By Sam Tremlett
Here Neil Tappin takes a look at some of the best golf innovations from the last decade.
7 Best Golf Innovations Of The 2010's
Golf has innovated massively over the last 10 years in terms of clubs, equipment, clothing, shoes and just about every other way you can think of. But what are the best innovations from the decade? Well here Neil Tappin makes seven selections to answer that question but if there are any suggestions that you think are worthy of recognition then please do not hesitate to let us know via our social media channels.
7. Shot Tracking Technology
One of the first of these shot tracking technologies we tried out was Game Golf in which you would tap the end of your club to a sensor on your belt and it would record your shots. This data could then give you an idea on how you were performing.
Since then we have also experienced Arccos' technology as well as something called Shotscope which is a GPS watch which not only gives you all the yardages you need on the golf course, but it also records every shot you hit in conjunction with some tags on your clubs. All of this is beneficial because over time the data reveals interesting trends in your golf game, and shot tracking technology has allowed golfers to have a much better understanding of their games than decades previously.
6. Spikeless Golf Shoes
Fred Couples was our first clear viewing of spikeless golf shoes when he wore a pair of Ecco shoes at The Masters and since then they have taken the golf industry by storm.
Nowadays you can get any kind of design you like in spikeless form whether it be a more traditional design, or one that is different and a lot more out there. There is most definitely something to suit all tastes. What makes them so beneficial is their versatility in terms of being able to play in them and then walk straight into the clubhouse.
In the past decade manufacturers have focused here to try and ensure that when you don't hit the centre of the face, you still get good ball-speed and you get distance. Every manufacturer has gone down this route whether it be Callaway's Flash Face, TaylorMade's Twist Face or Cobra that have CNC Milled faces on its woods.
Importantly irons have also received this treatment too. Now we are seeing a shift towards hollow headed irons which gives manufacturers more space and room to play with in the head. Importantly, if you haven't invested in new golf clubs for a while, this could be an area you are missing out because extra forgiveness could make a big difference to your golf game.
What we have seen in the past decade is waterproofs becoming lighter in weight, more stylish and offering excellent waterproof protection. Some examples include Galvin Green's Shakedry jacket, Under Armour's Gore-Tex Paclite and also FootJoy's Hydroknit jacket.
Importantly whatever your budget there will be a waterproof that can allow you to play in the worst of weather conditions.
The first example of adjustability we saw was the TaylorMade R7 Quad which came out in 2005 and was designed to help players create a certain sort of shape whether it be a fade or a draw. In this decade this concept has evolved drastically like in the Titleist TS3 you can see below.
Nowadays in modern drivers fitters can set the loft and the lie independently from each other. Also modern drivers can be set up to promote a draw or a fade as well as be dialled in to create certain spin characteristics and numbers. You can set the driver up in a multitude of ways dependent on what you are trying to do in your game.
2. Electric Trolleys
In the past decade electric trolleys have become a lot more compact and a lot lighter to save you storage space and make it easier for you to take them in and out of the car. As a result they are also a lot easier to move when out on the golf course.
A key thing that has allowed all this to evolve is the development of the lithium battery which have become smaller, more compact and lighter without hindering performance. To go along with this some trolleys also come with other technologies such as the Stewart Golf X9 Follow which follows you around the course, Powakaddy's GPS trolley and Motocaddy's M5 Connect where you have that GPS functionality built into the trolley.
1. Launch Monitors
If you have been fitted for clubs over the past few years the chances are you were fitted on a launch monitor which wouldn't have been the case a decade ago. The ability to see the shot you're hitting in terms of flight and also in terms of the numbers is huge. Access to this data has allowed coaches to fit better and to give better lessons which ultimately benefits golfers of all abilities.
Launch monitors on the market include Foresight's GCQuad, Trackman, Flightscope as well as SkyTrak which is a monitor at a more affordable price. No doubt the influence and usage of launch monitors is only set to increase heading into the new decade.
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