Practicing with a start monitor

Posted by on March 04, 2020  /   Posted in golf tips

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You have just purchased a starter monitor, what now? Many golfers struggle with the use of their new gadgets. Well, I'm here to help. The purpose of this article is to assist amateur players in analyzing data they receive from starting monitors and how they can develop better practice habits with the technology.

The golf world is flooded with ball flight data. Watch every PGA Tour event and you'll see players on the series warming up with a bright orange box behind their batting station. But what do the players do with this data? They certainly do not grind swing changes while warming up for a tournament?! No, most probably not. What the data offer them is a connection between the feeling of their swing that day and the resulting distance, direction and spin of their ball flight.

Although Trackman has become the clear market leader for tour players, the $ 25,000 price tag has the most recreational buyers searching elsewhere. Fortunately, the market has responded with an influx of personal launch monitors available for $ 500 or less. Many of these have been tested and assessed by Practical Golf:

The meat and potatoes

Although the cheaper monitors do not offer the abundance of data that a product does at company level, most give you the figures & # 39; meat and potatoes & # 39 ;:

Ball speed
Launch Angle
Spin Rate
Transport distance

For most golfers, this is a lot of valuable information. Sometimes it can be confusing to look at data on your swing and this should only be interpreted by teachers. So what can we do with this data?

Wedge Control

Perhaps one of the most effective ways to use a personal start monitor with your wedges. Good wedge play is all about remote control, and this is an area that many golfers experience because they do not practice enough.

In addition, almost every product with a price of $ 500 and less gives you extremely accurate distances within 100 meters.

As discussed in this article, effective wedge exercise is a combination of blocked (repetitive) and random exercise. Sharp in what kind of fluctuations it takes to hit the ball between 40-80 meters. When you get your & # 39; feeling & # 39; you can randomly test yourself. A product like the SC200 Plus has a practice mode that does this for you and gives you assessments for each shot.

The Swing Caddy SC200 Plus

Comfort zone in a controlled environment

Every golfer wants to be more consistent. The fastest way to consistency is to find a swing speed and rhythm that result in solid contact. Of course, bad recordings happen, but swinging within yourself can make them less frequent and less punitive.

With the help of a start monitor, you can not only identify how far you reach your clubs, but you can also more easily follow the distances at which you take your highest percentage of good shots. I can hit an iron 200 meters, but an annoying swipe of the ball is needed to reach it. Success rate? Maybe 3/10. Conversely, if I try to hit a 7-iron 160 yards, I can hit 7/10 shots on a fairly large green and find the other three not far offline. The first step in playing within yourself is to find out which swing pace leads to your best shot pattern. Read this article for more help.

The Big Dog

Everyone wants to know how they can continue to hit their driver. If you want a list of ideas to help you experiment with your practice, this article can help.

Along the way, you can use some of the start monitor metrics to track your progress. When it comes to increasing your total distance, the ball speed is king. Every product in this category gives you a reasonable accuracy of ball speed numbers (as well as wearing distance).

The premium models, such as the Swing Caddy SC300 and Rapsodo MLM, also offer you a launch angle, which is another critical measure. In general, many golfers leave the table with their driver away because they launch the ball too low.

An example of driver data from the Rapsodo MLM – you can see ball speed, club speed and launch angle (in addition to some other statistics)

View this trackman chart, and you can see that if you launch it higher with lower spin, you can add some distance to your disks without increasing the swing speed.

There are a few ways you can experiment during the exercise to help optimize your ball speed and launch angle:

Impact location: Grab a can of foot spray and see where your impact tendencies are on your driver's face. You want to prevent that you hit it too low on the face, so you lose distance. You want to hit it in the middle of the face or just above it to help with optimum launch conditions.

Tee Height: Experimenting with your tee height can help a lot in maximizing the distance. Begin to see how a low, medium or high tee height can change your impact trends and data on your start monitor.
Ball position: Last but not least, where your ball is located can make a huge difference in the distance of your driver. In this article we showed how finding the optimal ball position (usually towards your guiding foot) has added 34 meters to a ride!

