The 5 wood and the 7 wood can be key clubs in your golf bag for both tee shots and approach shots. They are both much easier to hit than the traditional 15 degree 3-wood that a lot of golfers own.
It can be confusing to understand what the differences since the pros rarely play 5 and 7 woods but let's take a look at 5 wood vs 7 wood so you know what the benefits are of both and which fairway wood you could have in the bag.
You might even take both!
5 Wood vs 7 Wood in Detail
5 Wood vs 7 Wood Loft
A 5-wood has 18 degrees of loft while a 7-wood has 21 degrees of loft.
Both the 5 wood and the 7 wood are easier to hit and get airborne than any 3 wood. With a loft of 18 to 21 degrees, the 5 wood and 7 wood are much easier to hit off the turf than a 15 degree fairway wood.
A five wood is very easy to hit from both the tee and the ground but a 7 wood will be just slightly easier. The higher loft on the 7 wood means it flies higher and lands softer than a 5 wood. This higher loft will increase spin and can help to keep the ball on target more than in a 5 wood.
The 5 wood at 18 degrees, corresponds to a 2 iron loft. The 7 wood corresponds with a modern 3 iron or 4 iron. It is much easier to hit both the 5 wood and the 7 wood instead of a long iron like a 3 or 4 iron.
I think the 5 wood is a good choice for golfers that struggle off the tee especially on shorter par 4s. The 5 wood is also a good choice if you find yourself in the 180 to 200 yard range to the green a lot on your golf course. They are very accurate and land softly to hold greens.
If you have a lot of shots in the 170 to 190 yard range, the 7 wood can be a tool to help you hit those greens easier than with a long iron. You can see that both the 5 wood and 7 wood can help you to reach par 4's and also hit accurate tee shots on short par 4s.
5 Wood vs 7 Wood Shaft Length
The shorter a club, the easier it is to control and hit in the correct direction.
The main reason that the 7 wood is easier to hit in the direction you want over the 5 wood is that it is half to 1 inch shorter than the 5 wood.
5 Wood Distance vs 7 Wood
The loft is lower in the 5 wood and the shaft is also longer. That means the 5 wood is certain to go longer than the 7 wood with the same strike.
The difference in distance will usually be between 10 and 15 yards. If you swing a bit faster, you might find the gap widen to 20 yards between the 5 and 7 wood.
Top 3 Reasons to carry a 5 wood
Easier to hit off the tee
May have a yardage advantage
May be more versatile for punch shots and longer tee shots
Why You Choose a 7 Wood
Slower swingers should try a 7 wood first. The lower the loft of a club, the more difficult it is to get it airborne. That's just one of the realities of golf. A 7 wood will suit a slower swinger more than the 5 wood.
Top 3 Reasons to carry a 7 wood
Is shorter and has additional loft for more control and soft landing
May be better out of the rough due to gliding through the tall blades
May be more precise because of shorter shaft and higher loft
The 7 wood is easy to launch high and hit greens with. A long iron just cannot compare to the ease of a 7 wood. The 7 wood is a great way to replace long irons or hybrids if you do not like them.
This club will help you hit higher and longer shots than a long iron, especially if you are a slower swing speed player.
If you have trouble getting the ball in the air, the 7 wood is for you!
What is Best for Beginners?
Both the 5 wood and the 7 wood are perfect for beginners. I would advice a beginner skip the 3 wood altogether and start with a 7 wood. You can add a 5 wood later in your journey to increase distance.
What is the Best for Mid Handicappers?
Mid handicappers should also scrap the 3 wood, replacing it with a 5 wood and adding a 7 wood as well. Most mid handicappers cannot control a 3 or 4 iron nearly as well as a 7 wood.
Any mid handicapper who struggles with a hook when they hit a hybrid, should replace their 3 hybrid with a 7 wood immediately. The 5 wood will give them an excellent replacement for driver on some holes on the golf course. Both the 5 wood and the 7 wood should be in every mid handicappers bag.
Which is Easier to Hit?
Comparing the 5 wood and the 7 wood to a 3 wood, they are both much easier to hit than the 3 wood. But of course with a shorter shaft and higher loft, the 7 wood is easier to hit than the 5 wood.
For low handicappers, I would say pick one or the other whichever is best for your bag.
For mid handicappers, get both the 5 and 7 wood.
For high handicappers, start with the 7 wood, and add the 5 wood if you find you like the 7 wood. If you do not like the 7 wood, you can try a 5 wood or replace them with hybrids.
If you are a golfer that cannot hit hybrids or long irons well, you might make room for both clubs in your bag.
Usually golfers talk about how far they hit the tee shot, or their 7 iron but very rarely do we talk about wedge distances.
On my channel, I can't stop talking about the importance of the game inside 125 yards. This is very often wedge range for golfers and the scoring zone to reduce your handicap.
It's very important to know how far each wedge goes. It's also important to have excellent distance control with the pitching wedge, gap wedge and sand wedge so you hit the ball close to the hole.
So how far should you hit your wedges? Different wedges have different degree lofts and the distances for average male and female golfers are between these distance ranges:
Sand wedge 65 to 80 yards
Gap wedge 80 to 110 yards
Pitching wedge 90 to 120 yards
It does not matter if you fall into the average above or not. The important part is:
You must KNOW your carry distance with each wedge factually accurate! We cannot use our ego distance for wedges. It's about precision, not power.
Controlling the distance of each wedge is the key once you know your normal distance that you hit the ball 8 out of 10 times. When you know how far you hit them, you can then control the distance so you are never in doubt approaching flags.
The wedge game is the key to scoring in golf. As a mid or higher handicapper, and even a lower handicap, the wedges will not miraculously bring you more birdies. The wedge game reduces the big numbers on your scorecards to more controllable bogeys and double bogeys instead of triples or more.
Which Wedges Should I Carry?
A modern pitching wedge has 48 degrees of loft while a sand wedge has a loft of 56 degrees. It's perfectly acceptable to use only these two wedges. After some time and experience, you might notice a distance gap between the two clubs that needs to be filled with a gap wedge.
I recommend that if you have 1 year of experience under your belt in golf that you have 3 wedges – a pitching wedge, a gap wedge and a sand wedge. You can have 4-6 degrees of loft difference between each wedge.
If your pitching wedge is 48 degrees, you can use a gap wedge of between 50 or 52 degrees of loft and a sand wedge with 56 or 58 degrees. Your preference will make the choice for you.
As mentioned above, you only need to know your carry distances - it does not matter the distance or the wedge. It must make sense for YOUR game If you know that information, you have power in your game to score well.
If you are an average hobby golfer trying to break 80, 90 or 100, we must understand that we just won't hit that many greens. So using the distances above as a guide, you can create a distance range for yourself.
100 breakers will hit 1-2 greens in regulation
90 breakers will hit 2-4 greens in regulation
80 breakers will hit 4-8 greens in regulation
par breakers will hit 8-12 greens in regulation
By default, we are scrambling with our wedges. The average golfer trying to break 80-90 will miss upward of 10 greens per round - well over 50%. This is normal and is nothing to be ashamed of. But the fact is that the wedge game will be where the score is decided between in the 80s or in the 90s.
Wedge Distance Chart
How Far Should You Hit a 56 degree Wedge?
How Far Should a 60 Degree Wedge Go?
Why Should I Have Many Wedges?
The main reason to have a 3 wedges is so that you can hit the ball a specific distance when you really need it. When you have confidence in the distance you can hit the ball with a certain wedge, you will feel committed and hit the ball closer to the cup for an easier par or bogey save.
Inside the wedge range, confidence is most important to avoid the dreaded fat shot or thin shot. Having the correct wedge for the task will reduce your stress and lower your score.
How to Measure How Far You Hit Your Wedges
We cannot use guesses or estimates and there is no need to.
There are three easy ways to learn your wedge distances:
Go to a Trackman bay at a driving range or indoors. You can hit balls and the Trackman will collect the information for you and give you a great spread of data and an average number.
Go to a field and hit your wedges. Try to see how much they are bouncing. You can leave a golf ball bag where you were hitting the balls and shoot a rangefinder back to the bag from where the ball were landing on your shots. This is a very accurate way to know.
You can check this out o the course. When you play a social or casual round, hit 3-4 balls to the green with your selected wedge. Shoot the distance to the pin. hit the appropriate wedge and then over the entire round, notice how far short or how far long you were in relation to the pin. This is also a very accurate way to gauge your wedge distance. To make this even more accurate, use a GPS watch to track the distance from where you hit it to where it landed.
The key is to remember DO NOT use the AVERAGE number. Use the number that comes up most often. So if the most common number for your PW is 110 and 113 and 115, then you know your wedge distance range is 110 to 115 yards. If you have a few outliers like 126 and 98, you should ignore those.
You have to remember to be brutally honest and do not lie to yourself. Use the club that works, not the club that impresses other people.
How to Hit the Partial Shots
It never matters how many wedges you have in the bag, you always seem to have those in between shots.
What do you do if you have 95 yards but your gap wedge goes 90 and your pitching wedge goes 100-105?
Here is the key:
Look at the green.
Where is the pin?
How many yards of green do you have from the pin to the front edge?
How many yards of green do you have from the pin to the back edge?
