Choosing the right golf ball for your game is an absolute must to play your best. Using the wrong golf ball will cost you strokes... possibly many strokes. Why? Because each golf ball is designed for a specific swing type and reacts differently to a number of factors. Let's cover at least 5 factors you need to know in order to select the right golf ball for your game.
1. Spin rate-
Changing your spin rate is desirable based on the shot at hand. For example, you would want more spin with a wedge shot rather than a drive. The ability to control your spin rate corresponds with your skill level. The better player may want to use a high spin-rate ball, Titleist Pro V1 for example. However, the beginner may not benefit from a high spin rate ball and in fact, could be detrimental. Why? Because spin-rate is beneficial only if you can produce the right spin on demand.
2. Ball Speed-
Ball speed is different than Swing Speed. Ball Speed is the speed the golf ball travels after impact. You may have a 110 mph swing speed but only 130 mph golf ball speed. However another golfer may have 90 mph swing speed and 140 mph golf ball speed -- this would result in a longer ball. Essentially it is an efficiency measurement of how well the ball is compressed. Using the right golf ball will allow you to compress the golf ball to the best of your ability.
3. Launch Angle-
Launch angle corresponds to swing speed. In general, swing speeds in excess of 85 mph produce more distance with a higher launch angle and lower spin rate. Swing speeds less than 85 mph would create more distance with a high launch angle and high spin rate combination. Using the right golf ball would allow you to produce the right combination.
4. Golf Ball Hardness -
In general, hardness affects spin. The softer the ball the more spin it produces -- remember lower spin rate is desirable for a certain swing speed? This one is a trade-off and should be addressed carefully.
5. Golf Ball Compression-
This is one of those, what... compression? Also another trade-off and works hand in hand with golf ball hardness. Compression plays a role in generating distance. Lower swing speeds may optimize distance with less compression. The better player with a higher swing speed may want either a softer or harder compression. This factor is more subjective to personal preferences.
There you have it. 5 major factors why using the right golf ball will allow you to cut strokes and maximize your golf game. In upcoming articles, we will review major golf balls and which one may be right for your game.
Written by Dan DeRoeck