The main thing to know in this regard is that launch monitors deliver numerical feedback as it relates to your shots. Golf simulators can be considered the environment you use your launch monitor in. It’s the screen and projector or the computer monitor you use as well as the net and enclosure. Simulators could even include a couch or club rack or realistic turfing and art on the walls.
What is a Launch Monitor?
An electronic device capable of tracking and reporting the flight characteristics of a golf ball after it is struck is referred to as a launch monitor. It uses numerical data to help you analyze how your golf ball moves directly after impact. This data can give you an approximation of the range, velocity and direction of travel of your ball.
Launch monitors can be used indoors or outdoors, whether you’re hitting on a driving range or into a net in your home. The best launch monitors can provide data regarding your smash factor, club speed, club path and club face angle. They can also determine your club face to path, attack angle, dynamic loft and club loft angle. Further, monitors can report your club lie angle, as well as your vertical and horizontal impact points.
Launch Monitor Benefits
The primary benefit of a golf launch monitor is the reduction of the role trial and error plays in improving your on-course game. You can more easily dial in your distances when you’re employing facts rather than guesses to inform your swing.
The data returned from a good launch monitor can also help you decide which clubs will make up your bag composition by revealing distance gaps in your game. This will help you ensure your bag contains the tools you need.
A launch monitor can help you fit your clubs too. Hitting under the watchful eye of a monitor can help you and a professional fitter figure out shaft flex and weights, club lengths and lie angles to find the exact set you need.
What is a Golf Simulator?
Simulators use the data provided by monitors to visually display the results of your shots in a virtual environment. The best ones can graphically simulate courses with an astonishing degree of clarity and detail. They can even help you learn to read greens.
Essentially, golf simulators capture, analyze, and project your golf shots onto a screen while giving you an on course feel and keeping your shots all in one place. They can also provide highly realistic visuals of well-known courses, along with modes for a group of players, mini-games, and practice exercises.
Golf Simulator Benefits
You can play a full 18-hole round on a simulator in as little as 40 minutes, vs three to five hours in real life. You can practice specific aspects of your game repetitively to develop muscle memory. With a simulator you’re not confined to your neighborhood muni track on 75 degree days. You can play or practice day or night. Four foot snow drifts outside? Intersections underwater from that rainstorm? Iit won’t matter to you because you’ll be swinging in your indoor simulator
If you enjoy entertaining in your home this is another option. Have the fellas over for a night of 18 while enjoying your favorite cooler of beverages. If you want, you can even set your simulator up dual-function as a theater. Wait until your son or daughter has a birthday party and a closest to the pin is one of the main attractions.
Make no mistake: golf simulators are great to have if you have the space for one.. However a good launchmonitor will provide many of the same benefits, while imposing far fewer requirements.
The Bottom Line
Both tools offer significant benefits. Either will help you practice any time you’d like, day or night, weather conditions notwithstanding. The choice is yours when it comes to setting up a monitor and net or if you want to go with a full blown simulator. Either way they both offer significant value to your golf game.