When I was starting out in golf I had no idea about the best golf balls for beginners. In fact, I had two strong beliefs about a golf ball. The first was that it didn’t matter which one I used – it was just the white thing on the ground I hit. The second was that it didn’t matter whether I used the same one because they are basically all the same anyway. Does this sound like you?
If so, don’t worry! We all think like this at the beginning. It may surprise you to learn that a golf ball is the most important piece of golfing equipment you use. This is because it is the only constant in a round of golf. Think about it, you may only use your driver 6 or 7 times, your 5 iron maybe 4 times, your wedge 11 times, maybe. The only thing you use for every single shot is a golf ball. If you are a beginner this is probably over 100 times each round – making this the most important, yet undervalued, piece of golfing equipment in your bag.
Best Golf Balls For Beginners: Quick Buy
Two misconceptions beginners have when it comes to golf balls
This couldn’t be further from the truth. Golf balls are all designed differently. Some are low compression which means you can hit the ball further with a slower swing. Some offer more spin control around the green. Others will give you more forgiveness and help you recover from those erratic shots all beginners make. Selecting the right golf ball will not only improve your score but will help you develop a more consistent game from tee to green.
Even experienced golfers get this wrong. Each golf brand and type will act in different ways. This is because they are designed differently. For you to really master your own game you need to know what you can, and can’t, do with the type of ball you choose. If you are constantly changing balls, you won’t get into a rhythm of how to strike the ball and how it will respond to the greens depending on your shot type. In 2018, I made the plunged and committed to one type of ball. I saw 3-shots come off my handicap almost immediately. This is so important, yet very few mid to high handicappers will do this.
There are three things a beginner should look for in a golf ball:
- Low Cost
- Low Compression
- Low Spin
For more details on why these features are all essential in the best golf balls for beginners scroll down to the bottom of this article.
Best Golf Balls For Beginners: All The Details
There really isn’t anything to dislike about this ball. It is great for beginners. You will get plenty of assistance off the tee with this low compression ball whilst giving a consistent release off the club face. I found you got some grip on the green but this ball will not give you super-spin or control on quick greens. This shouldn’t be a concern to beginners though and this ball is right up there as one of the best golf balls for beginners.
I got a nice pop off the club when using this ball but felt underwhelmed when trying to attack the green. This is a good ball for beginner who are still developing a consistent swing. You will get a lot of assistance from the low compression design which will help you add yours. Overall, a contender as one of the best golf balls for beginners.
When I was a high handicapper the Callaway Supersoft was my ball of choice. They feel great of the club and offer distance and forgiveness with the long irons and driver. Another great feature I found is that they roll true on the greens. With everything this ball has to offer it is one of the contenders for best golf ball for beginners. The only negative with this ball is that they seldom grip on the green making approach shots difficult to control. However, if you are a high handicapper it is likely you won’t be extracting too much spin anyway. Whether you are a senior, high handicapper or a beginner this is a fun ball which ensures you’ll enjoy those days out on the course.
These balls are unique as they are ‘over-sized’. Don’t worry though, these are legal and can be used in competitions. The oversized nature of the ball made it really easy to hit on the sweet spot which added carry to my drive. This ball is ideal for beginner golfers with the ultra-low compression core promoting faster ball speed for longer distance and increased accuracy. If you are struggling to keep up with the length of the course these are a ball I would recommend.
The first thing you will notice with this ball is that you get a ‘spongy’ feel because of the softness of the ball. This might sound obvious given the name of the ball but even among other balls in this category this one will feel like one of the softest. This is definitely a beginners ball. It was great to hit, you felt in control and it was forgiving. If you are a mid-handicapper, you will probably find that this ball doesn’t offer enough grip on the green and after a few approach shots you will feel like you are not being rewarded for good shots. That being said, if you are looking for a ball based on a soft feel – this one might be for you.
I didn’t see too much difference between this ball and the more expensive Taylormade Tour Response. You go plenty of grip and control on the green – even as a mid handicapper. If you are after a ball which offers more off the tee-box then this ball probably isn’t for you. It is fine without being spectacular. As a beginner this ball might be slightly difficult to play with but it will force you to develop a good short game with the high irons / wedges.
If you are the sort of golfer who regularly loses balls, then you will appreciate this ball. For the price, you are getting a well designed ball which has a nice flight and trajectory whilst being fairly forgiving. I must stress, for the price this is a really good ball, especially for beginners. Once you begin to improve you will probably find that this ball does not allow you to use all the tools in your bag.
I loved how explosive these balls were off the club face. They would be a great pick for beginners with a slow swing speed who are looking to compete off the tee. The ball behaved like a tour ball whilst being reasonably priced. The ball does feel hard at contact and it did feel like you were battling to control it on the green but for the price I was super impressed with this ball.
These are a worthy contender in our list of the best golf balls for beginners. It will give you every chance to improve your game whilst being reasonably priced. I found this ball had good stopping power on the green whilst offering fair reward for good shots off the tee. Better players will find that these balls will not shape in the air and, as such, may find them unsuitable. If I was a beginner golfer with a low swing speed then I would probably use these balls as they will give you spin performance of a mid-range ball whilst being durable for use round after round.
This ball very similar to the Wilson Duo Soft. It was soft to hit and definitely assisted my slow swing speed through the low compression technology. This ball struggles to find grip and spin on the green so if that is an essential part of your game this ball will probably not suit you. Personally, I think there are better budget balls out there but this with a compression of 30 this ball is not designed for people with even average swing speeds. It is designed for those with a slow swing making it ideal for beginners.
