April 30, 2021

Your guide to understanding how roll works on artificial turf.


The Physics of Golf

Physics. It influences everything we do, and, notably, the popular game of golf.

Physics, is the nature and properties of matter and energy: the striking of the ball, the ball’s trajectory in flight, the ball’s initial bounce, and the ball’s roll out.

Ideally, the ground in the direction of the shot would be perfectly flat, perfectly uphill, or perfectly downhill would be perfectly flat, perfectly uphill, or perfectly downhill in the direction of the shot. This would make targeting the ball into the hole a straightforward task and hitting it along a straight line.

Oftentimes you’ll see that the ground is sloped. In this case, the ball’s roll cannot be a straight line to the hole, therefore it’s a more challenging task. The ball now must follow a specific curved path to get to the hole. The amount the ball must curve to the right or left is dependent on the grade of the putting green’s slope and undulation.

Whether or not artificial turf or natural turf is used to create your dream backyard putting green, the physical properties of the putting surface impact the performance. Southwest Greens of Metro New York utilizes a blend of typical golf course tests and proprietary playability testing.

A typical test for ball roll is the stimpmeter test. Stimp testing is calculated by the distance a ball rolls on artificial turf in meters when it’s released from one meter. The ball-to-surface interaction of the grass is directly correlated to the distance of the ball roll.

The proprietary playability testing for roll analyzes the consistency of outputs with a standard putting stroke. Our test analyzes the initial bounce of the club face and the spin to roll transition.

Now let’s take a closer look into the elements that impact how a golf ball reacts and rolls on a turf.


Green Characteristics

Product Construction: Extruded, recycled plastics that come in a mix of constructions, colors, and lengths. Proper construction is vital to allow key putting green installation practices; construction allows turf to be infilled and rolled. Properly rolled fibers look and play like natural greens.

Pile Height: The thickness and height of the grass blades will provide differences in friction; having an effect on the velocity and smoothness of the putt.

Fiber: The composition of the fibers will have a substantial effect on how the golf ball moves throughout the putt. Friction and pile lay are influenced by fiber composition. How the ball interacts with the surface is impacted by how the turf lays.

Infill: Essential to the turf system, infill is comprised of rounded washed silica. Infill gives ballast and aids drainage. How the infill is shaped is critical to performance; angles and edges create roll disruptions.

Aggregate Base: Stone is compacted to create challenging slopes and undulations; the result performs and drains like a championship golf course.

The recipe to creating a Backyard Putting Green that performs like a Championship Golf Green is combining the best raw materials with elite-proven-tested installation techniques. Especially important when you’re on the putting green seeking to gently hit your ball into the hole.


The Southwest Greens Difference

Southwest Greens has quantified key performance indicators. Because we have the understanding of what variables affect performance, we’re able to mimic natural greens.

With Golden Bear Turf, you’ll have smoother rolls that compare to playing on your favorite championship course. Scientifically tested and developed to reproduce natural grass, from the initial bounce off the clubface... to the spin transition… to the smooth ball roll into the cup...

Golden Bear give you only the best! It’s the ideal backyard practice putting green that offers the most realistic putting surfaces on the market.


Take a look at our Gold Bear Turf, and discover why golfers around the world love Southwest Greens.


See The Greens

5x Golf Digest Award Winner
Best Synthetic Putting Green