Golf Impact Screen Alternative — (Different Screen Materials)

golf impact screen alternative and different screen materials from the golf experts at tell me more golf

We all want more time to practice our swing but unless you live on a course or near a driving range, you cannot always just run out and hit a bucket of golf balls.

The next best option is to build a golf simulator and an impact screen. A DIY impact screen for golfers is not as difficult as it may seem. Today we will talk about some alternative materials that you can use to safely build a spot to practice.

golf impact screen alternative and different screen materials from the golf experts at tell me more golf

Different Golf Impact Screen Materials

There are some key elements that you will want to look for in an impact screen:

  • The golf ball should hit the screen with minimal bounceback.
  • The impact screen should absorb some of the sound of the ball.
  • It needs to be durable to last many seasons.
  • The screen should have excellent image quality.

Most Impact screens are made of high-quality materials, like polyester mesh. This is what you will see in your local golf stores, most times paired with a launch monitor. The polyester mesh screens come in standard, preferred, and premium. All are made from the same material but the premium golf impact screen is the most heavy-duty option. It also has noise dampening qualities that the standard and preferred do not.

When building an indoor golf simulator, like the one offered by Skytrak, the correct screen should match the aspect ratio of your projector.

This ensures that your screen will display the most pixels per frame.

Home golf simulators are rapidly gaining popularity as more companies offer them and the price continues to become more affordable. Included in a home golf simulator package is going to be a projection screen, hitting mat, bungee cords to secure the screen, and golf simulator software. The more expensive ones have a golf simulator enclosure as well to help protect the room from any errant shots.

Hitting real golf balls into a simulator impact screen with a projected image of a famous golf course can be a great way to practice in your home on days when you cannot get to the course.


Polyester Mesh

Overwhelmingly the most popular material for picture quality is polyester mesh. Whether you purchase a standard or high-quality option, you are going to get the best image with this material.

Polyester mesh is also durable and relatively light, making it easier to install.

Sawdust Mesh

This is a more economical option for an impact screen, especially if you do not plan to project an image. If you do plan to project onto the screen this choice will work however, the quality will not be as good as polyester mesh.


The most expensive screens are made from Kevlar. Yes, this is the same material that is in a bullet-proof vest. The most appealing feature of this is that it can handle high-impact golf shots while projecting a high-quality image.

Having hit thousands of balls into different simulators, screens, and golf nets, I can say that you can create a hitting area without purchasing all of the components of a simulator. If you are ok not projecting an image onto a screen, you can use a net with bungees and make a full golf swing. You will just need to have enough space and add a golf mat.


Does Size Matter For Impact Screen Quality?

Screen size does matter for impact screen quality. Most manufacturers make screens a minimum of 120 inches. The larger your impact screen the larger you can make the images. This makes golfing into a simulator more realistic.

If you go into a store like Golf Galaxy, you will notice that the simulator bays are more narrow. This is because you are there to hit golf balls and hopefully buy a set of clubs. It is not designed for a group of people to play a round and enjoy each other’s company. The screens here are of standard size.

Several places are opening up like X-golf. These have couches and chairs along with a bar so you can play a virtual golf course with your friends, have some drinks, and relax. These screens are very large allowing for the projected images to be seen in better detail.

Impact Screen Bounceback

This is an important piece to get right as it can be very frustrating to get your simulator all set up and now the ball comes flying back in your face. The ricochet could be a safety hazard as the ball could bounce hard enough to hurt someone.

To avoid this follow some common sense guidelines to reduce bounceback.

  • Make sure the screen is not too taut.
  • Do not install the screen too close to the wall.
  • Make sure you have the correct impact screen material.
  • If space is tight consider adding an archery net to help slow down the golf ball.

FAQ Section

How tight should a golf simulator screen be?

The simulator screen should be tight enough to display an image and not distorted and lose enough not to cause as much rebound in the golf ball. In many cases, you will be able to hit some balls into the screen before you have to secure it. Depending on which simulator you choose, you may also have the option to have it professionally installed which will ensure that it is the correct strength.

What can be used as a golf Impact screen?

A golf impact screen is typically made of Kevlar or polyester mesh. However, you can make a DIY hitting bay using a net and some poles. In the early days of learning to play golf, I actually set up a tarp on bungee cords between two trees to hit into. While I don’t recommend that, it does highlight that you can get a little creative when you are constrained by budget.

Can I use a tarp for the golf Impact screen?

Yes, the blue tarps we typically keep in our garages were used for years before the modern-day nets and screens. There are several good YouTube videos on how to set up a golf impact screen with a tarp.

Do you need a special screen for a golf simulator?

Ideally yes, you would have the proper screen for the simulator and projector that you are using. When it is your own golf simulator, you can pick the screen but ask an expert before installing to make sure it works in your unique setup.

Conclusion: Research by

black tell me more golf compressed logo with mottled background information for golfers

Putting together a simulator or net to hit golf balls into is a great way to practice and have fun with your friends. There are some main considerations to take into account though as we have discussed in this article. Make sure your space allows enough room for your golf swing.

Do not install the impact screen too close to a wall or something hard that could cause additional bounceback. Get a screen that is durable and allows for a high-quality image to be projected onto your screen. When you cannot get out to practice, a simulator or golf net is the next best thing.


Patrick Corley

From a golf scholarship to a Southern California University, to a private golf coaching career and an instructor position at a nonprofit organization, I’m here to help you get better at golf! With my 50+ years of golf experience; I bring you Tell Me More Golf. A golf coaching website that helps your game with instructional golfing content that’s ultimately geared toward making you a better golfer and having more fun!
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