If you want to improve your game, you need to practice. Tour pros hit hundreds of golf balls a day. But if you don’t have access to unlimited balls at your local practice range, this becomes an expensive proposition.
The solution, practice at home with a golf net.
Golf nets are designed to let you hit ball after ball into them without risk of damaging your walls, your neighbor’s siding, or taking out a few windows every time you practice.
But there are a lot of cheap golf nets out there. So I put together this buying guide so you can find the best golf net for your home practice sessions.
Best Golf Nets
There are a lot of options out there when it comes to finding the best golf nets to practice at home. There are a number of things you have to consider when choosing one…from price to durability to size.
I tried to break the options down in terms of specific uses or locations that you may have for the net so that you can make the best decision for setting yourself up to practice at home.
Best Golf Net Overall
Net Return Pro Series V2
The Net Return Pro V2 is the Cadillac of golf nets. If you’ve watched The Golf Channel then you’ve probably seen their commercials. This is a heavy duty, well built, durable net. On top of the quality, it is built in such a way that when you hit the ball into it, the ball rolls right back at your feet.
Dimensions: 8′ W x 7′ 6″ H x 3’6″ D
If you practice often and don’t hit a lot of really stray shots, then this if going to be the best golf net for you.
The Net Return Pro gives you a 250,000 shot guarantee. To put that in perspective, you could hit 65 shots every day for 10 years and still be short of 250,000! That’s the best guarantee I’ve seen in terms of golf nets. They also say that you can hit the ball up to 250 mph. That’s some serious ball speed.
If you or your family play multiple sports, the Net Return Pro can also be used for Soccer, Baseball, Softball, Lacrosse and Hockey.
If you are looking to save a few dollars, then take a look at the Net Return Home Series too. It is very similar in design but just a little less durable than the pro version.
- Very durable
- Ball return feature makes it easy to practice longer
- Compact size fits well indoors
- Ideal for use with in home golf simulators
- Smaller size may not be great for high handicap players
- High cost
Best Golf Net For Backyard Practice
The Rukket SPDR Net
The Rukket SPDR Net is a great all around net. Although it didn’t quite make the top overall spot on the list, it might be the best choice for most of you reading this.
Dimensions: 10′ W x H 7′ x D 5′
There is a lot to like about this golf net. It has very good shot coverage for all levels of players as well as good build quality and durability. So you can swing away on a regular basis without any worry of failure or stray shots.
Like the Net Return Pro above, it is built in such a way to get the ball rolling back towards you after you hit the shot.
- Relatively quick setup (net stays on when you fold it up which saves a lot of time)
- Package includes net, side protective wings, and a mat to hit balls from
- Large size makes it difficult to use indoors
Best Golf Net For Garage or Indoor Practice
Callaway Quad Net
The Callaway Quad Net is a good compact option for a reasonable price. The 8-foot square hitting area is one of the smaller options on this list. It is a similar size to the Net Return Pro but at a MUCH more affordable price point.
It is relatively easy to set up and take down. You set it up by unfolding it out of the bag and then standing it up. It forms an “A” shape and then has poles that act as spacers to hold the shape. Then if you are playing outside, it comes with stakes to secure it to the ground.
The small size makes it perfect for setting up indoors in areas like a basement or garage. It’s not as sturdy as the Net Return Pro so if you have the budget and need a solid and compact net for indoor use, then consider that one. But for the price, this is a great indoor option.
- Compact size
- Affordable price
- Less durable
- May not be big enough for stray shots
Best Golf Net For The Money
Galileo Golf Net
The Galileo Golf Net is a great option if you have the space to set it up. At 10 feet wide, it’s got as much shot coverage as the Rukket above, but at about 1/3 the price. While it doesn’t boast the same build quality and durability, it is a well-made net and a great option at this price point.
Dimensions: 10′ W x 6.5′ H x 6′ D
The Galileo comes with a carrying bag which is helpful for storing the net and taking it with you (a friend’s backyard perhaps).
