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How do we measure the speed of greens?

In this episode of the “Greenkeepers Corner”, we will take a look with Ben Lovett into stimping, what it represents and how do we measure it.

What is stimping?

When you come to the reception of a golf course, like for example Albatross, you can find information on display, telling you what the speed of the green is. It might read something like this: Speed of greens 10. But what does the 10 mean? It is not represented by any unit of speed, such as meters per second or kilometers per hour. It represents distance in imperial feet. It is a distance that a ball rolls off to, when released from a stimpmeter.

The process of measuring

If you watch the video attached to this article, you will find out exactly how Ben Lovett measures the speed of greens at Albatross. Using the stimpmeter, he rolls three golf balls down onto a flat portion of the green. He then repeats the same process in the opposing direction, to make sure the spot he picked really is flat. The distance that the ball rolled off to is then measured using the stimpmeter itself. One length of the tool equals exactly to 3 feet. So next time you hear someone say that the greens at Albatross roll at 11, you will have a clear picture about what that means. Is this information beneficial to your score? Or do you prefer to just find the speed by hitting a few putts on the putting green?