Golf Simulator Putting

Golf Simulator Putting: Manual vs. Auto Putt

When it comes to golf simulator putting, the choice between manual and auto putt can be a tricky one.

Auto putt offers the advantage of speeding up the process, allowing players to move through a full round of simulated golf more efficiently.

On the other hand, manual putting, while a longer process, allows for a more authentic experience to your simulated golf round. which some golfers may prefer.

I’ll walk you through my experience using both of these features, both have their pros and cons. Depending on your objective for each of your practice sessions both can be beneficial, let’s explore both options and understand how you putt on a golf simulator.

Key Takeaways:

  • Setting up your golf simulator correctly enhances the accuracy of putting on your golf simulator.
  • Time plays a key role in the decision between manual and auto-putting.
  • Dedicated golf simulator putting practice, is important for honing putting skills

Golf Simulator Putting Options

When it comes to golf simulator putting, there are two main options to consider: manual putting and the auto putt feature.

Manual Putting

  • Provides a more authentic experience when playing a full round on your golf simulator.
  • Allows players to develop a better “feel” for putting, which is a crucial aspect.
  • Offers the opportunity to practice judging distances and speed. An important element in improving lag putting from long distances.
  • Can practice on many courses with different stimp rating. To allow you to practice on both fast and slow greens.
  • Re-creates the pressure of having to hole putts as you would have to in real-life situations.
  • Putting makes up close to half of all shots in your golf simulator round, which drastically increases the time it takes to complete the round.
  • Can be difficult to accurately replicate putting on golf simulators, as launch monitor accuracy can struggle in picking up lower-speed shots.
  • Environmental factors such as weather and the lie of the ball, which impact real-world putting, are not fully simulated in a golf simulator.


  • Auto putt allows a fixed amount of putts based on distance from the hole. For example on GSPro (inside 10ft =1 Putt, 45ft = 2 Putt, outside 45ft = 3 Putt). These distances can be adjusted to any distance you prefer to suit your skill.
  • Allows the simulated golf round to be completed in half the time it would be if every putt is being taken.
  • It allows the golfer to assess optimally their score for a round when removing the variable of their level or skill of putting
  • Does not mimic the real conditions of playing a full round of golf.
  • Creates a bad practice habit of ignoring an aspect of golf that consists of half the shots you take in a round.
  • Does not allow you to practice under pressure conditions as you would on the course.
  • Can offer a golfer an unrealistic assessment of their score for a round, when offering an optimal result for putting that is above their current skill.

Golf Simulator Putting Technology

The Accuracy of High-Tech Simulators

The technology used in golf simulator putting involves a combination of sensors, projection screens, and specialized software to create a realistic putting experience.

The launch monitor of a golf simulator can track various metrics such as ball speed, launch angle, and spin rate, providing instant feedback and analysis to help golfers refine their putting skills.

Golf simulator putting is generally accurate, with most simulators being about 90-95% accurate on average.

However, some challenges, such as accurately judging distances and experiencing the true roll of a golf ball can still exist, particularly for lower-speed shots.

The accuracy of golf simulator putting can be impacted by factors such as the conditions and the setup of the simulator. While golf simulators are generally accurate, there may be variations in accuracy depending on the specific technology and setup used.

Setting Up the Ideal Golf Simulator Environment

To optimize your putting experience in a golf simulator, it is essential to create the ideal environment for realistic simulation. Start by ensuring that your simulator is set up on a level surface to simulate a proper putting green.

I use the Country Club Elite Golf Hitting Mat, and it does a great job of acting as both a hitting mat and a putting surface. Any hitting mat that doesn’t offer too thick of a surface will work well enough as a putting green.

A well-lit hitting area is important for photometric-based launch monitors such as SkyTrak.

Additionally, consider the lighting conditions in your golf simulator putting space. Adequate lighting, preferably from overhead sources, will provide consistent visibility and minimize shadows that may affect your putting stroke.


To aim effectively when putting in a golf simulator, consider setting a ground-level target aligned with your intended direction.

This provides a focal point for your shot as most simulators read the initial launch.

Additionally, gauge the distance and adjust your stroke accordingly, crucial for successful putting in the typically spacious environment of golf simulators.

Time Factor

Golf Simulator Putting Time

For me this is the ultimate factor on which option I choose for golf simulator putting, and the variable of time changes for each practice session.

When I have more time to dedicate to the practice session then manually putting each stroke is very valuable for helping me improve my game. When I only have a couple of hours or want to get through a round fairly quickly after dinner, and before bed then more often than not I am opting for auto-putt.

I think being honest with how much time you can dedicate to your practice session is important in deciding which putting option will be the most efficient for that time. It is ok to change between the two options, and that is the great luxury in the options, is you don’t have to choose just one.

Golf Simulator Putting Practice

Golf Simulator Putting Practice

Like any other club in your bag, the best way to perfect its use is through repetition. My best results with refining my putting on a golf simulator have come through dedicated practice sessions.

In the same manner, you would hit 50-100 9-irons to gauge your distance with that club, the same applies to a putter. Do you know the ideal length of your backswing for a 25-foot putt? If you had to think about it you don’t know it well enough.

I have spent sessions where I just dial in my putter and hit stroke after stroke from a certain distance, and see how many balls I can get into that 2-3 foot gimme putt range.

I can’t express how much my game has improved by dialing in my lag putting through the help of my golf simulator.

The other thing I enjoy that my simulator provides is practicing on greens with different speeds. I love playing on different courses and knowing the stimp rating for each, and how that affects my putting stroke. When I hit the course now I am ready to adjust the moment I see how fast or slow the greens are running that day.

A golf simulator putting session may not be able to fully replicate what it is like to hit a hundred putts on a real-life putting green, but it can come pretty close.


Choosing between manual and auto putting on a golf simulator depends on factors like time constraints and practice objectives.

Auto putt offers efficiency, enabling a quick simulated round, while manual putting provides an authentic experience for honing skills.

The versatility of golf simulator putting options allows for a personalized approach, catering to both time-conscious and dedicated players seeking to optimize their putting practice for improving their skills.

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What are the options for golf simulator putting?

Golf simulators offer both manual putting and an auto putt feature. Manual putting allows you to actually putt the ball with your putter on the golf simulator, while auto putt predicts the number of putts based on the distance from the hole.

Which is better, manual putting or the auto putt feature?

The choice between manual putting and the auto putt feature depends on personal preference. Manual putting gives you complete control over your putting performance, while the auto putt feature provides convenience and efficiency.

How can I configure my golf simulator for optimal putting?

To configure your golf simulator for optimal putting, ensure you have an even putting surface and proper lighting. Additionally, adjust simulator settings such as green speed and slope to create a realistic and challenging putting experience.

What are the advantages of high-tech simulators for golf simulator putting?

High-tech simulators accurately replicate real-life putting conditions, allowing golfers to practice their putting skills with precision and realistic results.

Hi, I'm Jeff Ross, and my golfing journey began over 25 years ago, marked by a shaky swing and more slices than I'd like to admit. Despite the initial challenges, my profound love for the game took root, and I realized that golf had a hold on me—an enduring grip that pushed me to improve daily. Today, with half my life still ahead, I remain committed to this beautiful game, viewing each mulligan and unexpected success as a chapter in a larger narrative of growth. Eager to share my passion for golf, I'm driven by a desire to assist others on their own journeys. Together, let's explore new skills, embrace evolving technology, and delve into teachings that propel us forward while maintaining an unwavering passion for this beautiful game.

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