Best Golf Mat Reviews 2018: Top 9+ Recommended
“Why am I not able to play well on the golf course when my practice game is top notch?”
I went through this frustrating phase where I could swing well, drive better in all my practice sessions but failed to perform on the course. Only after sufficient research did I realize I was not practicing the right way; more precisely, I did not use the correct golf hitting mat for practice.
“Is there a right and wrong mat too?” of course; the best golf mat is built to replicate the natural feel of grass thereby not only enhancing your game but also making the transition from the mat to the actual course smooth and fruitful.
Do remember, mental toughness, calm demeanor, and several other factors contribute to success on the golf course, but we will start with working on the basic factors first, namely purchasing the best golf mat that you can afford.
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Buying Guide for Golf Mats
A golf mat can improve your golfing skills - the tees, the drives, etc. It is important that you choose a good quality product from a reputed manufacturer to benefit. Substandard golf practice mats will do more harm than good. Not only will your skills be affected but your expensive golf clubs will be damaged too.
It is therefore paramount that you know what features contribute to the best golf mat and how to buy it.
Key Factors to be taken into consideration before you buy a golf mat
Durability: A golf mat will have to endure a lot of strikes, sunlight and maybe even rain. It is crucial that you buy a golf mat crafted from quality material and designed to long hours of usage possibly every day throughout the year.
Size: The most crucial feature is how big or small the golf mat is. The size of the mat is dependent on how much space is available at your end and what size golf clubs you plan to use. The mat must be large enough to give you enough room to swing your clubs and strike the ball consistently. The most common size is 3’x5’ and 5’x5’.
Tees: The tees play an important role in the life of a golfer. They are subject to lots of hardship and as a result, most of them die an early death. It is therefore important that your mat allows you to replace the tees. With practice, your skills will improve and you will progress to the next level of the game. This will necessity the use of different tees that can be adjusted to suit your stance height and the clubs that you choose to use.
Feel: The reason you are buying a practicing mat is to hone your skills. For that to be effective you must experience the authentic feel of playing on grass. Only then will you adjust once you play on the real turf.
Material: The comfort, the feel and eventually the progress you make depend on the material used to make the mat. Your mat must suit the terrain or course you play on a regular basis.
The most common material used is foam rubber with Astroturf. This makes these mats less forgiving than natural grass. The next point to consider is the material used for the base. Here the choice is between rubber and silicone.
- Rubber golf mats: They are more stable and dense.
- Silicone golf mats: They are bouncier, more forgiving, come closest to the actual feel of playing on grass and finally the impact is not harsh. The main reason silicone is more advantageous is because it allows the shift to natural turf more easily than the rubber mats.
Design: It is not just the material but also the design and construction that determine the quality of the mat. One important aspect of the mat is the thickness. Look for mats that are thick because they have greater shock absorbing capacity. This will protect your clubs from damage.
The filling inside the turf also has a role to play in the quality of the mat. Poor quality fillings will stick as a residue to the golf heads and either stain them or scratch them, thereby reducing the efficacy of the clubs.
Price: There is no doubt the more expensive a product the better the quality, durability, and usability; but that does not mean that you must buy it. Choose a product based on your ability and which specific shots you want to improve. It will be foolhardy for a beginner to spend a colossal sum of money on a practice mat without even knowing the basics.
The price also depends on the size of the mat, the technology used and the material. Ideally, a medium ranged mat will be beneficial for most skill levels as it offers you the possibility to use more tees and practice with all types of golf clubs.
Types of Golf mats
We can broadly classify the golf mats into three types:
- 1. Normal size: These mats are around 3’x5’ or 5’x5’. They are full sized mats on which a player can stand and hit the ball.
- 2. Hitting area mat: These mats are usually around 1’x1’. They are small and portable and are designed just for hitting. You cannot stand on them and practice. These mats require a leveling mat.
- 3. Divot producing: These types of mats are manufactured using the latest technology. In these products, the mat retracts after each shot to replicate the natural grass feel.
Practicing is a must to improve in golf but practicing right using the correct accessories and equipment is even more important. If you spend countless hours practicing on a wrong mat not only will you damage your club, injure yourself but you would have wasted umpteen hours without any result. Therefore, invest in a mat that is closest to nature and offers you the real experience. Do not buy any product without trying.