I Used Shot Tracking For A Year, Here's What Happened...

Neil Tappin looks back on a year using Arccos Caddie.

I Used Shot Tracking For A Year, Here's What Happened, man hitting shot thumbnail
(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

I Used Shot Tracking For A Year, Here's What Happened...

Artificial intelligence has changed the way we play golf in the 21st century. 

Thanks to the best golf GPS apps and tracking devices, golfers can see their stats like never before, accessing all kinds of data about their game to really pinpoint where strengths and weaknesses lie.

These devices also give detail on how far you hit each club in your bag which could prove invaluable.

In the video and post below, I've gone into detail on using shot-tracking for the past year, specifically the Arccos Caddie. 

I tracked shots across 21 rounds of golf and tried to reveal the key discoveries the data revealed about my game, specifically where I need to improve. 

I've also looked to give some insight into what it is actually like to use Arccos out on the golf course. 

Short Game

The first area to talk about, which is the biggest weakness in my game, is the short game. 

Arccos is telling me my short game handicap is 12.4 whilst my actual handicap index is 2.7 so there is significant room for improvement here. To be honest I did not really need Arccos to tell me this because I already kind of knew it, but there are still some interesting data points to mention.

Firstly, the stats suggested my bunker play is actually quite good but where I really struggle is inside 25 yards as I only average 15 feet from the flag on those shots, and I'm only getting the ball up and down 28% of the time. 

Arccos is clearly quite useful here as it has given me some clear direction and focus as to which particular aspects need work. I can then plan a course of action by getting lessons, practicing more, getting new clubs or whatever it may be. 

man hitting driver

(Image credit: Kevin Murray)

Driving

There were a couple of interesting findings here. First I knew driving was a strength of my game and I gained 1.4 strokes when up against a three-handicapper.

That's good, and I am hitting the fairway 50% of the time as well which I am happy with. However I am more interested in what I am not doing so well at.

As it turns out I am missing right 25% of the time, and left 20% of the time but you might find your stats may suggest you are missing more one side than the other. 

This therefore gives you something to work on and also informs your strategy on a golf hole as well.

The second interesting finding is I seem to be better off the tee, the longer the hole is. The shorter the hole then the fewer shots I am gaining so that would suggest I need to focus a bit more or come up with a go to shot for those shorter holes. 

arccos approach stats

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Approach

This was another good aspect of my game this year as I was +0.8 strokes gained overall in this part of my game. 

But like the driving stats above, I am actually better the further away I am whereas I am actually -0.6 strokes from 50-100 yards when compared to a three-handicapper. Clearly there is something to work on there.

Arccos also revealed to me I am missing short 22% of the time which suggests either my ball-striking isn't as consistent as it needs to be, or I am not clubbing up enough and I think it is the latter more often than not. 

Arccos tells me how far I hit each club in the bag so I have a good idea how far I hit it but all too often I seem to be pushing it a bit which results in coming up short because its the wrong club or I mis-hit it. 

putting on green, putter at address

(Image credit: Kevin Murray)

Putting

Currently I am giving away 1.3 shots per round when putting and the statistic I really want to improve is putts per round which is at 35 right now, so again, work to be done here. 

When we delve a little deeper the main area to focus on here is putts between 25 and 50 feet as I am giving away four shots here. 

If I can improve my lag putting then I should reduce my three-putts and take strokes off my scores. 

arccos link on belt

You can either use your phone or Arccos Link (pictured) to track your shots

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

My Arccos Experience

The final topic I wanted to mention is my overall experience of using Arccos. 

Let me briefly explain how it works. Each club has a sensor in the grip that, when you hit a shot, gets picked up by your phone or the Arccos Link and then the shot gets logged in the app. If you use your phone you cannot have it in your bag, it has to be in your pocket.

Overall, from my experience Arccos has picked up my shots pretty well. Admittedly there have been moments it has missed shots and I have had to put them in after the round, and at one point during the summer some of the sensors stopped working and I had to re-pair them. After I did that, they all worked fine. 

Another area where you may need to do a bit of work is on the putting green because the impact sound is duller and cannot be logged properly sometimes. As such I did have to go in and adjust the putting shots to make sure they were as accurate as possible. 

But the way Arccos worked best for me was not looking at the stats after every single round but looking at it after a longer stretch of time. This allowed me to see the bigger areas that need work and allowed me to see trends properly. 

The other function I used a lot more than I thought I would was the GPS functionality. It gives you hole maps and yardages as you play which was really helpful. Then once you have enough data you have something called Arccos Caddie which will then suggest to you strategies on different holes.

So there you have my experience of Arccos and shot-tracking. If you have used both or either of them then let us know your thoughts. 

Neil Tappin
Neil Tappin

Neil has worked for Golf Monthly for over 15-years. Originally working with the best coaches in the UK to produce instruction content, he is now the brand's Digital Editor and covers everything from Tour player interviews to gear reviews. Neil is currently a 2-handicap golfer who has played the game for as long as he can remember. In his role at Golf Monthly, he has covered equipment launches that date back well over a decade. He clearly remembers the launch of the Callaway and Nike square drivers as well as the white TaylorMade driver families, such as the RocketBallz! He has also conducted 'What's In The Bag' interviews with many of the game's best players like Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm. Over the years, Neil has tested a vast array of products in each category and at drastically different price-points. 

Neil is currently playing: Driver: Titleist TSi3 Fairway Wood: Titleist TSi2 Hybrid: Titleist TS3 Irons (4-9): Mizuno JPX 919 Forged Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 46˚, 50˚, 54˚, 60˚ Putter: Odyssey Triple Track Ten Ball: Titleist Pro V1X