Benefits of Low Compression Golf BallsBenefits of Low Compression Golf BallsIn days gone by, compression was one of the biggest topics in the golf ball world. When you shopped for a ball, you would usually check the compression rating to make sure that the ball was a good fit for your game. In fact, some golf balls even featured their compression rank printed right on the side of the ball itself.

Those days are mostly gone; however, you can still find compression ratings in some places, and this piece of information can still be somewhat useful when trying to select the right ball for your game.

Most of the high-end golf balls on the market today feature a relatively high compression. These are the balls used by the best players in the world, and they are the ones which come with the biggest price tag. Unfortunately, many amateur golfers automatically choose these models, thinking they are the ‘best’ available.

That isn’t necessarily the case. The top-end golf balls you find selling for $40 per dozen or more are quality products, but they will only work properly when used by a talented player. For a beginning golfer, or a high handicapper, a premium golf ball is only going to be a waste of money.

For many golfers, a lower compression ball is going to be the way to go. There are a few benefits to be enjoyed when you use a low compression ball, and we are going to get into those points later in this article. As you might imagine, there are some drawbacks to this type of ball as well, and we’ll hit on those points, too. In the end, we want to leave you with a clear picture of what kind of performance you can expect when you select a low compression ball for use out on the course. Then, armed with that information, it will be up to you to decide whether or not these kinds of golf balls are a good fit for your needs.

All of the content below is written from the perspective of a right-handed golfer. If you play left-handed, please take a moment to reverse the directions as necessary.

Benefits of Low Compression Golf Balls

What to Expect from a Low Compression Ball

So, why would you consider playing a low compression golf ball? You are going to need to make sure that you’re in line for some nice benefits, otherwise there would be no point in going this direction. You have a wide range of golf balls at your disposal when you head to the local pro shop, so make sure the ball you wind up selecting is one with plenty to offer.

If you are thinking about using a low compression ball, the following points are some of the benefits you may enjoy.

  • Added distance. It is probably no surprise to see this point at the top of the list. Golfers frequently make decisions based on what is going to help them pick up distance, so many players will head to low compression balls simply because of the yardage they may gain. Since it is easier to compress these balls at the point of impact, you should have an easier time sending the ball farther down the fairway.
  • However, it is not automatic that your drives will fly farther with this type of ball, as many other factors come into play. The only way to be sure that a certain low compression ball is going to help you pick up yards is to try it for yourself out on the course.
  • Increased golf ball spin rate. To go along with your added distance, you may find that a low compression golf ball spins at a higher rate as well. For many players, this is good news. Added spin can not only help you hit the ball higher in the air, but it can also help you stop the ball quicker when it lands on the green. Many amateur golfers struggle to produce enough spin to control their shots when they land, so using a low compression ball could be a solution to this issue.
  • There are a couple of things to understand when it comes to spin, however. For one thing, it is possible to go too far, so you could wind up with too much spin (more on this later). Also, spin moves in all directions, meaning you won’t just be gaining backspin – you could gain sidespin, as well. If you don’t have excellent control over your swing through the hitting area, the sidespin you place on your shots may be magnified through the use of a low compression ball.
  • A soft feel. This is not a point which applies across the board, but many low compression balls do offer the player a soft feel on and around the greens. This is a nice addition, as you don’t want to play a ball which works well for your full swing – only to fall flat when you move into the short game. For a ball to work in your game, it needs to be an all-around performer. Again, not all low compression balls fit that description, but many of them do. As you consider opting for low compression, remember that you’ll probably want to find one which feels nice and soft on your short shots.

So far, so good. If you find the right low compression ball, you may be able to enjoy added distance, improved spin rate, and a soft feel. What more could a golfer want? Of course, as you probably would guess, the story does not end there. Using low compression golf balls can come with some drawbacks, which is the topic at hand in our next section.

Benefits of Low Compression Golf Balls

Low Compression Golf Ball Drawbacks

There isn’t any such thing as the perfect piece of golf equipment. Despite the many manufacturers spending millions of dollars on research and development, no perfect piece of golf gear has ever hit the market – and that isn’t going to change anytime soon. Why? Because golfers are a moving target. Despite the fact that golfers play under the same set of rules, each player has his or her own unique way of moving the ball from tee to green. It is impossible to make a club or ball that fits the needs of every player.

With that in mind, there are always going to be pros and cons to consider when trying to pick out equipment. We highlighted some of the notable benefits of low compression golf balls in the previous section, so now it’s time to look at the shortcomings of this ball category. In the end, you’ll have to decide whether or not the pros outweigh the cons in this particular case.

