How to Determine the Ceiling Height You Need for a Golf Simulator

It’s every golfer’s dream to have an indoor simulator.  Having the ability to play anywhere in the world from the comfort of your garage or man cave is something most of us would certainly never grow tired of.

Recently, there’s a lot that’s been written about how you can build your own indoor golf simulator for an affordable price.  And a lot of golfers have taken on the project as a result. 

If installing a golf simulator in your home is something you’re considering, don’t just go out, buy a bunch of materials and software, and start right in.  There’s a plethora of things you need to consider before you commit to a final plan.

One of those is ceiling height.  Believe it or not, this seemingly simple detail is one that often goes overlooked.  I’ve seen it happen – there’s nothing worse than spending a bunch of money on software and materials, and getting everything set up, only to learn you don’t have enough room. 

The good news is we’ve heard enough horror stories and done the research to help you avoid this silly, but all too critical mistake. 

Keep reading to figure out the ceiling height you need for your at-home golf simulator.

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How High Should Your Ceiling Be for an Indoor Golf Simulator?

It’s more or less universally agreed that the minimum ceiling height you need for a golf simulator is nine feet.  Anything less and you run the risk of causing damage to your ceiling, or your clubs. 

Most golfers recommend closer to 10 feet of ceiling height, especially for people that are taller. 

Determining the appropriate ceiling height for your simulator has more to do with your golf swing than how high the ball flies.  The fact is your net is going to catch the ball before it comes close to hitting the ceiling. 

The best way to come up with the right height is to measure how many feet off the ground your longest club is at the top of your swing.  Some people’s hands are low at the top, while others have high hands.  Whatever this height happens to be, it’s a good idea to have a ceiling height that’s a little higher to make sure you have plenty of room.

Don’t Forget About Depth

While height might be the most important spatial consideration when you’re installing a golf simulator, depth is another one that needs to be considered. 

To determine this measurement, you first need to make sure you have enough room behind and in front to make a full swing.  Once that’s been determined, you have to account for how much room your simulator needs after impact to pick up all the data points like swing speed, ball speed, smash factor, spin, launch angle, and distance to name a few. 

Make sure to check how much depth the simulator your thinking about buying requires, and that you have enough room in your space. 

As a general rule of thumb, the more depth you have, the better.  Even just a couple extra feet can extend the life of both your screen and net.

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What About Width?

The last measurement you need to think about is the width of the space you plan on putting your simulator. 

Obviously, you’re going to need enough width to make a full swing comfortably.  But we recommend giving yourself a lot more room.  You’re going to need room to put your simulator, clubs, and all other necessary equipment. 

Even more important is making sure you have enough room laterally so that errant shots won’t ricochet and cause damage to your walls and belongings.  No matter how good you are, you’re going to hit some sideways shots, it’s inevitable. 

If you give yourself 10 feet of width, that should be enough under most circumstances. 

For an extra layer of protection, it’s a good idea to install side nets, along with your target net to make sure all your shots stay in a confined area.

Conclusion

The next best thing to playing golf out on the course, is having the ability to play anywhere in the world from the comfort of your home.  That’s why indoor golf simulators have become so popular. 

While the very best simulators cost tens of thousands of dollars to install, golfers are finding ways to build their own for prices that are a lot more affordable.

If this is something you’re considering, there’s a lot of homework you need to do before you get started.  Part of that homework is making sure your simulator space has enough room.  This article should be a good guide for figuring out those measurements. 

Thinking about building your own simulator?  Let us know what other things you’re taking into consideration in the comments below.

Paul Liberatore
Paul Liberatore

As the Founder of Golfers Authority Paul Liberatore Esq. has spent the last 7+ years writing about the best golf equipment or instruction from the top golf instructors in the world. He has been a contributing writer for Sports Illustrated Golf and GolfWRX. After graduating with honors from Purdue University, he realized that he had a passion for the golf business and the law. When he's not practicing law, or creating golf content on YouTube, he can be found on his syndicated Behind the Golf Brand podcast both on Apple and Spotify talking with the most prolific leaders in the golf industry. 

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