Golf is one outdoor game that seniors can play regardless of their age. There are a multitude of benefits that seniors can derive out of regular golfing rounds. Although age requires some changes in your golfing habits and equipment, the easy paced format gels very well with seniors.
In this article, we will discuss about the benefits of golfing for seniors and review some of the best golf balls for seniors.
According to a Swedish study published in 2008 in Science Daily, golfing has the potential of increasing your lifespan by an average of 5 years! Few forms of outdoor exercises can claim such health benefits. It is one outdoor sport that you may learn at any age and is not greatly constrained by the physical limitations that one may naturally develop with old age.
Without further ado, let us look at some of the best golf balls for seniors.
#1 Nitro Long Distance Golf Balls
The nitro long-distance golf ball has a softcore with an outer ionomer layer which creates lower compression of 70 and makes the ball capable of travelling longer distances with short swings. The balls conform to US GA rules.
They come in highly visible luminescent colors – which is particularly helpful if you are a new golfer and frequently hitting the ball into the rough.
At about a dollar for every ball, it is very cost-effective and a great investment when you are starting out. The outer ionomer layer makes the balls more suited for distance and less for spin control and aligns to priorities of new golfers and high handicappers who are most likely to lose a few balls every round.
However, while the ball does well to cover good distance in the air, it does not go the distance after landing on the course, when compared to similar golf balls. Therefore, you may just end up a few feet shorter from the hole when a more premium ball would have taken you closer.
- Durable and tough; resists scratches and dents
- Outer Du-Pont Surlyn (ionomer) layer provides for longer traveling distances from short swings, very useful characteristic for seniors
- Fluorescent yellow color, visible from long distance and easy for tracking
- Good value for money
- Shallow dimples on the ball may affect the distance covered on green grass.
#2 Callaway Golf Superhot Bold Matte Balls
The Callaway superhot bold golf balls with bright colors and a matte finish have a 3-piece construction with an ionomer outer covering.
It offers good distance coverage on short swings as well and offers a good spin to negotiate trickier holes. The balls tend to provide a straighter trajectory in the air and therefore, give longer distances to players.
The matte finish and ionomer layer resist scratches on the outer surface and the balls stay newer for longer.
Priced about 3 dollars a ball, these are slightly expensive balls that allow a fair bit of spin control as well along with covering a good distance in the air. Therefore, if you new to golf and are regularly hitting in the rough or water hazards, we recommend you start out with cheaper balls.
The balls are available in five luminescent vibrant colors which will help you to see the ball from a distance – will be particularly helpful if you have lost some eyesight. Slightly slower on grass, these balls are perfect for beginners who can hit with confidence and not care too much about subtlety on the golf course.
- Available in 5 vibrant and bright colors; orange and red are specifically useful in case of lower visibility problems
- Aerodynamic hexagonal groove design helps to go longer distance
- Good control for shorter shots
- Offers longer distances with slower swings
- Travels fast and longer on the greens as well
- On the expensive side
- Some golfers have complained about too much spin or the balls may feel too light
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#3 Bridgestone E6 Soft Golf Balls
The Bridgestone E6 soft balls are low compression two-piece balls and are meant to be air borne for longer to travel longer straight distances.
The outer cover is made of an ionomer layer with a softcore which provides a balance between ball spin and distance traveled. The balls are also available in yellow color, which may be better for you if you have lost some vision.
The balls utilize the Delta Dimple design which allows them to minimize resistance in the air and helps you to maximize your swing. At about 2 dollars each, these balls give you more headroom for errors in your swing and minimize damage from mishits, which makes them ideal for new golfers on a tight budget.
It is worth noting that after playing for some rounds, these balls would start losing some distance on the drives – about 10 yards or so to start with, which is a good indicator of when it is time to replace the balls if you would want to continue to get the longer distance.
Here we have a video featuring Bridgestone E6 Soft Golf Balls.
