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Mats vs. Grass at Practice Range - Page 6

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 #91 of 258
Of course, if you hit far enough behind the ball, you'll be in trouble on any surface. Least probably on more fluffy mats, since the club will keep some speed going through the mat to the ball.

As long as you hit the ball first, you can hit off the hardest mats or from sand, and get somewhat the same distance out of the ball. If you hit it fat though, you'll maybe hit it 50% the distance off a hard mat, and 5% from the sand.
post #92 of 258
Matts are horrible, fat balls feel like youve flushed them. Ive never tried the Vijay practice matts, those might be interesting since they give and youll hit the ball terrible if you catch it fat
post #93 of 258
The mats at my closest course are very thick and forgiving. It's nice for me right now as I practice a new swing, so I have a little forgiveness on mishits, but it's not an ideal permanent practice area. There's definitely a difference, and when I have a choice I'll choose grass.

However, I hate hitting from ex-grass that is, by the time I get to it, a long trough of dirt. Hitting out of a series of overlapped divots makes it unnecessarily harder, and downright annoying.
post #94 of 258
I quit going to my range(mats only) about a year ago and I improved DRAMATICALLY, seriously I would way prefer to not hit balls at all than hit off mats
post #95 of 258
I think for a good player mats are acceptable. I usually do 30 balls off mats everyday to warm up and do some "stretching swings" that go some half distance of normal shot. However, to learn proper mechanics and ball compression one absolutely needs to use grass. ONCE LEARNED this should be ok for a good player to take to a mat. By that point most of us realize when we mishit it from feel alone without looking at how the ball responded.
post #96 of 258
man we got some heavily exagerated statements in this thread lol.

i practice exclusively off matts (not by choice) and its done perfectly well for me. Sure, matts are more forgiving in that hitting it fat will still get the ball in the air...but if you honestly can't tell by feel if you hit it fat or not, then you haven't been golfing enough anyway.

whether off matt or grass, I can still feel when a ball is striken well, fat, thin, etc. I practice off matts because I have no choice but i really have no complaints either. I'm mostly working on ball striking consistency anyway.

I do agree that distance and control isn't as accurate off matts. I always keep this in mind when practicing.
post #97 of 258
I hit off of real grass whenever possible. Mats for me are too hard and let me get away with chunking it. They also tend to leave a green residue on my clubs that can be hard to remove.
post #98 of 258
Originally Posted by golfro View Post
man we got some heavily exagerated statements in this thread lol.

i practice exclusively off matts (not by choice) and its done perfectly well for me. Sure, matts are more forgiving in that hitting it fat will still get the ball in the air...but if you honestly can't tell by feel if you hit it fat or not, then you haven't been golfing enough anyway.

whether off matt or grass, I can still feel when a ball is striken well, fat, thin, etc. I practice off matts because I have no choice but i really have no complaints either. I'm mostly working on ball striking consistency anyway.

I do agree that distance and control isn't as accurate off matts. I always keep this in mind when practicing.
I agree 100%.

I always hear a bad golfer saying "I can hit nice at the range but can't hit at the course." However, I have never heard a good golfer making such claim. Good golfers know what a solid strike is no matter whether it's a golf mat or grass. In addition, they know the distance is meaningless at the range due to range balls and turf condition.

I disagree with some posts suggesting hitting of golf mat is a waste. Of course, if you have the option, then by all means go to a grass range even if you have to pay more. But if you don't have such luxury, practicing on the golf mat is better than nothing.
post #99 of 258
Originally Posted by acegolfer View Post
I agree 100%.

I always hear a bad golfer saying "I can hit nice at the range but can't hit at the course." However, I have never heard a good golfer making such claim. Good golfers know what a solid strike is no matter whether it's a golf mat or grass. In addition, they know the distance is meaningless at the range due to range balls and turf condition.

