Let's face it: the driving range can get expensive to go to. And for most golfers, saving your money for greens fees is likely more important than using up your funds just on practice sessions on the range.
So what can one do about this issue? Well...for that we have an option for you, and that is buying golf practice mats. In this way, you can still practice at home by trying to simulate the golf game. If you already are the lucky owner of a golf simulator or launch monitor, then a hitting mat could also be the perfect addition to make your experience an even more realistic feel.
Golf mats are tools that golfers can use to practice their drives and other shots right from their backyard, and without damaging their lawn. It is a good investment for the golf enthusiast. Aside from having a real feel during practice sessions, this can also help you with your health. If you keep on hitting a hard surface, this may lead to turf shock (joint pain) or, much worst injury.
A good golf mat can be both a cost-effective and practical alternative to continued trips to the range. If you are looking for a golf mat to set up in your home or backyard, then keep reading. We go over to the sea of golf mats on the market and narrowed down to the top 5 best golf mats that are available today. We also listed the pros and cons for each mat to provide you a better golf mat options to make sure that you will come up with a sound decision.
Our Best Golf Hitting Mats in 2021
- Real Feel Golf Mat Country Club Elite (Best Overall)
"I’m sure you will agree with me that one of the biggest frustrations with traditional golf practice mats and local driving ranges is that they do not provide realistic feedback. The Country Club Elite is one of the few that eliminates the bounce that comes with other mats and provides a realistic and true feel practice. It is sturdy enough to withstand the punishment of repeated use, even by wedges."
- Truedays Golf Mat (Best on a Budget)
- PGM3660 Emerald Par Mat (2nd Best Overall)
- FORB Driving Range Mat (Best Golf Mat for Commercial Application)
- Jef World of Golf Fairway & Driving Range Mat (Most Versatile)
- Our Best Golf Hitting Mats in 2021
- Best Golf Hitting Mats
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- Testing Criteria used for evaluation
- Golf Tips
Best Golf Hitting Mats
Real Feel Golf Mat Country Club Elite
We come out of the gate swinging (our clubs, that is) with one of the best golf mats available. The first and in our opinion, best entry on our list is the Elite Real Feel Golf practice mat.
This hitting mat can provide a golfer with a very realistic feel that is more authentic than most golf mats on the market. The turf on this mat is to thank for this, as it produces a realistic feel similar to most courses and ranges.
The material this hitting mat is made of is a strong "long fiber" high-quality material. During our tests we also noticed that there is no green residue on the club, which speaks for the material quality. This also reduces wear and tear on the hitting surface of the mat that you may experience with another golf mat, and actually helps to reduce injury on the golfer themselves when striking the mat.
This mat is also very easy to assemble. If you're worried either it will fit in your place, well the good news is, there are different size options for this mat in the market. It is available in 4' x 4', 4' x 5', 5' x 5', 5' x 8', and 5' x 10'. However, please bear in mind that the 4' x 4 will not accommodate your driver but the size is good for chipping or for a beginner or junior golfer who is new to the sport.
While there are a lot of benefits, it does come with a large price tag. The Country Club Elite will set you back a few hundred dollars but could be well worth it to upgrade your golf simulator or launch monitor set up.
This golf mat lets you have a true divot action. Compared to the standard golf mats it is two times denser which you can tell with every swing helps with shock absorption. One feature that we like about this mat is that you can also use real tees. It's so thick that you can stick a real tee in. When the mat originally came out, this was a true first of its kind.
The authenticity of this mat cannot be beaten. There is simply no other mat like it. The price maybe a little bit higher but trust us, this one is worth investing in. You can trust its durability, also thanks to the 3 year manufacturer warranty. They put their money where their mouth is.
Truedays Golf Mat
Best on a Budget
On the complete opposite end of the price spectrum is our next golf mat, the Truedays Golf Mat. This hitting mat may be our cheapest today, costing even less than some golf balls. However, the price tag does not mean that this mat does not have some cool features.