In the example above, you can hit the ball up to 115 yards without missing the green. In this instance you should hit the pitching wedge because your distance range is 100-105. That means at the most you will have a 30 foot putt but you will be on the green even with a poor strike. Ignore the flag!
If you hit a 90 yard gap wedge, it can also work if the front of the green is flat and there is no hazard or chance of spinning down a hill. I would err on the side of caution and ignore the flag and get the ball to the middle of the green.
This is an easy solution.
You don't need to compare your distance to others. The key is to KNOW your own game so you can use your exact distances and shots to keep your score down with great wedge play.
Inside 125 yards is the vital part of golf and hitting the green 6 or 7 times out of 10 is a great achievement because even the pros only hit 70% of the greens from this distance. Keep your wedge game strong!
Urethane golf balls perform much better than surlyn, but they are expensive. So when Kirkland Signature golf balls came out, so many golfers had access to a great urethane golf ball performance, for the same price as cheaper surlyn balls.
The Kirklands Signatures are quality balls sold at Costco, with great endurance, and perform similarly to much higher priced golf balls.
After playing them for a while, many people are asking — who makes Kirkland golf balls actually?
I took a deeper look and found something very interesting. It would be easy to assume that Kirkland golf balls are manufactured by Costco themselves, but this is not the case.
Most Kirkland products are subcontracted to third parties which is no surprise because golf ball technology and research would cost way too much to create a new ball from scratch.
Kirkland Golf balls are manufactured by Qingdao SM Parker, which is a large company in China.
Some people also report that Nassau Golf produce Kirkland the golf balls in Korea. I have actually played Nassau golf balls and they are high quality. But it would appear the truth is that Qingdao manufactures Kirkland Sigs. The company is heavily involved in sports equipment manufacturing. They focus mainly on golf equipment, and Kirkland golf balls are their headline product.
The 3 piece golf ball is by far the most popular golf ball by Kirkland. It is officially known as Kirkland Performance+.
The pricing is way less than its competitors.
I played Pebble Beach with a Kirkland Signature golf ball. I am not joking, and I shot 74 on the first attempt. Check out the video below.
Costco is a budget wholesaler, so a pack of Kirkland golf balls costs much less than most manufactuers. Urethane golf balls are expensive and will range anywhere from $2 to $4 per golf ball, so at around a buck per ball, the Kirkland Signature is hard to beat on price.
It is a low launch and high spin golf ball with 338 dimples.
Review of Costco Golf Balls
Kirkland 3 piece golf balls or Kirkland Performance+ golf balls are always compared to the Titleist Pro-V1x, because it is the most used urethane ball on tour. This would be a mistake since this is a budget golf ball. That aside, the ball has no issues and for the average player, spending so little on a nice golf ball can enhance their enjoyment.
According to 'studies', the Kirkland golf balls are slightly shorter at higher swing speed at around 10 yards. I did not experience this in my time in the USA. I found the Kirkland equally as long.
They have a higher spin rate compared to the Titleist balls according to the studies, but I found the golf ball actually spins less than a Pro V1x on my shots. The Kirkland sits down near it's pitchmark rather than ripping back like a ProV1x does. My swing speed is a little faster than average.
But golfers with slightly slower speed will get more stop and drop with the Kirklands. Kirkland 3 piece golf balls could be a good choice for you if you find the ball bounding on after an approach to the green.
When I think of the people I played with in the USA, I think the Kirkland 3 piece golf balls are best for literally any level of golfer. Beginners to mid-level golfers who don't want to lose $4 golf balls will love the performance. And even as a low handicap, I loved these golf balls and would game them every round if I could get them in Asia.
It's a low stress golf ball with great performance perfect for practice rounds, casual rounds and if you don't buy into the hype, it is a ball you can use iwth confidence in competitions.
Kirkland 4 Piece Golf Ball
Kirkland launched a 4 piece golf ball in 2016.
Costco suggests that the 4 piece golf balls were of equal or higher quality than the golf balls on the market.
Acushnet Holdings who produce Titleist golf balls, filed a lawsuit against the Kirkland 4 piece golf balls. There were 10 patent violations in the case.
The 4 piece golf balls stoped being produced after the case was settled out of court.
Thereafter, in 2019, Costco announced a brand new 4-piece golf ball. It was sold at the same price, but quality seemed to be much worse this time. Golfers flooded the internet with pictures of cracking golf balls with damaged covers and tons of bad reviews.
After this negative coverage and terrible reviews, Costco took the 4 piece golf balls off the market completely and offered easy returns to limit the damage.
Does Costco Sell Golf Clubs?
Costco launched a line of golf clubs due to the high demand for budget golf equipment in light of the excellent reception of the 3 piece golf ball.
Costco sell the Kirkland 3 piece wedge club which people do enjoy. The quality is good.
Costco also has a putter which gets rave reviews.
Who Manufactures Kirkland Golf Clubs?
Qingdao SM Parker is only involved in the golf ball production. The golf clubs by Costco, are made by the Southern California Design company who are known for their quality and attention to detail.
Costco also sells box sets of Callaway golf clubs.
Are Costco Golf Balls the Same as Titleist?
Titleist is the leader in golf balls with all the coverage on Tour. The Kirkland golf balls are still budget golf balls and so can only be compared at surface level.
Kirkland and Pro V1 have similar materials and endurance but the level of performance will always be lower in a budget golf ball. Does that apply to 95% of amateur golfers? No. Most golfers will not notice a difference between a Kirkland and a Pro V1. A scratch down to plus handicapper and professionals will notice a difference.
The Kirkland is a cheaper urethane covered golf ball with excellent performance, and can slot into my bag any time any day.
What Golf Ball Is Comparable to Kirkland?
If I had to compare these golf balls to another brand, I would compare it to the Pro V1 and the Chrome Soft X. The compression of the Kirkland is higher than the general budget golf ball.
I cannot compare the Kirkland to an Inesis Tour 900 or a Taylormade Tour Response. Those ball feel soft and squishy and I notice distance losses. The Kirkland does not experience as big of a distance loss and it feels firm so I would go with a Pro V1 and Chrome Soft X as it's equivalent.
The Bottom Line
Kirkland make an excellent 3 piece golf ball. Kirkland are ever expanding into more facets of the golf game and with the quality being as good as it is, we can expect even more advancements. They are some of the best golf balls for mid handicappers.
If you’re in the market for a golf launch monitor or golf simulator, you know the name SkyTrak.
SkyTrak was put on sale in 2014 for the first time, and was one of the first really accurate launch monitor on the market for less than $5,000 making it somewhat affordable to a lot of golfers.
In my SkyTrak review, I'll take a deeper look at this golf launch monitor. I'll show you how to set yours up, exactly what's in our setup and how it is used, plus how it measures ball and swing data, and show you the capabilities of the unit.
How does the SkyTrak perform? How does it compare to other launch monitors that are on the market today? Is it worth getting if you’re looking for a quality golf simulator?
SkyTrak Launch Monitor Review
SkyTrak Initial Setup
The Skytrak is very easy to set up. Keep in mind, this is for new models. If you do purchase a used model, you may need to contact SkyTrak as it would have been registered with someone else. A new model will be an easy setup.
You create an account online, use that account to sign into your unit, then use the WiFi in your home to access the Skytrak from any device. I regularly use an iPad or my laptop PC depending on what I’m doing (simulator or just practicing on the range).
As far as physically setting it up in the bay at home, the most important considerations were leveling the unit and keeping it even with the mat. My Skytrak has a hard protective case with leveling feet so that part was easy. Getting it aligned and leveled is the most important factor to achieve proper accuracy of the SkyTrak, but it is not difficult.
It is also important that you have a brightly lit room. My garage has big LED lights on the ceiling as I installed those for working on my cars and motorcycles at night years ago and they work great for the Skytrak. It’s very bright in there.
It's very important to line your Skytrak up correctly and while it takes a little bit of fiddling, once you have it, keep it there so it doesn't miss shots or mistake shots. This is very important.
White shoes with the white balls gets lost by Skytrak sometimes and won't register from my observations. White pants can sometimes be an issue so wear darker colors contrasting the white golf ball all the time. The SkyTrak likes if you have more markings on the balls, like putting lines or logos or customized printed golf balls.
Setting up the SkyTrak Simulator
These are the most bare bone essential things you MUST have in order for the SkyTrak to work.
SkyTrak unit and I suggest the protective case as it has adjustable legs and a level on it to make sure the unit is level (utmost importance).
Hitting net or screen - the SkyTrak will track real golf balls not foam balls so you need to stop the golf balls with a solid net or hitting screen.
Hitting mat - you need a hitting mat because of all the balls you will hit. A high quality hitting mat will last a long time.
A computer or Apple product to run the software on the Skytrak. You will plug the SkyTrak into the computer which will display your statistics nd data. This is essential because there is no other way to see the results of the shots.
A screen to see the results. This is either the computer screen, TV or Apple product.
Optional Extras: You can upgrade your setup with a hitting screen which will return balls to you. This screen can then be used to project the images from an overhead short-throw projector. By doing this, you can create an immersive experience - notice the pictures below between Jim and Phil. Jim has a very barebones setup while Phil has an immersive experience.