- Suitable for longer distances with slow swing speeds
- Goes straighter than most balls thereby increasing distance traveled in the air
- More accurate; helps seniors who are beginning to learn the game
- More forgiving on mishits
- While these balls offer a good midway between distances hit with low swing and spin on the ball, there are golf balls which are softer and more suitable for just slow swings
#4 Callaway Hex Soft Golf Balls
The Hex Soft golf balls from prominent golf equipment manufacturer, Callaway, have a two-layer construction with an outer layer of ionomer and has one of the softer feels.
These balls are made for low spin and for covering maximum distance on a straight flight which makes them suitable for senior golfers whose club swings are shorter and slower and are likely to be high handicappers.
The balls help you to minimize slices and hooks, essentially mishits, so that you are within the fairway most of the times. These mid-tier balls are one of the best in the same price range, which is below 2 dollars a ball, and lets you learn and play a bit freely, without being unduly worried of losing expensive balls.
However, the balls are white in color and you may find it difficult to stop them while in the air, or if one of your mishits land them in the bushes – unfortunately, they are not available in other more visible colors.
- Covers long distances on shorter swings
- Forgives mishits to a large extent
- Built for low spin that leads to a straight flight path and helps it to cover longer distances as well as be more consistent across similar swings
- White in color and may be difficult to spot if you have weak vision
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#5 Spalding Nitro Pure Spin Golf Ball
The Spalding pure spin golf balls are of compression level 50 or midway between ultra-soft (compression of 70) and hard (compression of 40).
It is constructed with a larger soft power core and a soft outer layer of ionomer. The core is a super reactive titanium core which gives longer distances with a straighter trajectory.
The 2-piece construction provides good greenside control (on shorter shots and chips into the green) as well as good spin.
The ball has low dimples and the standard diameter of 1.68 inches.
At little over 1.5 dollars a ball, these are cost effective yet suitable for players with a wide range of golfing abilities – from high handicappers to golfing pros. It offers high accuracy and achieves uniform distances across similar swings which allows newer players to benchmark their learning progress better.
The balls are available in 2 colors – white and bright orange; We would recommend you buy the bright orange balls for better visibility in the air and in bushes.
- Fluorescent orange color helps in ball tracking and ball visibility from a distance
- Spins more than ionomer layered balls; helpful in tricky landscapes
- Provides good stability in the air and maintains consistency across similar swings
- May be difficult to control for seniors who are just beginning to learn golf
- Can be difficult to achieve longer distances with lower swings
#6 TaylorMade Distance Plus Golf Balls
The TaylorMade golf balls are made of the trademarked React Speed Core for a performance characterized by high speed, long distance and low spin.
Low drag cover and an aerodynamic design to lower air friction help the balls to cover a longer distance.
Available in two colors – white and yellow, these balls are suitable for beginners and inexpensive enough so that you can lose a few of them while learning to keep the ball within the fairway. Though the yellow ones cost a bit more than the white ones, we recommend you use the yellow one for better visibility.
These are softer balls which help older players to get distance, however, they do not get you enough distance if you have high swing speed. So, if you are playing in a group which involves younger players as well, who are more likely to have a higher swing speed, these balls may give them a lower distance than what they are used to.
- Moves fast and longer distances in the air as well as on grass; suitable for seniors who may be able to hit shorter distances in the air and are more dependent on ball speed on the turf/grass
- Consistent distances across similar swings
- Cost effective golf balls; lets you learn freely
- White in color, may become difficult for seniors to track after hitting and to see from a distance
- Less spin than tour quality balls
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#7 Srixon Soft Feel Brite Matte Colour Golf Balls
The Srixon ultra-soft-feel bright matte finish balls are two-piece golf balls with the outer layer made of ionomer for durability and generates good power and launch from short swings.
These balls, at little over 1.5 dollars apiece, are suitable for you if you are a beginner or an older player and give more accuracy and consistency across drives. The 338 Speed Dimple Pattern reduces the air resistance and increases the stability and straightness of the flight across the course.
The bright color of the balls makes them easy to spot from a distance or in foggy weather and the softer feel of the balls helps you with short distance shots or scoops. The matte finish as well as the ionomer layer make the balls resistance to scratches and they continue to look as good as new till the time they lose their elasticity and core power to give you the longer distance.
