Differences Between Men’s And Women’s Golf Balls
Do ball manufacturers make different types of balls for men and women? Yes, there are a number of balls designed specifically for women.
Let’s have a look at why they do this and whether you might be better off using a ball for the opposite sex!
Is There A Difference Between Men’s And Women’s Golf Balls?
Quite a few ball companies produce products aimed directly at female golfers. Generally speaking, there are two main ways in which balls that have been designed for ladies differ from men’s or standard golf balls.
- Compression. Balls for women will generally be of lower compression. This is because an average female golfer will have a slower swing speed than a male player.
- Launch/Flight. Balls for ladies will usually have dimple patterns and other design characteristics that encourage a higher launch and ball flight in order to maximize carry at a low swing speed.
There is one other aspect that is often different although it plays no part in how the golf ball performs on the course. The styling will tend to be more feminine. Offering different colors than you would normally expect for most golf balls. Packaging and point-of-sale information will make the ball much more appealing to lady golfers than the boring old options for men. Pink golf balls marketed to men just wouldn’t sell!
On occasion manufacturers have produced a slightly larger ball on the grounds it’s easier to hit but they never really take off and remain a tiny percentage of the overall ball market. Callaway currently produces the Reva ball which is slightly oversized with low compression and high launch design.
Do I Need A Lady Golf Ball?
While it’s easy to get hung up on a ball being “for a lady” there are occasions where such a ball might suit your game.
Golf ball compression just refers to how hard or easy it is to deform the ball with your golf clubs and therefore transfer energy to the core to maximize distance off the tee.
Anyone with a slower clubhead speed may find a benefit in changing over to a ball designed for women. If you don’t tend to generate a lot of club head speed then it’s likely that you’ll find a low compression ball feels better off the club face. A slower swinger might find that balls like the Titleist Pro V1 may feel quite firm off the clubface while a Srixon Soft Feel should feel better.
The fact the ball is designed to deliberately fly higher will also help you since you will likely struggle to keep the ball airborne long enough to generate as much distance as possible.
It should be noted however that going for a softer feeling ball is not always the best solution for those players that lack clubhead speed. My golf is found in their testing that even if you have a low birth lower clubhead speed you may find that firmer golf balls still give you the best distance results despite the fact you shouldn’t be able to “compress” them properly.
Another reason to pick balls with a low-rated compression is if you currently generate too much spin. A ball with a smaller compression rating will tend to spin less. This means if you tend to hook or slice the ball it’s likely that you will have straighter shots. In terms of backspin then this may also lead to longer drives since the ideal combination when using your driver is high launch and low spin. This is one way to achieve extra distance without making any changes to your golf swing.
What Kind of Golf Balls Are Best Suited for Women?
You shouldn’t really select a particular ball based primarily on the sex of the player. It is more to do with their swing characteristics.
A player with a fast swing is likely to want to use a premium golf ball such as the Pro V1, TaylorMade TP5 or Srixon Z-Star. This will offer them the sort of distance, spin and ball flight that suits their game. They are all high-compression golf balls. Players with really fast swings might go for even firmer balls like the Pro V1x which has a compression rating of 102.
Ladies and anyone with a slower swing might be better suited to a low compression ball which may or may not be targeted at ladies.
These days manufacturers don’t tend to use compression as a factor in the choice of golf ball. Feel is what they will talk about though since a large percentage of players prefer the feel of a soft golf ball and usually that means the ball has a low rating for compression compared with premium balls.
Should Your Golf Ball Spin A Lot?
It’s not really about having a lot of spin but about getting the right amount of spin for your game.
Most players would ideally like to have low spin with their driver as that should help maximize the distance they can hit the ball while limiting the amount of curve put on it.
They would then like to generate more spin with irons and around the green in order to be able to stop the ball near the pin.
Ladies’ golf balls tend to be lower spin so will help if you generate too much spin with your driver. However, this means it will be harder to create spin when you need it for pitch and chip shots or if you are trying to shape the ball.