The biggest difference in setup between fully immersive or bare bones is your needs. Do you want to have fun and enjoy the simulator experience or do you want to train and understand your numbers only? If you want only numbers and improvement then you can go barebones. if you want a video game like experience with something interactive, you can go all out with a projector and 16:9 screen.
Below are a couple of examples from Phil and Jim which explains their setup with pictures.
Jim's SkyTrak Minimal Setup
Jim Pecoraro, who is a Golf Sidekick subscriber sent in his setup and SkyTrak review to help us learn more.
Jim: I needed something that was accurate indoors in my garage. I need practice features like driving range and club gapping; as well as statistics I was interested in, namely accurate spin numbers, ball speed and launch angle.
I have the PowerNet - The nicer nets are 10x the price so that’s a consideration.
I have the Quattro mat - I did tons of research on mats. There are many out there but this is the best IMO. It’s very durable because it's designed for outside use and I have hit thousands of balls and there is literally no wear. It is heavy and will last a lifetime. It is also relatively soft to hit off of and is easy on my joints.
I use my laptop PC plugged into a TV to “project” the golf courses and practice range.
I did NOT need club head data or putting. Those needs drove me past the “entry level,” doppler based units like SwingCaddie, Mevo+, Rapsodo, etc.
In my experience and doing research, it seems doppler based units are not accurate indoors and don’t typically offer robust features like those I was interested in.
Even Trackman 4’s can have trouble in indoor settings without enough space to operate. So I knew I needed a camera-based unit. The second main factor was budget - at the time of my needs, the SkyTrak was the most affordable camera-based unit at roughly $2,000 USD and I would have considered purchasing one at that price if I hadn’t gotten it for free from my friend.
In recent years, several companies have come out with more “affordable” camera-based units. The Bushnell/Foresight GC3 ($3,000+) and Full Swing Kit to name a few. The biggest differentiator for those units is the addition of club head data (face, angle-of-attack, path, etc.) but those features come at significant extra cost, often thousands of dollars.
Skytrak was a nice middle ground that gets 90% of the practice features for 20% of the cost. Overall I love the set up I have. It could be better if I wanted to spend more money on a projector and impact screen, but I have limited time to set that up and this is great for my needs.
Solid performance and comparative accuracy compared to a $20k machine
Lots of features to choose from and a lot of great software for courses and games
Take it to the range it wirelessly connects to an iPad or iPhone
My friends and I use it to play accuracy games and to look at our actual distances while hitting range balls vs. into the net.
Great battery life
You need to adjust the ball so the logo faces the infrared dot
Mat shifting and misaligned aiming spot makes inaccurate results - make sure its aligned by using alignment sticks
White clothes or shoes confuse the machine
My Top Tips to Get More out of SkyTrak
The best tip I can give is to put it in a place that is easy for you to regularly use. If you have to drag out all your gear every time you want to practice (within reason), you won’t use it. Especially for those who don’t have thousands of dollars to spend or time to build a true permanent sim.
Use alignment sticks to make sure you are hitting the ball to where Skytrak wants you to aim. The unit prefers a shot direction into the net so it will pick up the correct information and be accurate. Sometimes the mat slips or you just forget where to hit. Use alignment sticks.
The SkyTrak does not lie so use the distances to understand your carry for each club and make better decisions out on the golf course. It's a powerful tool for simulation but also for understanding your game.
Use the balls you play with too. Don't use cheap balls. Learn by using what you play with on course.
Don't wear anything white at all when using the SkyTrak. It will confuse the machine because the golf balls are also white.
Chris says "Wish I bought a 16x9 screen. My Homecourse screen is roll up projector style and although it's convenient it's 4:3 and the 16x9 is more realistic/immersive especially playing courses." So if you are looking for a great experience, try not to skimp and go for the effect you really want.
The SkyTrak launch monitor tracks your shots using cameras. On impact, the launch monitor will take super high-speed images. The images are quickly fed back to SkyTrak’s software, which then works out datasets which includes everything from clubhead speed to back spin and carry distance.
What Does Skytrak Measure?
Ball speed, launch angle, backspin, side spin and side angle are directly measured, and other data points such as carry and total distance are estimated.
SkyTrak is going to offer the best on-screen shot analysis and accuracy (up to 98% as accurate as Trackman) for the money.
The SkyTrak is accurate. The carry distance especially is spot on. The shot shapes are almost always accurate as well. There are however, a few exceptions:
Occasionally, a driver shot will clearly be off on carry distance. Usually it’s a bit low. I am unsure why but this is the nature of indoor hitting with a fastr swing speed and happens with most units.
99% of the time the shot shape is consistent with my feel, but sometimes shanks and tops often look weird on the display. Again, not a huge problem because I’m not concerned with what a shank would do on the course!
SkyTrak Distance Issues?
Sometimes your mat can shift and your SkyTrak can have distance issues. It's always advisable to screw the mat down or secure it in a way that it will not slide.
You can reset the unit also and make sure the firmware that is running is the latest edition.
You can reset your Skytrak. You need a small paper clip. On the bottom of the Skytrak you see a tiny hole in the bottom of the middle screw hole. Push the paper clip and hold for 10 seconds. The Skytrak should be turned on when doing this. You should see the lights flashing and it will reset it. Now try again.
Skytrak Software - What's available?
I did lots of research between WGT for Skytrak ($100 per year), E6 Basic ($300 per year), and The Golf Club 2019 ($1000+).
Overall, I think E6 is a nice middle-ground value. It doesn’t have as many courses (15) compared to The Golf Club 2019 (50K+) but has all the features you would want and the graphics and overall package are great.
WGT is more of a toy and not as sophisticated with graphics and camera angles as E6. It’s not perfect but for someone who plays indoors for 4-5 months a year, it’s a good solution.
I bought the “Basic” level plan for E6 through the Skytrak website. I wish it had more courses, but for the money it seems like good value.
Make sure your laptop has the processing power to run the software to avoid lag and to keep up with the software. You want to have a great experience so never skimp on the specs of your technology.
Skytrak Vs Trackman
The main difference here is the Skytrak is a photometric launch monitor while the Trackman uses Doppler radar (much more accurate).
The second huge difference is the price of the Trackman is 10 times that f the SkyTrak.
When I compare the two golf simulator units, the spin rate and the launch angles were similar.
The Trackman offers many more features but the Skytrak is consistent and accurate enough and for the price is good value.
Skytrak Best features
The features on the Skytrak that I use the most are listed here in order from most to least used. These are on the Skytrak software itself, not E6:
By far the most-used feature. When you are in the driving range, you can set a green (big, medium, small size greens) at random distances within a set range. I like to do 40 to 140 yards so I can practice my wedge game. Every time I practice I finish my practice by seeing how many greens in a row I can hit from that range. Most I’ve ever gotten is 22! It has totally transformed my distance control inside wedge distance. I also use this feature for other distance sets but most often use it for wedges.
You can set easy, medium, and large fairway widths and practice “hitting fairways” with different clubs. They also do doglegs.
General driving range
This is the basic driving range but I use it a lot. I use it before a round of golf to see how far some standard clubs (6i, 7w) are carrying so I can adjust for the round that day. Stuff like that. Skytrak has many other features that I used a few times but rarely use any more. They include a bag mapping feature (I prefer to use the driving range), a wedge matrix (same thing although this one is pretty cool), a long drive contest (never used this).
Most of the following were done using just the driving range feature, but are things that are only really possible when you have access to a home simulator / launch monitor as they take too long or would cost too much to pay for a fitting each time
I am not a trained club fitter, but have gotten quite good at knowing my delivery characteristics and what types of launch numbers work well for me. An example is the decision between using a 2iron (Srixon Z u85) or a 7wood. I noticed you have made the switch as well. For me, it came down to the 2iron being a great club off the tee but very one-dimensional. Couldn’t hit it off the deck, out of the rough, or basically anywhere else. I was looking for something that flew roughly as far but spun more and launched higher. After testing both on the monitor, I knew I had found my new go-to club! See the picture below to compare the numbers.
I was interested in what the adjustability on my Driver (Callaway Epic Max LS) would do to the ball flight. I tinkered mainly with loft settings and found it actually made quite the difference! See below. It was interesting to me that the loft settings (8°, 9° and 10°) did not really affect carry distance but had a big impact on dispersion. The 8° setting was by far the most accurate so it’s what I’ve gone with and I haven’t looked back!
Wedge Launch Angle
I have always struggled to hit full wedge shots. I tend to “flip” at the bottom and present too much loft so the ball just goes super high and not much distance. You can see from my numbers above that I have some speed, so I should be able to control wedges to score well. Well, I found after hitting my wedges a lot on the Skytrak that my launch angles were all way too high (35-40° depending on club). So, I worked to reduce the launch angle through trial and error as I find “YouTube” swing tips to be a tough go. You can see through the numbers that I have been able to fix this problem, or at least get better and it’s made a huge difference to my game.
None of these things would be what I call “typical” use of the machine for most players. But if you get into that sort of thing, having a launch monitor in a home-simulator-style setting is an absolute game changer for equipment and swing-related improvement.
Overall, depending on your budget I think the SkyTrak is just as good as any other launch monitor in the mid price range.