  • Too much spin. For some players, low compression golf balls will simply spin too much to be useful. While a moderate spin rate is useful, as mentioned in the previous section, too much spin is going to make a ball unplayable. When hitting a driver, too much spin is going to cause the ball to balloon up into the air, robbing you of any distance you might have gained as a result of the softer compression.
  • On approach shots, too much spin may cause the ball to pull back away from the hole after it lands on the green. Also, a ball which is spinning at a high rate is going to be nearly impossible to use on a windy day. The amount of spin you generate with a low compression ball is going to depend not only on the speed of your swing, but other factors as well, such as your angle of attack. Of course, not all low compression balls spin at the same rate, so don’t give up on this category of golf balls just because the first model you try spins too much.
  • ‘Mushy’ feel at impact. The way the ball feels coming off the club is important. If you don’t like the way your golf ball feels, you probably aren’t going to have the confidence you need to play at your best. Unfortunately, some low compression golf balls will feel ‘mushy’ when they are struck with your long clubs, and you won’t feel confident in their direction as a result.
  • Of course, anytime you are talking about feel, you are talking about a personal preference kind of thing. Some golfers may like the feel of a particularly soft golf ball, while others will hate it. And that’s okay. Experimentation is the only answer here, as you’ll never know how a given golf ball feels to you unless you actually hit it out on the course.
  • Too soft around the greens. This point kind of carries on from the previous point, but here we are talking about the short game. When using a low compression ball with a soft feel, you might actually find that the ball feels too soft on and around the greens.
  • Soft feel is usually considered to be a good thing in the short game, but just as was the case with spin rate, it is possible to go too far. When the ball feels too soft, you might have trouble with distance control on your putts and chips. As you know, distance control is the name of the game on short shots, so you don’t want your golf ball to be giving you any trouble there.

After some testing, you may find that you simply don’t like low compression golf balls. Or you may find that you love them. Either way, your own personal opinion is what matters here, rather than trying to match yourself up with the opinions of others.

For instance, if other players in your regular group have tried a certain ball and decided they didn’t like it, that conclusion should have no impact on your choices. Your only job on the golf course is to get the ball into the hole in as few strokes as possible. If you can do that with a low compression ball, go for it. If it takes a high compression ball to get the job done, then that is the obvious direction to proceed.

Golf equipment companies spend a lot of money paying professional golfers to use their gear, and those endorsements go a long way toward motivating the decisions of amateurs. There is one big problem with this arrangement, however – the game of your favorite professional almost certainly looks nothing like your own game.

You probably don’t hit the ball as far, or as high, as you likely don’t have the same touch around the green. So, why do you care what equipment your favorite pro is using? Rooting for a player and needing to copy a player’s equipment are not the same thing.

We hope the message here is clear – pick the equipment that suits you best, and don’t worry about anything else. Think that using a low compression ball instead of a high-end, premium model will make you look like less of a golfer? Who cares. The number you write down on your scorecard at the end of each round is the only vindication you need. Find the ball that leads to the best scores, and move on.


Low compression golf balls offer several benefits for golfers, particularly those with slower swing speeds or those seeking specific performance characteristics. Here are some advantages of using low compression golf balls:

  1. Increased Distance: Low compression golf balls can help golfers with slower swing speeds generate more distance. These balls compress more easily upon impact, transferring more energy to the ball and allowing it to travel farther.
  2. Softer Feel: Low compression golf balls typically have a softer feel, both off the clubface and when putting. Many golfers prefer this softer sensation, as it provides feedback and can contribute to improved touch on the greens.
  3. Reduced Spin: Low compression balls often produce less backspin than higher compression alternatives. This can lead to straighter shots off the tee and can reduce the likelihood of a hook or slice.
  4. Improved Control: The lower spin rate can result in more consistent ball flight and better control, especially for golfers who struggle with excessive sidespin.
  5. Enhanced Accuracy: With reduced sidespin and a more predictable ball flight, golfers are more likely to hit their intended target, which can lead to improved accuracy.
  6. Better Durability: Low compression golf balls tend to have thicker cover layers, making them more durable and resistant to scuffing or damage during play.
  7. Optimal for Seniors and Beginners: Senior golfers or beginners often have slower swing speeds and may benefit significantly from low compression balls. These balls can help them achieve better distance and control without the need for high swing speeds.
  8. Cold Weather Performance: Low compression balls are often more suitable for cold weather conditions. They maintain their flexibility and performance even in lower temperatures, making them a preferred choice during winter rounds.
  9. Short Game Control: While low compression balls are designed to generate distance, they can also provide excellent short game control, allowing golfers to better stop the ball on the greens with their wedges and improve overall scoring.
  10. Cost-Effective: Low compression golf balls are available at various price points, making them accessible to golfers on a budget. You can find affordable options without sacrificing performance.

It's essential to note that the choice of golf ball should align with a golfer's specific needs and preferences. While low compression balls offer numerous benefits, they may not be ideal for every golfer, especially those with faster swing speeds who may prefer higher compression balls for better control and feel. Ultimately, the best golf ball for you depends on your individual swing characteristics and the performance attributes you prioritize.