June 22, 2022


Picture this. You are trying to improve your chip shot, and the artificial putting green you are playing on will just not receive the ball smoothly. However ideal the shot is, the ball bounces and rolls off the back of the green—for the third time. As an avid golfer, you can already tell that this green is not high-quality.

Quality synthetic golf green attributes should consist of these priority reactions:

  • Realistic golf ball bounce
  • Precise reaction to aim
  • True directional roll
  • Predictable playability

The key here is to have the artificial turf behave as naturally as traditional turf. From the moment your ball lands on the green, you can tell if you are playing on high-quality grass or not. If you are hitting a chip shot, you should be able to predict it will be received by the grass correctly, bounce appropriately, and roll as planned.

If these important elements are missing, how could you possibly improve your putt consistency or chipping accuracy?



The contrast in the bounce between natural and artificial turf comes from the properties of the turf that absorbs the kinetic energy of the bounce.

Let’s explore the science.

Bounce, Aim, Roll
The Golden Bear system replicates natural greens by employing base, pad, sand, and fibers to achieve like performance metrics. By understanding natural green absorption, spin, and friction, Southwest Greens has been able to employ a mix of these materials to absorb shots, spin on impact, and customize speed.



To ensure you’re getting an excellent reaction from our synthetic grass, we administer many tests, but here are the most important ones you should be aware of.



Tru Firm: Measure the shift of the surface to check how the surface influences energy transfer.

Bounce: Proprietary device that re-creates natural pitch shot approach angle and spin. This will create a standard and quantify the surface interaction to understand how the surface will react to a pitch shot.

Spin: Advanced machinery that recreates natural spin. Create a standard and quantify the surface interaction to see how the friction of the surface varies ball spin will translate to performance.



We have been able to quantify key performance signals to give your golf game fantastic results. By studying what variables affect performance, we can replicate natural greens.

We created testing methods to better understand what variables actually impact performance. Spin, firmness, and bounce were judged utilizing a mixture of GSGA testing protocols and proprietary testing methods. These tests mimic normal shot and surface interactions.

At Southwest Greens, we have honed the art of installation to offer the greatest playing surface available. This is how we make our grass:



Depending on where you call home, the earth may vary from sand to clay to rock. Properly installed artificial turf takes this into account, with a base created to encourage proper drainage.



Stone is utilized on top of the subgrade (ground) to assist in drainage and provide a permit to a properly constructed surface. It is important that the aggregate be constructed and compacted to valid depths. Specifically for golf uses, a second shaping aggregate is added to build undulations and breaks.



Artificial turf is created by sewing the fiber through multi-layer backing. The backing, in turn, is covered with high-grade polyurethane to protect the stitches.



Essential to the turf system, the infill is created from rounded washed silica. Infill yields ballast, helps with drainage, and has direct impacts on the key bounce indicators.



Extruded, PP/PE/ Nylon come in a large number of constructions, colors, and lengths. Fabrics and product build directly impacts on the ground interaction with the golf ball and surface aesthetics.

Check out this installation video to get a grasp how we determine the appropriate infill layers and synthetic grass surfaces for your situation.



On the search for a product where a chip shot will land, bounce, roll, stop, and react as comparably to a real golf green as possible?

Residential putting greens differ quite a bit from standard yard turf. Base work, cup placement, undulations, and turf selections are all important features of a synthetic golf green that adds value to your game, family, and home, all while lowering maintenance costs.


Consider one of our fan favorites: Golden Bear Turf

Golden Bear is our premium-grade artificial grass with the appearance, feel, and texture of regular grass. It’s the turf preferred by novices and professional golfers for their homes. In simple terms — it’s the most accurate playing surface obtainable on the market today. Golden Bear is a great pick for more consistency and improved predictability. Although installed with golf in mind, this long-lasting, high-quality turf is also pretty and can provide backyard serenity.

The alliance with Southwest Greens and Nicklaus Design started in 2004 and has evolved significantly through the years in both design and turf science. All consumers can take advantage of custom-designed golf greens installed by authorized Southwest Greens dealers. Now everyone can participate in superior integration of professional design, installation, and Golden Bear exclusive turf products.

Golden Bear Turf is of the highest-quality, look, and results for synthetic grass products. This high-quality synthetic turf bounces, rolls, and receives just like a championship course. Shot after shot, Golden Bear has the most precise aim of any putting surface. Game-play experience is so real you will feel like you’re playing out on a local Naperville course.

Our Golden Bear Turf brings you championship-level bounce available in your own yard. Scientifically developed and tested to have 20-25% more ball retention compared to other leading synthetic turf for real playability. Contact Southwest Greens of Illinois if you want to know more regarding the science.



We’re prepared to help you find the perfect solution for your backyard putting green. Connect with us when you’re ready to start your project.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in March 2021 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.