Thanks to everyone who emailed back saying they liked Wednesday’s gift guide.
Many of you said you wanted to see more golf gadgets, so here’s one I highly recommend from Ernest Sports.
Warning: This one is so cool and potentially game changing, you might want to get one for yourself, too.
(Not to worry, I was able to get you the best price on it anywhere, in stores or online, if you use promo code: gvi. More on this below.)
This product addresses one of the most shocking stats I’ve ever heard about most amateur golfers:
We have no idea how far we truly hit our clubs.
Get this: in a study conducted by the gearheads at MyGolfSpy, 100% of the participants hit their clubs shorter than they thought they did. Way shorter.
On average (and across a wide range of handicaps), they hit their 7-irons seven yards shorter, their 5-irons about 18 yards shorter, and their drivers about 30 yards shorter than they thought they were hitting them.
How this “Distance Divide” is Killing Your Score
I’m sure you can relate to this par-4 scenario:
You’re in the fairway after a nice drive, 155 yards from the hole.
You pull a 7-iron because you think you hit it 155 yards.
In reality, you average about 147 yards.
So, you hit what you think is a ‘career’ shot, only to watch it fall 8 yards short and bury itself under the lip of the front bunker. Ouch.
You just went from birdie opportunity to a likely bogey or worse.
Is it any wonder we can’t improve our scores?
No More ‘Forehead Slapping’ and Wasting Strokes
Simply Because You Chose the Wrong Club
Sure, part of this “distance disconnect” might be ego, but the real problem is, we’ve never had accurate information on how far we hit each club — we ‘re basically guessing. Poorly.
The pros, of course, have access to the gold standard: the Trackman and Flightscope launch monitors, but they’ll run you at least 15,000 bucks.
That’s where this baby comes in: the ES12 portable launch monitor by Ernest Sports (based in Norcross, Ga.).
Like Trackman, the ES12 uses Doppler radar to provide you with extremely accurate distances — carry and total distance (carry and roll).
Interestingly, distance is one measurement that other low-cost “swing analyzers” haven’t quite figured out. The ES12 nails it, though.
No, the ES12 doesn’t measure everything Trackman does, but it’s also about 5,900% less expensive.
Think of it as “the Trackman for the everyman.”
My Own, Eye-Opening Test Results
After using the ES12, I discovered, for example, I usually hit my 6-iron 162 yards.
I used to think it was, “around 170.”
So, the other day I was on a 150-yard par-3 with the hole cut in the back of the green — a 165 yard shot.
Normally, I would have hit a 7 iron…and been short, even if I hit it flush.
But knowing my precise distance, I instead went with a 6-iron and wound up with an 11-foot birdie putt.
No, I didn’t make the putt, but you get the point:
Not only am I hitting more greens (and avoiding the trouble around them) I can now more confidently shoot for the front, middle, or back, a huge advantage on today’s larger putting surfaces.
Bottom line: with the ES12, you’ll start pulling the right clubs and enjoy the lower scores that come with more precise golf.
Others Are Raving About the ES12, Too.
The ES12 hit the market about a year ago, and it’s been building up steam ever since.
Here are some reactions from around the Web:
“Best New Product 2012″
- PGA Expo
“Accurate option if you’re looking for a launch monitor.”
- Dave Phillips, Titleist Performance Institute
“Perfect for when you’re at the range…thousands less than other launch monitors.”
- Justin, Paramus, NJ
“Worked flawlessly and provided immediate and highly accurate feedback.”
- Alan Rudakoff, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
“Gives me the opportunity to dial in my irons and dial in my distances… pretty darn good!”
- Joe Theisman, former NFL quarterback
“Exactly what you need as a player.”
- Russell Surber, PGA Golf Professional
“A great teaching device.”
- Mark McCumber, 12-time PGA Tour Winner
“Top 10 Favorite Products”
Extremely Easy to Use
With any gadget, there’s always the potential “hassle factor,” but to be frank, if you can put a ball on a tee, you can use the ES12.
While it looks like a chunky smart phone, it’s a lot easier to set up and use:
1. Place the ES12 about 12-14 inches from the ball (indoors or out).
2. Hit a shot.
3. The ES12 “speaks” the distance aloud and sends the data wirelessly to your smartphone or tablet (iPhone and Android).
In about 15 minutes you can discover the precise distance you hit each club in your bag…lob wedge through driver.
The ES12 also includes a free, powerful app for your smart phone so you have a record of your distances.
Free with the ES12…a Killer Golf App
Designed by Golfers, Not Geeks
The ES12 comes with a free app (iPhone and Android) to collect and store your golf data.
The technicians at Ernest Sports loaded the ES12 app with some superbly intelligent features…
Range Data, so you can track and analyze your practice sessions-and store the data to monitor progress.
Scorecard. Log your score in real time. Save it. Even share it right away on Facebook, Twitter, and through email.
Full ‘Stats Tracking,’ so you can monitor putts, fairways hit, and greens in regulation (GIR).
The Course Caddy merges your distance data and weather conditions to recommend a club. (Yep, really. And the ‘caddy’ on the ES12 won’t talk back, be rude, mumble incoherently, or demand a huge tip.
The Video Analysis gives you a pro-level teaching tool to analyze your swing…everything from swing plane to stance…just video your swing on your smart phone and load it to the ES12 app.
Weather. Just enter the zip code and the ES12 app gives you current weather-plus the forecast.
I think you’ll agree-it seems like most golf apps were designed by ‘geeks’ who know nothing about the game. And many provide information overload.
But the free app that comes with the ES12 gives you precisely the information you need to help you enjoy your round.
It’s a golf app designed by and for golfers-and it’s worth the price of admission by itself.
A Special Price, but Only for 100 GVI Readers
Who Use Promo Code: gvi
Above, I mentioned the ‘best price anywhere’ and I meant it.
The ES12 launch monitor sells in major golf retail stores and online for $249.99.
You will not find it for less. Feel free to check.
I’ll save you the trouble of checking Amazon, which is usually the low-price leader. At right is a screenshot I took a few minutes ago.
However, if you use promo code gvi at checkout, you will pay just $234.99, a savings of $15.
I wish it could be more, but I had to beat these guys up pretty good just to get this discount, and they’ll only sell 100 units to us at this price.
So, if you’re interested, use this link to order the ES12 for yourself or as a gift.
When you checkout, simply enter the promo code: gvi to get your discount (see photo below).