The Top Specialized Sports Wearables for Golf

Track Your Swing, Enjoy Guided Workouts and More.

Fitness trackers may be among the hottest wearable devices on the market, but there’s also a more specialized category of gadgets catering to the advanced athlete’s needs. I’ll be taking a look at some of the top options sport by sport — today, let’s venture into the world of golf wearables. Read on for some of the top specialized picks. 

PIQ Golf Sensor

This device comes packed with plenty of functionality, including NFC, Bluetooth, GPS and a 13-axis motion sensor. All those bells and whistles let you measure distance, club height, air time and more, and there’s even an LED display that shows you the distance to various spots on the green, with a database of 35,000 courses helping the PIQ Golf Sensor automatically detect your location. (Oh, and yes, this is technically a wearable, as it clips onto your glove.)

The NFC comes into play when you switch out your clubs, as the sensor comes with different NFC tags that lets the sensor identify which one you’re using for a given swing. While the PIQ Golf Sensor isn’t available yet, it should go for about $300 when it hits the US in late summer. When it does, owners will enjoy access to Mobitee, the mobile golf assistant, and its apps.

Garmin Approach S6

The company known for its specialized sport watches unsurprisingly has a model tailor-mode for the golfers in the house. At $400, the Approach S6 is definitely not cheap, but you get plenty of stats and for your dough. Several features focus on improving and analyzing your swing: SwingTempo displays the relationship between your upswing and downswing as a ratio, helping you determine how close you are to the "ideal ratio" of 3:1; TempoTraining uses audible tones to help you fine-tune your swing; and SwingStrength compares a given swing to your normal full swing. 

This feature-heavy watch can also pair with your smartphone via Bluetooth, letting you receive email and text notifications directly on your watch face. You even get full-color course maps — more than 39,000, that is. Suffice it to say the Garmin Approach S6 is not for the casual, newbie golfer.

Game Golf

A bit more wallet friendly but no less cool is the $199 Game Golf kit, which includes a clip-on sensor for your belt as well as 18 sensors for the top of your clubs. You simply tag a club sensor by holding it in front of the clip-on sensor, then the system records everything from your club choice to distance, putts per hole and more. 

Once you're off the green, you can sit back and analyze your game in-depth, filtering by round and even comparing your skills with friends and golf pros. 

Microsoft Band

I said this list would include specialized golf gadgets, didn’t I? Well, forgive me for adding a more general wearable, but it’s worth mentioning that Microsoft’s $200 wristband includes extensive support for golf, using GPS to determine distance, count swings and track your score. Microsoft’s partnered with the TaylorMade app, letting users enjoy the latter’s course finder via the Microsoft Health app and using TaylorMade’s myRoundPro app to view shots and more detailed stats. Finally, golfers can utilized several “guided golf workouts” targeted at a variety of skill levels.