We all start the year with ambitions of breaking the next tier of golf score. When the ambition starts to go awry we quickly look to how we can improve our game. We become so desperate to make that leap to the next tier that we are willing to mortgage the house if it means we get to shave a few strokes off our next round. This results in us over spending for a golf training aid, that quickly finds the shelf or the garage by next season. Unlike golf clubs the best training aids can stand the test of time, and some of the best ones have been around for years. The reality is we all need a little help to perfect our game, but we don’t want to break the bank to do it. The good news is this can be achieved, and we have found 6 cheap training aids that can help your golf game today. Tools that remain in your bag for years, and that you can keep coming back to when the game starts to slide off the rails.
6. Izzo Smooth Swing
This simple looking tool is designed to keep your arms and body together for a tighter more efficient swing. Two of the more popular golf swing tips are to have a One-Piece Takeaway , and to keep your left (or lead) arm straight. The Izzo Smooth Swing helps tremendously in both these areas. If you have a bad “chicken wing” in your swing this tool is also extremely effective in correcting this tendency. It will physically keep that left arm tucked away, and prevent it from getting away from your body. The bands will allow you to feel how your arms should stay together to help keep your body in sync.
The band will take a little while to get used to, but the mental image of keeping your upper arms together will start to ingrain even after you take it off. The Izzo Smooth Swing is very portable making it something you can easily carry with you to the range. Even better it is a training tool you can use in your backyard, and can be used with or without striking a ball. Users of this tool have felt the results of it within their first 5-10 swings. Immediately seeing a difference in the accuracy of their shots. For under the price of what a sleeve of golf balls will cost you this is a very worthy investment.
5. Pocket Bunker
We all hit the driving range, practice our putting, even our chip and runs on the practice greens, but how often do we work on our bunker game? It’s not because we think we are good enough that we will never find ourselves in the sand. The reality is not many courses have sand trap areas for us to work on this element of our game. We brush it aside and think we simply do not need to work on it. Until we find ourselves in a green side bunker. A couple of failed attempts to get out of the bunker, leads us to attacking the ball harder. As a result the ball blasts over the green. We go from a good sand save for par, to starring at a putt to salvage a triple bogey. Just like that a good round of golf falls off the rails.
The Pocket Bunker looks to offer us a way to work on our bunker game, even when a sand trap is not available. It is a precision designed tool aimed at improving our bunker shots by simulating a bunker lie.
One of our fears with this product was that after a few hits the plastic legs would break off. Don’t worry about that, this product is remarkably durable. Have a look at the video below to see the makers put this product through the ringer.
The biggest problem with bunker play is the moment we find ourselves in the sand panic sets in, because it’s a shot we don’t know how to play. A bunker shot is a different type of shot, and approaching it wrong can put you in a world of hurt. What we love about the Pocket Bunker is that it allows you to practice this type of shot. So that when that moment strikes during a round you are approaching the shot with confidence rather than fear. That element alone is huge in the mental aspect of golf. Having the 3 pack is great as it allows you to hit consecutive shots in a row before having to retrieve them. We find it amazing that some amateurs will plunk down a hundred dollars plus for a new sand wedge, and not know how to properly use that club. For a quarter of that price you can get 3 Pocket Bunkers , and perfect how to use the wedge that is already in your bag. When it comes to good sand play proper technique is everything, so put aside that new wedge purchase and give these a try instead.
4. Dr.Scholls Odor X Foot Spray Powder
Wait. What!?! I know you must be wondering if you are reading the right article. Are we trying to cure athletes foot, or your golf swing? Remarkably a foot spray can do both. A few years back Golf Impact Labels were very popular, and for good reason. The labels did an effect job of showing a golfer where on the club face they were hitting the ball through a sticker that stuck on the club face. But, multiple problems with the labels started to emerge. From the hassle of having to remove, and re-apply the stickers. To the sizes not being able to fit the shape of some over-sized clubs. Perhaps the biggest issue with the labels was that it was adding a layer between the ball and the club grooves. This would effect the spin of the ball, and not give a true experience when the ball was struck. Introduce Dr.Scholls foot spray powder. Some genius with awful smelling feet figured out there was more use to this spray. When applied to the surface of the club face it acts as a marker when the ball strikes it.
The powder spray applies very easily, and comes off with a simple wipe of a towel. With no damage or residue on the club. Check out the great video below from Golf.com showing how it can be used.
Where the ball strikes the club face plays a pivotal role in maximizing distance, and accuracy. Off center hits are going to produce less powerful shots, and a different spin depending where on the club face you hit the ball. If you are hitting toe shots the club is going to kick back towards you. This will cause the ball to come off the club face counter clock-wise causing a hook spin. If you are hitting the ball routinely on the heel the club face will kick away from you, and adversely the ball will spin clock-wise causing a slice spin. You may think you are hitting the center of the club consistently, but the reality is that good golfers (single handicappers) hit the sweet spot less than 20% of the time. Using this inexpensive foot spray will give you a very cost effective way of knowing exactly where you are hitting the ball on the club face. This will allow you to quickly see if there is a trend in your ball strike. The can easily fits in your bag. You can take it out while at the range, or during a round to get immediate feedback. The added bonus is you rid yourself of any nasty smells coming from your playing partners shoes. You can’t lose with this purchase when you can get 3 cans for under $20.
