The terms men’s and women’s golf balls are misleading. Golf balls, in reality, are all unisex. The best golf balls for women, packaged in pink boxes, are nothing more than low compression golf balls. That’s it.
In general female golfers have below-average swing speeds. Slow swinging players tend to struggle with distance and height on their shots in general. These issues become even more evident when driving the golf ball. To make life even easier for slow swinging players, try playing with a high spin golf ball too. This combination will ensure distance and a strong ball flight on all your shots.
As mentioned, most female golfers play with a low compression golf ball. This is why some brands have seen it as an opportunity to market directly to this consumer base. Brands capitalizing on the fact that most women play with a low compression ball is nothing new. Golf ball manufacturers have also used aesthetics to target female golfers. Volvik’s different ranges of colorful golf ball offerings are an example of such a brand.
Do Women’s Golf Balls Go Further?
Golf ball compression is where the answer to this question lies. Compression is a technical subject that amateur golfers tend to dismiss. In layman’s terms, compression is the transfer of energy from the clubhead to the golf ball at impact. The ball’s core compresses at impact, and the energy created propels the ball off the clubface.
Depending on the design of the golf ball, you’ll either need more or less energy to create the optimal performance. It takes less energy for a golf ball with a low compression, and vice versa for a high compression golf ball.
Low compression golf balls are often classed as soft, but the softness shouldn’t get confused with feel. When chipping, putting, or hitting full shots, a soft golf ball can feel hard off of the clubface. The feel of the golf ball is influenced by the design of its cover system and construction.
Regardless of how fast you swing the golf club, what matters most is playing with a golf ball that matches it. To optimize performance, you need enough energy (clubhead speed) to compress the ball at impact. If the ball compresses enough at impact, you get optimal performance and distance.
How To Choose The Right Compression.
Knowing which golf ball compression to play with can be tricky. The below table will assist with making that process easier for you. Keep in mind that this table is a general indication; it might not apply to all golfers.
|Average Driver Swing Speed||60 mph||75 mph||90 mph||105 mph|
|Average Driver Distance||155 yards||195 yards||230 yards||270 yards|
|Recommended Golf Ball Compression||Low (below 60)||Low – Mid (60 – 80)||Mid (80 – 90)||High (90 +)|
Some players believe they get better results when playing with a golf ball compression that doesn’t match their swing speed. If that golfer is you, then I recommend going for a golf ball fitting with a qualified professional.
Professional golf ball fittings use leading technology and data to show you exactly which golf ball is right for your golf game. I was guilty of this as an amateur. Because the pros play with the Pro V1 or Pro V1X doesn’t mean that it is the best Titleist golf ball for all golfers. Their Velocity or Tour Soft offerings are much better options for slow-swinging players.
Golf Ball Spin Rates.
I apologize if all this talk about core compression is confusing. It is essential to understand if you want to make informed decisions about which golf ball is best for you. Compression does correlate to golf ball spin rates, and ball speed. If the ball isn’t compressed at impact, both spin rates and ball speed will be low. Low spin rates and ball speed numbers will impact both the distance and trajectory of your shot.
For slow swinging players, a loss in distance and a low ball flight will result from playing with a high compression golf ball. When looking at the numbers, it will be due to slow ball speed and a low spin rate.
The opposite is true when fast swinging players play with a low compression golf ball. Ball speed won’t be an issue, but the spin rate is where the problem comes in. The energy generated at impact by fast swinging players will cause a low compression golf ball to produce high spin numbers. If the spin rate of the golf ball is too high, your ball flight will suffer. The result will be a ballooning high ball flight, and your shot shape will also exaggerate as a result.
The most accurate way to measure your swing speed is with a launch monitor. If you don’t have access to one, the equation below will give you a general idea of your average driver swing speed.
Average carry distance with your driver (in yards) / 2.5 = average driver swing speed (in mph)
Women’s Golf Ball vs Swing Speed
The Callaway Supersoft is the best golf ball for women with a 65mph swing speed. The Supersoft has a low compression rating of 38 and the core design of this golf ball also promotes fast ball speeds for added distance.
For women with a 75 mph swing speed, the TaylorMade Tour Response will be best suited. This golf ball has a mid-low compression rating of 71. Its design also features an aerodynamic dimple pattern for more distance.
The Srixon Z Star is the best golf ball for women with a 90mph swing speed. The Z Star has a medium compression rating of 90. This golf ball also promotes added distance by promoting a penetrating ball flight.
For players with a 100+ mph swing speed, the Titleist Pro V1X is best suited. This golf ball has a high compression of 108. The complex design of this 4-piece golf ball delivers exceptional distance when compressed at impact.
Do Women’s Golf Balls go Further?
I discussed various technical details about golf ball design and the difference between male and female golf balls. If you are still uncertain about these things, remember the following. Women’s and men’s golf balls are the same from a design perspective. Brands have chosen to market to women, but in reality, there is no difference between the two. Women can play with a “male” golf ball and vice versa.
What is important to note is the design of the golf ball. If you have a slow average swing speed, a low compression golf ball is best. That golf ball can be marketed as a women’s golf ball, but it doesn’t have to be one. If the golf ball’s compression matches your swing speed, it will maximize the ball’s performance. To end, the golf ball that goes the furthest is the golf ball that fits your swing speed the best.
In the next article, we look at how far a woman can hit a golf ball based on well-known average numbers like swing speed and ball speed.