s are made of a soft foam that feel solid to hit, but will not cause any damage to your walls or windows.  They also fly true and straight like a normal golf ball, but go only around 30 yards.

Overall, the SKLZ LF30s are great practice golf balls, and are very reasonably price at about $12 for a 12-pack.

Buy the SKLZ LF30 Practice Golf Balls here!

Also check out the SKLZ Impact Golf Ball here

almostGolf Practice Golf Balls

almostgolf best practice golf ballsThey look like golf balls,  hit like golf balls, and fly like golf balls, but they’re not quite golf balls.  They’re Almost Golf balls!

These practice golf balls are one of the most highly rated products on the market.  The main reason customers love this ball is that they feel and fly off your club just like a real golf ball.  The dense foam construction allows the ball to ‘pop’ off your club, giving you a more realistic feel on impact.  You can also spin, fade, and draw it just like a real golf ball.

The foam is quite firm, but soft enough so that it won’t break any windows or dent cars.

Perhaps one downside of the Almost Golf ball is that it can fly quite far — about 50% the distance of a normal golf ball, up to around 100 yards.  So, make sure you have enough space in your yard if taking a full swing.

Overall, these are just another great practice golf ball.  They are also reasonably priced at about $15 per dozen.

Buy the almostGolf Practice Golf Balls here!

Buy the pack of 36 almostGolf Balls here ($35) !

—–

With the best practice golf balls, you can practice your swing almost anywhere, and anytime.  No need to rush out to try and rush out to the driving range after work or after dinner!

There is a good mix of quality and affordability on this list, so you are bound to find something that suits your needs.  Let us know which is your favorite!

What is the Best Golf Mat?

Whether you are trying to save a bit of money on all those buckets at the range or just want to practice more often, you’ll need a good setup at home to practice. One key piece of equipment you’ll need is a golf mat (the other is a golf net). You don’t want to tear up your backyard leaving divots everywhere and you certainly don’t want to hit off hard surfaces when you practice indoors. How do you pick the best golf mat and what should you look out for? Here is our advice on it.

Qualities to Look for:

  • Durability: You will use all your clubs to practice. This means the mat must be able to hold up to your irons, woods and wedges. When it comes to durability not all golf mats are created equal.
  • Design: Take a close look at the quality of the materials used. For the best golf mat you want a backing that will keep it in place on a hard surface. A sloped edge is also good as minimizes impact on your club should you hit the edge.
  • Price: Buy what suits your budget and keep in mind that even ranges replaces their mats from time to time.
  • Size: Check that the mat is big enough to use with all your clubs and that you have space to move the ball around a bit to reduce wear on just one spot. This way it’s sure to last even longer.
  • Tees: Ideally you want a mat that lets you replace the tees. As you know, tees break. Or perhaps you just want to use a higher or lower tee. This allows you to increase your practice range.
  • Authentic feel: for a truly “real feel” the best golf mat will give you feedback on your shot and won’t jar your wrists and elbows when you hit of firmer surfaces.

The 5 Best Golf Mat Reviews

Callaway FT Launch Zone Hitting Mat

callaway ft launch zone hitting mat best golf matCallaway certainly needs no introduction and their golf mat is true to their reputation. The mat measures 16 x 8 x 1 inches and has a true-turf surface that simulates hitting off a real fairway. The construction is high quality and a unique tee holder lets you use any tee you want. Excellent shock absorption is taken care of by a durable rubber backing.   The heavy rubber backing also ensures that it will not slide or shift around when you hit balls.  For the level of quality it’s reasonably priced at under $20 (on Amazon).

The one downside of the Callaway FT Launch Zone is that it is very small.   If you’re a beginner, or just want a larger hitting surface, then you may want to consider a bigger mat.

Overall, the combination of quality hitting surface, and budget price makes the Callaway one of the best golf practice mats available.

Emerald Par Golf Mat (3′ x 5′)

emerald par golf matFrom mat specialists All Turf Mats, the Emerald Par Golf Mat measures in at 3 feet x 5 feet, and has a 5mm foam backing to reduce club shock when you hit the mat.  The thicker backing also makes this mat suitable for use on any surfaces including concrete or wood.  The surface is made from ½ in. woven nylon turf, which is very durable and comfortable to hit off of.   The mat also includes a 2 in. rubber wooden tee holder so you can practice your drives.

Unlike the Callaway Hitting Mat (above), the Emerald Par is large enough so that you can also stand on it while practicing.  Some players may prefer a wider mat, but for most, this is more than enough.

There are not many negative points to the Emerald Par Golf Mat  — with a great mid-range price of $79.99, and superb durability (includes 1 year manufacturers warranty and 8 year fade warranty) it is easily one of the best golf mats on the market today.

