Mas­ter­ing mini golf

Popular Science - - CONTENTS -

YOUR LO­CAL PUTT-PUTT SPOT IS A SILLY LAND OF SPIN­NING wind­mills and laugh­ing clowns. But the tacky sur­round­ings don’t mean you can’t go all Jack Nick­laus and to­tally freakin’ dom­i­nate those baby greens. The putting skills you re­fine while dodg­ing minia­ture Stone­henges can help on the big-kid course too. Here’s the pro-grade gear you need to de­stroy your friends at the short­est short game.

Prac­tice first

The Put­tOut is a se­ri­ous train­ing tool. A well-struck ball, with the force and tra­jec­tory to go in the hole, will roll up the plas­tic ramp, then back to­ward you. Hit too hard and the ball will launch off the back; way­ward shots will fall off the side.

Pic­ture suc­cess

Mark­ings on the Wellputt Pro mat help you visu­al­ize ev­ery el­e­ment of a per­fect hit. Guide­lines on the 10-foot-long turf show the right back­swing dis­tance and ideal ball paths. The drills in the in­cluded book will help hone your skills.

Choose your tool

The Odyssey Exo Seven’s head is alu­minum in the cen­ter and stain­less steel around the edges, a de­sign that puts more weight around its perime­ter. That helps the face stay square so you can hit the ball straight.

Roll the right way

Don’t be fooled by the poppy cov­ers on the Volvik Vivid balls: They’re not like the cheap rocks at a typ­i­cal mini-golf course. An ex­tra-soft ex­te­rior with a matte fin­ish helps them grip the turf and roll true in­stead of slid­ing over the ter­rain.

Read the green

Thanks to their po­lar­iza­tion and tint, the lenses in Oak­ley’s Tar­get­line Prizm Golf sun­glasses help re­veal the bumps and curves in the putting sur­face. Thick arms also help block glare and any dis­tract­ing friends.

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