This ball performed consistently from tee to green. It was soft and felt nice off the club. This is a no-thrills ball which is great for those looking to fine tune their game without it costing a fortune. The low compression was really noticeable when you used a driver and it will definitely give every ounce of yardage for players with a low swing. A great ball for the value and definitely one you should consider if you are looking for the best golf balls for beginners
These are a fantastic all-rounder for beginners looking to improve their game. I found the ball travelled on a consistent trajectory and came off the club sweetly. The ball gripped to the green and I extracted enough spin to control the ball when hitting those approach shots. Now, I must say that these balls did everything well and nothing brilliantly – but if you are looking for a golf ball which will improve your consistency from tee to green this a great ball which you should try.
Things to consider when buying the best golf balls for beginners
Let us be honest. As a beginner, you are going to lose a lot of golf balls. This is part of the learning process whilst you develop your swing technique and course management. Therefore, unless money really is no object, you want to be choosing a mid-range or budget ball. These will give you the freedom to take on shots and make mistakes without hitting you too hard in the pocket.
Forget about Distance:
When people are looking to buy golf balls, one of the key things they look for is distance. I get it, everyone wants to hit the ball further. If you are reading this page, I bet that you have read elsewhere about these magical balls which will add yards to your drive and is perfect for you. If this sounds right, then I am going to take that advice and throw it in the bin. Distance this is not one of the factors which you should consider when looking at the best golf ball for beginners.
There are two simple reasons for this.
Firstly, even with specialist distance balls, you are going to get fractional gains in distance (at best) for a lot of downside such as lower control and feel in and around the green. This will negatively affect your score more than a few fewer yards of the tee.
Secondly, most golf balls in the low to the mid-price range which I have tested tend to go the same distance. Furthermore, when I got my dad (who is a 21 handicapper) to test the balls, they all went roughly the same distance for him too.
The reality is manufacturers have all designed their balls with distance in mind. They know golfers, like you and me look for this – so they give it to us. Now, this isn’t groundbreaking stuff, if you look at what the manufactures in-house testing says (this is the fine print which no one really reads) – most golf balls in testing achieving roughly the same difference.
Test Case: To test this theory I took the best selling distance ball on the market, the Srixon Distance, and tested it for distance against a premium Pro V1 and a Titleist DT trusoft (my ball of choice). The results showed were as I expected. I typically carry my driver 220 yards. With the Srixon Distance, this actually went down to 215yards. With the Pro V1, I drove 223yards and with the DT trusoft I drove 216yards. Now, I get the hype with the Srixon Distance. It performed remarkably well for a ‘budget’ ball. But, if you are simply looking at the distance, then the results showed that unless you are going for a premium ball – there really isn’t much distance.
Now, this is not a bad thing. In fact, it is great for us golfers because it is one less thing we need to worry about. Instead, we can look at other features of a golf ball which could help take our game to the next lesson. If you really insist on scratching every inch out of your ball there are a few which you can look at (for transparency, I haven’t tested these balls so the performance notes below are direct from manufacturer testing and player reviews).
Taylor made TP5 – you can squeeze some more distance with the top end of the bag, and you may see some marginal gains with the iron because the ball is designed to lower the spin-off the club.
Even with these balls, the gains you will get are minuscule (we are talking single digit difference in the yard book). Therefore, distance should not be a major buying preference because what you can gain with those fractionally longer balls, you are going to lose at the other end of the course which will ultimately cost you more shots as your round progresses.
A caveat to this advice is for golfers who typically buy a $9 box of 12 or another type of budget ball. This type of ball tends to feel rock hard and has a unique ‘clang’ sound off the club. If this is you, then you will likely see distance improvement with any of the balls I have reviewed (in reality, you should consider buying that better quality golf ball to improve your game and lower those scores).
Low Compression Balls
As a beginner, you are likely to have a slower swing. Compression is a measurement of how hard or soft a golf ball is. Depending on your swing speed, you will benefit from different compression levels. A low compression ball will account for a slower swing speed by maximising what speed you have to send the ball further.
Beginners will typically have a low swing speed so a low compression ball will be better for you. If you have a fast-swing (my brother Ned, who writes this blog with me, is one of these annoyingly talented people) then you will maximise your shot distance by using a high compression ball.
As you become more accustomed to the game of golf, you will realise that spin is your friend. Spin will allow you to control the ball on the green and will help with lowering your scores. However, as a beginner, spin has a downside. It is what will cause the ball to slice into the woods.
Now, a low spinning ball will not fix your slice. If you slice the ball you will continue to do so regardless of your ball selection. The beauty of a low spinning ball is that it will minimise this and will offer you as much forgiveness as possible. This will give you a chance to recover from those misplaced shots.
When you become a more consistent striker of the ball, you will want to increase the spin level on the ball. The added control around the green will save you loads of shots every single round.
But for now, the best way for you to improve is to keep your ball in play. Therefore, a low spin ball is the best type of ball for beginners.
Sound and Feel
You will read and hear some complete nonsense when it comes to the sound and feel of a golf ball. Some people will claim that a soft-feeling ball will spin more and therefore you get more control. This is not true. The spin of a ball is not reliant on whether it is soft or hard.
When it comes to sound and feel, go with something which gives you confidence when you are standing over the ball. I know scratch golfers who prefer a hard-ball and I know others who prefer a soft-ball.
The only consideration to make with the sound and feel, or, hard and soft is whether you want a high compression or low compression ball. The latter does feel softer and this will be better for people with slower golf swings.
Conclusion: best golf balls for beginners
As a beginner you need a great value ball which will allow you to develop your game in all areas. You want something with low compression to help you with distance, and low spin to help with accuracy.
My top pick for the best golf balls for beginners is the Callaway Supersoft. This ball feels amazing off the club and you will soon realise when you hit a good shot just off the feel of the club.