Want a wider mat?  Check out the similar 4′ x 5′ Monster Tee Golf Mat from All Turf Mats.

Jef World of Golf Fairway / Rough Practice Mat

fairway rough golf practice matAlways in the rough?  Don’t worry, you’re not alone.  This unique golf mat offers a solution to your problem.   It features a dual sided hitting surface, so you can simulate shots from the rough or the fairway.  It also comes with 3 different sized rubber tees, so you can practice your woods and driver (make sure you have a good golf net!).

The Jef World of Golf Practice Mat is very small (1′ x 2′), which makes it portable to move around, but can also be very limiting as each surface is only 1/2 foot wide.   The back is made with heavy duty rubber which helps prevent the mat from shifting when being used.  The surface material is a bit cheaper than other high end mats, but for only $25, you can’t ask for much more.

If you are looking for a simple mat for chipping practice, or a small mat you can move around without hassle, then this may be the mat for you.

Country Club Elite Real Feel Golf Mat (4′ x 4′)

country club elite real feel golf mat 5x5Want the best of the best?  Then look no further than the Country Club Elite Real Feel Golf Mat.  It is used by the finest country clubs and golf academies in the world, including LPGA legend Annika Sorenstam’s Golf Academy.  It is certainly better than the mats you will find at your local driving range.

The one factor that makes the Country Club Elite so much better than other golf mats is its deep “real feel” turf.  With most other mats, your club will simply bounce/skid off the surface, but with the Country Club Elite, your club will be able to sink down into and through the turf (just like real grass).  This will help you simulate the results you would get on an actual course.  If you hit a solid shot, your club will flow freely though the turf, but if you hit a fat shot (too far behind the ball), your club will be held up by the turf, and resulting in a chunked shot.  In fact the turf is so deep, you can stick a real tee right into the mat!

If you want to simulate real course conditions, then the Country Club Elite is simply the best golf mat on the market.   The only downside is that it will cost you a fat $319.

Also see the larger (5′ x 5′) version here:  Real Feel Golf Mat 5′ x 5′

SKLZ Glide Pad Divot Simulator Golf Mat 

sklz glide pad divot simulator golf mat

Want to simulate real grass conditions, but can’t fathom spending $300+ on the Country Club Elite Golf Mat (see above)?  Don’t worry, the team at SKLZ has you covered. The SKLZ Glide Pad Golf Mat simulates natural grass feel with its unique sliding function.  As you swing down and through the ball, the mat will actually slide forward to simulate the feeling of creating a divot.  The turf is also thick enough that you can stick a tee into it and practice your driver.

The SKLZ Glide Pad hitting surface is quite small (10″ x 19″), so it is probably not suited for absolute beginners.

Check out promo video below to see the mat in action:

Although the SKLZ mat does not simulate the real grass/divot feeling quite as well as the Country Club Elite Golf Mat, it is less than 1/2 of the price ($149 on Amazon).  So, if you are looking for a value alternative, then this may be the best golf mat for you!

Also check out the similar FairwayPro Divot Simulator Golf Mat

What is the Best Golf Practice Net?

As much as you love to golf, let’s face it… you never get to play enough, let alone go to the practice range as often as you need to. You can only improve your game with practice, practice and more practice. But, with work and family commitments, it’s not always easy to get to the range as often as you want. A golf net may just be the solution for you. It will allow you to practice at home whenever you have time to spare; even if it’s only for 10 minutes or while you’re watching the game dying to hit the ball. You want to get bang for your buck, so you’ll want the best golf practice net that suits your budget. Let’s see if we can help you with that.

When shopping for a golf practice net there are a few factors to take into account before you buy:

  • The size of the net is probably the first thing you want to look at. You may want to set it up in your garage, basement, backyard or even the driveway. You may even want to move it around depending on the weather.
  • The netting is another key factor. You’ll be hitting real golf balls so you want a quality, durable and strong net that won’t rip, sag or fold in on itself. A very handy feature in some of the best golf practice nets is automatic ball return. The net will allow the ball to roll back to you so no running around after it.
  • Take a very close look at the frame construction and material. You want to specifically consider if it will hold it’s shape over time, is it easy and quick to set up and does it have ground anchors should you decide to use it outdoors.
  • The best golf practice net should allow you to practice with all of the clubs in your bag so check on the range of clubs the net is suitable for.

