If you’re in a hurry and just want to find the Best Golf Balls for Beginners and High Handicappers in 2020, then we recommend the TaylorMade Noodle Long and Soft.
**UPDATE FOR 2020** If you’re looking for the latest reviews of brand new products released in 2020, we’ll be updating this post as we do our research and should be finished by the summer. Please make sure to check back then!
Golf balls are one of the most important pieces of golf equipment you will purchase. Even the best players in the world ask themselves, “what’s the best golf ball for me?” In fact, other than your golf glove, it is the only equipment that you will use on every single shot of every single round of golf that you play. A good golf ball can be the difference in yards of distance, spin to hold greens, and even carry to get you over any hazard that you face. Golf balls can also be very expensive. As a beginner or high handicapper, this expense grows exponentially because of the sheer number of balls you will probably lose as you improve your golf game. With that in mind, the best golf balls for beginners and high handicappers will be much different and more concerned with price than the seasoned player.
In this article, we’re going to review the following golf balls:
- Pinnacle Soft
- Callaway WarBird
- TaylorMade Noodle Long and Soft
- Wilson Staff 50 Elite
- Titleist TruFeel
How to Choose the Best Golf Balls for Beginners and High Handicappers
Just like everything else in life, there is a learning curve to the game of golf. There is something about golf though that makes the learning curve not only bearable but fun. I remember some of my worst rounds would include two or three great shots that made me think I could really play, and those shots made the other 100 shots (if I am honest it is more like 125) absolutely worth it. The point is, you will not pick it up over night.
Knowing that going in should help you avoid some mistakes. The first mistake that a lot of new golfers make is that they spend $45 on a dozen golf balls. This is a mistake because the most likely scenario is that you will walk off the 18th hole using a borrowed ball from your partner because your 12 are somewhere in the woods/water/hazard. There is no such thing as a magical golf ball that will improve your swing and make you better than you are. Those $45 golf balls only help someone who is already a lot better than you get a few extra yards or a little better spin on the ball.
At the same time, you do not want to get “dead” balls that make even your very few good shots look below average. The key is to choose a ball that is forgiving and promotes as little spin as possible. Do not worry about getting the new three to five layer balls that help with distance, spin, and softness. Get a one or two layered ball that will allow your good shots to fly straight and your bad shots to not go as far out of the way as they would with more spin. Choose balls that are not too expensive but will still perform well.
What are the Most Important Qualities in a Beginner and High Handicapper Golf Ball
While a golf ball does not fix your swing, it can help to accentuate the positives and help to mitigate some of the negatives. For most beginners, the biggest negative is the amount of side spin that a mishit creates. This sidespin increases the number of hooks and slices you will see off the tee and the ground. Some golf balls help to reduce this sidespin, and that is a key element for a beginner.
Aside from reducing spin, softness around the greens is important for beginners. This is known in the golfing world as “compression.” The compression is the measure of how soft or hard your ball is or feels. You want your ball to hold on those approach shots that you hit perfectly so that you can get a feel for what it is like to reach a green in regulation. Having a hard ball, while it may slightly improve distance, will not stop on the green or play out of the bunker as well as a softer ball. Look for a low compression ball and worry about distance later.
Another characteristic that is helpful to a beginner is consistency. Many people look for the cheapest option every time they go to purchase a new dozen. However, purchasing the same ball each time can be helpful because it takes some of the guesswork out of judging your swing. If you consistently use the same ball, then you can never blame your lack of success on the equipment. You know what the ball will do when you hit it well and when you do not, and there is something to be said about that.
Finally, look for a low cost option. People will try to sell you on the latest and greatest ball, but for a beginner it just does not matter as much. When you start hitting the ball consistently and only need minor adjustments to improve your score, then you can maybe look at spending a lot on a golf ball. As it is, you will lose them, dent them, and abuse them and it is just not worth spending too much money on it in the beginning.
Who Should be Using these types of Golf Balls
The question you may be asking yourself is, “Am I a beginner or what is a handicap?” If you are asking yourself this question, the answer is probably yes. A beginner, as the word suggests, is someone who is just starting out and trying to find their swing. Beginners are usually wildly inconsistent from day to day and even from shot to shot. If you have been playing golf regularly for a year, you are probably still a beginner. Many golfers who play six to eight times per year may maintain their “beginner” status for years.
