Indoor golf simulators are a great way to practice when you are on the road and there’s no golf course available. Experiencing a world-famous course that you probably never will visit is an added benefit of golf simulators. Visit a local golf show and you’ll find at least a half dozen being used in various capacities. Over the last few decades, golf simulators have become highly sophisticated in their engineering and design and closely imitate the golf course experience. They do for golfers what treadmills did for runners: Let them enjoy their sport all year long.
The golf simulator used on the Golf Channel is produced by the company aboutGolf. The company also supplies golf simulators for the PGA Tour Superstores throughout the country, where more than 28,000 lessons are given on simulators annually. Though the cost of an aboutGolf simulator is not cheap – various models sell for $50,000 to $68,000 – they continually expand worldwide. In Asian countries where land is a premium, golf simulators are more plentiful than golf courses. South Korea, which is about the size of Minnesota, has 25,000 golf simulators.
The current world number one golfer Luke Donald had an aboutGolf 3Trak-powered PGA Tour simulator installed in his home in the summer of 2009. No one knows for sure whether he spent time indoors preparing for the Masters, U.S. Open, The Open Championship, and PGA Championship, but his recent ascent to the top of the golf world cannot be disputed.
In addition to aboutGolf, several other companies produce golf simulators, including ForeGolf, Full Swing, Holiday Golf, High Definition, Multi-Sport, and Trugolf. At Full Swing Golf, you can participate in online golf tournaments. The Full Swing Tour, for example, is a quarterly indoor golf event that runs weekly tournaments and awards points for participation as well as distributing a purse among the 100 best golfers.
Indoorgolf.com is a good web site that offers lots of information about indoor golf simulators and where to find one in your area. Though not a comprehensive list, you can still find a golf simulator closest to your location. The list is periodically updated, and they rely on input from the public to help update their listing. They will also provide assistance if you are planning on purchasing an indoor golf simulator. The only drawback: It’s a tight squeeze in an RV!
Rick Stedman is an avid golfer, RVer, and writer who lives in Olympia, Washington. Rick writes a golf column, “The RV Golfer,” which is published every month in rvlife.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.