The 5 Best Golf Practice Net Reviews

Callaway Tri-Ball Hitting Net 

callaway tri ball hitting net best golf netThe Callaway Tri-Ball Hitting Net net comes in three sizes: 6 x 7 Feet, 7 x 8 Feet and 9 x 10 Feet.  It is reasonably priced at $68.99, $89.98 and $128.21 respectively (on Amazon). The net is made with an extremly strong netting (self-proclaimed “strongest netting in golf”) and includes a hanging target to help improve your consistency. The unique triangular shape of the  net allows you to practice with  a full range of clubs — from your driver through to your wedge. This net is freestanding, so you can use it indoors, and includes stakes to anchor it outdoors. It also packs away in a nylon carry bag so you can easily take it wherever you want or simply store it away.  The smallest of the three sizes (6’x7′) is most ideal for indoor use.

There are some downsides to this product.  Some players have experienced net breakages or polls snapping after limited use.  Callaway is a reputable brand, and stands behind its product.  So, if the netting unexpectedly breaks, or pole snaps, just contact Callaway and they will send you a replacement part.

The biggest problem with this golf net though is that it can be a bit difficult/complicated to set up  (Callaway’s Tri-Ball Hitting Net instructions).  You may need a friend or two to help you figure it out the first couple times.  If you are looking for an affordable option from a reputable brand, then the Tri-Ball is one of the best value golf nets available on the market.

The RukkNet Pop-Up Golf Practice Net 

rukket rukknet golf practice netThis high quality golfing net from Rukket is available in one size only (10 Feet wide, 7 Feet high and 5 Feet deep). It can be used outdoors or indoors, but the size probably makes it impractical for indoor use for most people.  It costs $199.99, and hosts a variety of features to back up its price.  It has a unique double net system to ensure that your ball will never rip through.  The frame is made from strong steel, instead of fiberglass like most other golf nets.  The rest of the Rukknet is double stitched and uses heavy/durable materials.    The four-ply knotless netting design disperses power from your shot easily and returns the ball to you.  You can easily hit a full powered driver into the RukkNet, and not worry about anything breaking, ripping or your ball flying back at your face.

Maybe the best part about the Rukknet, is that it is incredibly easy to set up.  It literally pops open when you want to use it, similar to some camping tents.  Coincidentally, the one downside of the RukkNet is that it can be a pain to fold back up.  If you aren’t careful, the bars will get twisted.   Of course, after a few times, you should get the hang of it.  The RukkNet is also not very good to use on windy days, as it will get pushed/blown over easily due to its light weight.

Check out the RukkNet promo video below to see its simple setup and other features in action:

If you don’t mind spending $145, then we can recommend the RukkNet as one the best golf practice nets available.

To get some extra features/attachments (chipping targets, hitting mats etc), check out the RukknNet Portable Driving Range combo ($165)

PowerNet Golf Practice Net 

The PowerNet Golf Practice Net is 10 feet x 7 feet x 3 feet and retails at a very reasonable $99.

The construction of this golf net is absolutely fantastic.  The metal frame is very sturdy, and extremely well made.   You do not need to worry about the net tipping over.  Most customers report that they do not even use the included ground pegs to keep the net in place.

The netting itself is heavy-duty, and made of 6 ply knotless construction, so you do not need to worry about it ripping even if you are blasting your driver shots into it.  The netting is also designed to return the ball back to your feet after each shot.

One of the best features of the PowerNet is that it is incredibly easy to set up.  You can literally set it up or take it down in about 2 minutes (the first time might take a bit longer of course).  This makes it optimal for moving into and out of your garage/house depending on weather.

Even better, everything is backed by a lifetime warranty!  If a part breaks, or goes missing, just call their customer service, and you will get a replacement.

For a price of just $99, the PowerNet Golf Practice Net is awesome value.  If you want the most bang for your buck, then this is the best golf practice net for you!.

The Net Return Pro Series Golf Net the net return pro series best golf practice net

With a price tag of $595.00 The Net Return Pro Series Golf  & Multi-Sport Net is by far the most expensive net on our list.  It is also easily the best all around and highest quality net available.

It comes in one size, measuring 7′ 6″ high, 8′ wide and 3’6″ deep, and weights about 28 pounds.  The frame is constructed from lightweight tubular aluminum that will not rust, and the net is made from a commercial grade, UV treated, heavyweight polyester material.   The net has a simple “push button” assembly that requires no extra tools, and will allow you to set the entire net up in about 5 minutes (maybe longer your first couple of times).   The automatic ball return feature works extremely well, and is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.  Check out the promo video below for a closer look at The Net Return Golf Net:


If price is not an issue, then The Net Return Pro Series Golf Net is simply the best golf practice net available on the market today.  It can also be used for multiple other sports, such as soccer, baseball, softball, football and lacrosse.

