Choosing the Best Golf Balls: Golf Equipment Advice
By Dan Davis, PGA Professional, Thousand Hills Golf Course
Choosing the best golf balls has always been and will continue to be the most important part of filling out a golfer’s bag. Today’s golf ball manufactures spend millions of dollars on research and development, packaging and marketing to provide some type of improvement for existing brands and models of golf balls. With so many choices, people off come to me for golf equipment tips to make sure they pick the right golf ball.
The ultimate goal when choosing the best golf balls is to provide the best feel and the longest distance all in the same ball. The problem with achieving this goal is that these two factors tend to work against each other. Usually the harder the ball is then the more distance it will produce. The softer the cover then the better it feels to the golfer.
When producing a new model of golf ball, manufacturers look at what demographics they want to market to. The reason for this is that, just like golf clubs, they try to fit the ball to a particular skill level, age or even sex of the customer. The biggest variable for maximizing distance is the compression of the golf ball. If a golfer cannot compress the golf ball enough then they will not maximize their distance potential. If the ball compresses too much then the face of the club will not compress enough to maximize distance. Unlike the old wound golf balls we do not have a standard listed compression on golf balls. Most major manufacturers have a low compression option such as the Titleist DT Solo, the Nike Karma, or the Precept Laddie. These balls are directed towards golfers with a lower swing speed. Figure out what your swing is like and you’ll be a long way towards choosing the best golf balls.
The low handicapper is usually targeted with a much higher quality golf ball that offers a harder to compress, yet softer feeling, durable cover. These balls are actually going against the traditional premise that there is a direct trade-off between feel and distance. Manufacturers usually can ask a premium for these type of balls which are usually well worth the price to the avid golfer. At Thousand Hills Golf Course our top two selling premium golf balls are the Titleist Prov-1 and the Nike One Tour. Of course Ultimately most golfers are after value and the greatest perceived value to most golfers will always be the used ball bin.
Now that you know how to choose the best golf balls, read some of Dan’s other golf equipment tips articles to improve the other equipment aspects of your game.