Golf Mats - A Buying Guide

Best Golf Mats on the market and how to buy the right one for your needs

With home golf set ups becoming more and more popular, golf mats are no longer being bought exclusively by driving ranges and golf clubs. Designs of golf mats have also evolved to cater for the golfer who practices at home. In this guide, I provide key considerations when buying a golf mat for your home set up, as well as types of products on the market to suit different needs. 

Key Takeaways

If you only have 30 seconds to read this please at least read the following key takeaways before parting with your hard-earned money for a golf mat:

  • Golf mat is one piece of equipment which you really don't want to go cheap on. If you intend to practice regularly, a bad mat will cause injuries and could be destructive to your golf swing in the long run. 
  • In most instances - you get what you pay for. If your budget is limited, consider buying a smaller mat with good forgiveness and turf material.
  • Treat a good golf mat as a long term investment in your golf set up - so thinking through how you intend to use the mat will help you select the mat that is suitable for you. Key factors include - size, frequency of use, material used and of course your budget. 

Key Considerations for a Golf Mat

Although they may look very similar to the untrained eye, not all mats are the same. And with the number of options available on the market, it may be overwhelming for the everyday golfer make a purchasing decision. So thinking through how you want to use the mat as part of your set up will help you narrow down your options and ensure you get the biggest bang for buck, and ultimately, improve your game.

Size - minimum width you will need if you want to be standing on the mat is 4 feet or 1.2m, this will allow you to hit off the same level as the ball and by standing on the mat, the mat will be more stable and not move around as much after you hit the ball. However if you want a more portable set up or have limited budget then smaller mats with good material will be the way to go. You can still get on the same level as the ball by standing on a door mat, puzzle mat etc.

Material used - typically good mats will have a backing as well turf material on top

  • Backing - a good backing will give your mat more stability and will help to absorb the impact from the golf club, especially if you have a steep swing or intend to hit off a hard surface. Look for mats with a good EVA foam or rubber backing, with at minimum 10mm thickness. 
  • Turf - do you want to be able to insert your own tee and be able to hit down and through the turf? If so a longer pile (35mm) will be your choice. If you are not too fussed then 10mm should be the absolute minimum to provide some give when striking the surface (with a thick backing of course).

Usage frequency / Forgiveness - in general, the more balls you intend to hit the more forgiving a mat you should consider. Hitting off a thin/unforgiving mat off a hard surface repeatedly is a sure recipe for injury (yep, from personal experience). In the long run, your body will not allow you to hit down and through the ball and your ball striking will actually suffer as a result. 

So now you've thought through the above factors, let's have a look at what types of product may suit your budget.

Types of Golf Mats Available 

Cheap and Nasty 

Please unless you are occasionally hitting off your lawn, do not go for those cheap options. These are typically sold on ebay with a badly doctored product photo (I'm sure you've seen them - I won't insert one here to insult your eyes). Another tell tale sign is if a large mat can be 'rolled up for easy storage' - when you see this please run away as fast as you can. These products are also sometimes offered by reputable golf retailers, here's a photo of one I bought for ~$90 last year during the height of the pandemic which turned out to be no more than a piece of glorified synthetic grass offcut. 

Bad golf mat

Entry/Mid Level Mats

These are mats which are suitable for typical home and driving range use. These are typically mats which offer a thick foam/rubber backing as well as a thick nylon hitting surface. If you have the space a large 1.5m x 1.5m mat would be ideal but if you have limited budget/space - smaller and more portable options are available on the market - this will be a better way to save money rather than going for a large thin mat. A good example of this is our Tri-Turf Mat.

Kaizen Tri Turf Golf Mat

Dependent on your requirements/budgets, you can get mats which offer additional features, which include

- Air cushion insert - this will provide additional impact absorption which will reduce the chance of injury/pain, especially for someone who hits a lot of balls. An example of this is our 3 Layer Mat.

Kaizen 3D Golf Mat

- Tee turf - typically 35mm dense turf which will accept a tee. Budget allowing, this is a great option as you can practice with your preferred tee height, and more importantly, this surface will allow you to hit 'down and through' and offer a much more realistic simulation to real turf. As the club doesn't bounce back off the mat, you will get instant feedback when you hit it fat. Your ball striking will improve faster as a result. The most well known example of this is the 'Country Club Elite (CCE)' real feel mat. We also offer this category of product at Kaizen Golf - refer to our #1 selling Tee Turf Mat.

Kaizen Tee Turf Golf Mat

 Commercial Grade Mats

If budget is no issue, there are a number of products which are typically designed for coaching studios and simulator use. Popular examples include

  • Truestrike mat - available in various sizes/configurations, these mats have a silicone gel insert below the hitting surface to offer forgiveness as well as emulate the feeling of taking a 'divot'.
  • Fiberbuilt - proprietary fibre design which again offer forgiveness and realistic simulation to hitting off real turf. See our review of the Fiberbuilt mat here.
  • Divot Action - designed to simulate the action of taking a real divot. This relatively new design is very popular amongst home golf simulator owners. There are also many instructions for DIY divot action mats which can be inserted into a stance mat - I intend to give this a try myself...[update - I built a DIY Divot Acton mat - read the full blog here]

    [update 2 - we now offer a Divot Style mat - check out our own Kaizen Golf Hitting Strip]

    It might be useful to note that the Truestrike and Fiberbuilt mats can be purchased as hitting stripes so you can potentially save some costs by just buying those and use alongside a stance mat.

    Fiberbuilt also offers an entry level 'flight deck' option which is a 1.77 ft x 1.13 ft oval hitting surface.

    Some tips on using your golf mat

    •  Consider using carpet tape or Velcro to fix your mat to the floor - no matter how heavy your mat is, it will shift on the floor with repeated swings. If your set up is going to be fairly permanent, consider fixing it to the floor - carpet tape or Velcro are simple and effective solutions for doing this.
    • Rotate your mat - especially with a 1.5m x 1.5m, consider frequently rotating the mat or hit off different areas so you don't develop wear spots on your mat.
    • Consider using inserts - you can get a relatively inexpensive thick mat (or even raised floor) as a 'stance mat' and make a cut-out on the mat where you can then insert a more premium hitting strip. This is a much more cost effective way of having a good hitting surface, but will require some elbow grease. Here's an example of a fiberbuilt flight deck being inserted into a country club elite mat.

      In summary, if you are in the market for a golf mat, I hope this post will help you make an informed purchasing decision. Shameless plug time - at Kaizen golf, we offer a great range of high quality golf mats, so I would be grateful if you would also consider our collection of mats. 

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        Hi Wayne, tried to send you an email but somehow could not go through…

        For your needs we recommend our 3 Layer (3D) mat, it is very durable and the air cushion will provide some additional forgiveness/shock absorption that comes with a steeper swing with shorter irons, especially if you plan on practising frequently. Please feel free to check it out –

        We charge a flat $30 delivery fee for our large mats Australia wide.

        Another good option for backyard use are our portable mats – they can be moved around the yard and are also very durable. Please check them out in our Golf Mats range if you are interested –

        Hope this helps Wayne! Please let us know if you have any other questions.

        Kaizen Golf

        I have a small properity and neef a driving range golf matt.
        Picking wedge will be the club I will be mostly using.
        I want this Matt to last through the hammering it will get.
        The mat will be used outdoors.
        What do you recommend & how much delivered to Townsville

        Wayne Butler

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