Most people consider golf as a “rich man’s sport” because of the expenses that you need to shoulder just to play the game for a few hours.
Getting a high-quality golf club would cost hundreds of dollars and not to mention the additional accessories that you need to buy.
Whether you want to play this game as a sport or just a hobby, knowing how to build a golf simulator at home can help you reduce your expenses and practice at the comfort of your home.
Let’s dive into the world of golf, and we will tell you exactly what you need to do to enjoy this game without spending a lot of money.
How to Build a Golf Simulator at Home
Is it possible?
Yes, definitely, but you need to know a few things before you proceed with the golf simulator.
You still need to spend money to set up a golf simulator at home.
Although we did mention that you won’t spend a lot of money, it is in comparison with playing golf at an actual golf course.
So yes, you still need to spend money to buy certain equipment to build your golf simulator.
Golf simulators mimic the feeling of playing golf in an actual golf course, and you can practice your swing and the amount of force that you need to use when swinging the golf club.
However, there are still differences between playing with the use of a golf simulator and playing in a golf course.
Golf simulators can help you practice your techniques, but you still need to play in a golf course to apply what you learned.
If you are still determined to try it, and you already know what you are getting yourself into, let’s have a closer look at the essential things to prepare when setting up a golf simulator at home.
Setting up the Room for Your Golf Simulator
Building a simulator means that you are ready to empty a small room to put all of the equipment for your golf simulator.
It has to be a permanent setup since it would take time for you to set up all of the equipment needed for the simulator.
If you have to remove it every time you are done playing, you will surely waste a lot of time.
There is no one-size-fits-all setup for golf simulators, but there are important factors to check before you select a room in your house, such as:
1. The Ceiling Height
The standard height of the ceiling for an average golfer is nine inches.
However, some golfers would make do with a ceiling height that is less than nine inches.
You have to take note of your height and your swing to make sure that you won’t hit the lights or the ceiling when swinging the golf club.
You should also check the impact screens, nets, and simulator enclosures to see if they have a minimum height requirement.
Check the height requirement and compare it with the ceiling height of the room where you are planning to use to see if it would work out.
2. The Room Width
If you are checking the height of the room for your swing, the width of the room should also be considered to make sure that it is wide enough to accommodate all of the equipment that you will put inside.
Of course, it includes enough space for you to move around while you are swinging the golf club.
The required width of the room would depend on the golf simulator that you are planning to buy.
For instance, you plan to buy a SkyTrak SwingBay Golf Simulator Package that has a required minimum width of 12 inches.
You have to check your room if the golf simulator would fit.
This requirement has already considered the space for you to move around while the golf simulator is already installed.
If you want a golf simulator with a lower width requirement, the SkyTrak Compact Golf Simulator Package would be a good choice.
The minimum width requirement for the room is only 10 inches.
3. The Room Depth
For the depth of the room, the most optimal size would be 12 inches.
You can go one size lower if you want, but for most golf simulators, the 12-inch depth is pretty comfortable already.
If you have a bigger room with a higher depth, then that’s a better option.
You need to put some space between the screen and the wall.
It is not a good idea to just put everything inside the room, even if it feels like you already have a crowded room.
Have enough space between the wall and screen, and make sure that you have plenty of space behind you, as well.
You don’t want to hit the wall when you swing your golf club.
Buying the Equipment for Your Golf Simulator
If you plan to consider a DIY golf simulator, you need to buy all of the important equipment one-by-one.
You have to do extensive research on the different equipment for the golf simulator and make sure that they would work properly once they are fully installed.
If you want to know how to build a golf simulator at home, you need to know how to choose the best equipment.
Hence, we listed down some of the most important things to buy if you want to set up your golf simulator at home.
1. Choose a Good Golf Simulator
The golf simulator is the core of the setup since it contains the software required to run properly.
You need to be very meticulous when choosing a golf simulator since it would determine the overall performance of the setup.
All the other items that you will buy for the simulator would be additional accessories, and although they are required, nothing is more important than the golf simulator itself.
Here are some of the things that you need to consider when buying a golf simulator.
a. Movement Tracking
The most basic feature of a golf simulator is its ability to track your movements.
