Screen Shot 2013-08-13 at 2.35.09 PMPicking up the ball after a Hole-In-One at Copper Point in Invermere

The Champions Tour is making its way to Calgary for a few rounds at Canyon Meadows and the Shaw Classic. Fred Couples, Fred Funk, and a few dozen other guys not named Fred will be out to thrill the crowds. It’s going to be a wonderful event.

I’ve been fortunate to watch the pros live a few times in the past. The most special event was a WGC stop at Sahalee near Seattle in 2002. My grandfather sat beside a green and watched Els, Singh, Weir, and Woods roll through. Their swings were so easy, their ball placement so precise. It was a marvel to watch.

So, if the pros coming to town inspires you to work on your game a little more, here’s some of the best golf apps and gadgetry you can add to your bag to lower your score.

Leupold G1
There are many ways to track distance to the hole on a golf course. You can march off from the barber poles, from the sprinkler heads, use the GPS in the cart, one in your watch, or any other apps. Really though? It doesn’t matter. Our distances are not that accurate because we’re only going to hit a perfect shot probably 4 or 7 times out of ten. Still, the easiest and best way to measure a distance to a flag, because those other measurements are to the center of the green, is with a laser pointer.

golf swing analyzer app

3 Bays Golf Swing Analyzer and app (above)
This is a nifty little thumbtack device that plugs in to the hole at the end of your club. You download the free app for Android or iOS, pair your phone to the device via bluetooth, and then swing away. 10 000 data points are measured from impact angle to clubhead speed to tempo to give you a representation of your swing. You can actually watch the path of your swing just like they show the pros on tv. The app gives you tips and points to areas of improvement.

Off Course
This app will help you track your handicap and tendencies and socialize with your pals. Think “Facecbook for golf” and you’ll understand the social side of the game. Whenever you play a round, you put your score, your fairways, greens, putts, and where you missed the fairways and greens. The app will point to areas of improvement or cheer you on with what you’re doing right. At the end of each round you can toss in a few notes to share your score with your buddies, and they can comment along with your round.

v1 golf swing app video

V1 Swing Analyzer App (above)
Watching the pros and then trying to replicate it is one thing, watching the pros and then watching yourself is entirely different. The V1 Golf app lets you video your swing, and then play it side by side pros. You can draw lines on it to check the alignment at the start and finish of your swing. You can do the same to the swings of the pros to see how you measure up with an entire roster of PGA stars. Video is one of the keys to learning how to do things right, even Tiger mentioned all the iPads he saw at the 2012 US Open. “These kids are now bringing out iPads to the range and watching their swing and breaking it down on the V1. That’s totally different,” he said.

Golden Tee Home Edition
And if all this course work is getting your down and the game just isn’t coming around, pick up good old fashioned Golden Tee. The classic arcade game is now available as a plug and play game for your tv set. The game comes with the scroll ball into the console, so plug, play, swing and see if you can make the money you lost on the course back in the basement.

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