A great example of what a beginner looks like is the first time I played with some of my friends in college. I had just picked up the game with my Dad and this was one of the first times playing without him. The other three guys I was playing with and I came up to the first tee box and a group of men told us to play through. I am still not sure why, but we balked at the idea and told them how bad we were at golf. They insisted, so we proceeded to hit our drives. I specifically remember crushing a drive straight down the middle of a narrow fairway and having a 75 yard second shot which I put in the middle of the green. I remember proudly walking up to that shot and calmly burying my birdie putt on the first hole. The men saw it all. What they did not see, however, was that if I had kept my true score that day it could have easily topped 150. And that is the definition of a beginner.
The type of people who should be taking this golf ball advice is just like the guy (myself) I described above. You may hit five incredible shots in a row and then do nothing but scramble for the next 12 holes. You may hit one good shot the entire day and then come back the next week and break 100. If you are a beginner, then you know, and if you shoot over 100 consistently, then you fall into the “high handicapper” category and should follow this advice as well.
Best Golf Balls For Beginners and High Handicappers Reviewed
The following are some of the best balls for beginners and high handicappers that are out there. There are some higher end and some lower end balls, but the bottom line is that there is something out there for everyone.
Pinnacle is an old name in golf and it is known as a beginner’s brand. They make high quality products without the extras that other companies promote.
This is a simple golf ball with all of the things that a beginner needs starting with a low price point.
- A great price.
- A very low compression core.
- Promotes low spin and straight shots.
- A simple ball without the bells and whistles but perfect for a beginner
- It is not as long as some of the other choices.
- It will not grow with your game and you will want to change balls when you gain consistency.
The WarBird focuses on distance off the tee and the ball is constructed with that in mind. It is a high compression core with a high launch point that produces more hang time and distance.
The high density cover provides decent feel and some softness even with the higher compression core.
- This ball is long off the tee, and for some beginners this is very important.
- The high launch point gives some carry off of the tee.
- A good price for a good brand.
- Will grow with the golfer to the next phase of skill.
- The WarBird does not lessen sidespin.
- Focuses on distance at the expense of softness and feel.
- There will be more hooks and slices if you are already prone to these.
- Not a great beginner’s ball.
TaylorMade is more known for their clubs than their golf balls, but they have recently been putting a lot of work into changing that.
The Noodle Long and Soft is a great low compression ball that still delivers some good distance off of the tee. For a beginning golfer, the combination fo the price and features of this ball make it one of the top options on this list.
- It is a really good golf ball for a great price.
- Low compression aids beginners off of the tee in terms of spin, but it still maintains a higher and longer ball flight than most balls at this price range.
- Less spin leads to greater control and a truer ball flight.
- The ball has qualities that are perfect for a beginner but can also be used as the golfer improves without missing out on quality.
- TaylorMade is not a great golf ball brand like some of the others on the list.
- It is not as long off of the tee as other options.
- It does not have a stand out feature.
This is the least expensive option on the list which means it is automatically a good beginner’s ball. Wilson is a well known brand and you can purchase these golf balls at almost any retailer with a sporting goods section.
This is minimalist ball in terms of features, but it will get the job done.
- The price cannot be beaten.
- It is long off of the tee because of its high compression core, but maintains good feel because of the response cover.
- Wilson has been around forever and continues to produce good equipment for majority of golfers.
- While it is the least expensive, it is also the lowest quality ball on the list.
- A high compression core and two piece construction make for a bad combination in terms of performance and quality.
- Available in multiple bright colors that make them easier to spot, and find, on a course.
Titleist is the top of the line name when it comes to manufacturing golf balls. No company comes close to the Titleist tradition, and when you purchase a Titleist ball you know that you are getting quality.
The Titleist TruFeel, contrary to its name, is designed more for distance than for feel and it produces.
- Long and straight off of the tee.
- High quality that comes along with the Titleist name.
- Soft feel and low compression make this a great ball on and around the green.
- The most expensive option on this list, and it is not worth the extra cost.
- It is one of Titleist’s lowest offerings in terms of quality and features.
The TaylorMade Noodle Long and Soft is the winner from this list of golf balls for beginners. This product is pretty much perfectly made for beginners and at a price that is difficult to beat.
It helps keep balls straighter off the tee and lessens the sidespin that leads to those hooks and slices into the woods. This ball can also grow with beginning golfers and be the golf ball of choice for a long time.