Golf Balls Demystified

golf balls

So do the different numbers on a golf ball mean anything? Truthfully – not really – It helps that when you play golf with friends that you all don’t play with exactly the same brand and number of ball as it can be confusing. If you are both playing with a Srixon 1 then you will have to mark them otherwise if one is playing with a Srixon 3 and the other a Titelist 3 there is no real difference between the balls.

The development of golf balls in record speed

The” featheries” were the first golf balls ever made. They were small leather balls stuffed with goose feathers.

After that the gutta percha ball was invented. It was just a solid rubber ball that did not fly very well. The ball improved and flew better the more people used it and it got more scuffed and gained scrapes and dimples.

The next change in the golf ball was to hammer dimples and cuts on to the gutta percha ball and the performance of the ball improved.

The haskall flyer came next – a good ball but not much distance on it.

Players found that putting pimples on the ball made it go up and steer pretty well when you hit it but the drawback was low flight and low distance. They then started experimenting with what putting dimples on a golf ball would do. In the beginning all golf balls were the same with the same amount of patterns and dimples on the golf ball.

The modern ball has dimples making the ball travel higher, longer and straighter. There are many brands now like Titelist, Wilson, TopFlite, Srixon, Nike, Bridgestone, Dunlop and many others. All have dimples.

There are 3 types of balls

One piece – normally used at driving ranges

Twp piece – used by the average golfer

Three piece – used by the pro’s

The two-piece golf ball is a safe bet for beginner golfers as it will roll further and generate more distance than any other ball. Balls with three or more pieces allow the golfers greater control of the ball. By that they can put more spin on the ball, which can be a nightmare for beginners if you hook or slice the ball. If you would like to think of golf balls as the following – one piece – normally found at golf ranges only. Two piece is used by the average golfer. Three piece or more is used by the more experienced golfers to give them more control with the ball.

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How to play golf

Playing golf is pretty easy. All you need to do is get the ball in the hole in as fewer golf shots as possible. When you start playing golf as a beginner you may get a little overwhelmed with all the information. But don’t worry almost everyone feels the same way when they start playing.

A golf course consists of 18 holes. Every hole you play will require you to get the ball in the hole either in three, four or five shots. If you get the ball in the hole in the required number of shots it is called a par. However as a beginner you are not expected to get the ball in the hole in the required number of shots all the time and so you get a handicap.

A handicap quite simply is extra hits than the required shots for par. So a 24 handicap has an extra 24 hits of the ball per round. So if the course par is 72, if you are playing to a 24 handicap that would mean your par is to try and finish playing 18 holes in 96 shots.

I have found in my experience that depending on the country you play in the course difficulty can be very different. For example if you play courses in colder countries like the UK the courses are usually easy but the weather makes them difficult to play. Most of my experience has been in the warm sunny climate of South Africa where the weather is great all year round and the course design makes the holes difficult to play.

Don’t over think the game. Just enjoy yourself. If you play the percentage game you will win. As soon as you start to gamble and hit the ball too hard the chances of making a mistake are much greater.

How to break 100 and rapidly reduce your golf scores

Taylormade White Smoke Putter
Taylormade White Smoke Putter –

You don’t have to knock the dimples off the ball on every tee shot in order to lower your score. As a beginner the putting green is the perfect place to rapidly lower your score. So many shots are added to a beginner golfers scorecard due to missed putts which in all honesty are almost criminal acts preventing them from lowering their scores.

Make a note of how many putts you make in a round of golf. Are you 3 putting? How many times? If you add up all your three putts e.g. In a round you may 3 putt on 5 holes. If you scored 104 for the round you can see that if you had two putted on those holes that you would have broken 100. The easiest way to practice is to putt balls a certain distance consistently.

I like to putt the distance of my golf umbrella. That distance can be a tester but if you keep putting that distance either at home every night on the carpet or even the practice green at your local golf club. Putting is a skill like being a guitarist. How good do you want to be? The more effort you put in the more you will be rewarded.

Mistake by Golf Beginners: Sacrificing Strategy for Power

The infamous Charles Barkley Swing!
The infamous Charles Barkley Swing!

A big mistake beginners make is sacrificing strategy for power. Forget about being greedy in getting distance as a beginner. You are not Tiger Woods or Ernie Els so just play the game with normal golf swings keeping to the middle of the fairway and you will greatly improve your golf scores very quickly. Don’t gamble! Just play the game.

Let’s take an example – Try looking at using golf strategy to your advantage rather than trying to lash the dimples off the ball on the tee. By that I mean that a beginner will thrash a golf ball off the tee hoping to get a 250m driver so that the next shot may be a chip or medium iron into the green.

The reality is that the ball is sliced violently or even missed on some occasions. So the second shot may end up being played from a bad lie in the rough. This makes it a more difficult shot to play with chances of duffing here being extremely high. The ball may even go out of bounds so you could be playing shot number three off the tee. That second tee shot could be very nerve wracking especially if your aim is to bogey the hole. Forget about maximum power and look at what you achieve when you hit the ball normally at the golf range.

If you are hitting a 4 Iron on average 150m and a par 4 is 400m. Playing with a 4 iron you would be at 300m after two shots with a 100m shot into the green. That would leave you with two putts for you to finish the hole and be one over par. This is scoring a bogey on a par 4 without the use of your woods.

Relax and take it easy during your round of golf. It is not the person who hits the ball the furtherest but the one who gets the ball in the hole in the least amount of shots.