Decide between if you want to have the Skytrak for improvement in your game only or if you want it for hitting balls in the winter or in your free time, or finally, if you want a full sim experience. This will guide your buying decision regarding the full setup. I would personally love a ful all out setup over the barebones because I don't like working on my game, just having fun with friends.
Of course, the Trackman and similar models more upscale launch monitors that will provide even more detail for pro level golf, but is that worth $20-$30k vs a couple thousand dollars? I think the data with SkyTrak is solid and it provides us with a total midrange solid practice set up to learn and more importantly enjoy hitting some golf balls while having some fun.
by Jim Pecoraro, Chris B and Phil Stoops (all Playas)
Launch monitor or home golf simulator reviews online are often written by people who know nothing about the product or how it works. Not this one. This review is thanks to three great subscribers of the Golf Sidekick Youtube channel.
We have three guys who all warn the same thing: You need more space than what FlightScope advertises.
Avid reviewers David, Eric and Brandon provide us with deep actual user insights in this FlightScope Mevo Plus review so you can decide if the Mevo+ meets your requirements and how it stacks up against other launch monitors. We'll take a look at how it works, how it's set up, whether the Mevo+ is accurate and how it compares to Skytrak and Trackman. We'll also look at some of the Mevo Plus problems and how to solve them.
Eric mentions that the unit is very durable. It’s much harder material than similar priced products. Eric loves his Mevo Plus and says the company is great with updating the software and firmware.
David felt the initial feeling when you look at the unit, is that you feel intimidation because it's a beautiful and high end piece of machinery but it's very easy to set up as long as you have enough space.
The following issue is easily fixed with enough space but Brandon adds something important: "My first impressions were not good. They advertise (still do) minimum space requirements that do not allow enough room to get accurate reads and I had maybe 6inches more room than the min. I had many issues with distance accuracy with faster ball speeds. It was really accurate when hitting shorter clubs (7i and down) but when I hit 5i or longer I could not hit any shot over 210yds. My driver carry is/was over 250yds."
Multiple in-depth data points make the Mevo+ an attractive option for indoor simulation. Below is the list of every data point you can accurately capture.
A big benefit of using the FlightScope unit is that the company continues to update and upgrade the software so you always have improvements to the experience. This is a a big factor to consider so you have a long term usage of your hard earned money.
Mevo+ Data Parameters
Full Swing: Ball speed, club speed, smash factor, carry distance, launch angle, spin rate, apex height, flight time, angle of attack, spin loft, launch direction, spin axis, roll distance, total distance, lateral landing, shot dispersion, shot type
Chipping: Ball speed, club speed, smash factor, carry distance, launch angle, spin rate, height, flight time, angle of attack, spin loft, launch direction, spin axis, roll distance, total distance, lateral landing, shot dispersion
Putting: Launch speed, total distance, ball direction
Mevo vs Mevo Plus
Mevo vs Mevo Plus Similarities
Both units can be used indoors and outdoors.
Both of the units has no subscription fees and can be used for free.
The Mevo and Mevo Plus are portable and not heavy.
Mevo vs Mevo Plus Differences
The Mevo requires 4 to 7 feet of space behind the ball while the Mevo plus requires 8-9 feet minimum behind the ball.
Data numbers are more accurate with the Mevo Plus and rival some of the big name expensive units.
The Mevo Plus is good for simulator use while the Mevo cannot be used with simulator software.
Battery life is longer int he Mevo because the Mevo Plus has many more features and simulation mode.
The Mevo Plus requires metallic stickers on the balls to read spin rates.
Yes, Mevo+ has a built-in camera for sensor alignment and video capture. In the Awesome Golf coaching session the camera automatically records your swing. So we use it there to look at our swings. The new version of app allows you to have multiple cameras which really will help you if you have some swing changes to make.
FlightScope Mevo Plus Indoor Space Requirement
All 3 of our reviewers all said the same VERY IMPORTANT thing.
You MUST have at least 18 feet of indoor space - 9 feet behind and 9 feet in front of the ball.
All three reviewers agreed that at high ball speed, or with longer clubs, the date was less accurate. With only 16 feet of space, 5 iron is the longest club you could hit and get reliable information.
Optimal Space Requirements for Mevo Plus
For optimal results, you should have 9 feet between the sensor and the ball and ideally, you should have 13 feet of ball flight for a total of 22 feet especially if you intend to hit long irons through driver.
If you want to hit driver with the Mevo+ you need a minimum 10 feet high ceilings.Eric confirms that his ceilings are only 8 feet so he can hit up to 6 iron. This is vital information so that you are not disappointed. The width of the room should be enough to contain your swing, which will be unique to you, but 14 feet is enough.
What if you don't have 18 feet? Mevo Plus Driver Issues
Any less space than the minimum 18 feet and your Mevo plus will not provide accurate information particularly using a driver or with higher swing speeds. Your driver distances could be out by up to 40 yards.
Eric confirms that he tried the Mevo+ from 5, 6, and 7 feet behind his golf ball and it did not perform as well. Brandon actually did not have enough space and had to remodel the room despite having the exact minimum 16 feet that FlightScope recommends. He firmly recommends 18 feet minimum.
The FlightScope Mevo+ works well as a Simulator
Yes you can use the Mevo+ as a golf simulator. There are some limitations but overall, it's a reliable indoor simulator with many options for software and golf course options. The flight dynamics form the tee and fairway work very well and accurately.
E6 Connect, Awesome Golf, The Golf Club 2019 and GSPro simulation & training software are the most popular software to use in simulation. You can send the images to a computer, iPad Pro, iPad Pro and TV combo or to a computer and projector combo onto a hitting screen.
Awesome Golf is better for range practice and swing work. David says 'I also play their courses because they have different tees and I’m not hitting a driver so I hit from shorter tees. I practiced the way of the playa when I played. When I was 220-185 our I hit an approach that got me to 100 yards.' I’m looking closely at GSPro for simulator work. I need a gaming PC for this and don’t have. Putting for me was a challenge, so I had set to autoputt.
GSPro is the most popular among all of us and the three reviewers all agree that GSPro is the best for simulation. You do need a gaming PC for this though.
E6 Connect comes with the Mevo+ for free and there are 5 free courses to play already on the unit.
The courses included on the unit are:
These are free and you can upgrade your subscription to include many more golf courses. You will need either a high power PC for gaming or newer Apple device for this to work as intended and that means having the Apple Watch 5 or the iPhone 8 or later. It is some of the best software around though.
Limitations of the Mevo+ as a Simulator
The limitations are minor and are by no means deal breakers at all.
Some short chips are difficult to get it to read.
Everything is a flat lie, so your scores are in no way reflective in real life.
The flight dynamics off the tee and fairway work well.
If you’re in the rough, sand, and other playing areas, you're still hitting off the flat mat.
The putting feature is basically useless. Putting cannot be replicated indoors. You can however set putting to autoputt. No one should really be buying a simulator for putting!
Top Secret Tips for Optimal Mevo+ Experience
Mevo+ uses your WiFi connection to communicate, so if you want connect to the internet to play games you need to find a way to establish ANOTHER WiFi connection. Brandon: I went the route of getting an adapter that I could plug into an iPad that allowed me to hardwire into the internet.
It helps if you turn on the Mevo+ in the right connection so you can change weather conditions. I was using it in winter and if FS Golf connects to WiFi first it will take the temperature in your area. I did not want a 5 degree temperature. To do it correctly you connect you unit to your iPad first and then connect to open FS Golf.
How accurate is the Mevo Plus?
We tested the Mevo Plus vs the GC Quad. Keep in mind the Mevo Plus is about 15% of the price of the GC Quad! The Mevo Plus an accurate machine.
FlightScope App can suit your needs
The FlightScope app is perfect for taking the unit to the range and it now has a swing speed session option. It keeps and displays all data in many different arrangements. FS Golf also keeps data on each session.
David adds that "I really like the app. I thinks it's accurate and you can also set parameters you want to work on. It even has a chipping area for indoor. I used this to get my chipping to improve. I have distances for each club with a 10 and 20 yard carry."
Eric thinks "this app works well for my needs. It has four parts; Full swing, Chipping, Putting, and Swing Training. I only use the full swing because the other three seem less valuable to me. Also, its fun to play the five free courses provided with the E6 Connect app. No membership required!"
As long as the unit has enough space to pick up the ball indoors, it is very accurate and can help you with your shot distance estimation and function as a fun and accurate simulator. Here is a chart showing the comparison over 5 shots between the GC Quad and the Mevo+.
The FlightScope Mevo+ is within less than 3 yards of a machine 6 times its price. The difference in readings between this $2,000 unit and a $15,000 machine is minimal. It is a Doppler unit so excessive metal, lighting, or ceiling fans can mess of the readings but more on that below.
Metallic Stickers or Titleist RCT for Indoors
Metallic stickers are needed in an indoor environment in order for the Mevo to accurately measure ball spin.
A great tip from Brandon is that you can use Titleist RCT Pro V1 golf balls which are made to be picked up by radar. RCT stands for Radio Capture Technology and it's a game changer so you can have great quality reliable golf balls indoors while you play your favorite course.
"Mevo+ is a low power Doppler radar using phased antenna array technology to detect and track golf ball launch and flight.
It measures the speed of the ball, as well as the position of the ball as it progresses along its flight path.