To start let's take a look at its construction. It has a heavy-duty rubber back. This helps prevent the golf mats from moving - which is something that is missing in some of the other cheap hitting mats.
Truedays Golf Mat is made of woven nylon turf and claims to withstand several thousands of your golf swings. It is one of the best golf practice mats for the backyard, indoors, or in smaller spaces thanks to its portability.
The woven nylon turf helps give this mat an authentic look of a real grass hitting surface. The mat also comes with a rubber golf tee, which is another feature most of the cheaper mats lack, but admittedly a small one.
Portability is another big factor why you might want to go with this one. It can be rolled up super easily. Flattening the mat after unrolling is not a problem as it so often turns out to be with hitting mats. You just have to follow the included instructions. If you're wondering if you can stick a tee on this mat, the answer is no. However, that won't be a problem. The rubber tee will work just fine at the top of it.
If you're one of those that are new to this game and don't want to spend much money with their golf mat but can still give them a solid golf experience, then this mat is worth checking out.
Unfortunately, in the real world there are a few durability concerns as several customers have reported.
- 1 pc removable rubber tee holder
- 1 pc multi-function white tee holder
- 10 pcs regular golf tees
- 1 pc hitting mat
This is a great value, however, as most golf mats in this price range really are not any good. If you are on a budget and need a hitting mat quickly, this Truedays Golf Mat is your best choice.
PGM3660 Emerald Par Mat
2nd Best Overall
Coming in third on our list is the PGM3360 Emerald Par Golf Mat, which comes at a very reasonable price point. And for that price, you get more than your money's worth with this golf mat.
The Emerald Par is a large golf mat and is perfect to set up in your garage or basement. It is made using a 1/2" woven nylon turf that helps to replicate the look of a tee box or fairway. This is a high-quality mat so you don't have to worry even if you leave it in the backyard under the rain or sun. Even it's not as thick as the other golf mat, it has great shock absorption.
The mat also comes with a thick foam backing that helps to prevent the mat from moving when swinging your clubs.
While the mat may seem a bit on the thin side, it does not seem to be an issue with those that use it. The Emerald Par provides nice feedback on both grass and concrete, with a nice cushion even when using clubs such as irons, which is perfect for a home setup of a golf simulator.
The mat does seem to have a few issues with movement, however, as even with the foam backing the mat tends to move after a few swings. The thin design may also not be for everyone, either, as some people may want something that is thicker and more like turf.
Overall, this is a great practice tee. While there may be a few options out there that may appeal more to others, the PGM3660 Emerald Par is a golf mat that has features to make most golfers happy.
FORB Driving Range Mat
Best Golf Mat for Commercial Application
We go up in price point a bit for our next mat today, the FORB Mat. This is the best golf mat for commercial applications. While that price may be a tad on the higher side, it is made up for with the variety in this golf mat.
Let's start with the turf of this mat which is made to look and feel just like a real golf course fairway. It feels and responds like you on the fairway. The artificial grass is 100% weatherproof, and therefore, good for all weather conditions design of this mat not only looks good but feels authentic when taking shots off the tees or off the turf.
And speaking of tees, the FORB golf mat features four rubber tees of varying sizes and all of which are removable. This makes it not only great for practicing tee shots with both irons and drivers, but also easily manageable in case one of the tees happens to get worn down or broken.
What makes this golf mat more appealing is that suits all types of players. Whether your new or professional golfers who want to take the game to the next level, this mat would be a great help.
While it is not included, the FORB does have the option of adding a rubber base that prevents the mat from moving and protects against water and mud. The only problem with this is that the base will set you back an extra $100.
The price of the FORB Driving Range mats really is the only setback that I can speak of. This mat provides every feature a golfer could want and then some, making it a safe buy for those that can afford it.
Jef World of Golf Fairway & Driving Range Mat
Our last golf mat, the Jef World of Golf mat, is very well our most unique mat on the list today.
