Premium Ball vs. Bargain Ball
I get asked about what golf ball I should play on a regular basis. On a daily basis I will see golfers practicing or playing a round with several different types of golf balls. Many golfers I find don’t understand the importance of the golf ball and the role it plays in making you a better and more consistent player.
Golf balls come in all different qualities and designs that are each trying to do something a little different. On one hand we have the bargain golf balls that are aimed at distance and being more cost effective while on the other hand we have the premium golf balls, the golf ball the pro’s and better players play. This brings up the question, am I good enough to play a premium golf ball? The answer is yes and here is why.
The premium golf balls aren’t just designed for better players, they are designed to make you play better golf. This is because premium golf balls use better material and designs which makes the golf ball more consistent and predictable. A golf ball that is more consistent and predictable makes it easier for the golfer to have more control over their shots. This is especially true around the greens. The top level balls have more spin which gives the golfer more control. This results in better chips and wedge shots around the green and helps lower scores. If you find yourself hitting chip shots or wedges and your ball just rolls off the green then your golf ball is partially to blame. I challenge you to take a sleeve of premium golf balls and hit short game shots side by side against your cost effective ball. See how much different the premium ball reacts versus the bargain ball.
Another question I get from this discussion is won’t I lose distance with a premium ball over the cheaper distance ball. The answer is yes but not as much as you think. A study was done a few years ago to test this and it was found that between your premium golf ball like a Titleist Pro V1 and your distance golf balls, Top Flite and other brands, that the actual distance gained by the cheaper distance ball is a mere 7 yards on average. That is less than 1 club difference. This gain in distance does not make up for the loss of control around the greens.
Lastly is a reason I hear from many players as to why they don’t choose a premium golf ball. That is that they are afraid to lose them because they cost more money. I understand this reasoning as the premium golf balls aren’t cheap. Overall the premium golf ball as mentioned spins more and is more consistent with its reaction off of the club face which means your ball will stay in play more. Now does this mean it will stay in play significantly more, that depends on your current game and skill. If you are a new golfer then I would advise you to use the same ball each and every time you play because this will give you more consistency in understanding how that ball performs and reacts. If you are constantly switching balls it becomes difficult to predict how the ball will react. Once you develop as a golfer and have more confidence in your game then switch to the premium ball all the way. If you are already a skilled golfer then make sure you are playing a premium ball to maximize your results.
If you have questions about which premium ball is right for you follow these steps to fit yourself. Buy a pack of several different premium level balls. Begin with putting the golf balls to gain a feel off of the putter. After this move to chipping to see how they react and which ball you are better at controlling. Now move to mid range wedge shots, then full wedges then full iron shots. Lastly you will want to compare your top choices side by side off the tee. Ultimately you will want to choose the ball you had the best results with around the green.
If you have questions or need help with any of this please feel free to send me an email.