Sophisticated mathematical estimators are used to track the ball even under adverse conditions, using the physics of ball flight to overcome random noise and fading conditions experienced in the real world.
The phased array technology also picks up tiny variations in the Doppler signals caused by the spinning motion of the ball, enabling direct measurement of the ball spin rate."
The Mevo Plus requires either metallic stickers or the Titleist Pro V1 RCT golf balls to detect the balls indoors.
FlightScope Mevo+ Outdoors
Eric and David report that the Mevo Plus works flawlessly outside on the driving range and is highly accurate. There's even a setting to account for using limited flight range balls. You just set up the unit behind you and select the 'outdoor' setting and start hitting.
You do not need the silver dots outdoors. You need them for indoor use only.
"As far as I am concerned, outdoors, there is no difference between the Trackman and the Mevo+ because they are both doppler technology - the Trackman is just bigger and more expensive" is what Eric tells me and after experimenting with the two units, I find this is true. The difference is minimal and who knows which is actually the more 'accurate' one?
Eric also suggest that if you’re only planning on using this outdoors then this is where this unit shines. Photo units like in Skytrak are affected by excessive sunlight. This Mevo Plus unit doesn’t have that issue because it’s Doppler based.
Because there is unlimited space to track the ball, the data is actually more accurate than indoors. You have unlimited space so you can definitely put the unit the recommended 8-9 feet behind the golf ball. Just be sure no one stands on it!
FlightScope Mevo Plus Battery Life
Brandon says "Playing on the range (away from a power source) I can spend about 2hrs before it starts getting low."
How to Set Up a Mevo+ to Use as a Simulator
The Mevo+ is a bit more involved than the Skytrak. You will need to play around with angles, distances and settings until you get the thing dialed. This is part of the fun though. is a must. Your environment that you will be using the unit in is unique so while the setups below can help you get an idea of how to set up your unit, you MUST optimize it yourself.
That is a very simple process as the unit is easy to manoeuvre. As mentioned multiple times, just be sure to have enough space behind and in front of the ball.
Mevo+ uses your WiFi connection to communicate, so if you want connect to the internet to play games you need to find a way to establish another WiFi connection. I went the route of getting an adaper that I could plug into my IPAD that allowed me to hardwire into the internet
It helps if you turn on the Mevo+ in the right connection so you can change weather conditions. I was using in winter and if FS Golf connects to WiFi first it will take the temperature in your area. I did not want a 5 degree temperature. To do it correctly you connect you unit to your IPAD first and then open FS Gol
Example Mevo Plus Setups
Mevo Plus Man Cave Setup - Brandon
Brandon chose to create the ultimate Mevo plus setup in his home where he can watch the ball on screen like he is on a golf course. This will require some computing power and a projector to send the picture onto the screen.
You can use an iPad like in this picture to send the information from the Mevo Plus to the iPad. You need an adaptor and then plug the iPad into a larger television, like you see in the golf fitting stores.
Mevo+ with iPad Pro E6 Connect and Awesome Golf Setup - David
Projector - $500 up to $4k for high end 4k picture. Mine is a $1k short throw ceiling mount capable of 4:3 aspect ratio. The garage size dictated a 4:3 picture. I’m very happy with the picture.
Screen - Retractable screen is wireless with a remote and is rechargeable. Rolls out in about 30 seconds. Pricy at $2,200. I could have gone on Amazon and got a manual retractable roller (kind of the ones for window blinds) and bought a much cheaper screen and did it DYI.
Computer - Gaming Windows laptop for $1,100. A desktop pc would have better graphics. With Mevo +, you can display on an Ipad Pro however some third party software only works with either Windows or IOS.
Hitting strips or mat - Get the best you can afford. Read the comments about some strips causing elbow pains and plan accordingly.
Basic Software - with Mevo + you get FlightScope FS software. It has about 27 golf courses with partner E6 and multiple practice ranges. You get all the data points you need. iOS and PC.
Third party software - Subjective and pricing is highly variable from outright purchase to annual subscriptions. I chose E6 and GSPro. GSPro has over 100 courses created by volunteer programmers. Courses are reproductions of actual courses. E6 and GSPro are under $300 annual subscription for each. I will drop E6 and keep GSPro when it comes time to renew.
What I would redo - You can build a basic sim for under $4k easily. Buy a Mevo +, hit into a good quality net, use the supplied software (FS) and project on an iPad Pro. Go even cheaper with used equipment.
Experience - Playing a course with friends is great fun. A foursome is my limit, strictly due to garage space for chairs. There are online tournaments available and some software is family oriented with lots of fun games for young golfers.
What Are Some FlightScope Mevo Plus Problems?
There are only a few problems we experienced with the Mevo Plus, some of them preventable from reading this review and some you can rectify with FlightScope.
The minimum recommended space required is not 16 feet but rather 18 feet or more with the ideal being about 22 feet. 8-9 feet behind the ball will be optimal.
If you put the Mevo Plus 7, 6 or 5 feet from the golf ball, it will not be able to pick up the higher speed clubs and drivers, miscalculating the distance by up to 40 yards. Make sure you use enough distance.
Sometimes the unit has trouble picking up slower speed shots like chips but you can contact FlightScope who have great customer service.'
The doppler radar tech can be problematic if there are reflective surfaces in your room you will use and also if the lighting is not correct. Dim artificial light is better indoors.
You might find the unit has a tough time reading putts. I prefer to use it on autoputt, but if you do experience some trouble, FlightScope is very helpful if there are any issues in your satisfaction.
Mevo Plus iPad Requirements
For Apple iPad and iPhone, you need to have iOS 13 or later. Bluetooth LE 4.0 - supports UART/Serial Port Emulation service with RX and TX characteristics.
Mevo+ works with any iPad made after 2017.
Is there a yearly FlightScope subscription fee?
All FlightScope Mevo+ data measurements will forever be available for free with no subscription fee Myflightscope.com is the online cloud where you can view, keep, and review every practice session. You can store three videos per month with no charge. If you want to store more videos in a month, more storage can be bought for a fee.
Overall the Mevo Plus seems like a great deal for only $2000 but the thing that will define your experience will be your setup. If you're on a budget, do you want to hit into a net or into a screen?
If you choose a net, are you going to look at your iPad or a large TV screen? What is important to you? Do you want it to look really fancy in your mancave or do you just want it pure and simple as a training aid and way to keep up to date in the winter?
Playing into a screen will require more setup costs and more intricate planning. But it definitely will look very pretty.
In the end, identify WHY you want one, and then adjust your expectations accordingly. Two things are for sure though with the Mevo plus: It's ACCURATE and YOU NEED TO HAVE ENOUGH SPACE!
Congratulations on finding the most complete golf distance chart article on the internet.
Do you know how far your clubs travel? How do you compare to others? Its always good to understand that age, gender and skillset are the biggest differentiators.
I did so much research on this article to bring you the most up to date information to help you quickly skim the tables and charts about golf distances. The charts are showing us golf club yardages and I go into more detail around age, gender and ability.
Let's get you up to speed on golf club distance so you can learn where you an improve and where you might be ahead of the pack!
Golf Club Distance Charts: Key Factors
My golf distance charts show the the key elements that influence how far you can hit each golf club:
Swing speed is the most important factor in determining the distance of the ball. Ball speed and smash factor both depend on swing speed.
While the swing speed is important, it is not the only element. The quality of strike and correct technique is a big differentiating factor. A pro golfer swinging at the same speed as an amateur gets wildly different distance numbers.
Average swing speed by age chart
10-16 years old
17-25 years old
26-40 years old
41-50 years old
51-60 years old
60+ years old
What is Smash Factor?
Smash Factor is ball speed divided by club speed. The number calculated gives a ratio to show how much energy is moved from the club head to the golf ball at impact. Low Swing factor numbers mean less energy is transferred, while higher Smash factor numbers means a more efficient movement of energy from the face to the golf ball.
The goal for excellent ball striking with the driver is a factor of 1.5.
For example: ball speed 150 mph with a swing speed of 100 mph, your Smash Factor is 1.5.
Other smaller contributory factors also have an effect on distance:
The ball speed
Ball speed will be affected by the type of golf ball you use as well as your quality of strike. A strike out the center of the club face, with the correct technique will go much further than the same golfer hitting the toe or toward the heel. You can measure ball speed on launch monitors like the Mevo Plus or camera operated simulators like the SkyTrak.
Equipment affects distance
The pros on tour have optimized equipment to their specific technique and skill level as well as body shape. The same swing speed in a PGA Tour pro will send the ball much further than an amateur golfer of higher handicap but similar swing speed.
The reason is of course, technique, but if you were to use the same technique, the pro would still win, because every aspect of their golf club has been designed around THEM. That is why a fitting can help to optimize your strengths for more distance.
Skill level affects distance
There are young, sporty beginner and even mid handicap golfers who might read this article or that you may know who think they are capable of smashing a driver as far as a pro or scratch golfer. The myth is that they CAN but if it is not staying in play or being used to an advantage, then it does not count.
Beginner Golfer: New to the game - first 6-12 months.
Average Golfer: 15-24 handicap.
Good Golfer: 6-14 handicap.
Excellent Golfer: Below 6 handicap.