This is because it is the only golf mat we've talked about that allows for practice on different terrains. It comes with a turf that replicates both the short grass of the fairway and the long grass of the rough.
This, along with an included rubber tees that hold all standard and practice golf balls, makes it possible to practice nearly every aspect of your golf game right from your backyard.
Also, on the topic of tees, the Jef World of Golf hitting mat comes with three different tees of varying sizes. This makes it possible to practice shots from the tee with different clubs, making this mat even more versatile.
The tees that are included with the mat are not very durable, however, with some saying they broke after a few uses. While this can be an easy fix, seeing as you can buy replacements easily enough, the size of the turf is not, as the overall size of the mat runs a bit smaller.
Those issues aside, you can't really ask for a much better mat. If you are looking for a golf mat that allows you to practice everything without leaving your house, this is one of the best golf mat options available.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is the best golf mat size?
We can't just tell you what the best golf mat size for you is. Why? Because choosing the right size depends on what are your needs are and the environment that you will be practicing your game in. The bigger the golf mat is the larger the space that it needs. However, that also usually leads to more comfort when using it (standing on same level as the ball lies on) and versatility (big enough for driver). Usually, if your space allows at all, we recommend a minimum of a 5' x 5' hitting mat. This size of mat might be more expensive but it will give you enough space to truly use your mat.
What is the most durable mat made of?
We checked the materials various golf mats are made of and we found out that most of them are made from a rubber-based base layer. They are usually non-skid to prevent the mat from sliding. In order not to damage your favorite clubs, you should also consider what the simulated grass it is made of. There are three golf mat materials that are safe for your golf clubs. These are polyethylene, polypropylene, and nylon. Of the 3 types, nylon is the most expensive but at the same time also the most durable and has the most grass-like feedback.
What is the difference between regular tees and golf mat tees?
There is a difference in how these two work. Regular tees you use by staking them into the ground. However, this way will not work with most golf mats, the Country Club Real Feel being the exception. If you do stick a traditional tee into your mat, it will probably destroy the rubber base of your mat.
Some golf mats have a built-in stationary tee. Alternatively, rubber golf tees are a great option for a golf mat. You can put it at the top of the mat and if you want to adjust the ball's height, you can put a regular tee at the top of the rubber tee.
Testing Criteria used for evaluation
Like any other sports, you needed to invest in your equipment. In golf, your golf mat is one of your investments so that you can practice without leaving your home.
So what exactly makes for a good gold mat? The following factors can help you decide on just that.
For starters, you will obviously want golf mats with good durability. You will be hacking away at these mats with your clubs all day, so you want something that can endure the repeated stress. The materials used and the thickness of the golf mat can give you somewhat of an idea of how long the golf mat will last. You don't want to end up with a golf mat ripped up after a couple hundred of swings. Some manufactures indicate the number of swings before the signs of wear and damage should start to show up. This will provide an expectation for the golfers for the life span of your golf mat.
We know that golf mats will eventually show wear over time. It is normal but it should be after more than just a couple hundred of thousands of swings. It should perform well for us to say that's really a good value for money.
You also have to determine where would you like to use this mat often. Is it indoor? Or you like it to be used both indoors and outdoors? If your answer is the latter, then it is better to choose a golf mat that is all-weather resistant. A turf that can withstand the cold winter and hot summer days. It should have the ability to easily bounce back.
Another thing to look for is the size of the mat. You will want golf mats that can accommodate the size of the clubs you are using, as well as to have the space to move the golf ball around if needed.
You should put into account the area on which you'll be setting up your golf mats. Most golfers prefers to set it up outside especially if they don't have enough space indoors, like in their basement or garage.
When the golf mat is too small it causes dissonance between how you position your golf clubs and balls as compared to your feet. It may be a little bit uncomfortable sometimes. And of course, if you wanted to go for a larger golf mat, these are more expensive but your game experience will be more realistic.
When you are using a larger mat, this will enough space to properly position your body and clubs. It also has more areas to take care of wear and tear. One tip when using the mat, you can rotate or hit the mat on different areas.