The company provides a complete 1 year, 100% money back guarantee when you purchase this net.  Please note it does not come with the hitting mat / turf as seen in the picture.  You will need to buy it separately (see here for one option).

SKLZ Quickster Golf Net with Target

sklz quickster golf net with target

Need a more budget friendly option?  Then the Quickster Golf Net from training equipment specialists SKLZ could be for you.  It is available in a couple different net sizes (6’x6′ or 8’x8′), and comes with a removable target for chipping/aiming practice.   The frame is constructed from lightweight, but sturdy composite steel & fiberglass material.  The two-ply woven net is strong enough to be used for all range of shots (full driver to wedge).

Unlike some other nets, the SKLZ Quickster Golf Net is EXTREMELY simple to assemble/take-down, and packs away nicely into the included carry bag so you can bring it anywhere you go, or simply store it away.

One downside of the Quickster Golf Net is that it does not have an automatic ball return feature.  So, just make sure you have a bucket of balls beside you when practicing.

Overall, this is a very high quality, high-value product.  For budget-conscious golfers, we recommend the SKLZ Quickster as the the best golf practice net

Check out SKLZ video below:

What are the Best Putting Aids?

Want to improve your putting?  Then you should practice (obviously)!  But, if you are not practicing the right way, then it will all be for naught.  Luckily for you, there are many gizmos and gadgets on the market that will make your putting practice sessions more effective.  With help from the best putting aids, you should become a more consistent putter, and eliminate those devastating three-putts!

The 5 Best Putting Aids

Eyeline Golf Ball of Steel

eyeline golf ball of steel 2 best putting aidsHow it works:
The Eyeline Golf Ball of Steel weighs fives times more than an average golf ball.   The extra weight forces you to make a solid putting stroke through the ball, and will help players eliminate their decelerating putting stroke.

It is made of a steel core, with a silicone coating/padding.  It is safe to hit with your club for putts 6 feet or less.  DO NOT use the Golf Ball of Steel for putts greater than 6 feet in length, or you may damage your clubs, and injure yourself.

Who it’s for:
If you struggle with leaving putts short, or lack confidence in your stroke, then then this may be the best putting aid for you.  Before you play, make at least 20 strokes with the Ball of Steel, and you will make crisp and solid putts throught your round.  Never leave a putt short again!  See more Ball of Steel putting drills here: http://www.eyelinegolf.com/blogs/practice-games-and-drills-vault/tagged/Ball-of-Steel

Overall rating: 4.2/5 – Great for improving your short putts, but not useful for putts over 6 feet (will damage your clubs!).  A little bit pricey at $30 for a 3-pack (only $25 at Amazon!)

Putter Wheel Golf Trainer

putter wheel golf training best putting aidsHow it works:
The appropriately named Putter Wheel is wheel-shaped golf ball that will help improve your stroke and alignment.  It is designed to simulate the weight, size, and feel of a standard golf ball.  If you mishit the ball, the Putter Wheel will immediately begin to wobble and curve off the intended path.  Only when you make square contact will the ball roll straight.

The red edges are used to make sure your eyes are over the ball every time you set up.  If you can see any part of the red edge, then your head/eyes are not directly over the ball.   Watch the video below for a complete overview of the Putter Wheel features.

Putter Wheel Overview Video:

Who it’s for:
If you struggle with lining up over the ball,  or often hit putts off-center, then the Putter Wheel is for you.  It is one of the best putting aids to help you hit consistently straight and true putts.

Overall rating: 4.5/5 – Simple product that does what it is supposed to do.   A little pricey for what it is.  Comes in a pack of two; also includes a template so you can draw alignment lines over your real golf balls.

Buy the Putter Wheel here

The Gimmee Complete Putting Trainer

gimmee-putting-trainer-golf-trainingHow it works:
This odd looking contraption claims to help you improve your entire putting game.  It works by combining a a huge variety of features, including: a projected laser beam (visible only to user) that helps you keep your head still, adjustable guide rails to help you keep your putter square at impact, a backstop which will help keep your backswing short and accelerate your follow through, and “pop-ups” to help you stay on the correct swingpath.  Combined together, these features should help you develop a smooth, consistent, flat putting stroke.

Who it’s for:
The most useful feature of The Gimmee Putting Trainer is the light beam that is only visible to the user when his/her eyes are in correct position above the ball.   The purpose of the beam is to help you keep your head absolutely still when putting.  The beam is red color before you hit the ball,  and turns green for two seconds after impact.  If you look at the green light for the entire duration, then you should have successfully kept your head down.  If you often lift your head during putts, then The Gimmee could be the device for you.