Should You Use A Low Or High Compression Ball?
Your decision would depend partly on your swing and partly on what sort of feel you want from your golf ball.
If you have plenty of clubhead speed then a high-rated ball would usually be best since it will offer you the best combination of spin and distance. A less accomplished player with a slow swing would generally be better sticking to a lower-rated ball as it will feel better off the clubface and spin less which should help straighten their shots out a little.
The best thing to do is try some different types of balls to see which suits you best.
Does Titleist Make Balls For Women?
Looking at their current range they don’t appear to make any golf balls directly targeting female players. Clearly, they feel their range of low compression balls is sufficient as it stands to cover the needs of that segment of the market.
What Are The Key Factors In Choosing A Golf Ball For A Female Golfer?
The same as choosing the correct ball for a man!
Start with your swing speed and look at balls that are designed for that speed.
Do you need to get more spin or less? Do you need a higher or lower flight?
Are you more concerned with feel or distance?
Depending on how you answer those questions would determine your ball choice.
Alternatively, you could just play the Pro V1!
Some companies would probably suggest the opposite. Start with putting, chipping and pitching to find balls that perform the way you want. They try them out with your longer clubs to see which perform the best. Don’t base your decision solely on which goes further from the tee.
Does Golf Ball Choice Have Any Effect on Your Golf Game?
Clearly, your ball choice will have an effect on your game. If you play with a two-piece ball then you will find it more difficult to get backspin on your irons and in your short game.
If you go for a high spin tour quality ball then it will likely make your slice go further offline!
If you have a high clubhead speed and you play a soft ball then you will almost certainly lose distance through the bag.
While not everyone with a high-speed swing should play a Pro V1 or Pro V1x that is probably the sort of ball they should look at first to see if it suits their game.
Similarly, people with average swing speeds or slower don’t have to play a softer ball but that may be the best starting point.
Should Women Use The Same Golf Balls As Men?
It all comes down to the individual players’ game. Some women will be better off using men’s balls while some men might be better off using a ball that is intended for women.
Women with higher than average ball speeds will gravitate toward harder golf balls while those with slower clubhead speed will better fit lower spinning softer feeling balls.
If a woman golfer is looking for maximum distance from the tee then a firmer ball might be a better choice in spite of her club speed as mygolfspy has found in their testing that harder balls tend to go further no matter what speed the player swings at.
What Are The Best Golf Balls For Women?
There are a huge number of choices when it comes to purchasing golf balls whether you’re a man or a woman. Bridgestone in particular tends to be very focused on your clubhead speed as the primary determining factor.
Certainly, it will give you a head start on a shortlist of potential candidates when it comes to golf balls if you use your speed as the first factor to consider.
If you’re a lady that is not lacking in clubhead speed and has a decent handicap then I would just pick any of the tour-quality golf balls that you like the feel of.
Plenty of female professional golfers are using balls like the Titleist Pro V1 and Srixon Z-star because they have the requisite speed for those balls.
For ladies with more typical swing speeds, you might want to start looking at low compression golf balls. If you prefer the Titleist brand then you could look at the Tour Speed or TruFeel models.
The Srixon Soft Feel Lady would be a good choice if you tend to struggle to get the ball in the air as it is designed to produce a higher launch. Combined with its lower compression rating should be a good combination for a wide range of typical golf swings.
The depth of the dimples is what usually influences the flight of the golf ball.
The TaylorMade Kalea range is also designed for women players who need additional lift due to their slow swings. The range includes some colored golf balls that should make them easier to pick out when playing golf.
There is a wide range of prices from around $20 per dozen up to around $50 per dozen. This will also affect your decision. If you tend to lose plenty of balls then you might want to sacrifice some performance by playing a cheaper golf ball. You might even want to consider playing with logo overruns or lake balls.
Differences Between Men’s And Women’s Golf Balls: Conclusion
Don’t play a pink ball just because you’re a woman play the right golf ball for your game. Base your decision on your swing parameters not on marketing by the golf equipment companies.