- Available in 3 bright colors – red, orange and green easily visible in the air and from a distance
- Ionomer cover and low compression of 60, the balls cover long distances from low swings
- More stable in the air and consistent movement across shots
- Very soft feel and suitable for seniors
- Lower spin than a tour ball
Why Do Seniors Play Golf?
Apart from the enjoyment part which is obvious, and the close alignment of seniors’ abilities and the game’s demands, there are a lot of benefits of golfing which can be broadly categorized into physical, mental and social benefits.
- Physical and health benefits: If you are going the whole hog of 18 holes, it is equivalent to walking 4 miles – and that is equivalent to burning well over 1000 calories. Brisk walking can also be beneficial in tuning your cardiovascular functions and revitalize your muscles. Golf swings, though will be slower at an advanced age, will go a long way in maintain your joint and muscle flexibility, two things that are often lacking in seniors.
- Mental benefits: The success of putting the golf ball in a hole can be stimulating and can lead to secretion of endorphins which play an overall positive role in maintaining the mental wellbeing in seniors. The challenge of steering the ball towards the hole often requires complex calculations, taking into account wind speeds, wind directions, slope of the land and grass height. Continuously engaging in these calculations keeps you brain active and wards off old age cognitive diseases. Golf is also a highly social sport. As we age, it gradually becomes difficult for us to actively maintain a social circle. A large part of the enjoyment in golf is related to the social aspect and the opportunity to mingle with people of your age, which keeps you mentally engaged.
Finally, for seniors, golfing is one of the nicest ways of enjoying the outdoors on a beautiful day. I mean, fishing and sun bathing can also come close, but golfing also lets you be active!
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Changes in Your Game As You Age
Seniors will inevitably suffer from loss of strength, body balance and flexibility as they age. However, this along with probable loss of vision should not come in the way of enjoying a good round of golfing. While the problem of sub-par visibility can be resolved with vibrant colored balls (or even white on green grass is good enough for most seniors), loss in strength and balance can be countered with the following:
- You should widen your stance to compensate for any loss in balance and only go through with your swing once you have achieved a stable stance.
- You should shorten your swing for further stability and better prospects of hitting the ball at the right place and with the right timing.
- To counter any loss in flexibility and stiffness in joints, there is no better way to loosen up but with a warm-up session just before your golfing round. This significantly reduces risks of injuries, even when you slightly go beyond your physical capabilities, because your joints are supple and elastic.
Things to Look for in Golf Balls for Seniors
For a golf ball, the amount it will spin in the air and the distance that it will travel are often complementary features and you get less of one with more of the other.
- Low compression softer balls: Seniors are more likely to have lesser swing speeds and shorter swings, therefore, it is appropriate for them to use golf balls which are low compression and have a softer feeling to achieve longer distances. Contrastingly, younger golfers who have strength on their side, use harder balls with higher compression, so that a stronger swing will create a higher rebound effect and make the ball travel a longer distance. Most balls for seniors have an ionomer coating which is harder than the urethane coating found on circuit level balls. Ionomer coated balls also spin less, provide more stability in air, are easier to control and have a very soft core to reduce the compression longer better distances.
- Location / Weather / Visibility: Locations (grass type), weather conditions and visibility are some other factors that you will have to consider before purchasing you golf ball set. Softer grass requires your golf shots to carry balls in the air for longer. Low visibility or cloudier days may require you to play with more vibrant colored balls. Weather in which the air is heavier, for example in hotter weather, golf balls tend to pick up more friction in the air and therefore will travel higher in altitude but not the same distance.
- Durability & Pricing: Finally, your golf balls should be durable enough to last you some games – Unless you lose them in the bushes or the pond in the golf course. As a senior, you may be on a limited budget or on pension and may not want to splurge a lot on golf balls, especially when golf kits and the sport itself can be expensive.
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There is nothing better than to learn a new skill, be it at any age. Whether you are pro golfer getting used to lower physical abilities at an older age or whether you are a beginner finding your way on the golf course, using the right golf balls goes a long way to optimize your performance, and therefore, making the activity an enjoyable experience. And only when it is enjoyable, will you be able to sustain it over a long period of time. So, buy the set of balls that suit you and tee off!
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