Professional golfers have every part of their game analyzed. That’s how they make tiny improvements to their game and get ahead of their competition. For years, this would take teams of experts, expensive equipment, and a lot of time. But now, you can analyze your own game like the professionals. All you need is a golf GPS watches.
The best golf watch not only looks the part, but it can significantly lower your handicap as well. A golf watch can act as a virtual caddie attached to your wrist, and could give you a big advantage over other players on the course. Being able to track your data, from the distance to the green or swing speed, could give you an insight into your game that you may have missed.
At StatdeGolf, our goal is to take the stress out of shopping. We do all the product research, so you only have to focus on the key facts – and your golf game. If you’re ready to buy a golf watch, check out our top picks. If you want some general advice on choosing a golf watch, keep reading our shopping guide.
What’s the best golf watches right now?
The best GPS golf watches come preloaded with at least 30,000 courses from around the world, and are able to measure course elevation as well as your distance from the pin to help improve each shot. For long days on the green, it’s important to choose a watch that’s comfortable, with ample battery life and a bright screen that’s easy to read even in direct sunlight.
With that in mind, our top pick for golfers is the Garmin Approach S40 golf GPS. Newly launched this year, it’s packed with features to help you master any course. It also comes with a raft of standard smartwatch functions, including notifications from your mobile device and even accurate fitness tracking (steps, calories, distance covered, and so on).
5 Best Golf Watches of 2021:
As one of the world’s leading manufacturers of GPS golf watches, Garmin has got the art down to a tee. Its latest wearable, launched this year, is crammed with features to help you master your swing, which is why it’s our top pick for the best golf GPS. A combination of cutting-edge GPS technology and a sunlight-readable 1.2-inch colour touchscreen enables you to calculate distances to the front, middle and back of the green, as well as any hazards.
AutoShot game tracking records your every pitch and putt, so that you can learn from your mistakes post-match. And data from 41,000 global courses gives you the opportunity to compare your score with others who’ve played there. Add in Bluetooth, notifications from your smartphone, and accurate sleep and fitness tracking, and the Approach S40 is a true all-rounder when it comes to golf GPS watches.
- Clear colour display makes it easy to view
- Cutting-edge GPS delivers accurate distances
- Offers a raft of smartwatch features
- The display can be hard to see in the sun
Bushnell is known as the #1 rangefinder in golf, but this industry leader also manufactures golf GPS watches. One of their latest releases, the Neo Ion 2, features everything, and more than one would require from a golf GPS watch.
With the Neo Ion 2 on your arm, you will never have to worry about finding a sprinkler head with a distance on it ever again. This powerful GPS golf watch is preloaded with 36 000 golf courses and this information can be updated weekly via Bluetooth connection. The 12-hour battery life on Neo Ion 2 is very impressive and when flat can easily be recharged with a USB charger.
The Neo Ion 2 provides access to a variety of distances including distances to up to four bunkers or penalty areas per hole as well as to the front, middle, and back of the green.
In addition to being a golf watch, the Neo Ion 2 is also a fitness tracker with a built-in odometer that measures steps taken and distance walked. The Neo Ion 2 retails at a very affordable price tag, any golfer will be happy to add this watch to their repertoire.
- Stylish design
- Powerful, accurate GPS
- Specialised charging rather than micro USB
- Swing Pro feature needs work
With a highly visible, raise-to-wake colour screen, powerful GPS, an intuitive interface, distance and hazard tracking and flyover views of each hole on 38,00 courses, the Golf Buddy WTX ticks a lot of boxes (or sinks a lot of putts) for tech-savvy golfers.
However, where it really racks up the extra yardage is the dynamic green view. This feature allows you to plan your pitch from the angle of approach shot.
There’s also GPS course and hole recognition and the watch will move to the next hole automatically. Syncing with the Golf Buddy app will bring you all of the course updates you need.
- Colour screen, good sunlight visibility
- Dynamic Green View is an awesome feature
- Complex set-up
- Information may be overkill for some golfers
The Garmin Approach S20 is the best golfing partner that doubles as an everyday watch. It features more than 40,000 courses combined with the AutoShot round analyzer and activity tracker.
This golf watch has an elegant watchband design with an HD display with smart notification. The Green View feature shows you the actual shape and layout of the green. You can manually adjust the pin to for accurate shot selection.
The AutoShot round analyzer measures and records shot distances and shot accuracies. It pairs with the Garmin TruSwing sensor for metrics to improve your swing consistency.
There is also the Course View feature that updates courses that you played automatically. The S20 Approach keeps a digital scorecard. With this, you can track your progress throughout the round.
The Garmin Connect app works with your iPhones and Android and shows all notifications and round details. It saves and keeps a record of your points and scores too.
- Attractive design
- Tracks progress
- Clear display
- Comfortable to wear
- No touch screen
- AutoShot misses some swings
The SkyCaddie Linx GT is one of a kind in that it’s not just a wearable, but part of a package.
Combined with an app and a club sensor, the Linx GT does more than just measure shots using GPS, as it can analyze each swing very accurately to offer improvement tips too.
The company claims the watch’s GPS increases accuracy over apps by up to 300%, while saving your phone’s battery too. The readout on the display will show yardage on the watch, or you can get out your phone for a more detailed course map and shot analysis.
And it’s not limited to golf, with step, distance and calorie tracking enabling it to double up as a basic fitness tracker.
- Works as a fitness tracker
- Includes an app and club sensor
- Only comes in black
GOLF WATCH BENEFITS
There are plenty of reasons why a golf watch is handy on the course.
- Helps lower your handicap: Because a golf watch can help you improve your game, you’ll be able to shoot better scores.
- Offers course distances: With GPS, a golf watch can provide accurate distances from your location on the course to the next green. That means you don’t have to guess before you take your shot.
- Provides insight for hard-to-see shots: If you hit your ball into a spot that doesn’t provide a clear view of the green, a golf watch can help you figure out exactly where you need to aim.
- Allows you to play more efficiently: A golf watch provides accurate course distances and insights about where to the hit the ball so you can play more quickly.
- Helps you make the most of your clubs: Your golf watch can keep track of how far you hit the ball with each club, so you’ll always know the best club for a particular shot.
Golf GPS watches vs. handheld GPS device
GPS watch vs. a handheld device, this is a common question that many amateur golfers are faced with, but at the end of the day there is no right or wrong answer, it all depends on personal preference at the end of the day.
Golf GPS watches are easily accessible on your wrist, most of these watches double up as fitness trackers and they provide you with valuable information out on the golf course. On the downside not all golfers enjoy playing with a watch on their wrist and golf GPS watches aren’t able to calculate exact distances to the flag, these watches only calculate distances to the front, middle, and back of the green.