I spent a couple days walking around the PGA Merchandise Show last week and of all the cool stuff I saw, a range mat stole the show.
I finally found the New Product Zone (after two days of searching) and right outside this area I discovered a booth for True Strike Golf Mats. I was surprised to learn that True Strike is not a new product at all. They’ve been around for years in Europe and Asia but only recently re-launched here in the US with the most recent rev called the MK-VII.
While I was standing in line waiting to try this mat out I watched two Golf Professionals take their turn in front of me. I wish I could describe their reaction to the feel as they hit 7 Irons and Wedges off a True Strike Mat. Both had shocked looks on their faces after taking just a couple swings. One looked up after his first swing and said “that feels like a damn fairway”. Well I’ll see for myself.
Let me be clear, I hate hitting off mats. I developed golfer’s elbow a couple years ago in a simulator over the winter, that lasted well into the summer; so my fear of hitting off mats has significantly hindered my winter practice ever since.
Within two swings, I knew that even calling these things “golf mats” isn’t really fair. True Strike is a technological marvel. I spoke with the inventor of True Strike, an English Gentleman named Phil and he explained how the mat works.
The secret is in what they call the “Gel Section”, this is the portion where you hit all of your irons and wedges from. The appearance is that it is a normal range mat but, it actually has a very durable bag underneath the surface which is filled with foam pockets then filled again with silicone gel. The gel causes the Gel Section to give but, not give too much. The way it is designed, this area for irons and wedges gives and immediately snaps back into shape.
The mats are completely modular so the same few parts make up various sizes which are designed for specific uses. They are designed for indoor or outdoor use and can be set up for right handed or left handed players.
My initial concern would be that this area wears over time but, they claim the section is rated for 150,000 strikes. I watched a number of people hit from the same mat and in the same spot and the gel snapped back into place every time, which impressed me.
The fact is that all golf mats will wear over time and most golf mats don’t last 150,000 strikes at all. What really interested me is that when a normal golf mat wears, you’d have to replace the entire thing; interestingly with True Strike’s modular capabilities when you do finally wear this thing out, you only have to replace the actual Gel Section, not the entire mat. Very impressive.
I had to share this information as I know many golfers are like me, they hate hitting off mats. So, injury prevention was what drove my interest in the mat but, I was impressed to learn that not only is the mat an effective tool for preventing golfer’s elbow it is also a better mat for generating realistic feedback on launch monitors like TrackMan and FlightScope. Both launch and spin test perfectly when stacked up against a real fairway, this closed the deal for me.
To sum it up, True Strike Golf Mats are the best Golf Mat I have ever hit, I was a buyer on the spot.