Overall rating: 3.8/5 – Some features are a bit gimmicky, and the product is cheaply made for the price, but still a decent device for improving your putting stroke.  Good for using indoors on a rainy day.

Buy the Gimmee here

Eyeline Golf EDGE Putting Mirror

eyeline putting mirrorHow it works:
Another awesome golf training product from Eyeline Golf, the EDGE Putting Mirror helps you perfect your stance/setup, while also training you to swing your putter on the correct path.  It works by giving you a full view of your  setup — eyes, putter face, and shoulders — when you stand over the ball.  Just point the alignment lines at your target, and make sure your putter is square to those llines.  After some practice, you will be able to setup perfectly each time.

Check out this example video from Eyeline on how it works:

The Edge Putting Mirror also has slots built in so you create putting gates that will help you swing on the correct path every time.

Who it’s for:
Do you keep burning the edges on your putts?  It could simply be that your alignment is off.  The EDGE Putting Mirror is easily the best putting aid for ensuring that your stance is correct and that you are swinging on the correct path.   If you want to become a consistent putter, then you definitely should check this out.   In fact, it has been used by various PGA tour pros including Miguel Angel Jienez, Ricky Fowler, Darren Clarke, Rory McIlroy, and Graeme McDowell.

Overall rating: 4.7/5 – The Pros trust it, and so can you!  A bit pricey for such a simple tool though.

Buy the Eyeline Golf EDGE here

The Original Putting Alley

putting alley golf putting putting aidHow it works:

The Putting Alley is a 27-inch long putting apparatus that will help you correct your putting stroke through repetition.  The skinny green putting “alley” is slightly raised, so that the ball will fall off the edge if you do not hit it square.  The concept is simple (think of it like a miniature bowling alley).  If the ball falls off to the right, then you are pushing your putts, and if it falls off to the left then you are pulling your putts (for right-handed players).  Over time, you will be able to self-correct your putter-face angle, swing path, and ball impact, so that you will hit solid, straight putts.

The Putting Alley has 2 different putting strip widths.  On one side, the strip is 1 inch wide.  Successfully hitting across the entire alley is about equivalent to hitting a 10 foot putt.  The other side has a strip that is only 0.5 inches wide.  Successfully completing this side is equal to hitting a 20 foot putt.

Watch the video below to get a better idea of how the Putting Alley works:

Who it’s for:
Do you push / pull a lot of your putts or consistently miss your line?  Want to make more long putts (>10 feet)?  Then the Putting Alley could be one of the best putting aids for you.   It will give you a controlled, consistent putting surface so you can work out the small kinks in your stroke, and hit consistently straighter putts.   The device is small enough to carry around anywhere, and is great for use in your home or office.

Overall rating: 4.5/5 – Great, simple putting aid that works as advertised.  Not as useful for beginners, as it won’t help you fix your stance / setup.

Buy the Original Putting Alley here

What is the Best Indoor Putting Green?

Rainy day? Stuck in the office? Don’t worry….with the numerous golf training gears and gadgets available these days, you can still work on your game.  We already looked at some of the best swing trainers on the market.  But as any pro knows, the best way to shave strokes off your score is to improve your putting!  Here are our recommendations for the best indoor putting green.

Best Indoor Putting Green Recommendations

SKLZ Accelerator Pro Ball Return Putting Mat

sklz accelerator pro ball return putting mat - best indoor putting green

The training equipment gurus over at SKLZ have created one of the best indoor putting mats on the market.  The SKLZ Accelerator Pro is over 9 feet long, automatically returns your ball, and has alignment guides at 3′, 5′ and 7′ to help you get consistent from multiple distances.  The mat is also sloped uphill at the end to train you to putt past the hole, so you will never leave your putts short on the course!

The SKLZ Accelerator Pro is decently-priced at only $50.  We would have liked to see a bit higher quality plastic used, as the current material feels a bit cheap.  Many customers also complained about the ball-return mechanism not working all the time.  Overall the SKLZ Accelerator Pro is a great indoor putting green that rolls true, and can be honestly recommended for your home or office.

Buy the SKLZ Accelerator Pro here

Also check out the SKLZ Vari-Break Putting Course

Big Moss Augusta Putting Green

big moss augusta putting green

This Big Moss Augusta is the mother of all indoor putting greens.  It is extremely large for an indoor green, measuring 12′ x 4′.   So, make sure you have enough space in your home or office to use it!  The Augusta features patented “True-Roll” downgrain material that simulates putting on freshly cut greens.  The material is extremely high quality, and will not get worn down even after being vacuumed multiple times.

