It is a booming market within golf, the search to develop a golf simulator or launch monitor that everyone wants. But should you really be considering buying a simulator or launch monitor?
As a golf coach, I can see the benefit of owning a golf simulator, as opposed to a golf launch monitor as I believe that using a simulator can actually help your game massively, especially during times of lockdown or long, cold winters where playing golf is simply not an option. So why shouldn´t you invest in a launch monitor? Well to be honest, unless you are looking to develop a club-fitting or coaching empire then a launch monitor is an extravagance that is not really a necessity.
One of my biggest problems with modern day golf is the reliance on technology to tell you, or a coach what the problem is. There is a need like never before to “know” as many tiny details about a golf swing; swing speed, club face angle, attack angle, launch angle, smash factor, spin rates, club path the list goes on, but do you really know what each little piece of information you can achieve from the top end launch monitors really means when it comes to improving your golf game? Be honest, the vast majority of you are going to say “no” or “not really”. So why do you need to know? Because of the after-round chatter in the club house, a need to show off that your clubhead speed is faster than your best buddies?
By owning a launch monitor and studying the numbers, you will drive yourself crazy with an obsession to improve the numbers, regardless of the effect it may have on your game, and they are not always positive. I have known clients come to me, spurting out numbers and how they have increased swing speed, reduced driver spin and achieved a smash factor of X, but when asked if this has resulted in a reduction of handicap or improvement of playing ability the response is not very encouraging. In fact most have had a handicap increase because instead of focussing on what really matters, learning to get the ball in the hole, they became number crunchers and not golfers.
A simulator on the other hand is a superb investment, as it allows golfers the opportunity to practice in the closest possible environment to a real game of golf as possible and the technological advances in simulators is quite extraordinary.
Using a simulator helps to build consistency in your swing, it also gives a good representation of how you would deal with certain situations when you are actually out playing. Please continue to use a simulator if you have one, and if you are considering a launch monitor or a simulator to pass the time, during the state of world wide emergency, then opt for a simulator.