I disagree with some posts suggesting hitting of golf mat is a waste. Of course, if you have the option, then by all means go to a grass range even if you have to pay more. But if you don't have such luxury, practicing on the golf mat is better than nothing.
If you cant get to the course enough and try and make up for it by practicing on the range alot, then you,re probably going to get screwed, it makes you develope a horrible scooping action if you do not hit off grass enough, I learned this the hard way early in my golfing days, coming out one spring after spending hours during a miserable winter on the range......to realise I could barely hit the ball.

Now if you are a good player and play off grass alot then you know how a true strike feels and when you hit the range you can tell the difference, and as you mentioned you only hear it from poorer players. Thats my understanding anyway.

For me I just dont do it because of that horrible learning experience.......god I nearly quit
post #100 of 258
Originally Posted by Clubspent91 View Post
If you cant get to the course enough and try and make up for it by practicing on the range alot, then you,re probably going to get screwed, it makes you develope a horrible scooping action if you do not hit off grass enough, I learned this the hard way early in my golfing days, coming out one spring after spending hours during a miserable winter on the range......to realise I could barely hit the ball.

Now if you are a good player and play off grass alot then you know how a true strike feels and when you hit the range you can tell the difference, and as you mentioned you only hear it from poorer players. Thats my understanding anyway.

For me I just dont do it because of that horrible learning experience.......god I nearly quit
I golf on course MAYBE once a week, mostly every other week. I practice on matts roughly every other day. I am very familiar with how a true strike feels, so when i'm practicing at the range, I know exactly what feels like a pure shot and what feels like even a slight misshot.
Personally, I've never had as much of a problem as a lot of people are making it out to be.

Fundamental mechanics of a golf swing remains the same no matter what you hit balls off of. Just because you hit off grass or matt doesn't suddenly screw up your swing. Knowing how to practice on matt and grass and knowing what to feel for is important in my opinion. I live in WA and grew up in OR, which means grass ranges are very hard to come by...every range is matt only unless you drive out a ways. I spent years training daily on matts during my high school years playing competitively, playing with a 2 handicap at the time.

8 years later, I still have no complaints, faired just fine for many years.
post #101 of 258
Well for me when I started, it was late summer so when my swing was developing it happened mainly on mats(winter) my impact just wasnt good althought I didnt know it due to the forgiveness.
To avoid jarring of the wrist to a certain extent on mats you dont hit down as much as you should. So if you dont have a good impact position then mats will make you seem alot better...........then when you get to the course you will be in for a surprize.
But you,re obviously a good player and doesnt struggle with impact so mats wont effect you.......but for the majority of golfers mats just provide false promises
post #102 of 258
I hate practice mats, I always go to the grass at the range.
post #103 of 258
A word of warning: hitting off mats too much can affect your clubs. I worked at a driving range for four years, and one older gentleman (a decidedly skilled golfer) always hit exclusively off our grass tees instead of the mats. He said he used to hit off mats a few times a week and after a year it actually opened all his clubs up 1 to 2 degrees. Mats don't give the way real earth does, and as a result your clubs will give instead. Go for the grass!
post #104 of 258
I have plenty of schools and parks near me so I will only go to a range if I want to work with my driver. I love the people who go to ranges and hit chip shots that make them look like the pro's then on the course they are taking 3 inches of dirt with them and their ball goes 5 feet.
post #105 of 258
Originally Posted by eaglecc View Post
I love the people who go to ranges and hit chip shots that make them look like the pro's then on the course they are taking 3 inches of dirt with them and their ball goes 5 feet.
Doesn't sound very fun to me.
post #106 of 258
Grass for me, but I'll hit off a mat if there's nothing else around.
post #107 of 258
The thing with mats and even the good simulated grass mats is there is no divot. I've gotten more in the habit of looking at the ball flight, ball mark on club and divot to try and figure out off-line shots. You can kind of tell on mats, but it's nice seeing the real thing.
post #108 of 258
My local range has a sweet chipping and putting green, but the mats feel like hitting off concrete. My wrist, forearm, elbow, and especially rotator cuff were hurting like hell for a while. Lately I haven't been using the mats as much since I've been improving my short game and suddenly I have no pain. I think I'm done with mats and will just play a twilight 9 from now on for just a few dollars more.
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