The Big Moss Augusta also comes with a “break snake” so you can create custom slopes and contours in the green.  It is great way to practice your reads and uphill/downhill putts.  The Augusta also comes with a separate chipping mat, so you can practice your shots from off the green.

The Big Moss August is made in the USA, and therefore has a relatively high price tag of $285.  The price is the only downside we could find for this product.  If you are a serious golfer, and simply want the best indoor putting green available, then it is well worth the investment.  The Augusta will last you a very long time and will definitley help improve your game.

Buy the Big Moss Augusta Putting Green here

Grassroots Par Three Putting Green

grassroots part three putting greenLooking for a cheap alternative to the Big Moss Augusta?  The Grassroots Par Three Putting Green is a budget-friendly choice.  This kidney-shaped green measures 3’x9′ and has three separate practice hole cutouts.  It also has built in traps behind the holes to catch your missed shots.

The Grassroots Putting Green is made of noticeably cheaper material compared to that of the Big Moss Augusta, but still provides a fairly realistic putting service.  The holes are fairly shallow, so the balls tends to bounce out.  This mat also has problems staying unrolled, so you may need to use tape or other things to hold it flat.

Overall, the Grassroots Putting Green will get the job done, and for just over $30 though, you won’t be able to find a much better deal than this.

 Buy the Grassroots Par Three Putting Green

Best Golf Swing Analyzer for iOS / Android

Technology.  Isn’t it amazing?  With your smartphone and a simple attachment, you can now get a complete analysis of your own golf swing, including club head speed, club head angles, backswing angles, body rotation, and more.  You can even compare your swing to that of PGA tour professionals!  These devices are far from perfect yet, but can definitely help the average hacker hit a bit farther and straighter.   If you want to improve your swing, and don’t feel like hiring an expensive coach/instructor, then you should definitely check some of these devices out.

The 5 Best Golf Swing Analyzer Devices:

Zepp Golf 3D Training System

zepp golf 3d training system best golf swing analyzer

The Zepp Golf 3D Training System is easily one of the best swing analysis systems on the market.   The system is a combination of a small sensor that is attached to your glove, and a free mobile app (Android, or iOS).  The sensor connects with your smartphone/tablet device via Bluetooth, so you don’t need to be on a wireless network.  As you swing, the sensor will record thousands of data points along your swing path to help you find out where you need to improve.  The app will then display a 3D-model of your swing, so you can analyze it from every angle (360 degrees). You will visually see your club plane, club path, and hand path.  The app will also calculate your swing speed, swing tempo, and backswing angle.  You can also compare your scores to various professionals, and save your history, so you can track your improvement over time.

The Zepp Golf sensor is very small and lightweight, so you won’t notice it while playing.  It is also very reasonably priced, and is our choice as the best golf swing analyzer system on the market!

Check out the Zepp Golf commercial below:

 

Buy the Zepp Golf 3D Training System now!

If you want to save some money, check out the older version:  Zepp GolfSense Swing Analayzer 

Blast Motion Golf Replay Swing Analyzer 

blast motion golf replay swing analyzer

The newcomer to the swing analyzer market is the Golf Replay system from Blast Motion.  It was awarded as one of the “Best of 2016 PGA Show” by Golf Digest, and is supported by numerous players on tour.

The Blast Motion Golf Replay is incredibly easy to use.  You simply attach the sensor to the end of your club, and connect it to your smartphone or tablet using Bluetooth.  The system will automatically start to analyze your swing without the need for any complicated setup.  It will record swing metrics including backswing time, downswing time, tempo, speed, and numerous other useful metrics.

Unlike most other devices, not only does Blast Golf Replay help you analyze your swing for drivers, irons and wedges, it also helps you analyze your putting stroke!

One of the coolest features of the Blast Motion Golf Replay system is its video recording app.  Just record a video of your swing using the app, and it will automatically overlay your swing metrics (speed, loft, rotation, etc.) on the video to create your own highlight film.  The metrics will appear in sync with your swing, and you can replay it over and over in slow motion.   Using the apps built in social media sharing, you can quickly show off your swing improvements to your friends via Facebook, Twitter, etc.

The one major downside of the Blast Motion system is that it is only compatible with a limited number of devices.  This is especially true for Android phones  (see full list of compatible devices here).   Iron and wedge swing analysis is also only currently available for iOS devices.

We expect Blast Motion to increase the number of compatible devices in the future, but until then, make sure you check the list above or your relevant store (iOS / Android) before purchasing!

Buy the Blast Motion Golf Replay Swing Analyzer here!

Check out the promo video for Blast Motion Golf Replay below:

Buy the Blast Motion Golf Replay Swing Analyzer here!

