Golf Balls Frequently Asked Questions
How many dimples on a golf ball?
A golf ball has between 300 and 500 dimples depending on its make and model, each at a depth of about 0.010 inch. The dimples play a really important role in the flight of the ball, as the depth of the dimples affect the lift and drag. If the golf ball was smooth, it would only travel about half as far as it would do if it had dimples.
Why do golf balls have dimples?
Golf balls have dimples to aid in the flight of the ball. The dimples create a fluctuating and charged layer of air that clings to the ball’s surface, allowing smoothly flowing air to round over the ball’s surface around the backside of it. This decreases the wake of the ball, so it doesn’t drag in the air and sails properly. The dimples also contribute to the ball’s lift in that they help create spin.
How to hit a golf ball
For longer clubs, you’ll want your hands to line up with the club in a straight line so the ball is closer to your lead foot. This is no doubt the stance and approach you’ll use for using your fairway woods or driver. Your stance will become more differentiated with each club you use, especially as you approach the shorter clubs, so your addressing the ball will change depending on your club of choice. So you’ve set yourself up with the stance and the ball placement, next comes your backswing. Use your shoulders and arms to move the club backwards for the beginning of your swing - keep your arms straight, and begin to flex or hinge your wrists slightly. As you pull backwards, resist the urge to bend your dominant arm, but instead bend your dominant knee towards the ball. Follow this motion by turning your hips to follow this, and shift your bodyweight onto your back foot. We’ve mastered the upswing, now we need to harness the power of the downswing. Like a coiled spring, you now need to unwind the tension and poise you’ve built up in the backswing. Move your bodyweight onto your lead foot as you turn your hips, letting your arms and shoulders follow through fluidly. Keep your eyes focused on the ball at all times to ensure that you deliver maximum possible contact with the ball throughout the entirety of your golf swing. When you’ve mastered this, you should be able to follow through and hold this finished golf stance properly to disseminate any momentum whilst still having provided power.
What golf ball should I use?
This all depends on how new to the game you are, and how fast your swing is. For those with lower swing speeds, like beginners or older golfers, a low compression golf ball will help to drive more distance. On the flip side, a higher compression golf ball is better suited to those who play with a confident, fast swing. Higher compression golf balls do tend to have a straighter flight, but they do need a little more confidence and power than lower compression.
What are golf balls made of?
Your typical golf ball has a core made of rubber because this material is, unsurprisingly, very bouncy. It absorbs and transfers the energy from your swing to help the ball’s lift and flight. It’s coating is either made from plastic, a resin called surlyn, or urethane, depending on your price range and the brand or model you’re looking to purchase.
How to clean golf balls
If you don’t already have a golf ball cleaning solution, then warm soapy water will do just fine. Lather this up in a bucket or large bowl and add your dirty golf balls to the water. Allow the balls to soak for up to 20 minutes, giving them a jostle every now and then. If there’s anything more stubborn than dried mud, like a mould or clumps of sand, then you’ll need a cleaning brush. Again, if you don’t have the cleaning tools for this, you can just use a sponge or toothbrush to give the ball a good scrub. Some people choose to put their golf balls through the dishwasher! Keeping your golf balls clean means they can experience a better flight, because there’s no side of them or dimples that have been skewed with added weight.
How to put backspin on a golfball
Most golfers want backspin, and the best chances of you hitting a good backspin shot are on longer wedge shots. You need a high club head speed to hit a good one, because this creates a higher spin rate. Another factor that contributes to a healthy backspin is your spin loft. For this, you need a good attack angle, which means the clubhead is traveling downwards when it hits the ball. You also need a dynamic loft, which is the degree of loft when the clubhead hits the ball. The third mitigating factor is friction, and this is where the terrain comes into play. The higher the friction on your shot, the more backspin you’ll create. The optimum conditions for this are therefore a wedge with fresh grooves, a premium golf ball, short grass surface, and dry conditions.