My least favorite aspect of this net is the setup. It uses fiberglass rods that breaks down into sections that you have to slide together. It’s not difficult by any means, but it takes a few minutes even once you get the hang of it. So this isn’t going to be a net that you want to set up and take down a lot.
This would be great if you wanted to leave it up in your garage perhaps. But I wouldn’t leave it outdoors for an extended period of time. A few rainstorms won’t ruin it, but over time the elements will certainly cause it to break down faster than the other more expensive models on this list.
- Wide enough to catch stray shots
- Target to aim at
- Low cost
- Less durable
- Not easy to set up and take down quickly
Golf Net Buying Guide (What To Look For)
The size of the net is the first thing you should look at when making a decision, especially if you want to use it indoors.
The golf nets on the list above vary significantly in size.
You’re going to be hitting golf balls into this net over and over again at speeds over 100 mph.
So durability is an important factor.
Durability is also the major factor that separates the quality nets from the cheap ones. You may want to save some money and go for the cheaper models but you’re going to run into two problems with that approach.
First, the net is going to wear out faster and you’ll end up buying two, three, or even four of the cheap net instead of one quality net. So instead of saving money, you’ll end up spending more.
Second, and more important, cheap nets may break quickly and unexpectedly. That can mean a golf ball going through the net and into your wall, a window, or even a neighbor’s house. Most of those things are going to be a lot more expensive than a quality net.
All of the nets on our list above are well designed and have a good build quality. That doesn’t mean they never break, but they all have a good track record. Of course the higher end models are going to be more durable than the less expensive models.
Shot coverage is the area that a golf net covers. You may need more or less shot coverage depending on some factors.
If you’re a beginner and hit the ball inconsistently, then you want to look for a larger net with more coverage. We all hit stray shots now and then.
Mis-hits and even shanks tend to fly astray of the target line. While the net will be relatively close and cover most stray shots, some might get away with the smaller net. If you tend to hit a lot of stray shots, then go for the larger net.
Another thing to consider is how you’ll be using the net. If you frequently have friends over and use the net recreationally. Then you’re going to see a lot more stray shots (unless you and your friends are all low handicap players).
If you are using the net in an area that is also used for other things, then the ability to set up and break down your golf net easily is going to be an important factor in you decision.
Golf Net FAQs
Can I Leave My Golf Net Outside?
It depends. Most net’s are made of nylon or some other synthetic material. So they are waterproof and won’t be damaged by rain or other weather. However, leaving them outside for long periods of time can shorten the durability and lifespan of the net. If you do leave the net outside, be sure to inspect it regularly and replace the net more frequently.
How Much Room Should Be Left Behind A Net Indoors?
Generally, it is a good idea to leave at least 10 feet behind the net if you can. This varies from net to net, however. Some nets are more rigid and will stop a golf ball in less space than others that use a looser net to slow down the ball.
How Far From The Net Do I Need To Be To Hit Golf Balls?
Generally, 6-8 feet in front of you should far enough from the net to hit golf balls. You should give yourself enough room to swing the longest club you plan on using. Take your longest club and make a few slower swings just to make sure you have enough clearance.
How Long Does It Take To Set Up And Take Down A Golf Net?
Golf nets can take anywhere from 90 seconds to 10 minutes or more to set up. Some of the sturdier nets can take longer to set up and are designed to remain assembled for longer periods of time. Other nets are designed to set up and take down every time you use them.
Are Golf Nets Worth It?
A quality golf net is a great way to work on your swing without having to go to a practice range and pay for a bucket of golf balls. They are great for working on specific aspects of your swing and can be very helpful, especially when combined with a camera recording your swing.
Are Real Golf Balls Too Damaging To The Nets?
Not if the net is designed to be used with real golf balls. All of the nets we reviewed on this list are strong enough and durable enough to sustain repeated strikes by real golf balls. Every net will wear down over time, however. So be sure to inspect your net on a regular basis to ensure that the area that is hit most frequently is not wearing out. Replace your net before any rips or holes form.
Now go practice…
A golf net is only as useful as the amount of time that you actually practice with it.