A Guide to Indoor Golf and Indoor Golf Simulators (2022)

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If you’re an avid golfer, you know just how painful it can be when you’re craving a round but just can’t readily access a golf course. Maybe you live in a colder part of the world, or maybe it just happens to be especially terrible weather that day. Whatever the case, there will be moments when you just wish there was an alternative to going to the course and playing.

Luckily, that alternative exists: indoor golf! There are many premier indoor golf facilities you can visit to satisfy your golfing desires. These places typically have many simulator “bays” that you can hit in and all you have to do is call ahead to book a time. Though it won’t exactly replicate the feeling of playing outdoors, indoor golf facilities can help to keep your game sharp outside the regular golf season.

If you find that you love to play simulator golf, you can bring the golfing experience home with indoor golf simulators designed to be installed in a house! This post will provide a comprehensive overview of indoor golf and reveal some advanced simulators to install in your own home.

What is an Indoor Golf Simulator?

Before diving into some of the best indoor golf simulators on the market, it’s important first to understand what a golf simulator is and how it works.

Put simply, a golf simulator is a machine that measures data about your golf swing (and ball flight), feeds that data into a computer, and then projects graphically how your shot would have look on a simulated driving range or simulated golf course.

Relying on high-speed cameras and other detectors, a golf simulator will track each shot in real time and present data about club speed, ball speed, club face angle, spin, ball path, launch angle, and more.

There are a few different indoor golf simulator types that have their own unique advantages and disadvantages:

  • Simulator mats
  • Sonic sound system simulator
  • Radar systems
  • Optical sensors
  • Camera systems

Most modern simulators are a hybrid of a few of the simulator types above and use all the data received to build a comprehensive profile of your ball trajectory after every swing.

Requirements to Set Up Indoor Golf In Your Home

Before you head out and start shopping for indoor golf simulators, check to make sure that you meet all the requirements to set up a simulator in your home.

Space – Needless to say, indoor golf requires space. At the minimum, you’ll need to make sure you have enough space to swing your driver around without hitting anything. For most golf simulators, the space requirements are 10’W x 10’L x 9’H. The most challenging space requirement is oftentimes finding a space in your home that has a 9 foot high ceiling. A common place to set up a golf simulator is the garage since it provides lots of room and also prevents your simulator from taking up space within the house.

Net or Screen – The actual golf ball sensor / launch monitor is important, but at the end of the day, you’ll need to be hitting into something (since you aren’t outdoors). Deciding on whether you want a net or a screen is an important prerequisite before buying a simulator. A screen will be easier to project onto, but a net will be significantly cheaper to purchase and install.

Golf Mat – In addition to the space required to set up a simulator, you’ll also need to purchase a golf mat, both to receive balls that bounce off from the net/screen and also to hit off of. Not all mats are created equal and some suit certain swing types better than others. Be sure to try out different mats before installing your simulator as they can make or break your indoor golfing experience.

Software – Depending on which launch monitor you choose, you could have to additionally purchase some software. Some golf simulators come with their own in-house software (like Foresight) but others can be linked to various different software. Some popular software to consider are WGT (World Golf Tour), The Golf Club 2019, and E6 Connect.

Be sure to consider all of these requirements before buying an indoor golf simulator.

The Best Golf Simulators of 2022

Between the high-tech golf simulators that pro players consistently use and affordable golf simulators that cost less than $10,000, you’re sure to find a simulator on this list that works for your indoor golfing needs.

SkyTrak Sig10 Golf Simulator Package

Offered by Shop Indoor Golf, the SkyTrak Sig10 package is the perfect option if you’re looking for a simulator that’s effective, space-efficient, and affordable.

The package comes with a SkyTrak launch monitor that’s commonly touted as being one of the best simulators on the market. Many comparisons show that SkyTrak is almost as accurate as Trackman while costing much less. You’ll get accurate data on your ball flight, launch angle, and carry while being able to pair the SkyTrake with your phone.

On top of the actual simulator, you’ll also receive a metal protective case for it, the SkyTrak play and improve software, an indoor Sig10 golf simulator enclosure, a golf simulator projector, a golf mat, and everything else you need to set up the simulator in your home.

At less than $10,000, the SkyTrak Sig10 package is one of the best budget golf simulator options on the market. If you’re still looking for something more budget-friendly, feel free to check out the SkyTrak Bronze package, the SkyTrak training package, and the SkyTrak Golf Simulator Flex Space Package. These offer various software adjustments and space adjustments that make it easier for you to accomodate a simulator in your home (regardless of where you live).

Uneekor EYE XO Golf Simulator Package

If you’re looking for a slightly more premium offering than SkyTrak, one of your best bets is the Eye XO Swingbay golf simulator package.

The Eye XO launch monitor is an overhead simulator that features game-changing technology without being overly complicated. One clear improvement over its predecessor is the non-marking technology that Eye XO now has. This means that you’ll be able to practice and play with any ball you’d like without worrying about the accuracy of the data you’re getting.

On top of that you’ll be receiving more advanced club data, new software to work with, enhanced resolution, and a high-quality camera and swing analysis system. Bonus: the Eye XO simulator is compatible with lots of different simulation software (including TGC, E6, and Creative Golf).

With most packages, you’ll also receive a simulator enclosure, a projector, turf to hit on, and a landing pad turf area. Adding all of these products together puts this package at a reasonable $20,000.

Flightscope Mevo Plus

The Flightscope Mevo Plus is an upgrade from its predecessor, the Flightscope Mevo, and aims to provide golfers with accurate shot data at a fraction of the cost of bigger companies like Trackman and Foresight.

Also, don’t let the fact that Flightscope isn’t a “major player” deter you from their simulators. Major tour players like Bryson DeChambeau consistently use Flightscope to improve their games.

