“Technology in golf has really come a long way in the last, let’s call it, 15 to 20 years,” Kyle Butler told In The Know. “Before, players really had no idea how far their shots were carrying — one of the most important things in golf.”
Butler is the north Texas and south-central regional manager for a company called TrackMan, a golf launch monitor that was founded in 2004 by two talented golfers and a radar engineer.
“Now players know within a foot how far their shots are actually going,” Butler explained.
“I use TrackMan for basically every single part of my game,” said LPGA player Gaby Lopez. “I can record how [well] I’m improving over time and what I need to work on specifically.”
Technology is also helpful for manufacturers making clubs and golf balls. Now companies have highly accurate information to make their quality as top-notch as possible.
“I’ve been doing this for 30, 35 years and at the beginning of it we were literally guessing,” Paul Boehmer, a PGA club technician, said. “There is so much data you can get off a TrackMan… It’s so much easier now and less time consuming than trying to figure out what we’re looking for.”
A very sellable component of the TrackMan is its design allows players to set it up in less than two minutes. A corresponding app on the players’ phones keeps track of the analytics.
As data becomes more crucial to athlete performance, particularly in the professional realm, Butler anticipates that TrackMan will continue to evolve and grow with the game of golf for years down the line.
“There’s no doubt that the technology is going to stay here,” he said.
“It’s a huge game changer,” Lopez agreed.
If you enjoyed this story, you might also like reading about The Sports Science Lab.
More from In The Know: