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Best way to measure shot distance?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I have no range finder, GPS, etc. You all say that the yardage markers on the course aren't accurate. So, what is the best way, on the course, to see how far I am hitting the ball? Is there a reasonably accurate way to estimate this? Even at a driving range, how can I know it is accurate there?
post #2 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

Find a course that has GPS in the cart. If your walking, pace off from the markers. Ranges are notoriously inaccurate. Good luck!!
post #3 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

How did we ever live before GPS and laser rangefinders?!

I've never found yardage markers on the course to be so far off as to not be useful. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of the people who claim that they're inaccurate are upset because the measured yardage doesn't agree with their own estimate of the length of their shot! Damn thing says 150 yds to the center and I came up short with my lob wedge, the marker must be wrong!

If you're talking driving distance as an example, either find a marker on the teebox, or use the center of the teebox as your reference point. That will usually coincide with the published yardage for the tees you're playing. You can check with the proshop to verify. Then just learn to walk a measured one yard pace. If the hole is 420 yds from the center of the box, and the tees are 10 yds up, you're playing from 410 yds. If you hit the ball 20 yds short of the 150 marker, you hit it from 410 to 170, or a drive of 240 yds. It's just not any more complicated than that......and golfers have been doing it that way for hundreds of years now.
post #4 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

Google earth maps......are very accurate, its your point of reference that tends to be off, i like to use a bunker or hazard that my ball clears from a tee. It gives you a good estimate.
post #5 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

I agree with David, the markers on the course are not that far off at all. One coure I play has GPS on the carts and if you drive to the 150 marker in the fairway the GPS will give you something within 1-2 yards of that.

The big thing to keep in mind is that the yardages on the course are to the center of the green. One thing I used to do when I was growing up was to go the course when it wasn't busy and experiment with different shots. It is best to do it with a flat hole with little wind. I would put 3-4 balls down at the 150 marker and hit them to the center to see how far off I was. You should know when you hit a ball solid so when you hit one good go up and see where it landed. Take a look to see where it ended up in relation to the center. If the 8-iron is a little short of center on a good hit, then you know a 150 shot is a 7-iron and an 8 might be for 140. Then go to a different hole and hit balls from 175 or 125 or 100. Once you get a good base for a few clubs then the rest of them should fall into place.

Then when you get to the course to play you can step off the yardage from the nearest marker, check the pin to add or subtract a few yards, get a final yardage to play, you should know the club so swing away.
post #6 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

not only are the markers to the center of the green, they run a line through the middle of the fairway. Sometimes a shot in line with the 100 yard marker may only be 85 yards to the center green if you're closer to the inside of the fairway bend.
post #7 of 7

Re: Best way to measure shot distance?

Originally Posted by imtomtomim View Post
not only are the markers to the center of the green, they run a line through the middle of the fairway. Sometimes a shot in line with the 100 yard marker may only be 85 yards to the center green if you're closer to the inside of the fairway bend.

This is important even if you are not in a bend. Say you are 20y left of center even with the 100y marker, you are probably closer to ~110y from the center of the green because 100y out is a circle around the green, not a straight line at the 100y marker.

If you were to print out a hole from google maps and use a compass to draw circles with the pointy part at the center of the green this would illustrate the point I am attempting to describe.
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