The Best Practice Nets, Hitting Mats, and Home Putting Greens

Published on 01/05/2024 · 11 min readPerfect your swing at home! Explore the best practice nets, hitting mats, and home putting greens for golfers looking to improve their game off-course.
Brendon Elliott, Golf Expert
By Golf Expert Brendon Elliott

PGA Professional Brendon Elliott’s previous home practice area in 2008. Photo by Brendon Elliott

The COVID pandemic changed the game of golf forever. As one of the few activities that was safe to take part in during a time of uncertainty and social distancing, golf saw a major uptick in popularity. With more free time due to lockdowns and working from home, golfers now had an opportunity, and an excuse, to set up home practice studies.

As a PGA Professional, I, too, set up a home practice and training studio during this time. I also used it to work remotely with my students, as we would do real-time lessons remotely via Zoom or FaceTime. During these sessions, we would both be at home, on our practice putting mats, hitting mats, and hitting shots into our practice nets. We would use various mobile apps and other technology to get a lot of practice and work done to improve our games.

Golfers have continued to look into home golf practice setups well after the pandemic passed.

PGA Professional Brendon Elliott’s home practice area, which he set up during the pandemic in 2020. Photo by Brendon Elliott

Because of this, I became somewhat of a connoisseur and expert, if you will, on all the best that existed in the marketplace for home practice. From the best indoor putting greens for home putting practice to backyard greens complete with flags. From the best training mat to hit golf balls off of to the most durable nets to hit them into. From the most useful alignment aids to the best and most high-quality training aids. I learned a great deal about all of this.

I spent a great deal of time talking with fellow golf coaches and PGA Professionals about the best ways they came up with to work on putting, short game, and full swing and maximize both personal practice time as well as remote coaching with students from home. The feedback was tremendous, and some really were able to even take their as well as their student's golf game to the next level during this historic time.

PGA Professional Brendon Elliott’s home practice area, which he set up during the pandemic in 2020. Photo courtesy of Brendon Elliott

Today, I will share with you some of my findings and suggestions for working on your golf game away from the golf course, away from real greens, and away from real grass. There is a great deal you can accomplish in the privacy of your own home.

What to Consider Before Buying a Home Putting Green

There are several options to choose from when it comes to purchasing a home putting green. Whether you are looking for something that can be used inside or outside, or perhaps both, there are many things to consider. Here are just a few of those items.

The Putting Surface Turf

Finding a realistic putting surface is key. You want to find something that mimics a real putting surface and offers a true roll. Part of that consideration lies in how the artificial turf surface mimics grain. Being able to work on both into and down-grain putts is important for becoming a better distance control putter. A home practice green should not just be seen as a piece of carpet to roll some putts on! The best putting mats are made of premium materials and are thicker so that wrinkles are not an obstacle.

Green Speed

An important part of becoming a great putter and having complete control of your putting skills is the ability to put well on greens of various stimpmeter readings. Don’t know what stimp means? Or what a stimp meter is? Have a look at the video below from the USGA. Being able to adjust to different stimp speeds will dramatically improve your ability as a putter.

Finding a home putting mat with realistic green speeds is important to simulate what you will have to face on the course.

Practice Aids

Many of the best home putting mats offer a variety of practice aids printed right on the putting surface itself. From visual aids such as alignment lines to different colored zones, these features help tremendously as you practice accuracy on your indoor putting mat. Some putting mats, such as the Wellputt Mat, even offer an app as part of their home putting practice solution. The Wellputt app helps track your practice sessions and offers drills and games to do as you train.

Other Bells and Whistles

When choosing the best home putting green, having additional bells and whistles is important. Many mats offer accessories that allow you to create slopes and breaks on your green. Having regulation-size hole sizes is important. A backstop to catch putts that run long and past the hole is a nice option. An automatic ball return is also a great feature. Different size options are great, from a smaller mat to an XL size; having the ability to hit a variety of length putts is always something to consider. Easy storage, setup, and use are other important things to consider.