Evaluate your gap in distance

If your launching conditions are reasonable (meaning you don't hit the ball extremely high or extremely low), your set can be as simple as counting with five. In general, players want a ball speed difference of 5 mph between clubs. As long as spin and launch fall within acceptable parameters, this gives you nice 10-15 meter differences in distance between your irons and wedges.

The Rapsodo MLM has one of the best apps to evaluate your distances per club. Here is a screenshot of their app.

If you have trouble getting these holes in a row, find a local store / professional with a Mitchell Loft / Lie machine and have your clubs checked. As a technician, I routinely find 1, 2 or 3 clubs in a set (especially an older set) with non-synchronous cages where they should be. A few quick turns and those gap gaps are easily cleared.

Speed ​​training

Many golfers now train their bodies to move faster through training regiments and Overspeed training with SuperSpeed ​​Golf. Personal start monitors can keep track of how that training is transferred to your swing speed and of course your total distances.

SuperSpeed ​​Golf training sticks

If you use SuperSpeed ​​Golf, there are now two start monitors that can track your swing speed without hitting a ball. The SC200 Plus and PRGR start monitors can help you benchmark your speeds when you train with the speed sticks.

These two launch monitors can measure your swing speed without hitting a ball

Your best shot versus your normal shot

One of the biggest mistakes that is rampant among golfers is that they don't take enough club in greens. Looking at the data, the vast majority of players miss greens on the short side, and it costs them easy strokes.

ShotScope's analysis of millions of shots showed that golfers consistently miss greens short of their goal

A starting monitor can help you keep track of your distances and give you a more realistic insight into your recording patterns. For example, you see when you hit your seven iron perfectly, it goes 165 meters, but notice on most shots that it comes closer to 145-155 meters due to accidents. Applying this information to your job decisions is an easy way to get more greens and lower your scores.

Other things to keep in mind

The ball is important: Do not train with a Slazenger that you removed from a lake in 2013 and expect it to perform as a Pro V1. If you are on a driving range, count on the ball to come with less speed and less spin than even a mid-performance golf ball from a reputable manufacturer. View this test between range balls and premium balls. If you practice at home, you can arrange the quality of the golf ball more.
Practice with purpose and intensity: A launch monitor will not magically make you a better golfer. However, it can help to practice more purposefully, something that most golfers do not. I was just as guilty as anyone else out there on the range of pounding balls with the same club, on the same goal, without really paying much attention to anything. One of the best exercises that I do in the range is also an exercise that I preach to all my students. I call it …

Game Time

If you have access to virtual jobs, play them. If you do not have virtual jobs, play a job in your head !! Imagine the tee recording at # 1. Consider the problem. Choose your goal line. Choose your club. Go through your entire routine and take a shot. Imagine where the ball landed and plan the next shot from there. Repeat this process for all tee shots and approaches. You will find that you practice much more intensively and efficiently. This higher involvement in planning and executing recordings provides a much more realistic practical experience. For an additional level of fun, follow how good your approach photos were and put on a green or carpet from those distances. Now you have a way to quantify your practice and improvements, even in the off season!

A Word of Caution

Data does not all prevail. Don't get too addicted to seeing perfect starting conditions with every shot. This is more a problem with Trackman because there is so much information. I have seen many players get bogged down and worry about degrees of club path, attack angle and perfect spinning conditions on an iron of seven. Believe me, nobody is perfect, especially during a whole round of golf.

Spend more time building up a repeatable rhythm, making solid golf shots and some exercises from this article.

For more information about the current launch monitors on the market, you can read this manual.

About the Author

Greg Gibson is a Staff Golf Professional, certified club fitter, instructor and trackman specialist at the golf headquarters in Louisville, KY. He was previously General Manager, Director of Golf and Head Golf Professional at Shelbyville Country Club. For an appointment with Greg, contact the GHQ Louisville staff at 502-245-8600

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