Here are the in-depth golf club distance charts curated by male, female and senior golfers.
Golf Club Distance Charts: Average For Male Golfers By Skill Level
The numbers are estimates and you can see in the beginner section that 2 iron to 4 iron is not a very impressive number. I would suggest that even a 2 iron and 3 iron in the Average column is ambitious. These are very difficult clubs to hit and often go very low distance due to technique and swing speed issues. Most beginner and high handicappers should avoid these clubs for a long time.
From 'Good Golfer' onward, the 2 iron down to 5 iron should improve as confidence and technique improves, thus bringing on more swing speed.
Golf Club Distance Charts: Average For Lady Golfers By Skill Level
On average, ladies will hit it shorter than men. The advanced category may be a shorter distance than the advanced category in the mens. But when comparing similar distance in the good to average category in the men, the accuracy of the ladies is much higher than the men.
Golf Club Distance Charts: Average For Seniors and Pro Golfer Comparison
Senior Average Distance
Senior PGA Tour Champions
Golf Club Distance Chart by Swing Speed
As an amateur golfer, you can gain access to rented Trackman bays where you can hit all your clubs and actually get a print out, or soft file of your swing speed and many other data points. You can even use a Voice Caddie SC300 to do it privately at the range.
Swing speed does determine the golf club distances and we'll take a look in the charts below.
NOTE: The swing speed use at the top of each column is driver swing speed. We use this as a general gauge to estimate the distance of each club thereafter.
150 mph is the top range and only long drive competitors will be swinging toward this range. The average swing speed on the PGA Tour (the best golfers in the world) is around 114 mph.
Ball Speed To Club Head Speed Chart for Driver
The driver club head speed is often used as the benchmark for swing speed and the higher the ball speed, generally the better the strike at that club head speed.
Ball Speed (mph)
Club Head Speed (mph)
Driver Swing Speed Chart by Golf Skill Level
Confidence and skill make a big difference when hitting the driver efficiently and out the sweet spot.
PGA Tour Average
LPGA Tour Average
Golf Club Distance Charts Other Important Factors
Every club has a different loft and more loft goes less distance, while less loft goes longer distance in combination with longer golf shafts.
Driver usually goes furthest while the lob wedge around 60 degrees goes the shortest.
Average Lofts 2022
Average Lofts 1990
8° – 13°
9° – 14°
13° – 15°
15° – 17°
20° – 23°
21° – 24°
18° – 20°
20° – 22°
21° – 24°
23° – 25°
25° – 28°
28° – 30°
28° – 31°
31° – 33°
32° – 35°
35° – 37°
36° – 38°
39° – 41°
40° – 43°
43° – 47°
45° – 48°
48° – 50°
47° – 50°
51° – 54°
The golf clubs of today go a lot further since the manufacturers started creating cavity back golf clubs in combination with lower lofts for the same clubs.
Every club is between 2 and 5 degrees lower in loft in current day, which automatically increases distance by up to 15 yards per iron. Driver lofts cannot get much lower as people will not be able to hit them. In order to hit a driver with a loft below 9 degrees, your swing speed needs to be incredibly fast.
The club heads are bigger for all golf clubs in modern times with much larger sweet spots. With the addition of lighter shafts in both the irons and the woods, the ball speeds and swing speeds are higher as well.
Golf Club Distance Charts of PGA Tour Golfers
Average Distance Range(yards)
Bryson De Chambeau
LPGA Tour Averages
Why are modern golfers longer than prior generations?
Most pros are in the gym every day currently while in prior generations like Palmer and Nicklaus, the guys were regular people who even used to enjoy a smoke and a drink on the course.
Bryson Dechambeau is an example of someone who has beefed up in order to hit it further and it makes a big difference. Tiger Woods was one of the first modern day pros to begin working in the gym. His huge transformation to a big, strong guy inspired a whole new generation of golfer.
Lofts of pro clubs
Lofts have changed how far the ball goes. Tiger Woods is only behind the modern guys in this chart because he uses 3-4 degrees more loft on every single club. He cares about precision and less about distance because he has plenty of power
The golf ball when Tiger Woods first hit the tour and even more so when Nicklaus was in his prime, was much shorter than today's Pro V1 and equivalents. The balata golf ball is significantly shorter than the current urethane covered solid core golf balls they use today on the Tour.
What Do These Golf Club Distance Charts Mean?
You can compare how you shape up against the average golfer, the senior golfer, the pro golfer and the advanced golfer.
The key though is to understand YOUR own game and your distances so you can more effectively plan your game and piece together a good golf score. When you fully understand and accept your distances that you hit the golf ball, you will score better.
For the pros and the advanced players, the distance they hit each club is not a matter of ego. It's a matter of 'which club gets the job done?' and they use that.
You can too, whichever distance you hit it. Just be totally honest with yourself and leave the ego behind.
They make my wrist itch, the metal bands irritate me, the synthetic ones don’t breathe, and the cloth bands just get soaked with sweat. The last thing you need on a humid afternoon in the middle of summer is something else to provide another uncomfortable distraction out on the course.
Thank the golf gods for the Shot Scope H4. The designers at Shot Scope decided to throw all of the technology in their V3 series watch into a handheld device that provides a treasure chest crammed with usable statistics for game development as well as GPS data for the course.
Full Review of the Shot Scope H4 in Detail
In the Shot Scope H4 box
When you first open the Shot Scope H4, you’ll find
a USB charger - it’s specifically made for the H4 so you’ll want to keep track of this and not lose it. I have the V3 watch as well and the cable is entirely different.
a magnetic belt clip - provides a very secure magnetic connection if you prefer to wear it that way
the GPS unit itself which is small
16 screw-in 'club tags' - there are 16 because everyone's bag is different so there are some extras
Difference between Shot Scope H4 and Arccos
The prime differences in the tags for the H4 vs the Arccos is that the Shot Scope tags don’t use a battery, so you don’t have to worry about the sensors going dead after a couple of years.
The H4 is also a unit you need to tap onto the butt of the club where the sensor is. The unit D-ring fits through a slot on the belt clip if you opt to carry the unit clipped onto your bag so it's easy.
I was also considering the Game Golf Live as well as the Arccos system. The Shot Scope H4 provides all the information and data tracking with comparisons WITHOUT subscription fees and that tipped the scales in favor of the H4.
To get the clubs ready, just screw the tags into the grips of the corresponding clubs - you do not need to sync anything yet.
Then download and start the mobile app, power on the H4, and the app will walk you through a simple pairing process via Bluetooth. The setup takes a couple minutes and then it will update the Firmware which takes about 3-4 minutes and you're ready to rock.
Once at the course turn the unit on, acquire the GPS signal, and you’re off to the first tee.
How to Use the Tags for SuperStroke Grips
The tag will not screw into a SuperStroke putter grip but that is no biggie. You just need to cut the screw off the bottom of the sensor. It's plastic so it's easy even with a pocket knife. Then you glue the sensor onto the top of your putter grip. Good to go.
How does the Shot Scope H4 work on the course?
On the course it’s a very accurate GPS unit with suggested layups, distances to hazards, front, middle, back, etc.
Unlike the V3 watch the H4 handheld does not automatically detect your swing. The H4 relies on the golfer to “tag” the club before each shot to register position. You hole the sensor to the H4 and it instantly vibrates to signal that it has the club. You can see the name of the club on the screen of the H4 after tagging.
This may seem like a hassle, but as I read reviews of various watch based systems missing shots, I came to like the idea of having to tag it myself. I have worked it into my pre-shot routine and tagging the club serves as a trigger that I’ve moved into the “action zone”. So far I’ve logged two rounds and not a missed shot, which made post round editing in app or on PC a breeze.
What if you don't tag a shot?
Edit from Matt: I missed a few shots on the golf course because the process is so new to me. It made me worried that it would destroy the data. But you can edit the shots afterward on the app on your phone. You can click and drag the location and name the club you used. Just remember where you were and what club you used!
The trigger of moving into the 'action zone' of the shot has helped to get me more focused on my shot and is a mental game side-benefit I did not expect!
H4 Pin Collect
The H4 Pin Collect shows up when you reach the green. This is an important feature but if you forget to do it or don't know how to do it, like I did on the first round with the H4, you can edit it on the app.
The important part is to input how many putts you took and then stand at the hole and use the Pin Collect feature to tell the unit where the pin is on the green. This helps to make the putting stats more accurate for your record keeping. If you don't do this, it will have a hard time keeping accurate data for your game.
Tagging your clubs makes this automatic without having to remember to select on a watch face
Very easy to set up - plug, download, install, sync
Stats tracking is a bonus that you can use to gauge your club distance and where you're leaking shots
No subscription fees for the full service
Includes the sensors at a very good price - unbeatable really
Can be magnetically attached to the Pro LX Rangefinder for the ultimate measuring device
Tags do not use batteries so they will not die
A small carry case should be included in the package to prevent scratching but is not
Does not automatically pick up your swing as it is not attached to your arm like a golf GPS watch
The sensors will not screw into a SuperStroke fat grip so you need to cut it and glue it on
I forgot to tag a lot of shots and had to play with the app for 15 minutes after the round
What data can the H4 give a golfer?