The tees that come with the golf mats are another factor you may want to consider, as you want a mat that allows you to change tees. This helps in the event that your tees break, or if you just want to use tees of varying sizes. Rubber tees can be an excellent accessory. Although you can get this on some of the golf mats for free, like for the Truedays mat.
Yes, there are all-weather golf mats and they are even safe to leave them outdoor. However, you don't want to leave it exposed at all times when not in use. A good golf mat should be easy to store and transport. It should be easy to store and keep away after practice if you want to.
There are thick and also thin golf mats out there. This is also an important aspect to consider as it has to do with the shock absorption during practice. Since we are trying to replicate the real grass, the thicker mat usually bounces back. while the thin mat makes it harder to crisper shots hit.
Another challenging key factor to consider is price. Most of us have a specific budget when we wanted to purchase a specific product. We understand that not everyone can afford premium golf mats. However, we would like to emphasize that the practice mat is one of the best investment golfers should have. After all, you will not be just using this after a hundred swings. It's better to have one that can take hundreds of thousands of swings to make your purchase worth it.
Below are a few disadvantages of cheaper golf mats.
- Cheaper mats don't have enough forgiveness that may lead to back, wrist, and knee pain. Much worst they will lead to injury.
- It usually doesn't have a near like real grass experience that will affect your golf swing.
- They are not durable. Most customers that bought cheaper mat end up disappointed. The rubber layers get easily separated from the surface layer after a week or even a hundred swings.
Finally, the last thing to think about is how authentic the golf mat is compared to real turf. Checking for this doesn't just make sure you have a good looking golf mat, but one that can easily replicate the feel of a real golf course, so as to not produce unwanted joint strain off of feedback. Since we're replicating the real grass, it's similarity will be a big help when you're on the real course.
The most important feature of a golf mat is the high-quality hitting surface. There are some mats that are versatile. It offers two to three turf strips with different properties to practice your shots on different terrain. They can replicate the areas from the rough, fairway, or off the tee. It's still up to you if you want a mat that has extra functionality.
The weight of the mat usually has to do with its portability. The larger the mat, the heavier it will be and a little bit harder to carry back and forth. Remember that the mat should be laid flat on the ground. So if you roll this up after playing, make sure to return it to its position when storing so that the shape of the mat will not be affected. It will be inconvenient to you and sometimes frustrating every time you will try to flatten it in every play.
Now that we've given you the top 5 best golf hitting mats, the criteria that you can use on buying as well as answer the frequently asked question, we would like to give you a few tips for the optimum results to level up your golfing skill.
1. Choose the right place
Did you purchase a small or a large mat? Choose a great spot in your home where you can set this up perfectly flat on the surface. The place must be conducive enough for a golf practice session.
2. Always wear your golf shoes
When you're on the golf course, those golf shoes of yours also plays a great role in your game. This is the same as your home golf mat. In fact, compared to the real grass on the course, the artificial grass is more slippery. Wearing your favorite golf shoes, especially the one that has more traction would be very helpful. A shoe with good traction will help you with your feet' stability and prevents unwanted twisting during your swing.
3. Proper mat Maintenance
Your golf mat either used with a golf simulator and launch monitor still needs maintenance. If you feel that it's already too firm, you can replace it with a new one to avoid damaging your clubs and most importantly causing you injuries. You may also consider rotating it so that you will not only use one area during practice sessions.
That concludes our list of the best golf mats available today. Hope we are able to help you pick up the right mat that matches your preference and needs. If your one of those golfers who want to practice at home, then a golf mat is a must-have. A golf mat will not only help you improve your game, it also provides a different level of enjoyment.
As you can see, the above mats are currently the best golf mats in the market. The Country Club Elite is our pick among the best golf mats in the market. The materials and the features of the golf mat are excellent. It provides a real grass feel with your golf practice.
We hope that our list helped you find exactly what you are looking for to suit your practice needs, and we'll see you next time on the links!