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Mats vs. Grass at Practice Range - Page 14

Poll Results: Do you hit off the grass or mats when you go to the range?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 50% (54)
    Always off the GRASS - I want realistic conditions
  • 7% (8)
    Always off the GRASS - This is all my range offers
  • 0% (1)
    Always off the MATS - It's cheaper
  • 0% (0)
    Always off the MATS - I like the feel of the mat
  • 0% (1)
    Always off the MATS - I don't want to clean my clubs when i'm done
  • 16% (18)
    Always off the MATS - This is all my range offers
  • 11% (12)
    I switch it up but mostly off the GRASS
  • 4% (5)
    I switch it up and it's 50/50
  • 12% (13)
    I switch it up but mostly off the MATS
  • 0% (0)
    It doesn't mater to me at all. I have no preference
107 Total Votes  
post #235 of 258

I ran into this issue this weekend. I was hitting off the mats and was hitting beautiful lengthy draws with my irons, lots of distance, reasonably accurate. The grass was in front of me, so when a guy came to hit off the grass, I moved up, because I didn't want to hit him with an errant shot, for which he sincerely thanked me. Anyway, once on the grass, all my pretty shots disappeared, as I was hitting them slightly fat, and the mats were bouncing the club just right, I guess, or it was psychological, IDK.

post #236 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by golf-noob-bruce View Post
 

 

"Almost Golf" balls are relatively hard, and if you're standing closer than say 20 yards or so it would still hurt pretty badly if you got hit by a well struck shot. Maybe you're thinking of foam balls?

 

Yes, the yellow ones.

post #237 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by golf-noob-bruce View Post
 

 

"Almost Golf" still relatively hard and if you're standing closer than say 20 yards or so it would still hurt pretty badly if you got hit by a well struck shot. Maybe you're thinking of foam balls?


Yeah I've got some of those and I wouldn't want to get hit in the face with one that was hit with any of the longer clubs.

 

Biggest problems most parks and ball fields would have even with foam balls would be people making divots and the danger of a little kid running up behind somebody swinging a golf club and getting hit.

 

Wouldn't be much problem to find a secluded spot and use some common sense but the park has to also account for those that might not have any common sense when they make rules.

post #238 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post

Wouldn't be much problem to find a secluded spot and use some common sense but the park has to also account for those that might not have any common sense when they make rules.

Or the people who just don't have common sense around golf. I watched a guy on Saturday walk right through the middle of the golf course (across multiple fairways and greens, some of which people were hitting at) to get to a Safeway while I was working. I told him he should let me give him a ride so he didn't get hit and he just shrugged and said, "They suck too much to ever hit me." It was in the middle of a beer tournament (each person received two beers at the tee of every third hole), so I could sort of see his point since they were all smashed, but then again they were all drunk enough to hit him easily without even aiming.

 

On topic, I greatly prefer hitting off of real grass just because it gives more reliable feedback as to how I'm striking the ball. I always sneak into the habit of hitting the ball fat after hitting off of mats. Real grass is nice just because that's what you hit off of on the course, so you know that's about how you're going to hit it out on the course. It does get a bit annoying though when it's all sandy (spraying up into your face when you hit), but I know that's just a byproduct of them having to reseed it with the divot mix every two weeks or so.

post #239 of 258

     It's been my experience that hitting off mats can hide numerous impact problems. Mats have very little give to them, which allows the club face to slide into the ball on what would normally be a fat shot. A fatty off the mat will still show a decent ball flight. Irons are designed to hit down on the ball. Hitting down on a mat, especially one sitting on concrete can cause an injury, and/or damage to the club. This, even if the ball is contacted first. For these reasons I tend to stay away from mats when ever possible.

     At my home, make shift practice area, I do use a mat I built myself, that allows the club head to continue it's downward motion after contacting the ball much like normal turf would. 

     I think woods are better suited for hitting off mats, since a golfer can get by with a sweeping motion. 

post #240 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pretzel View Post
 

, "They suck too much to ever hit me."

 

funny - he's under the impression that everyone is trying to hit him then.....