Now we get to the fun stuff… the data. The H4 gives you three different distances for your clubs;
Longest, Average, and P-Avg (Playing Average).
The first two are self explanatory, but the playing average removes outliers from tops, duffs, scoops, thinned shots, etc. This gives valuable real life distances that mean more to me than LM numbers. There is also Strokes Gained data for a quick comparison of your game to your handicap peers that is in an easily understood “at a glance” reference, or it can be as deep a dive as you like.
All in all I don’t think you could get more bang for the buck out of a shot tracker. While it may not have an A.I. caddy like it’s competition, it’s a more than capable unit for game development and it’s lack of subscription fees and lifetime updates to the firmware make it a great choice for the value minded golfer.
How big is the H4 Shot Scope?
The little device is similar to the size of a golf ball and flat enough to not bother you on your belt, in your pocket or hanging from your bag.
If you don't like a watch, the Shot Scope H4 is a nice device to use for the exact same functions. But check out my review on the Pro LX as well because you can use it as a combination with the Rangefinder to have a super distance measuring device. The H4 clips onto the Pro LX!
The data that it tracks is useful to help you keep track of what you're hitting your clubs, how you're playing and how to improve.
Sand wedge bounce is one of those mystical topics everyone talks about and you even hear pros and other amateurs saying things like "use the bounce" when you're chipping or pitching. And you know what? No one knows what they are talking about.
So here's the real deal, no BS.
What is bounce in a golf wedge?
Bounce is the amount of sole on the bottom of the wedge there is to literally bounce off the ground when you hit the ball. It's that simple. When people tell you to use the bounce, there is no conscious notion of 'using the bounce'. To hit any golf shot, the club must bounce off the turf otherwise we just dig into the turf like a spade.
If you hit a chip, the club makes contact with the ground, bounces off the ground slightly and contacts the ball. The reason we need bounce in a club is so the turf interaction with the club is appropriate for the shot.
So if you play on soft ground, you want the higher bounce to be able to 'bounce more' when you hit the ball so the wedge does not get stuck in the soft ground. When you hit a wedge on firm ground, you do not want the golf wedge to bounce much off the hard surface. It will bounce, and then hit the ball in the equator, making you thin the ball into oblivion.
Is a Sand Wedge Bounce of 10 or 14 Better?
If your golf course has firmer ground and you clip the ball off the surface in fear of blading the ball, then you should get a wedge around 10 degrees of bounce. Usually your bunkers will also be firm so 10 degrees bounce in a sand wedge or less is best.
If your course is softer and sometimes a bit moist, with soft lush grass, and you make divots after you hit the golf ball, use a sand wedge bounce of near 14 degrees.
If you have the correct bounce angle on your wedges, you can hit more confident shots with your sand wedge. And as we know, the 56 degree sand wedge is a serious scoring club.
Which is The Best Sand Wedge Bounce For Your Golf?
I've played golf in SE Asia, USA, South America and South Africa. That's kikuyu, bent, bluegrass, rye grass, paspalum, all strains of bermuda. With that, I've tried every wedge bounce and loft angle so I'd like to save you some time with this article to get the right wedge.
Deciding on the right sand wedge is a critical part of the game of golf. Golf courses are filled with hazards like deep rough and sand bunkers. The sand wedge generally has the largest bounce angle of all wedges as to help golfers get the ball out of sand bunkers and deep rough.
The sand wedge is there to get us out of these situations.
You can check out my guide on how to chip and also the video series below.
Most 56 degree sand wedges have a bounce of between 8 and 14 degrees.
The best way to figure out the right bounce and degree angle of loft for your 56 degree, is to have a wedge fitting where you might be surprised by what they find!
Why Use a Sand Wedge With High Bounce (10 to 14 Degrees)?
Most golfers, by default, unless playing in the outback or some other hardpan golf course, should buy a wedge with higher bounce angle.
The wedge has been designed to 'bounce' off the ground to add forgiveness when hitting the golf ball. When you hit a hybrid, do you notice how much easier it is than a 4 iron? That's because of the wider sole and the 'bounce' that is also provides the hybrid golf club. It's a similar concept to the wedge.
A sand wedge with high bounce is between 10-14 degrees of bounce.
You should use a sand wedge with the higher bounce if you
hit steep with your golf swing with deep divots
Your wedge shots are often fat
You golf course has soft ground, and soft fluffy bunkers
Have more longer rough around the greens than tight short grass
Why Use a Sand Wedge With Low Bounce (6 to 10 Degrees)?
A low bounce sand wedge is for a golfer who plays on firmer conditions with much tighter lies than most course and a golfer who likes to see a more open club face at address.
With a low bounce sand wedge, there is just a lot less sole in the bottom to bounce off the ground so a lot of the time, a golfer needs to catch the ball clean off the turf. This does not suit a high bounce wedge but more a low bounce wedge. When you have a low bounce wedge, you can change the face angle quite easily because there is less sole to pick the leading edge up off the ground.
6 to 10 degrees of bounce is normal for a low bounce sand wedge.
Lower bounce on a sand wedge is best for you it
you have a shallow swing and your divots are minimal
your course has firm ground and hard pan as well as firm sand in the bunkers
you like to hit some spinny open-faced wedge shots like a wizard
What is the Best Bounce for a 56 Degree Wedge?
Sand wedges have 56-degrees of loft - usually denoted with an S on the sole of the club and there is sometimes even another number on the sole, indicating the bounce of the club. Usually the sand wedge that comes with the set of irons you buy is around 55 or 56 degrees without the bounce indicated.
The best bounce for a 56 degree wedge for most golfer is about 12 degrees. This is a versatile number right in between the low end of 8 degrees and the high end of 14 degrees. You can play most courses with a 12 degree bounce sand wedge and enjoy your golf.
Which Bounce For Every Different Course Condition?
From my experience in all the conditions of the world I have seen, you can use a 12 degree bounce wedge for most, but some conditions really need a specific bounce on the 56 degree wedge. It's important to know when to use certain wedges.
Higher bounce is always the best choice in soft sand. The aim of bunker shots is to slide the club under the ball and skim that wedge to bounce up and let the ball out on a magic carpet ride. 12 to 14 degree bounce will work best.
How do you know if your sand is soft? When you hit the sand shot, does the sand fall back into itself and leave a very round divot in the bunker? That's soft. When you walk into the bunker, does it sometimes go up to your ankle? That's soft fluffy sand.
Medium, Wet and Firm Sand
In firm sand, wet sand and medium sand, you need less bounce because the sand will not allow the fat sole to get in deep enough to allow enough space to bounce. You will blade the ball across the green a lot.
I love to use wedges with 8 to 10 degree bounce angle for firm courses and firm sand, but 10-12 degrees of bounce for medium sand.
How do you know if your course is medium or firm? When you walk into the bunker, the sand will either not give way for firm sand, or will only dig your shoe in up to the rubber sole. Wet sand is pretty easy to identify. If it's wet, then the sand is wet.
Deep Soft Grass Rough
From my time in the Eastern states of the USA, I found the wedge needed for soft long grass with soft conditions under the grass, a bounce of 10 to 14 degrees is preferable.
The soft under condition will need some extra bounce but the long grass can tangle the club face leading edge if there is not enough bounce. With more bounce, the club is heavy and thick soled, to glide through the grass.
Tight Lies in Fairways and Fringes Next to The Green
When you watch the Masters on TV, most of those pros will be using a variety of wedges but those tight lies will make your hair stand on end, thinking of blading it across the green in the hazards.
A low bounce between 6°-10° will make you feel better about making crisp clean contact especially if you need to open the club face a little bit. When you use high bounce wedges on tight lies, the leading edge can often meet the ball in the equator and your score sky rockets.
Best Wedge Company Sand Wedge Options
A lot of manufacturers are making great wedges and you can see a couple of my guides below:
Some of the best options on the market for different bounce and grind options:
Cleveland RTX 4 Sand Wedge (Many options: Full Bounce, Mid Bounce Low Bounce, X Low Bounce)
Cleveland Smart Sole 4 (Sand Wedge with huge bounce)
Titleist Vokey SM6 (5 different options and famous for wedge fittings)
Callaway PM Grind (Sand Wedge with big bounce)
Callaway Mack Daddy 4 (Sand Wedge 8-12 degrees of bounce)
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the bounce of a gap wedge?
The usual bounce of a gap wedge is 8-10 degrees.
Can you use a sand wedge in the fairway?
Yes. You can hit a sand wedge from the fairway. Usually you will use it from between 10 and 80 yards depending on your preference for partial shots. It's a versatile club and can lower your scores with practice.
Can you use a 56-degree wedge in the sand?
56 degree wedges are called sand wedges and so most people will start golf playing this club out the sand. You can continue to do that or like me, you can start to use 58 degree wedges and for some golfers, even knowing when to use a 60 degree wedge is key. Whichever you choose, if you practice enough with it, you will get very efficient.
What bounce wedges do the pros use?
When conditions were firmer and unfriendly in the old days, pros preferred low-bounce wedges, but current PGA Tour pros use wedges with between12 or 13 degrees of bounce.
By now I hope you know enough about the bounce of a wedge to make an informed decision.