Space and Budget

Home putting greens and mats can range in price anywhere from $50 for a mat to well over $10,000 for a home synthetic, professionally installed green. You have to consider space and budget prior to making that final decision.

The Best Home Putting Mats and Greens

Prior to the setup I created during the pandemic, I had a home practice area, complete with a large 500-square-foot putting green, at my previous home. This higher-end option saw a crew come in and spend two days building it at a cost of $7,300.

The greens I will share with you today will not include options to this extent but more on the affordable end of the home putting green spectrum.

PGA Professional Brendon Elliott’s previous home practice area in 2008. Photo by Brendon Elliott

The following are some great options for home putting greens and mats. I have broken them down by price, features, and other important factors. I have used and tested each of these putting mats and greens and made my rating considerations based on the roll of the surface, durability, features offered, and cost. My rating for each is based on a 10 scale.

Putting Mats

Perfect Practice Putting Mat

Endorsed by Dustin Johnson, the Perfect Practice Putting Mat is an excellent choice for working on your putting stroke at home.

Key Features:

  • A range of length options, from 8’ and up to 15’6”.
  • Quality putting surfaces.
  • Alignment and distance markings on the mat.
  • Two holes, one regulation and one smaller.
  • A ball return feature.
  • Great line of accessories and training aids.

Cost: Price ranges between $124.99 and $199.99.

My Rating: 9 out of 10 stars

Wellputt Putting Mat

Endorsed by Cameron McCormick, the 2015 PGA of America Teacher of the Year and coach to PGA TOUR star Jordan Spieth, the Wellputt Putting Mat is one of the best putting mat systems on the market.

Key Features:

  • A range of length options, from 8’ and up to a whopping 26’!
  • Quality putting surfaces.
  • Alignment and distance markings on the mat.
  • 10 to 11.5 stimp.
  • Rolls out and stays flat.
  • Great line of accessories and training aids.
  • The Wellputt App for iOS and Android has 72 practice exercises.

Be Aware:

  • Wellputt Putting Mats have No holes and no ball return feature.

Cost: Mat prices range between $79 and $475.

My rating: 9 out of 10 stars

PuttOUT Putting Mat

Endorsed by the popular golf YouTube channel, Me and My Golf, the PuttOUT Putting Mat is a fantastic choice for those golfers looking for a quality home putting solution.

Key Features:

  • A range of length options, from 8’ and up to 12’.
  • Quality putting surfaces.
  • Alignment and distance markings on the mat.
  • 10 stimp.
  • Rolls out and stays flat.
  • Great line of accessories and training aids.

Be Aware:

  • The PuttOUT Putting Mat has no holes and no ball return feature.

Cost: Price ranges between $62.99 and $169.99.

My Rating: 8 out of 10 stars

Ram Golf Professional Dual Grain Putting Mat

The Ram Golf Professional Dual Grain Putting Mat with Distance Markers and Slope is a fantastic tool for golfers looking to improve their putting at home. The Ram Golf Professional Dual Grain Putting Mat offers the following features:

Key Features:

  • The Dual Speed Mat allows you to have the grain either with you or into you, giving you a faster or slower putt. The included broom helps you create that faster or slower putt.
  • Quality putting surface.
  • Alignment and distance markings on the mat.
  • Slope ramps to put under the mat to create a break.

Be Aware:

  • No holes or ball return features.
  • Cheaper construction than other mats listed above.

Cost: Affordable price at $49.99 here on Curated.

My Rating: 7 out of 10 stars

Putting Greens

Fiberbuilt Putting Greens

Fiberbuilt Golf, better known as a hitting mat manufacturer, offers some of the very best premium putting mats in the game. These mats are not cheap, but they are extremely thick and durable.