It should detect how you hit the ball, and it should accurately provide data for it.
If you care about the results and you want very accurate data, more expensive models would be a good choice since they usually put sensors on the ball to provide accurate data.
Less expensive models can be a good choice, as well, and it will only depend on your preference.
If you are on a tight budget, getting a less expensive model would do, and you can just upgrade it if you think you require a more advanced model.
b. Golf Course Play
When it comes to golf course play, accuracy is critical since it will determine how far the ball would go based on how you hit it.
When choosing a golf course play, make sure that you check the golf courses available.
Usually, basic models have 15 different courses that you can try.
If you want more, you can get a more advanced model.
This is the key to your golf simulator, and it will process all the data from your game and provide information on how you can improve.
You will need a smartphone, tablet, or computer to run this.
Most simulators already have the basic features like the distance traveled by the ball based on your hit. They can even track the shots.
However, there are software options available that would provide a complete analysis of the game and help provide better information on how you can improve it.
d. Multiplayer Options
It is fun playing golf inside your house when you are alone, but it is always a better idea to play it with your friends.
The multiplayer option allows you to do this.
This type of feature is optional, and you can decide to consider this or not when buying a golf simulator.
If you prefer to improve your game alone, then you don’t need this.
If you plan to use the simulator as a way to improve your game and to serve as a form of entertainment, then getting a multiplayer option is a must.
2. Choose a Golf Mat
The golf mat is another essential accessory that you need to buy for your golf simulator because this is where you will stand when you hit the ball.
Although this is only a mat, you must choose wisely since it can have an impact on your training.
Here are the things that you should consider when buying a golf mat:
This is a no-brainer. You need a golf mat that would last for a very long time.
You need the mat to be as durable as possible since you will stand on it for long periods while practicing your swing.
You need a mat that can be as realistic as possible because the goal of a golf simulator is to mimic the environment in a real golf course.
If you are just standing on a rubber mat while swinging, it will not feel like you are actually in a golf course, and it may affect your training.
The more expensive mats are more than just an additional accessory.
They will serve as a way to accurately predict where the ball will travel.
It can detect how you are standing on the mat, and it will provide information on how you can improve.
3. Choose a Screen
The screen will display all the information about your shot, including the simulated appearance of the golf course.
When choosing a screen, you usually have two options: a TV screen or tablet and a projector screen.
If you are on a tight budget and you don’t want to spend too much on a screen, you can use a TV screen or tablet.
That said, it would be challenging to aim the ball.
A projector screen is more expensive, but it is the most suitable choice for golf simulators.
The only thing that you need to do is to look for a projector screen that can withstand the hits of the golf balls.
It is also better to install a retractable projector screen so that you can still use the room for other purposes.
4. Choose a Golf Net
The golf net is placed behind the screen to make sure that the ball will not damage the wall.
When choosing a golf net, all you need to do is to check its durability.
It has to be durable enough to withstand the impact of the golf ball.
You also need to make sure that it is big enough to cover the projector screen.
5. Choose a Projector
The projector is the main component that would project the data from the golf simulator directly to the projector screen.
If you want to have the best experience in using a golf simulator, you need to buy the best projector as it would determine the quality of the display.
We will list down the basic features that you need to look for in a projector.
This would determine the pixels that it can project to the screen. Higher graphics means a clearer picture.
b. Frame Rate
It will determine the speed of the projector displaying a new image.
Although it is not really a big issue for golf simulation, this is important for movies or playing games.
The brightness of the projector is measured in lumens.
It would determine the brightness of the picture once projected on the screen.
This will be an issue if the room is in an area with a lot of natural light.
You will need a higher brightness for this.
You need to check the lifespan of the lamp when buying a projector.
You have to replace it eventually, but you have to look for a lamp that can last for many hours.
e. Aspect Ratio
It is the ratio between the height and the width of the projector.
For golf simulations, getting a 4:3 aspect ratio is the best option.
However, the projector should be flexible, so look for a model where you can adjust its aspect ratio.
Building a golf simulator at home would require a lot of research, and you need to choose the best equipment so that you can have a more immersive experience.
If you don’t want to buy every component separately, you can buy a complete package and just install it directly in the room.