It’s the time for giving – and getting. So with each of those in mind, here’s a few great gift ideas for golfers and athletes this holiday season.
TaylorMade M1 Driver
The company’s latest driver features a features a multi-material crown. Typically drivers are made of 100 percent titanium. By using Carbon Fiber on the driver crown, TaylorMade says it was able to save weight and implement a “T-Track” adjustment system on the bottom. With two sliding weight, golfers can easily adjust the M1 driver (suggested retail price $499) to fit their swing.
- Golfers can move the horizontal weight left or right to create a fade (ball tot he right) or draw (ball to the left), or leave it neutral for a straight shot.
- A player can also move the back weight forward for a lower ball flight or back to get the ball higher in the air.
For example, if a player tends to hit the ball high and to the left, they can adjust the back weight forward, and the horizontal weight to the tow of the driver to fade the ball right (www.taylormadegolf.com).
Swingbyte Virtual Coach
This is as good a virtual swing coach as on the market for players who like to “teach’’ themselves. Swingbyte (MSRP $169) is a digital swing analyzer that transmits motion data to a golfer’s mobile device. It will launch Virtual Coach, an intuitive platform that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to analyze a golfer’s swing and identify the most important swing and body faults present.
The Swingbyte sensor attaches to the shaft of any club, captures motion data and transmits it to a smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth. From there, the Swingbyte app displays real-time swing data, allowing users to view their swing in full 3D along with swing speed, club path, plane, attack angle and much more.
By employing a machine-learning algorithm that combines Swingbyte data with a knowledge base of more than 100 pre-defined faults, Virtual Coach can identify the top swing flaws that impact a golfer’s ball flight. In a matter of seconds, Virtual Coach can display a series of video lessons and drills on how to correct and improve the swing flaws.
The app is available on iPhones only and is free during its Beta testing phase (www.swingbyte.com).
Adidas Golf ClimaHeat Concept Fill jacket
Great for golfers and non-golfers alike, the ClimaHeat concept fill jacket comes at a good price (MSRP $150) features bonded quilting and elastic binding for enhanced performance in chilly weather. The jacket (www.adidasgolf.com) also has the company’s familiar three stripes on the right arm; elastic binding on cuffs and bottom hem; and adidas brandmark on front-left shoulder.
adipower Boost golf shoe
adidas Golf (www.adidasgolf.com) continues to create some of the more innovative and comfortable golf shoes on the market. The adipower Boost (MSRP $149) is a good example. The company says the Boost is designed to deliver a “spring-like’’ energy return golfers have never experienced, as well as a midsole foam integrated into the heel for increased walking comfort and energy return throughout the swing.
Bushnell Tour X Rangefinder
I’ve never been big on rangefinders, but the Tour X (www.Bushnellgolf.com) changed my mind. Lightweight and easy to use, the Tour X (MSRp $499) is engineered with Exchange Technology. Using two interchangeable faceplates, Bushnell says Exchange Technology gives the golfer a 2-in-1 device.
The Tour X conforms to USGA rule 14-3/.05 when the black faceplate is engaged. When users switch to the red faceplate, the Tour X deploys Slope Technology providing players with adjusted distance readings based on elevation changes. The Tour X features Dual Display Technology (DDT) that allows users to easily toggle between the bright red display featuring Vivid Display Technology or the black display, ranging capability of up to 1,300 yards (450+ yards to a flag), second generation E.S.P. (Extreme. Speed. Precision.) and PinSeeker with JOLT Technology.
Bushnell Neo Ghost
For golf course junkies, the NEO Ghost (MSRP 129.99) comes preloaded with more than 30,000 courses and provides simple measurements to the front, center and back distances of the green – along with up to four hazard/layup distances per hole. Additional features include auto course and auto hole recognition, shot distance calculator and battery life (play three rounds before charging). Using a multifunctional clip that allows for increased accessibility and convenience during play, the NEO Ghost can be worn on the golfer’s body or easily attached to a bag.
Mizuno Wave Inspire 12 shoes
I’m not even a running enthusiast (far from it) but I wear the Wave Inspire 12 (MSRP $119.99) shoe for its style and flexibility. It’s a great shoe to just walk around in – and yes – even to run (www.mizunousa.com).