What golf ball should I be using?

Key Takeaways


  • Ball Compression explained
  • Ball Spin explained
  • Ball for every skill level explained

What golf ball should I be using? It’s a rather simple question that requires a different answer for different levels and style of player. I’m going to recommend what I think is the best ball for each category of player.

First, we must determine different types of players. Golf is a complicated sport filled with players of vastly different skill sets (more so than any other sport). On the same day a course can have a quality player shoot a 68 while someone later on makes double par every hole and ends up shooting over 100. That’s a massive disparity, and those players certainly shouldn’t be playing the same ball.

Before determining the right ball for each skill set we need to understand what the difference in the balls are. The box of any ball will tell the potential buyer many different things, understanding them is important. Beginner players should look for two piece balls. A two piece ball has a rubber core and an outer layer that’s harder. Given that it’s only two pieces it compresses far more easily meaning people with slower swing speeds will be able to hit it far more effectively. There are also 3 and 4 piece balls that are more difficult to compress meaning they have more layers and are harder. For those with higher swing speeds they can be compressed rather easily and will go significantly further as they roll further off the tee and spin more around the greens. Essentially, the ball one should play is all about swing speed. If you swing lightly get a two piece ball it will go further for you rather than a harder 3-4 piece ball. If you swing hard then get a 3-4 piece ball, you will have no problem compressing the golf ball and it will have a low driver spin rate and a high spin rate with short irons when struck correctly.

Beginner Player: (Average Score: 100)

My first recommendation is for a beginning player with a slow swing speed. With a slow swing speed ball compression is much more difficult. For this group I would recommend the Srixon Soft Feel golf ball.  This is a softer ball. What will that do? A softer ball means it will compress easier and go further for an individual that can’t/or isn’t ready to swing hard. Not only is this a quality golf ball, it also comes at a quality price. A dozen runs at 19.99$ a very affordable price for the beginner more prone to lose balls.

Intermediate Player (Average Score: 90)

The next player I want to look into is the intermediate golfer, this is a very common type of player; they play on the weekends or in their limited free time and can sometimes be described as a “bogey golfer”, they likely shoot around 90 and have some good holes and some really bad ones. This type of player has a higher swing speed and can compress the ball easier. The perfect ball for this group is the Taylormade project A. This ball also starts at a very fair price of 29.99 per dozen, a tremendous value for a high quality ball. Rather than a 2 piece ball that compresses very easily, the Taylormade Project A offers the ultimate compromise. It compresses at a slightly higher swing speed but it also offers a much higher spin rate around the greens due to being a three piece ball. A better spin rate around the greens is important for the intermediate player. They have “more shots in their bag” so to speak. They are able to spin the ball more with flop shots and hitting the ball cleaner allowing for more spin. This extra layer makes for a more controlled feel around the greens.

Advanced player (Average Score: 80)

Finally, for the advanced player I recommend the Taylormade TP5. Many people find the ProV1 to be the elite ball of golf but the TP5 is on the same level for a slightly lower price. I play both the ProV1 and the TP5 and notice little to no difference in the balls leading me to the slightly more economical option of the two– the TP5. A dozen TP5 golf balls are about $45. So what justifies the price? This is a 4 piece ball which means there are multiple cores that allow for multiple types of spin. The players in this elite bracket are able to manipulate the ball to allow for maximizing or minimizing spin to their greatest advantage. The sweeping motion of a 4 piece ball like the Taylormade TP5 off the tee allows for a very low spin rate when struck properly, allowing for maximum distance. Iron shots when hit down on properly provide elite control when landing balls on the green. Around the greens on chips and pitches quality players with quality balls like the TP5 because it can check the ball quickly in its place.