 

One might have to consider if he's the type that, then, likely has it coming for one reason or another....

post #241 of 258

As far as I know, here on Long Island, there aren't any public grass ranges available besides I believe Wind Watch, which requires a $25 entry fee, so I've only ever hit off of mats. But there are better and worse mats. There are the ones that look like shag astroturf from Home Depot or the ones that are tight astroturf on some kind of plastic baseboard. I hate going to those ranges because I just dislike the experience of hitting off of those types of bases. But there are a number of ranges that have invested in the mats that cost about $400 each, the ones that are about an inch and a half thick, with rubber cushioning and quality astroturf. If I hit too far behind the ball, I definitely feel like I chunk my shot. And the turf doesn't leave a thin residue or film on your golf clubs that is common on low quality mats. I do my best to exclusively go to places that use ones of those quality, even if they're farther away or more expensive. Oyster Bay has such mats, and they're a great pro shop to patronize. They do groupons and such that help keep the per bucket cost down, so I'll make the trek over there once in a while. But there are a few others that are good in the area. And, as snooty as it sounds, I find that the nicer the mats are, the nicer the clientele tends to be. You pay the extra buck or more per bucket, but you tend to avoid the boisterous crowds at the big commercial ranges that tend to have more durable (read: bad to hit off of) mats.

post #242 of 258

I've seen the website owners using mats in some of their vids...so I feel like they can't be THAT bad. I can tell when I'm hitting down on the ball correctly via ball flight/height. When I hit it fat on the mat, it just doesn't go as high or as fast as when I hit it flush. 

post #243 of 258

Good mats are pretty good. Bad mats are not so good.

 

Also, a good player can more easily hit off mats without issues. It's mid to high handicappers with inconsistent ballstricking that may suffer from it. Good players got the mechanics to avoid hitting it fat and they most likely feel better bad shots. As someone who has grown up with mats on range and tees, I did not feel when I hit it fat and not.

post #244 of 258
I think mats with a hard surface are quite good. You can feel fat shots because the clubhead bounces a bit and generates a low ball flight. On soft mats you maybe don't have that kind of feedback.
post #245 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reval14 View Post

I think mats with a hard surface are quite good. You can feel fat shots because the clubhead bounces a bit and generates a low ball flight. 

QFT

 

This is what I see and feel when I hit a fat shot. 

post #246 of 258

I went over to the range where I mow the grass last week and hit some balls off of their brand new mats.

 

Wow! It was almost like I couldn't hit a bad shot if I tried.

 

If they ever allow carrying a mat with me and placing the ball on it during my rounds I will have it made.

post #247 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crim View Post

QFT

This is what I see and feel when I hit a fat shot. 
The trajectory I mean looks more like a thin shot. Technically the ball is strucked thin, but just because the clubhead bounces from the mat and then hits the ball.
post #248 of 258

You can usually tell if you listen that you are hitting it fat. You'll hear the thump before the click would mean a fat shot on a normal swing, click and thump at the same time is picking or sweeping it, and click then thump is hitting ball first. It's not an exact thing of course, but the range I have here has crap for grass tee areas. I'll go to the grass area most of the time but if they have the ropes set up where the ground slopes all over the place I'm better off on the mats.

post #249 of 258

When they move the ropes in front of the mats I hit off the mats even in the summer if they are close enough. I don't have a problem with grass or anything just there usually isn't much left. There should be a sign at the range explaining how to use it with hacking a stall to bits hitting 35 balls ruining it until they move to another spot. Even if you can find a little patch of grass you might have to stand on uneven divots to use it.

post #250 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2512 View Post
 

When they move the ropes in front of the mats I hit off the mats even in the summer if they are close enough. I don't have a problem with grass or anything just there usually isn't much left. There should be a sign at the range explaining how to use it with hacking a stall to bits hitting 35 balls ruining it until they move to another spot. Even if you can find a little patch of grass you might have to stand on uneven divots to use it.

 

This is the lesson tee and practice area at Foothills.  Grass hitting area is 150 yards long and 40 yards deep.  I did most of my practicing at the chipping area.

 

post #251 of 258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

 

This is the lesson tee and practice area at Foothills.  Grass hitting area is 150 yards long and 40 yards deep.  I did most of my practicing at the chipping area.

 

That's a nice practice area. I know the course I work at is re-doing their, and I hope it ends up something even just similar to this. Looks like there's plenty of room and grass to hit off of.

post #252 of 258

Real grass is hard to find by me, it's mats or nothing, so one has to learn the feel and sound of a good shot off the carpet, and I have, I can tell when players a few stalls away hit it right, and when they're fat, I'm amazed how many continue to hit those fat shots again and again, possibly thinking they're doing well, and then go to chunk the mall, it's really a terrible way to practice for that reason alone, no less the lack of feedback and divots... but it's all we got.

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