SwingTIP Golf Swing Analysis & Coaching System

swingtip golf swing analyzerSwingTIP — made by the fellas at Mobicoach — is one of the cheaper and more popular swing analyzer systems on the market.  The  motion-sensing device clips onto the shaft of your golf club, and connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth.  SwingTip will analyze your swing across five main points:  address, takeaway, top-of-swing, downswing, and impact.  You can get a 3D-animation of your swing, as well as a video recording with stats like clubhead speed and swing speed, swing tempo, angles, and more.

The unique feature of the SwingTIP system is its integration with Mobicoach’s remote coaching service.  After you record your swing with SwingTip, you can upload your swing to the Mobicoach website, and receive live feedback and instructions from real golf coaches around the world!  (This feature is currently available for iOS only)

SwingTip is not without its flaws.  The device does not work well with left-handed swingers, and the company seems to have some quality control issues with their manufacturer.  Many customers have received faulty devices that have weak battery life or do not record your swing reliably.  Mobicoach does provide excellent customer service, so if you receive a faulty product, just make sure you contact them and they will send you a new device.

Overall, SwingTIP is solid entry level swing analyzer system, and is very budget friendly, currently costing around $118 (on Amazon)

Buy SwingTIP Golf Swing Analysis System here!

SkyCaddie SkyPro Golf Swing Analyzer (iOS only)

skypro iphone

SkyPro Swing Analyzer is made by the same company that makes the popular SkyCaddie GPS devices.  The lightweight sensor attaches to the shaft of your club (just below the grip), and connects wirelessly to your iOS device (version 7.0+) via Bluetooth.  The device should fit almost all shaft sizes, and will help you track every club in your bag (including putter).  The SkyPro will  track your clubhead speed, swing path, club rotation, face angle, swing plane, shaft lean at address and impact, tempo, and more.

TheSkyPro has the best golf swing analyzer graphics and animations.  The detailed 3D-models allow you to playback your swing in multiple speeds (real-time, half-time, quarter-time, pause), and also gives you mulitple viewing angles (including zoom-in).  You can also compare your past swings to see what changed in your swing.

The SkyPro will also backup all your swings online, so you never have to worry about losing your swing history.

The main drawback of the SkyPro is that it does not come with detailed instructions, so it can be complicated and frustrating to initially setup.  It is also slightly higher priced than most golf swing analyzers, and is currently available for iOS (iPhone, iPad, etc.) and Android users.

Buy the  SkyCaddie SkyPro Golf Swing Analyzer here!

3Bays Golf Swing Analyzer (iOS / Android)

 3bays golf swing analyzer ios3Bays markets itself has the lightest golf swing analyzer in the world (0.33 oz.).  This is useful, since the club will feel the same when you swing  with or without the device attached. The 3Bays device fits onto the butt end of your club instead of the shaft.  This should also help keep the club feeling the same whether you swing with or without the device attached.

As you swing, the device will capture up to 10,000 data points along your swingpath, which is then transmitted wirelessly (via Bluetooth) to your device.  You can view an extremely detailed animated version of your swing plane from the side or front, and also view numerous swing metrics like club head speed, face angle, tempo, down swing time, back swing time, impact force, ball speed, carry distance, and consistency.  Viewing just metrics alone is not very useful, so 3Bays gives you the ability to compare your swing to your own past swings, as well as those of various PGA/LPGA professionals.

Overall the 3Bays is very reliable, lightweight, and accurate swing analyzer.  For just over $150, it is also a good value buy.  Note that the 3Bays device is only meant for adults sized clubs, and will probably not work or fit with child-sized/smaller clubs.

There are seperate versions of the 3Bays Golf Swing Analyzer for iOS and Android, so make sure you pick the correct one!

Buy 3Bays Golf Swing Analyzer for iOS  (iPhone, iPad, etc.)

Buy 3Bays Golf Swing Analyzer for Android

Leave us a comment, and let us know what your choice is for the best golf swing analyzer!

What’s the Best Golf Swing Trainer?

Stuck in the office all day?  Have a few minutes to spare and want to work out some of the kinks in your swing?  These golf training devices will help you fix your slice, increase your swing speed, hit straighter drives, and hopefully help you shoot lower scores on the course.  Below are some of best golf swing trainers available on the market.

The 6 Best Golf Swing Trainers

SKLZ Gold Flex Strength and Tempo Swing Trainer

sklz gold flex strength and tempo trainer best golf swing trainerWhat it does:  The SKLZ Gold Flex Strength and Tempo Trainer helps you create clubhead lag for longer drives, build core strength/flexibility, and develop a better tempo in your golf swing.  Overall, this swing trainer will help give you flatter swing plane, which in turn will help eliminate slices.

