This gear misconception is holding golfers back | Fully Equipped

With a hefty price tag and some of the best players in the world promoting the product, it’s easy to look at today’s premium golf balls and assume you’re better off playing something else.

Sure, the ball is loaded with performance, but most golfers assume only elite golfers will be able to reap the technology benefits. (Not to mention the price tag is sometimes hard to digest when you’re constantly pumping balls into the woods.)

While it’s true better players will notice an uptick in performance, mid-handicappers shouldn’t automatically assume a three- or four-piece offering with a urethane cover is beyond their skill level. On the latest episode of GOLF’s Fully Equipped podcast, co-host Gene Parente noted it ultimately comes down to a few simple questions.

New golf balls for 2023
2023 Golf Ball Guide: 63 new golf balls for every type of golfer
By: GOLF Editors

“There’s a misconception I hear out there is something people tell me all the time,” said Fully Equipped co-host Gene Parente. “It’s that they’re not good enough to play a urethane golf ball. A urethane golf ball doesn’t activate at 120 mph or a negative seven attack angle with a wedge. A urethane golf ball gives you performance characteristics regardless of your skill level that is better than a two-piece or Suryln golf ball. The question is, is it worth it for your game? But it’s not a matter of skill. It’s just a matter of whether you want that extra benefit that the golf ball will give you.”

As Parente continued, it’s important to take a hard look at your game and figure out if you’re at the point where approach shots are finding the green on a consistent basis.

“You don’t need to reach a certain skill level to play a urethane golf ball,” he continued. “What you need to look out and ask yourself is whether your game is at a point where you’re hitting greens. Do you want to be holding greens? That’s the difference. If you’re not hitting greens, it doesn’t matter. But once you start hitting greens and have a little bit more consistency, that’s when the ball starts coming into play. Once you get to a certain skill level, the golf ball really does have a benefit.”


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Many of today’s urethane-covered balls feature multiple pieces (and layers) that decouple launch and spin depending on the club you’re using. In other words, they are designed to perform well off the tee and around the green, whereas many of today’s two-piece offerings are geared for more speed.

You may still be at the point where a budget ball fits your game and wallet, but don’t skimp on performance as you improve. A premium ball very well could play a key role in shaving even more strokes off your handicap.

Want to overhaul your bag for 2023? Find a fitting location near you at True Spec Golf.


Jonathan Wall Editor

Jonathan Wall is GOLF Magazine and’s Managing Editor for Equipment. Prior to joining the staff at the end of 2018, he spent 6 years covering equipment for the PGA Tour. He can be reached at