Key Features:

  • Pre-built greens range from 4’x8’ and up to 10’x10’.
  • Very thick, heavy, and durable putting surface.
  • Realistic feel and true green conditions.
  • 2 metal cups for visual targets and an authentic golf course green sound.
  • Turf delivers realistic check and roll on chips.
  • Runs at a stimpmeter speed of 9.
  • Installs evenly and quickly.
  • Includes: Putting turf with 2 hole cutouts, 2 metal cups, and a tool-free modular rubber foundation with easy-lock fasteners.

Costs: Prices range between $829 and $2,399.

My Rating: 9.75 out of 10 stars

BirdieBall Putting Greens

BirdieBall Golf Putting Greens offers a unique and more affordable option for bigger-putting greens. Coming in a variety of sizes, their RollTech Foam surfaces offer less expensive yet true rolling surfaces.

Key Features:

  • Pre-built greens range from 2-inch x 10-inch and up to an incredible 4-inch x 30-inch/
  • Custom greens come in a variety of size configurations… the sky's the limit!
  • A thicker and more durable “double-depth” putting surface is available.
  • An even more durable outdoor model, beyond the “double-depth” option, is available.
  • Various regulation hole configurations can be cut.
  • Offers a line of accessories and training aids.

Be Aware:

  • The original surface is not as solid as the double depth or outdoor.

Costs: Prices range between $139.99 and $2,000+.

My Rating: 9.25 out of 10 stars

This is one of the home-putting options I have chosen myself in the past, and I’ve been very happy with the quality. The pricing is also great for those looking for large greens for your office or deck.

Big Moss Putting Greens

Big Moss Greens are Endorsed by PGA National Teacher of the Year Recipients & used by numerous PGA & LPGA Major Champions.

Key Features:

  • A range of length options, from 6’ and up to an incredible 60’.
  • Also comes in various size and shape configurations up to 6’x15’.
  • Custom shapes and sizes are available as well.
  • Various regulation hole configurations.
  • Offers a line of accessories and training aids.

Be Aware:

  • The putting surface is fairly thin compared to other greens.

Costs: Prices range between $59 and $1,699.

My Rating: 9 out of 10 stars

BONUS Best Hitting Mats and Practice Nets

PGA Professional Brendon Elliott’s home practice area, which he set up during the pandemic in 2020. Photo courtesy of Brendon Elliott

There are countless amazing hitting mats and nets in the marketplace that would go perfectly with your new home putting mat or green. The following are a few of my picks for you to consider:

Hitting Mats

SwingTurf Golf Mat (5-inch x 5-inch retails at $579, 4-inch x 9-inch retails at $899)

Wittek Quattro Mat (59-inch x 59-inch retails for $399)

My Choice: Fiberbuilt Practice Station (Setup includes: flight deck, stance mat, 2 alignment rods, adjustable tee. Retails for $499)

My personal choice is the Fiberbuilt Practice Station. I have used this for three years in my various home and indoor practices and coaching studios. It is compact, durable, and portable. It really serves its purpose in a different and unique way.

Practice Nets

Spornia SPG-8 Golf Practice Net (8’w x 8’h, Retails for $449)

Rukket SPDR Portable Driving Range (10’w x 7’h, Retails for $319.99)

My Choice: The Net Return Pro Series V2 (8'w x 7'.6"h, Retails for $695)

My personal choice is the Net Return Pro Series V2. I have used this net since 2020. It has worked perfectly in my various home and indoor practices and coaching studios. It is very durable and made from high-quality materials.

Wrapping Things Up

In the past, prior to our work and personal life balance being forever changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, golfers often found it hard to find the time to practice. Today, as a result, habits have changed, and working on your game at home is now seen much differently.

Practicing your game at home can dramatically increase the time you are able to spend getting better at golf. This can ultimately lead to more enjoyment as you play on the course.

Hopefully, my insight today will help you make some good choices should you consider working on your golf game at home. If you ever need any more advice on this topic or any other, don't hesitate to contact me or any other Curated Golf Expert.

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