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ProAim Putting Training Glasses

Mar. 29, 2005     By     Comments (11)

The ProAim has been widely touted as a great training aid. I fail to see why: it's a waste of sixty bucks that may in fact impair your putting far more than it helps it.

Pro Aim Side"Drive for show, putt for dough" they all say. "Straight back, straight through" others say. The ProAim is the Professional Golf Teacher's Association's "Training Aid of the Year" and a Golf Digest "Top 10 Training Aid."

The product is endorsed by Butch Harmon (hardly a short game guru), Natalie Gulbis (who's yet to win on the LPGA Tour), Mark Calcavecchia, Craig Parry, and the most respectable man of the bunch, Irishman Darren Clarke. They all love it.

I have no idea why.

Simple Physics
The ProAim works rather simply. Daylight enters the yellow piece of plastic beside your right eye. Thicker pieces of plastic concentrate the light in a parallel-lines-with-crossbar pattern and bounce the light off of a darkened lens back to your eye. You see a simple putting alignment grid (again, see image just below).

The ProAim's goal is to ensure a straight-back, straight-through putting stroke that keeps the putter face square to the intended target line. A straight-back, straight-through stroke (also called the pendulum stroke) is preached by legendary short-game guru Dave Pelz and is employed by many good, solid putters.

ProAim StepsInterestingly enough, Pelz's current star student - Phil Mickelson - employs the stroke used by most of the greatest putters: more of a "hinged door" stroke that opens the putter face on the way back and closes it on the way through. Proponents of the hinged door method say that the putter remains square to your body the whole time, which is much easier to control than the pendulum stroke. The pendulum stroke requires some wrist pronation and supination to keep the putter face square throughout the motion.

Mission: Impossible
In the end, my problems with the ProAim were plenty. First, if you wear glasses, you're simply not going to be able to use the ProAim and to see clearly at the same time. If you've not got 20/20 sight or a pair of contacts, you're simply out of luck.

The ProAim is also fairly small: my head isn't abnormally large, but the ProAim's frame squeezed my head like it was an orange and the glasses had a hankering for some fresh OJ. The first time I tried the ProAim for more than just a few minutes, I got a headache. The headache went away fifteen minutes after removing the ProAim. Whether it's because my eyes were having trouble focusing without my glasses or because the ProAim was squeezing my temples I can't say for sure.

Pro Aim Bad AimMy problems with the ProAim were far more serious than wearing glasses and needing an Aleve now and then. My problem is paying $59.95 for something that simply doesn't work. The ProAim projects its little grid just fine, but it does so where your head is pointed, not where your eyes are looking. Try this: get into your putting stance. Close your eyes and let them move back to the center so they're looking straight in the direction of your face. Open your eyes. Where are you looking? Probably not straight down at your feet.

Most people don't jam their chin into their chest when they putt and their faces are not pointed straight down at the ground. As the illustration to the right shows, the ProAim projects its grid where your face is aimed, not where your eyes are looking. For most people, that means the grid will be two to three feet away from their ball.

What's worse, if your head is cocked to the side a little, the ProAim will steer you in that direction. Tilt your head a little to the right and the ProAim dutifully helps you push your putts. Cock it a little to the left and you're warmly welcomed to Pull City.

Conclusion: Bad
Pro Aim BackNot only is the ProAim not worth $59.95, but I feel it could be detrimental to your putting game. It's quite easy to duplicate a simple putting grid with tees, tape, some shafts or dowel rods, or string. Spend your sixty dollars getting a putting lesson instead - it'll go a whole heckuva lot farther than the ProAim glasses.

Perhaps the ProAim's lenses should have been rose colored?

Discussion

  1. Rafcin says:

    Disagree 100%. Of course you can do that string, tape, tees etc stuff to project straight lines, but nothing will give you feedback on your head movement like the pro-aim. Additionally - if you're on a public or semi course - try set that stuff up every time... Head movement feedback is awsome.

    I was amazed what I was doing! I think practicing over the winter my stroke got much more solid. My wife (35hcp) after practicing with it can sink 8 out of 10 from 10ft on our practice matt, improvement from 4, maybe 5 out of 10 before.

    If you ask me - Worth every penny.

  2. Mickey Douglass says:

    Shit, I don't even use these for golf. I just wear them around when I'm rolling down the strip in my boss hummer. The ladies love 'em. It's like some serious sci-fi thriller baby!!

  3. Doug Williams says:

    You must have had a bad day. These things have improved my game by 3 or 4 strokes per round. Maybe you need to find another line of work!

  4. chris hunt says:

    Working in the field of optometry and visual science, there appears to be some merit behind the idea, however with this aid there are a couple of flaws that in my opinion prevent it from becoming a great aid, one of which is that the eyes rotate within the socket at different rates depending upon the angle of the head to the horizontal.

    Also 20/20 vision is really very poor vision. The measurement comes from a standard theoretical eye being able to descriminate a gap of 1' of arc.

    Most people should be able to see 20/15 and sport people 20/12.5 which is approaching the limit of the resolving power of the human visual system.

    If you are in your 4th decade of life you would probably benefit from a trip to see your optometrist who understands the needs of golfers.

    With regards to the product I would have liked to see added a bubble spirit level in the field of view.

  5. Terence says:

    This is a great product, my putting has improved tremondously. I am amazed that anyone can be negative about such a great product. With the glasses on I am sinking puts that I would never have got close before. I am keeping my head still and alignment much much better.

    Well done ProAim for a great training aid.....

  6. Michael says:

    Brother you make a couple of valid points I hadn't thought of. But I put these glasses on instead of buying a new putter and started dropping everything 6 feet and in.

  7. Terence 33 says:

    This is a great product. I have very poor eyesight but I can still use the pro-aim without glasses. It gives me a clear alignment to hit the ball and provides an amazing level of confidence that I have the ability to hit the puts into the hole every time with the Pro aim glasses on.
    So when I return to normal with my spectacles on I now have the confidence to put the put in the hole.
    I practice most days with and without the Pro Aim. This is the best putting training aid money can buy and I have bought a few duds in my time.
    Good luck with your putting.........

  8. Pedro says:

    I am contemplating buying some.. Some valid points made, but seems to help 'drop putts', which= lower scores.. No brainer really.

  9. Sonny Chabra says:

    Where can I buy Proaim Glasses

  10. danny ibarra says:

    contact me, ill sell you my pair, still in original box and all...

  11. Ivy Joyner says:

    Contact me if you are still willing to sell or have a pair of the glasses for sale.

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