What’s In A Golf Ball?

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What’s In A Golf Ball?

Within the chemistry of turbulence, aerodynamics and air pressure, surface structures seem to be essential physical elements. Though historically things happen hundreds of years before, science late come up with theories based on much better composition. Golf Ball is one greatest paradigm in the course of historical stand.

During the initial days of Golf, in Scotland, towards the eastern coast, quite many players made use of old apparatus and played the game in a very informal and disorganized manner. The first Golf balls and clubs were developed out of wood.

In the year 1618, feather golf ball was then introduced. It was termed as “Featherie” as a common noun. This ball was more of a handcrafted ball developed with goose feathers carefully pressed within a cowhide or a horse sphere. This gets done when the ball is wet. When it dries, the leather shrinks and feathers are expanded bringing a hardened ball.

As these balls are totally handcrafted, they are more expensive than the clubs. This resulted in quite few people finding it affordable to play golf during those days.

Guttie Golf Ball

This came next in the list. This was a pre-historic variety of Golf ball made from rubber, similar to sap of Gutta tree which are found in tropics. These Guttie balls normally could be wrought into a sphere as they are hot and could gradually be used as golf balls. As shaped out of rubber, guttie balls could be reproduced inexpensively and could be repaired easily by reshaping and reheating.

Comparing the two early forms of golf balls, the golf ball made out of feather travelled more farther than what the gutties did. This happened due to the smoother surfaces of gutties which limit the capacity of the ball, covering a higher distance.


Further with scientific analysis, the golf ball developers came up with new balls with dimples, which are predominant in current day golf balls.

To lessen the aerodynamic drag, dimples are carved into these balls. The dimples would act as though the balls are totally smooth. Smooth balls, when seafaring all through the air, ensure to leave huge pockets of low-pressure air within its stir creating a drag. As this drag gets applied, there is slowing down of the ball.

This way, the dimples upon golf balls would make the pressure differential go down reducing the drag force. These dimples generate turbulence in air surrounding the ball completely. In turn, the air is forced to clasp the ball closer. On doing this, the air trails the bend developed by the golf ball towards the back rather than flowing past it. This ends up in lesser drag and smaller wake.

Backspin could be put on shots with the presence of dimples, making the ball break off when on the greens.

The notion of putting dimples upon golf balls could be traced back through the Gutta Percha phase. One piece rubber cored ball being encased in Gutta Percha sphere was introduced by Coburn Haskell. During this era the players saw the various swings becoming heavily predictable due to reason of balls turning rough from the play.

The Golf ball took its modern look, as William Taylor applied the pattern of Dimples to Haskell Balls in 1905.

Thereafter, dimpled Golf balls became official and were made use of in every tournament of Golf. In the year 1921, the modern day golf balls took its shape with standard weight and size.

As of now, there is no dearth of selection for Golf balls fitting varied conditions and games. Few Golf balls offer distance while the other few offer control. Whatsoever the case may be, one thing is known about Golf balls; i.e., they are not simply elements within the sports arena. More than that, they are prototypes in concepts of physics.

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