April 2013

Hot new gear you should have

Labels: Equipment
This Article Features Photo Zoom
ERNEST SPORTS
The Ernest Sports ES12 digital golf assistant is a portable launch monitor that provides you with valuable information. Take it to the range, set it up next to the ball, then swing. Via a Bluetooth connection, it sends your pertinent swing data to its smartphone app, so you instantly see shot distance, ball speed and more, right on your phone. New features include a club-gapping mode that tells you if the various lofts in your set are off. The app also works with video to help you analyze your swing. ($250, ernestsports.com)

RUKK NET
The rock-solid Rukk Net is sturdy enough to withstand your tee shots—it contains two layers of netting, plus a steel frame—yet weighs just 14 pounds and collapses into a circular carrying tote bag. Remove it from the case, and it easily pops into shape for instant usage. It includes a hitting mat, plus a small chipping target that hangs inside the net, replete with target hole, so you can chip into it. The net is shaped so that the ball will roll right back to your feet. Best of all, it requires zero assembly. ($179, rukket.com)

GARMIN
It appears to be a sleek wristwatch, but Garmin's Approach S3 watch allows you to measure shot distances. The touch screen lets you quickly position the pin location to find distances to any cup—while more than 30,000 courses are preloaded, you also get lifetime updates. Off the course, it's a cool alarm clock and full-featured sports watch that includes an odometer. The rugged unit is also waterproof. ($350, garmin.com)

SKY GOLF
SkyPro is a clever new sensor that easily fastens to your club's shaft, then transmits instant swing data to your smartphone. Endorsed by Hank Haney, the product shows a wonderful 3D graphical view of your swing path—it captures 100,000 data points from address through impact—and lets you adjust the playback speed and viewpoint angle to see what your clubhead is doing through impact. It even offers built-in alerts to help you ID swing faults. ($200, skygolf.com)

SWING JACKET
After disappearing from the market for six years—the company factory had burned to the ground, along with all of the dyes, molds and product—the Swing Jacket is back. Golfers who put on the vest learn quickly to repeat the core fundamentals of a simple, repeatable, efficient swing. The vest physically guides you through a connected, on-plane swing. You get instant, effective and visual feedback when you hit golf balls wearing it. ($120, swingjacket.com)

THE PILL
The Pill looks as if it's the thick center slice of a golf ball, and it rolls on its side. Designed for practice on the green, you line it up on its side, aiming it where you think you should aim your putt. If your stroke is proper, you'll roll the Pill into the cup. If it's off even slightly, the Pill either will fall over or the degree of your miss will be exaggerated. Bottom line: It provides reliable feedback about your stroke plane. It also works from a sand trap, forcing you to make a proper stroke to land the Pill onto the green. ($13, thepillgolf.com)



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