Does Your Golf Ball Matter...?





It is now December and in State College, there is not much golf left to be played until March or April. During this boring period for a golfer, they may consider equipment changes for next season. I like many, have spent way too much on clubs and am now taking a step back to determine if I am playing the best golf ball for me. In a game that is purely an art, not a science, everyone has a unique swing. It cannot be left out that the golf ball is used on every shot, where as a club may only be used a few times per round. Let's take a look at the golf ball and determine what may be best for you.

I will focus on what Titelist has to offer for products because there are too many brands and types of balls to cover by noon tomorrow! Titelist currently has eight balls on the market, but six after you disregard just change in color (which is a different story which has to do with how your eyes and brain work!)

Since the ball is used on every shot, it should first be noted that most shots are spent hitting the ball onto the green, as opposed to off the tee or on the green. While the tee ball and putting cannot be forgotten, one should focus on what ball will be best for their approach game first.

The first factor I will look at it the ball speed that a player produces, based on how hard they hit the ball (off the tee). The average tour player will have a ball speed of about 170 mph, compared to the average amateur  at 140 mph. This alone is a significant difference, but should not be the greatest factor when determining what ball is best for you because a golf ball will need to perform well with a driver and an 8 iron, both producing different speeds.

If distance if your biggest concern, then you may care about ball speed. The Titelist Pro V1X will go farther than the Titelist Pro V1 if you have a high swing speed, but the Pro V1 will go farther than the Pro V1X is you have a lower swing speed. This is due to both how the ball compresses and the dimple patterns on the ball. The most efficient kinetic energy is transfer in the Pro V1X when hit hard, where the Pro V1 can receive the greatest transfer of kinetic energy at a lower swing speed when compared to the other ball.

The most important thing when considering what ball is best for you is the spin the ball will produce. All six of Titelist's balls will produce a different amount of spin. The Pro V1 and the Pro V1X produce the most spin which may be best for advanced players. This way, they can control the best when hitting approach shots. For those who are not total hackers but do not want to give up complete feel around the green, Titelist offers the NXT and NXT Tour. For those golfers who are most concerned with hitting it straight, hence no spin because side spin causes the ball to go left or right, Titelist has the DT Solo and the Velocity.

Each ball is unique and it is important you find what is best for you. The men on tour have near perfect swings so hitting a high spin ball off the tee does not affect them, but it may cause you to miss the fairway. If you chose a harder ball, you would get more distance and hit it straighter. It amazes me the technology that goes into the game of golf, and now especially in the golf ball. I think choosing the perfect ball for you is important to lower scoring. Is having a certain golf ball matter to you?


I have always wondered what the different balls did and I'm glad you provided some insight for me. I enjoy golfing, but never really cared about what ball I used. I tend to use the one my dad does ( I don't think I'm good enough for it to matter which ball I use. In fact its probably better I just use the cheaper balls cause I'm bound to lose a few each round. You talk about the most important aspect of the ball being the spin. To me being an amateur, its one of my least important. Granted I do know how to spin the ball, half the time I don't get the spin I intend for.

What you may not understand is that when I refer to the spin of a golf ball, it means more than stoping the ball on the green. The spin off a golf ball will also affect the flight of a ball, low, high, left and right. A low spin ball, aka a cheaper ball, will be more beneficial for you because you cannot control spin on the green. The benefit of a low spin ball is that it will go straighter when hit poorly because it will not spin as far left or right.

As a golfer I can relate to this post. I golf about twice a month during the summer but I haven't really put much thought into the ball I use. However, recently I found this new type of self correcting ball. Polara has come out with what they call and anti-slice golf ball. I got my hands on a few this summer and they actually work quite well. I usually had an annoying slight hook which seemed to correct while the ball was in flight. They say that their product can correct slices and hooks by 75%! Another cool feature is that the ball flight depends on the direction you place it on the tee. Depending on the way the dimples face you can actually add a fade or a draw to you tee shot. I would recommend checking these new balls out!

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