The Fairway Pro is unlike any other golf practice aid. It is a revolutionary golf mat that works based on a patented technology which allows the mat to slide forward in the direction of your swing, so as to simulate the process of carving out a divot on real turf. This makes it much more accurate than conventional golf mats. With traditional golf mats, unless you invest in a soft silicon-based mat of exceptionally high quality, which of course will be very pricey as well, you do not get an accurate feel of real grass. These golf mats have significantly lesser give than real grass. As a result, the club, when swung, tends to bounce off the mat on impact. The force of the impact relays back at you, into the player’s wrist and elbow, while the ball receives much less momentum than it should have.
In summary, if you are a beginner and looking for a budget-friendly golf simulator that will allow you to take some swings indoors, or for those who just want to have fun and load up Tiger Woods to play with friends, then this simulator will be perfect for you. Of course, there will be instances in which shots don’t register or your get inaccurate distances, but that’s what the included remote is for. Just reset and swing again! This unit is extremely portable, and you can hook it up anywhere on a USB device.
There are a few things you need to keep in mind if you are seriously thinking about investing in a golf simulator. First off, if you want to maximize your user experience, you need to get the simulator working properly. For that, you’ll need a good computer and a decent graphics card to get the best visual image possible or a dedicated high end golf simulator.
I built my home simulator late last summer. I went with the SkyTrak w/Game Improvement Pkg for $1750 on sale, Rukket Haack Golf Net for $129, a used commercial grade 5×5 hitting mat (Grade A) for $200 off eBay. I used my old laptop and used it for displaying the shot data. I set mine up in my garage. I leave the net up full-time and move the mat in/out of position, if needed. This is a very workable and relatively affordable solution for $2079 in total.
This is probably the cheapest way to set up a golf simulator in your home. However, this version of OptiShot is not a launch monitor, and therefore it will not track the ball. The infrared sensors in the OptiShot are there to track your swing before you hit the ball and after you hit the ball. So, if you are looking for a professional and sophisticated golf simulator analysis like you get with the FlighScope or TrackMan, you should look for something else.
Jim McLean’s 8 Step Swing, which incorporates the swings of Ernie Els, Ben Hogan and Tiger Woods, is an additional feature many HD Golfers decide to add to their simulators. Step by step, a golfer is able to perfect every element of their swing. The simulator records and analyzes a golfer’s swing in real time. When the system detects that the golfer’s position and swing are out of the “corridor of success” or have committed a “death move”, the simulator will automatically alert the golfer and present virtual coaching from Jim McLean.
Those of you golfers who live in cold climates and can’t always go to the range will significantly appreciate this device. It includes pretty accurate infrared sensors that will measure the club-head speed and point-of-impact by shooting about 10,000 pulses per second at you both before and after impact. Then, the OptiShot software will process the information and give you a fairly accurate illustration of your shot.