50 Words or Less
The Flight Deck Tour and Duo putting aids give golfers a variety of ways to work on their alignment and putting stroke. Great for players who like to make a lot of putts during practice.
One of my favorite things about Plugged In Golf’s relatively advanced age is that we’ve been able to see products and companies evolve. Flight Deck Putting is a prime example. They released their original trainer in 2019 [review HERE], took feedback about it, and redesigned an entirely new version. I tested the Flight Deck Tour and Flight Deck DUO for this review.
Set Up & Ease of Use
The Flight Deck training aids are all easy to set up and intuitive to use. Flight Deck recommends setting the trainer up 3-12 feet from the hole. It’s staked down with three tees, and the only difficulty is dialing in the line precisely so that a well struck putt ends up in the hole. Once the trainer is staked down, set a ball in the notch and make your stroke.
Flight Deck offers two separate training aids that can be used together or independently. First, there’s the Flight Deck TOUR which is a “putting impact trainer.” The base piece includes the “stop blocks”. Next, the Flight Deck DUO sits atop the TOUR with either a mirror and alignment lines (shown above) or a thick white alignment aid (see below, above “Value”).
The Flight Deck DUO is a solid, if not particularly novel, putting aid. With the mirrored side up, you can dial in your set up position. The other side allows you to focus on your line and making solid contact. I do like the fact that its two sided as that adds to its value, and it’s a good aid for players that like to set up in one spot and roll in a lot of putts.
Flight Deck TOUR is much more closely connected to the original Flight Deck trainer, and is a more interesting aid. The idea is that the blocks provide feedback about the squareness of your putter face at impact. Further, and likely more controversial, is that these blocks will teach you to correctly (per Flight Deck) decelerate your putter into impact. Taken direct from the Flight Deck website: “The Flight Deck reminds golfers to naturally decelerate prior to impact and create solid strikes for better control of direction and distance.” I don’t study putting motion capture, so I’m not going to wade into the accelerate vs. decelerate debate; I’m going to stick to reporting my findings about the training aid.
What I found was that the Flight Deck TOUR had the opposite effect on my stroke – it made me want to slam into the blocks so the ball would get to the cup. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – I tend to need more speed into impact – but it’s not Flight Deck’s expected response. I could gently cruise into impact when there wasn’t a ball there, but when the goal was making a putt, my stroke had a lot of hit in it.
With regard to the blocks and a square face, I found the feedback too gentle. If my putter face was wildly open or closed I could feel it, but small misses weren’t very noticeable. I do like Flight Deck’s suggestion of using it with your eyes closed or with one hand. However, those feel like indoor drills to me and Flight Deck needs to be anchored with tees.
In the plus column, the Flight Deck trainers are small and durable enough to live in your golf bag. The primary negative is that there’s no gamification here, nothing that makes them particularly fun to use.
The overall longevity of the Flight Deck putting trainers will be determined by how you like to practice your putting. If you’re the type of player who gets confidence from seeing a lot of putts go in the hole, you’ll get a lot of use from these training aids.
Flight Deck offers their training aids in a variety of different combinations. The Flight Deck Kit has all the pieces shown in this review and costs $80. You can also purchase the base, the Flight Deck Tour, for $40. Finally, the Flight Deck Duo, the piece with the mirror and alignment aid, can be purchased for $50.
If you want a training aid that will help you groove your stroke and sink a lot of putts during practice, the Flight Deck putting aids are a fine choice. However, if you prefer a training aid with strong feedback, this may not be for you. There is good value to be had in the Flight Deck trainers for the right type of golfer.