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Choosing the right ball for you

Many people subscribe to the hype that the Titleist ProV 1 or ProV 1X is the right ball for the touring pro and for the recreational golfer at the same time.

Since a tour pro practices for hours, plays thousands of the same shot and has a way higher club speed than the average amateur, how can that logical make sense?

“ Golf balls have kept pace with the technological advances of clubs.”

That statement can be good and can be bad! People seem to devote a lot of money to the newest, shiniest club (usually the DRIVER), salivating over the promise of 10 more yards. Well if that was so, shouldn't the average amateur now be hitting the fairway at 400 yards?

Sure, with all the tweaking of compression rates, number of cores, hex pattern, aerodynamics, etc etc etc, manufacturers can leverage the USGA's rules and a player can benefit over, "I play anything I find in a round of golf"

While golf is an expensive endeavor, you will never score your best unless you know what your ball can do. That includes how it stops, how it rolls, how much control you have over it, the yardage you get on a cold vs hot day, and the list can go on. You may not play at the level where ALL that is no more than overwhelming, but at least you should have a basic idea on average yardage and roll out. So use what comes after as your basic guide, but by all means you CAN get a club fitting done, which will include ball recommendations.

Step 1

Obviously you need to find a golf ball type based on your skill level and personal preferences. Does your game benefit from greater control, spin or distance. High handicap players usually want additional distance but also remember short game is where you usually lose strokes!

Step 2

Three-piece balls are normally produced for golfers desiring additional backspin for short game control,  while 2 piece balls are for reducing the effects of spin on the ball for distance.

Step 3

Compression ratings over 100 are appropriate for golfers driving 240 yards, and this is not the time to fudge what you ACTUALLY drive! The average amateur with slower swing speeds producing under 200 yards, compression ratings between 80 and 90 are usually a  suitable selection.

Personally I play the Chrome Soft Truvis, but I so love the 30 compression of the SuperSoft. But I would lose approx 20 yards using the SuperSoft, BUT I do drive over 240 yards, hmm, the delightful dilemma! So I flip and flop, but ultimately, even though I am a control, scoring type of player, I stuck with the ChromeSoft because I wanted the yardage, and I could still control the ChromeSoft, draw, fade, and checking on the green. So sometimes, you have to narrow it down to 2 choices, play comparison drives, and wedges, and then play separate complete rounds with each to determine what you really should use.

You have to be able to honestly assess your overall golf game, both strengths and weaknesses before making the final choice of golf ball. But please remember, it should not be an agonizing decision.

Ultimately whatever you choose, you will get used to. So if you opt for some of the benefits of the higher priced ball, but don't like the premium price, you should be able to find a ball that offers you something close to what you really would buy if price was no object, without breaking the bank. A simple rule I live by when I see players spending 10 minutes searching for that $5.50 ball in the rough, waving players through, maybe that ball the pro plays and everyone seems to think is mandatory, that's too expensive for your game. If you also have to use range balls when going over water or hazards, again because you cannot take a chance losing that $5.50 ball, maybe you need a less expensive alternative, because aren't you supposed to be having fun? 

And please, pretty please, a lost aspect of the game seems to be yelling 'fore!', when your ball develops a mind of its own through no fault of yours, cough cough.


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