Golf swing suck? Game not on par? These apps, handhelds, and other small devices will boost your performance on the course. Hello, victory.
Dean Arrindell 1 / 6
Golf isn’t easy. And it’s not just your swing that’s tough to nail. From finding the right clubs to evaluating a course before you start, there are tons of elements that come into play. Thankfully, technology can help. We’ve found a slew of apps, handhelds and other gadgets that can fix your swing, boost your score and make you a better player. Who knew the solution to improving your mediocre golf game could fit in the palm of your hand?
If you could see your swing and know what you did wrong, you’d improve it on the next hole, wouldn’t you? Golfsense allows you to do just that, calculating a 3D view of your swing so you can play it back on your smartphone. How it works: The little gadget attaches to the back of your glove (at .6 ounces, you’ll hardly notice), and its sensors track and analyze the club’s speed and position, as well as your swing’s tempo and path. At the same time, your iOS or Android device—when kept in your pocket—will read your hip rotation, too. Then, once the data is all on your phone, you can zoom in and out, rotating the image to see your swing from any angle. ($130; golfsense.me)
Rules of Golf App
Knowing the rules of the game is important, especially if you and your opponents get competitive. But all you really need is the Rules of Golf, which is the official app of the United States Golf Association’s most up-to-date set of regulations, essentially putting their guidelines, definitions, and decisions at your fingertips. What happens if your club is damaged? How do you handle a ball that lands near a rattlesnake? Download this app—available for both Android and iOS—and you’ll have answers to just about every question, right there on your smartphone. (And if something’s missing? Don’t worry. You can send the USGA an email directly—with one little click.) ($4; usga.org)
Callaway Upro MX+
If you really want to step up your game, try the Callaway Upro MX+ GPS monitor synced with satellite imaging and aerial maps to pinpoint where you are on the course. Before you grab a club for your next shot, the Upro MX+ tells you the distance to the next hole so you can judge which club to use. Track your score digitally as you go and upload it to Callaway’s website later to see trends in your play. Plus, the compact 2x4-inch device comes preloaded with over 25,000 golf course maps — you’ll be able to use it pretty much anywhere. ($150; callawayuxplore.com)
Bushnell Hybrid Laser GPS
Another device built to zero in on the flag, the Bushnell Hybrid Laser GPS — a combination rangefinder and GPS — estimates within one yard of accuracy. Though the price tag’s a little steep, you’re paying for brand new laser technology that gives you an even more accurate reading to the center of the green. And it’s worth it. Pinseeker technology focuses right on the flag and filters out obstructions to read a spot-on shot. It also gives you distance to front, center, and back of the green so you can take into account slope or wind variables that might change offset ball when it lands. Complete with over 25,000 golf course maps. ($500; bushnellgolf.com)
Nailing your swing is about finding proper pressure—if you hold the club with a death grip, chances are you’ll gaff it. But thanks to sewn-in sensors, the SensoGlove pulls feedback from previous swings to calculate what your grip should be throughout your stroke. A tiny, sweat-proof computer measures your swing’s pressure from 1 to 18 so you can adjust for your next shot. Plus, it shows you (down to the finger) where in your grip you need to relax your hold. ($90; sensoglove.com)