Bryson uses the Flightscope X3, which costs around $15,000, but the more budget-friendly alternative (the Flightscope Mevo Plus), only costs around $2,000.

With this small and compact simulator, you’ll receive data on important metrics like ball speed, carry distance, club head speed, efficiency, spin rate, shot shape, and angle of attack. Furthermore, you’ll get a customizable interface to help you navigate your shots, an internal camera to help you make sure you’re setting up to the ball square every time, and an iOS simulation software so you can actually play rounds.

At only $2,000 and with an easy golf simulator setup, there’s not much more you can ask for out of an indoor home golf solution.

Foresight Sports GCQuad Launch Monitor

If you’re looking for a high-end, professional-grade golf simulator that will provide you with precise data and bring your game to the next level, look no further than the Foresight GCQuad. It has won the Golf Digest Editors’ Choice Award twice so far and continues to be one of the leading golf simulators on the market.

Building on its predecessor, the Foresight Sports GC2, the GCQuad uses a quadroscopic camera system to capture even more data than before. The GCQuad has a compact and ergonomic design that’s pleasing to the eyes, and powerful internal analysis systems to let it accurately capture ball and club data.

Setting up with the GCQuad is extremely easy, and it’s super portable so you can take it with you wherever you go and practice on the fly.

The best part about the GCQuad is just how accurate the data it provides is. Rivalling that of Trackman, the Foresight GCQuad has readings that are extremely close. In fact, when it comes to indoor readings, Foresight is noted to actually be better than Trackman. The only potential scenario in which you might run into some issues is if you swing the driver very fast and hit some low spin, high-launch type shots.

Along with the actual launch monitor, you’ll also receive access to FSX 2020, Foresight’s in-house simulation software. FSX includes 9 courses free of charge, and if you want a more expansive golf course library, you can pay to have it downloaded. Also, the software comes with three different modes (play, compete, and improve) so you can really hone in on your game and bring it to the next level.

With its accurate shot data and extra offerings, it’s no surprise that the Foresight GCQuad is used as a commercial golf simulator in plenty of indoor practice facilities.

Trugolf Vista 12 Golf Simulator

The Trugolf Vista 12 is a golf simulator bundle that’s designed to shave shots off your game without completely breaking your bank.

The Vista 12 differs from its predecessors with a new cutting-edge design, life-like video simulation, advanced software, and extreme portability. The setup employs TruTrak2 to give you instant club and ball data after every shot. The package also comes with a realistic hitting mat that gives you as authentic of a golfing experience as you can get indoors.

When you purchase the Vista 12, you’ll also receive access to the E6 Golf Connect software, one of the highest-quality, most realistic simulation programs on the market today. You’ll have virtual access to epic courses like Bethpage Black, Bay Hill, and Pebble Beach. With 4k graphics and expanded functionality, E6 Connect will make you forget that you’re playing virtual golf!

SwingLogic SLX MicroSim Home Golf Simulator

At a ridiculously low price of around $200, the SwingLogic SLX MicroSim is the best cheap golf simulator on the market today.

Despite its low price, the MicroSim proves extremely useful to improving your game and providing you with decent shot data. Bonus: when you purchase the MicroSim, you also get access to the E6 Golf simulation software, so you can experience true golf simulation at the fraction of the price of bigger brand-name products.

The MicroSim works by using a lightweight sensor to measure shot data. This sensor is attached to an attached swing stick or to your very own golf club. All you have to do is register the device, install E6 Connect, establish a few connections, and start swinging your club!

Of course, you’ll need to find a way to set up a hitting area in your house if you want to actually hit balls (like investing in a Net Return Pro), but the MicroSim can still be a great way to work on your swing when the weather outside isn’t cooperating.

If you’re looking for a fun little training aid to help give you a few insights on your swing, definitely keep the MicroSim in mind!

Trackman 4

Used by more than 700 tour professionals, the Trackman 4 is arguably the best golf simulator on the market today.

The monitor offers dual radar technology, allowing it to zero in on both club and ball data during impact. Because of this, Trackman gives accurate insight on more data points than any other simulator available.

Of course, for a premium simulator like this, you can expect to pay more than you would for other launch monitors. The Trackman 4 costs upwards of $20,000 and is only recommended for high-level golfers or institutions who have a budget of $30,000 and up.

Aside from the intensely accurate data that Trackman provides, it also has an app that you can download that allows you to view shot data on your phone. The only disadvantage to the Trackman is that it needs to be calibrated to detect targets in an outdoor environment.

Also, the Trackman is a fantastic outdoor golf simulator but has some restrictions indoors. If you’re deciding to get a Trackman for an indoor hitting space, make sure you have enough room between the hitting mat and the screen, or you could lose out on some of the data. It’s recommended that you have a minimum room size of 12 feet x 12 feet for the best hitting experience.

Also, another thing to keep in mind is that the Trackman 4 weighs in at around six pounds. Though that’s not exactly heavy, you probably won’t want to be lugging that around in your golf bag along with your golf clubs. It’s for this reason that Trackman is recommended as a good stationary simulator (either indoors or at the range).

Still, if you’re looking for a top-notch simulator that’s fit for PGA golf, there’s no better premier indoor option than Trackman.

Recap: A Guide to Indoor Golf and Indoor Golf Simulators

If you just can’t get enough of the golf experience and would like to improve your golf game both on and off the course, consider getting yourself an indoor golf simulator.

This post has provided you with a run down of the requirements you’ll need to meet before installing an indoor golf simulator and also provided you with a list of some high-end indoor golf simulators (and a simulator package or two) to consider.

It’s up to you whether it’s worth it to make the investment or whether you’re content with regular outdoor golf.