While your conditions and the way you strike the ball makes a big difference to the bounce you should use in your 56 degree, I highly recommend a wedge fitting. The pro will know your local conditions, your swing style and be able to set you up with a decent set of 2-3 wedges with the correct bounce and loft angle for you specifically.
Most articles you read about the Best Golf Youtube Channels will give you a list of the most vanilla, boring and cliché channels. The writers don't care what they write. The channel owners might even have paid for the listing.
In this article, I give you both my opinion on the best channels to watch, and also the top channels by the data. I skipped the clichés and pulled information that everyone can see from the channels themselves. I plugged the data into a formula which I will reveal to you so I could create a list of Youtube channels based on four weighted criteria:
Average number of views per video
What percentage of subscribers watch the average video
Number of subscribers averaged per video
After that, I will give you the channels that offer the most value for you the viewer. The rankings only contain channels with over 100k subscribers. I will provide a list of must-watch Youtube channels as well.
The Best Golf Youtube Channels according to the numbers
Golf Youtube channel top 10 power rankings (April 2022)
Bubbie Golf (Personable guy also part of Good Good crew)
How the Youtube channels were ranked
Mere subscriber numbers is not enough to assess the Youtube channels for golf. Total subscribers can include many dormant accounts, purchased subscribers and other fluffery.
I wanted to see how many views the videos get on average and the number of subscribers in relation to the view average - how much do the views match subscriber numbers? Organic subscribers is hard to quantify but engagement is a decent metric to assess a channel.
Weighted scoring system
That is why the weighting of the scoring system is as follows with the weighting mentioned:
Subscriber count - 1
Subscribers per video released - 2
Average view count per video - 4
Subscriber numbers as a percentage of the average view count - 4
That gives us a total of 11.
I ranked the channel according to each of the above metric where the channel is 1st place receives 190 points, the channel in 19th place receives 10. To create a weighted score, I calculated the scores as follows:
The channels on this list are all around 100k subscribers or more. Here are the full power rankings and I will provide some charts of each of the major factors in ranking the channels.
My personal top choices of Golf Youtube channels
While the top ranking golf Youtube channels I mentioned above are the best in the game in terms of metric, we don't live our life on metrics. We watch golf to enjoy it. So here are my most enjoyable and best Youtube channels, regardless of subscriber numbers. These are the channels I watch and because I watch them so much, I have done collaborations with most of them.
Golf Sidekick is clearly the obvious choice. The Golf Sidekick channel is full of guests, from pros shooting good scores, to Matt guiding people around the course to break 100, 90 and 80. This is the easily the best channel on Youtube, objectively. Golf Sidekick is based in Thailand and has created one of the top channels with just an iPhone and a willingness to help.
Who is Genevieve Ling? Genevieve Ling is a Malaysian lady pro currently on the LET Tour. She has featured on Golf Sidekick videos on numerous occasions and her channel is about course management, understanding the game, and life on Tour.
Not a Scratch Golfer follows Adam, a 7 to 8 handicapper who hits the ball average distances to show you how to play golf, how to score, and how to forget the nonsense of hitting further is always always always the best even if it goes offline.
Mr Short Game, aka Matt, is a good guy with an honest, helpful channel with a variety of content so you can never be bored.
My rankings of the best channels in charts
Youtube Golf Power Rankings in a chart
Rick Shiels is the leader of the pack by a long way. Random Golf Club Films and Mark Crossfield are the oldest channels both started in 2007. Rick Shiels and Peter Finch began their channels on the same day in 2011. The youngest channels are Fore Play and Good Good, along with Stephen Castaneda.
The breakdown of channels by the country they are located in looks like this:
United Kingdom: 7
United States: 10 (Good Good and crew makes up 6 out of those 10)
Average number of subscribers obtained per video
Creating a crew with their own individual channels and focusing on creating a large community is the key to Good Good Golf's sudden and meteoric rise. They have a great crew of editors, videographers and cast members that allow them to create plenty of unique content.
Average views per video released
What is the audience retention rate of golf Youtube channels?
It's interesting to see channels subscriber numbers and number of views the channel gets per video on average. This can show you a retention rate, roughly speaking, of how many subscribers watch the videos. This is not entirely accurate but it's a good metric to see the reach of the channels and how engaged the audience is.
These were my favorite Youtube golf channels - I hope you will try them or discovered someone new. There are new channels all the time coming up and this list may change but as of April 2022, the Good Good crew are doing well and Golf Sidekick is up there with the big boys. That is amazing.
Mid handicappers make up the majority of golfers in the world. Nearly half of al the golfers who keep a handicap, fit into the mid handicap category. But what is a mid handicapper and are you in this category of golfer?
In this article, we'll explore the handicap requirements to be a mid handicapper and what a mid handicappers game looks like in relation to higher and lower handicap ranges.
What is a Mid Handicapper?
A mid handicapper in golf is a player who has a handicap between 9 and 18.
Average golfer handicap
The average handicap in the USA for those who keep handicaps, is 14 .
What score does a mid handicapper shoot
What is a mid handicap score?
The average 14 handicap golfer will shoot an average score of 90.
The lower mid handicapper will shoot scores between 84 and 85 as a 9 handicapper. A higher mid handicapper will average scores between 93 and 95. We can estimate the score of a mid handicapper is between 84 and 95.
Type of mid handicap
Low to Mid Handicap
Lower mid handicaps have handicaps between 9 to 12. What is considered lower mid handicap is a golfer who scores between 80 and 90. Sometimes the lower mid handicapper breaks 80, but 9 our of 10 scores will be above 80.
Mid Mid Handicap
Handicap 13 to 16 make up the mid mid handicap range. Average scores here are always above 80, sometimes below 90 with most scores around the 90 to 95 range.
Mid to High Handicap
What is considered a higher mid handicapper is a golfer who scores above 90. Rarely, this golfer will break 90. Average score in the higher mid handicap is between 92 and 100 and a handicap level of 17 to 18.
Golf handicap divisions
If you play in competitions, the handicaps will be split into divisions. These are usually
Division A: 0-8 handicap
Division B: 9-18 handicap
Division C: 19+ handicap
How does a mid handicapper play on the course?
A mid handicapper will usually hit 3-4 greens in regulation. In general, mid handicappers also swing slightly faster with more confidence than a high handicapper. As a mid handicap golfer gets more confident, their scores drop.
Areas of focus for a mid handicapper to lower their scores into the 70s:
Practice the game inside 100 yards 3 times as much time as the long game
Become very good at putting inside 5 feet
Hit a tee ball into a position that allows a second shot without penalty - very often not the driver
What are the best clubs for mid handicappers?
Most mid handicap golfers will benefit most from game improvement clubs in the golf bag.
Mid handicappers should use a driver to stay in play as a top priority. Distance will come later. Any driver with a loft of between 10.5 and 12 degrees suits you this level for the most distance and forgiveness combination.
Avoid blades as a mid handicap. Many golfers will tell you that it's the best way to learn to hit the golf ball but it's not. It's always better to start with confidence first and then move to more difficult to hit clubs. Confidence breeds good swings, which breeds good contact.
Lower mid handicap golfers can start with some muscle back irons when they get confident enough around the 8 handicap range. The best irons for mid handicappers are irons that have forgiveness and consistency.
Cavity back wedges are always a good option for handicaps between 9 and 18.
I always recommend that mid handicappers play golf balls that they do not mind losing. If you are worried about losing a golf ball, use cheaper golf balls or the balls you find in the woods.
If you do not care about lost balls, your best bet is to start with golf balls that have a surlyn cover. These are durable golf balls that can last up to 3 rounds long. I would avoid spending a lot of money on the expensive premium golf balls until you are confident you will not lose more than 1 per round.
My go-to ball has always been the Srixon Soft Feel or a WIlson Duo which I played until I was a 7 handicap.
How Do Mid Handicaps Perform?
Off the tee
Mid handicappers can be very good and very bad off the tee with the driver in hand. For the mid handicap golfer who loses shots from balls going out of bounds or in the water, I recommend scaling back to a fairway wood or a hybrid off the tee. Get the ball in play to allow for a stress-free second shot.
Greens in Regulation
The hardest part for mid handicappers will be approach shots because the tee shot is often not long enough, or in the correct position to hit the greens in regulation. The approach shot distances are too long to allow for easy approach shots. Most often, mid handicap golfers will be hitting a 5 or 6 iron into the green and even a professional golfer only hits the green is 50% of the time with a 6 iron in hand.
Up and Downs
Mid handicaps can slash their handicap by getting really good inside 100 yards. The average mid handicap player will spend hours hitting golf balls on the driving range with a driver but will never touch the short game area. The game is decided inside wedge range and if you want to drop your handicap into the single figures, the easiest and quickest way is to practice chipping and putting.
Mid handicappers BIGGEST hurdle to better scoring is the mental game. Stop and think for 10 seconds before your shot. Don't auto pull the driver on every hole. Play back from the hole. Imagine where you want your next shot to come from and hit the ball there. Assess where the best place to be is on every shot.
Mid handicap players will often hit the ball directly at the pin instead of the fat part of the green. Hit to the middle of the green and practice your putting. Watch my videos on Youtube and discover how to slash your golf score!.
So what's considered mid handicap in golf?Players with a handicap between 9 and 18, shoot between 84 and 95 but can have the ability to break 80 on a very good day.