What A Load Of Golf Balls
by Clay Morris
Through out the history of golf the golf ball has evolved more than any other piece of equipment used in the game. From the very first wooden balls followed by the feathery to the latest 4 piece, high energy core, tungsten weighted, titanium, super thin covered, go further go straighter last forever golf ball, advances in science and the materials used in manufacturing has taken that little white thing to a new level of performance.
At the moment in my shop I have 36 different balls to choose from and there are plenty more types I could stock. This being the case it is difficult for a golfer to choose which is the right ball for them especially when they all claim to be the best thing since the couch potato was given the remote control.
The Number one
Titleist golf balls have been known for many years as ‘The Number 1 Ball in Golf’ and it is true that more tour players across the world use a Titleist ball. Some golfers think that if Ernie Els is playing with a Titleist then they should play with a Titleist as well, however, that is not necessarily the case. Believe it or not in amongst this huge selection there is the right ball for you and the ball you choose to play with needs to suit your requirements and level of skill.
In my opinion the huge range of golf balls on the market can be broken down into 5 categories.
- Swing speed
If you are a beginner, or lose a lot of golf balls, then buying budget balls is the best thing to do. These are often packaged in 15 ball boxes and are a hard durable ball that will generally go further when you hit them. The draw back of this ball is that it is very lively off of the club face and when it comes to chipping and putting can lack some of the soft feel that some golfers prefer.
The harder golf balls such as Topflite XL 3000, or Callaway CB1 are perfect for the golfer who doesn’t lose too many balls but could do with more distance off the tee. These balls are not as hard as the budget type, but are durable and offer some feel around the green although they still won.t stop very quickly on landing.
If you want the combination of distance, feel and durability then balls such as the Titleist NXT Tour, the Callaway Hex 2 or the Strata Tour Straight are ideal. These are all what I call a medium ball giving the golfer consistent performance in all areas.
The top players in the world all use soft golf balls. Up until about 4 years ago the cover of the ball was actually soft enough to mark with your finger nail and marked very easily when miss hit. This meant that only the best ball strikers, or golfers with more money than sense, would use them. These days the covers on these balls are very durable and the ball will spin and stop very quickly on and around the greens.
The leading balls in this category are Titleist Pro V1, Callaway Hex, Strata Tour Ace, Hogen Apex Tour and the Maxfli M3. These balls are manufactured to the highest specification and quality and every golfer could play and enjoy them. They are however very expensive at about £10 for 3 balls if you are a bit wayward with your shots then it could cost a fortune in golf balls.
When it comes to swing speed some players just cannot swing the golf club very quickly. If this is the case some manufacturers are now making balls specifically for those of you who struggle to get any distance because you just can’t hit it hard enough! The Maxfli Noodle ball is perfect for anyone who has a slow swing and they are durable and affordable.
Whichever ball you choose, try to stick with that ball every time you play. You will get used to the feel and performances of the ball, which in turn will help, play more consistent golf.