This is a review of the Holy Grail Hitting Strip by Gungho Golf. In order to complete my garage golf simulator build I am testing all of the most popular hitting mats and hitting strips to find which I like most.
The Holy Grail comes up consistently as one of the best options providing a realistic feel that won’t be too hard on your elbow and wrist. I found out the hard way that a bad hitting mat can cause some serious pain in your lead arm so further injury prevention is one of my biggest priorities.
I found the Holy Grail hitting strip to be a very nice option that allows you to hit down through the ball while still being soft enough that it won’t beat up my arm. Continue reading and I’ll do my best to describe what you can expect from the Holy Grail hitting strip.
When I first opened the box I was curious how this thing was constructed.
Basically there is a layer of what I’m guessing is polycarbonate (or other plastic) with turf attached to it. The plastic keeps the turf flat but it’s also flexible so it will bend when struck with the club.
Underneath are three strips of very soft foam and two strips of harder foam on the ends. The soft foam feels the same or very close to the foam that’s used in the SIGPRO Softy hitting strip. Super squishy.
The hard foam came with both sides of velcro ready to be stuck in place.
I ordered the 12”x46.5” size which Gungho advertises will fit within a Fiberbuilt grass mat for those who want to replace the grass hitting strip. It fit mine like a glove.
Overall I was very impressed with the quality. This type of divot action hitting strip is definitely something you could make yourself but if I tried it would not come out as well as the Gungho Holy Grail looks.
All of the cuts and corners are straight and each layer of material is aligned perfectly. Even the height matches the Fiberbuilt stance mat perfectly.
It really is a perfect, drop-in replacement for the Fiberbuilt grass.
What does the Gungho Holy Grail feel like?
First of all it’s pretty soft. It doesn’t take much to compress the foam underneath which is a good thing for me because of my previous lead elbow / wrist injury.
The putting turf on top means the artificial fibers are very short and your club head can glide over it without it grabbing.
So does it feel like taking a divot?
In a way, kind of…
You certainly can hit down and through the ball which is great.
The part that’s different I think has to do with the plastic layer underneath. When you compress any part of the hitting strip that layer of plastic bends the whole width of the hitting strip.
The only example that comes to mind is like a springboard for gymnastics. That’s not the greatest comparison because it’s not “springy” and the board part isn’t totally stiff but there’s a rigid layer on top that compresses down.
So to me it doesn’t feel identical to hitting off grass but what hitting mat does?
Coming from my Fiberbuilt grass I enjoyed hitting off the solid surface (instead of bristles). It makes the biggest difference with chipping and putting which were not ideal on the fiberbuilt grass.
Even with the solid surface I still found it soft enough that there’s really no way it’s going to injure my arm. A really nice compromise overall.
How does the Gungho Holy Grail hitting strip fit within a golf simulator?
You can purchase the Holy Grail from Gungho Golf as a hitting strip or a complete mat with a hitting strip already inserted.
The Gungho golf website includes a very detailed description of the holy grail and how you can make it fit within your golf simulator.
For example, it’s made to line up flush with a 1” thick subfloor with ⅜” putting turf on top. If you want your simulator putting turf to match the Holy Grail, they specify that it’s Grasstex Money Putt.
The hitting strip comes in 3 different sizes and if you want the complete mat you can get it in 4’x5’ or 4’x9’.
In short, there are lots of options to make it fit within your simulator environment however you would like.
Pros and Cons
- Squishy foam provides a soft feel and won’t cause turf shock
- Solid surface makes putting and chipping easy
- Well constructed
- Well thought-out details makes it easy to fit the hitting strip into common golf simulator subfloors that are 1″ thick
- Still not the most realistic feeling but something similar
- Hitting strip wobbles a little bit because there are no foam strips on the edges
Alternative Hitting Strips
Carl’s Divot Hitting Strip
Carl’s Divot Hitting Strip is almost an identical offering with one important difference – it comes in both a beginner or advanced option. The beginner option has the softest foam on the bottom while the advanced has foam that’s a little bit firmer. I compared the advanced version to the Holy Grail in my full review.
SIGPRO Softy Hitting Strip
The SIGPRO Softy can be purchased as a hitting strip or a full golf mat. As I mentioned above I believe it uses the same soft foam as the Holy Grail except rather than strips it covers the whole hitting strip area. I feel like the SIGPRO Softy has a more realistic feel than the Holy Grail because it doesn’t have that “springy” feeling. Read the full review.
EZ Tee Hybrid
If you’re looking for something that’s a little more realistic you may like the EZ Tee Hybrid which is a turf rather than a divot action board. I found the EZ Tee Hybrid to feel very realistic but can be harder on your joints if you take a steep angle of attack.