Who it’s for:  The SKLZ Gold Flex is a great tool for all players, especially those struggling with slicing.  In fact it has even been used by PGA tour players such as Vijay Singh, Matt Kuchar, and Fred Couples.  It is also great for older players to increase torso flexibility.  The Gold Flex is perfect device for stretching before a game, and to get a good swing rhythm before teeing off.

Overall rating: 4.6/5

 

 

SKLZ Tempo and Grip Trainer

sklz tempo and grip trainer best golf swing trainerWhat it does:  Here is another great tool from SKLZ that does exactly as the name implies — improves your grip and swing tempo/rhythm.  This small training club (approx 30 inches long) has a molded grip to ensure that your hands are always in the exact proper position.  Changeable weights allow you to simulate swinging either irons (heavy) or woods (light), while also developing your flexibility and golf-specific muscles.  Using this trainer will help give you a flatter swing plane, and elimiate unwanted slices.

Who it’s for:  The small size of this tool makes it the best golf swing trainer for practicing indoors at your office or home.  It’s also very reasonably priced at only $25.  If you don’t have time to get to the range before the game, then a few swings with the SKLZ Tempo and Grip is the perfect warmup. Note that this tool is only made for right handed players.

Overall rating: 4.5/5

 

 

IZZO Smooth Swing

izzo smooth swingWhat it does:  Helps elimate the dreaded “chicken wing“.  The IZZO Smooth Swing keeps your arms and body together for a tighter, more efficient swing.   With a tighter swing, you will start to hit consistently longer, and more accurate shots.

Who it’s for:  Anyone that has that ugly chicken wing form in their golf swing.  It is a simple, and cheap device that works.  If you don’t mind looking a little bit dorky at the driving range, then you should try out the IZZO Smooth Swing.

Overall rating: 4/5 – Simple device that does what it’s supposed to do, but you could also just use a large rubber bands to simulate the same effect.

 

 

SKLZ Smash Bag

sklz smash bagWhat it does:  Helps you practice making proper club contact, and provides instant visual feedback.   Just take a full swing at the SKLZ Smash Bag. then look at the angle of the target map to see how you did.  If your swing was straight/true, the bag will remain aligned. If your swing missed the target or hit at a skewed angle, you will feel the miss, and the bag will also show with a skewed indentation.

Who it’s for: If you’re struggling with hitting thin/fat, slicing/hooking, then give the Smash Bag a try. It is particulary good for beginners who want to get the feel of making proper impact.  It is perfect for practing in your house, backyard or at the range.

Overall rating: 4/5 – Great priced hitting bag, especially for beginner and intermediate golfers.

 

 

 Swingyde Golf Swing Training Aid

swingyde golf swing trainerWhat it does:  The Swingyde helps your arms and wrists stay in the proper position throughout the golf swing.  It will help you develop a flatter swing with correct clubface alignment.  This will allow you to make square contact, and consistently hit more accurate, straighter shots.  The Swingyde is particularly useful for your backswing, when you can’t see your wrists.  It will let you feel if your hands are in the proper “hinge” position.

Who it’s for: The Swingyde is the best golf swing trainer for players that struggle with making square contact (clubface angle is too open, or too closed), or have problems keeping their front arm straight on their backswing.  It is a very simple device and has been used by pros like Zach Johnson and Charles Howell III.  The Swingyde can be used by left or right handed players.

Overall rating: 4/5 – Simple device that works well, but a bit overpriced for a piece of plastic.

 

 

 Momentus Speed Whoosh Golf Swing Trainer with Training Grip

momentus speed whoosh golf swing trainerWhat it does:  The Momentus Speed Whoosh helps activate your “fast twitch” muscles, which in turn helps you increase your swing speed and hit more explosive drives. The Speed Whoosh weighs the same as an average driver, but swings 20+ MPH faster.  This unnatural speed helps activate your normally unused fast twitch muscles, and prepares them for use.  After swinging the Speed Whoosh six times in a row, then switching to your normal driver, you will see an increase of 7-10 mph in club head speed.  This can translate to an extra 20-25 yards of distance.  The timing ball on the Speed Whoosh also lets you know if you are releasing on your downswing too early or too late.

Who it’s for: The Speed Whoosh is best golf swing trainer for players trying to increase their swing speed and hit longer drives.  It has been used by long-drive champions as well as many PGA tour professionals.  It is not so useful for absolute beginners who are still working on their swing fundamentals.

Overall rating: 4.2/5 – Will give you a extra yards on your drive, but won’t fix your slice/hook or other swing flaws.