WEEKEND GOLFERS simply don’t have the time to hone their game the way the pros do. So anything that gives them an edge without too much effort is likely to be welcomed – Garmin’s Approach S3 Touchscreen GPS Golf Watch, for instance.
GPS fitness tech has revolutionised the way in which sportspeople analyse their workout – from runners to cyclists and kayakers. The golf watch adds a new dimension: guidance. It’s a GPS, after all. This stylish device comes preloaded with 27 000 worldwide courses to help you optimise your strokeplay, even on unfamiliar territory. Features include Green View with manual pin positioning, distances to doglegs and layup points, customisable yardage points and digital scorecards. It’s like having a virtual caddie during every stroke.
“It’s lightweight, it includes a round timer to keep track of time played and the colour options will make it a talking point on and off the course,” says Dan Bartel, Garmin’s vice-president of worldwide sales. Free course updates, offered throughout the year, add new courses and make enhancements to the current line-up to help ensure accuracy. According to Garmin, just as courses change, so do the pin placements. “With the new Green View feature golfers can see a true image of the current green and the flag can be adjusted for the current day’s pin placement with the simple touch of the screen. As adjusted, it displays the distance to the pin, front and back of the green.”
A GPS’s ability to set waypoints is used in the S3 to add custom points for measuring or zeroing in on hazards or obstacles that may affect a shot. It’s also possible to zoom in for a closer look at the green.
Sleek enough to wear as a day-to-day timepiece, the Approach S3 is built waterproof and rugged but weighs only about
50 grams. Its high-resolution sunlight-readable touchscreen display – designed to be glove-friendly – provides large, bright numbering.
On a full charge the S3 providers eight hours of playing time and up to four weeks as a day-to-day timepiece. Charging the internal battery is as easy as connecting the watch to a small magnetic clip on its custom charging cradle.
Golfers can review their scores on the device, or download and access a printable version of their own round on their computer. Scoring options include Stroke Play and Stableford.
‘You cannot endow even the best machine with initiative; the jolliest steam roller will not plant flowers.’ – Walter Lippmann