The Swingyde is one of the simplest looking training aids on the market. This turns off a lot of people as it gives the impression that it is a dated product. We can understand the concerns, the box still comes packaged with a DVD! The bottom line is that this product has not had to undergo any changes because the product works just as well today, as it did when it was first released.
This product is designed to help the player who is struggling to make square contact. Whether it be an open or closed club face this simple little tool can do wonders to get you in the proper position in your backswing, and follow through. Essentially the Swingyde is a plastic arm that attaches to the top of your club and wrist. You can attach it to any club, and it will provide instant feedback on your swing. What this tool does so well is that it allows you to feel the club face angle in otherwise difficult to see positions. Once you achieve the proper positions the curved area of the tool will slot up against your forearm. If you arm remains in the correct position through the backswing the tool will stay slotted. It will then release off your forearm as you come back to ball strike. In your follow through the club will re-position back on to your forearm to confirm you are in the proper finish. The below video is a real good example of how the tool should be used.
When you see a training aid pop up on the practice session of PGA pros, you get an indication that it works. We love training aids that can be used to hit live shots with. It is the quickest way to ingrain good muscle memory, and see the results of the corrections the aid is making. This simple tool continues to be one of the best training aids on the market. Do not let its simplicity fool you, it has stood the test of time for a reason. Get one today to see why.
2. PuttOut Pressure Putt Trainer
The Puttout Pressure Putt Trainer is a simple putting aid that is designed to return to you good putts, and reject bad ones. At the base of the product is a silicon disc in the size of the golf cup. A successful putt will roll pass the disk up the ramp, and roll back to you. The ramp is shaped in a manner that if the ball is too far off center it will fall off to the side to simulate a lip out. The real genius in this product is that the ball will roll back to you at the exact distance the putt would have rolled pass the hole. You can increase the challenge by opening a section of the product, and trying to get your ball to land exactly in the hole. To achieve this you will need to hit the putt dead center, with the perfect speed (15-18 inches past the cup). With this aid you are getting a tool that trains both accuracy, and pace.
Due to the return slope design the number of putts you can hit with this tool is remarkable. You are not having to chase, or bend over to pick up balls constantly. As long as you are hitting accurate putts you can literally stand in one spot, and hit putts for as long as your hearts content. This is great for those 4 foot putt drills, where you try to sink consecutive 4 footers. The added element of having the perfect putt hole keeps your focus, by giving it an additional layer of challenge. Trust us, making that perfect putt is a lot harder than it looks.
The Puttout sets up or folds up in seconds. It can be used on any non-slippery surface, from the carpet in your living room or office, to the practice greens at your local course. The portability of the product makes it easy to carry around to be used whenever, or wherever you please. In our opinion the very best thing about this training aid is that it is fun to use. One of the inventors of the products stated “If it’s fun to use you’ll keep using it. If you use it you’ll get better.”. A simple but accurate statement about this product. A testament to how fun the product is, is the fact kids adore it. They actually may end up using it more than you.
The fact of the matter is that 40% of all golf shots are made with the putter. Any player who is looking to shave strokes off his score is going to need to shore up his or her putting . When it comes to a putting training aid that works on accuracy, pace, repetition, and is fun to use, the Puttout trainer is unmatched. In our humble opinion this is a product that could sell for double the price it currently is, because of how effective, and enjoyable it is. The simplistic design and materials used allows the designers to offer the product at a very cheap price. You will be amazed how much your putting game can improve from this one product. Take advantage of the price, and add this great tool to your daily routine today.
1. Alignment sticks
If you ever have a chance to watch a practice session at a tour event you will find one training aid that every golfer is using in one capacity or another, Alignment Sticks. These simple, boring, inexpensive tools are the most valuable training aids used by professional players. If it can help the best players in the world, then it most certainly can help you.
Alignment might be the most overlooked fundamental in golf. Without good alignment, even the best swing in the world can be wasted. Golfers will spend hours on technique, without giving a second thought to if they are properly aligned. Alignment sticks are here to fix that problem. The most popular use of alignment sticks is to have them placed on the ground as a visual aid to align both your body and club face.
Most people think that alignment stick use ends there, and that is far from the truth. There are many more great uses for these sticks that can help improve your game. Have a look at the below video for 3 more great drills that can be done with alignment sticks.
We particularly love the putting drill. Using the sticks in conjunction with our number 2 aid the Puttout, work amazingly well together. It will be frightening how many putts you sink practicing with both those tools. Again the list of drills does not stop there. They’re endless amount of drills that can be performed with the sticks. Have a look at this comprehensive list if you are looking for even more drills with alignment sticks.
Like all the tools on the list the alignment sticks are easily portable. They slide perfectly in your golf bag, so they’re always with you. The great thing here is if color and design are worthless to you, you can use driveway fiberglass markers just as effectively. Those you can pick up for a couple bucks each. So, you can get the most important training tool for pro players for the cost of a couple of hotdogs at the turn. Really, what the hell are you waiting for? It is not even a question if you should buy them at their price. The only question is why have you not already? These sticks are a must for every golfer, period.