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Practice Golf Balls Vs Regular Golf Balls (Compared)

When comparing range balls vs regular golf balls, it’s important to analyze what they are made of, how far they travel, and their key differences.

Each type of golf ball is going to have a role to play in the right situation.

This is why golfers need to be aware of the differences between a practice golf ball and a regular golf ball.

So, what is the difference between practice golf balls vs regular golf balls?

Practice golf balls are made of a lighter material that does not cause damage, has a reduced spin rate, and will travel shorter distances. In comparison, a regular golf ball has a harder shell, an increased spin rate, and will travel a longer distance.

Many golfers will use practice golf balls at home. They are lighter and tend to be more affordable too.

This makes them easier to practice with as you can get more of them and also practice your golfing technique at home.

Here is more on comparing a regular golf ball to a practice golf ball.

What Is A Practice Golf Ball?

A practice golf ball is designed with a lighter material (i.e. foam) and will have a reduced spin rate and does not travel a long distance in the air. It is also ideal for homes and/or tighter spaces as it will not break things upon impact.

When using a practice golf ball over a regular golf ball, it is common for these benefits to stand out.

Most people will go through golfing drills with a practice golf ball. It is simply easier and lighter, which makes it ideal for these scenarios.

What Is A Regular Golf Ball?

A regular golf ball is made of heavy-duty materials, tends to be heavier, and will cause damage if it hits something. It is also going to have a higher spin rate and is going to travel a longer distance in the air.

With game situations, a regular golf ball is going to be used.

Those who do take the time to go to the local golf course will want to take regular golf balls with them.

They are pricier than practice golf balls but do hold value as that is what you are going to see out on the golf course when it is time to play.

Benefits Of A Practice Golf Ball

1. Limited Flight

When it comes to using practice golf balls, it’s time to understand what makes them stand out as a viable option.

It starts with using limited-flight practice golf balls.

In essence, the golf balls are not going to have a high loft and they will not travel long distances in the air. This is useful for those who are simply working on their technique and looking to optimize their golf swing.

You will not want to go fetch a ball as it travels a long distance.

Instead, you are just working on your form and that is where a practice golf ball is useful. This is one of the main advantages of using a practice golf ball.

practice golf balls vs regular

2. Don’t Damage Things

Are foam golf balls good for practice?

Yes, foam golf balls are good for practice and it starts with the reduced distance upon impact, reduced spin rate, and the softer outer shell. This means it does not damage things upon impact.

If you are practicing golf in a tighter space such as your home, you will not want to break a window or anything that is nearby.

As a result, a practice golf ball is useful.

Cons Of A Practice Golf Ball

1. Doesn’t Recreate Real-Game Situations

Can you play a practice ball in golf?

No, you cannot play a practice ball in golf because it’s made of a different material. This means it is not going to play the same way as a regular golf ball would.

You need to account for this.

Going through too many golf drills as a golfer with practice golf balls means you are going to end up doing poorly out in the open.

You do need to vary how you practice.

Practice golf balls are good for working on your technique but it is also important to understand a regular golf ball is going to be used on the golf course. You should get work in with both for good results.

2. Can Ruin Your Technique

When using golf practice balls, you also have to think about your technique.

Yes, practice golf balls are good for drills. You should be using them but it is also important to think about your power output on the golf course.

You are not going to get the same feedback as you would with a regular golf ball.

The practice golf ball is lighter and it is not going to spin the same way. This means you can ruin your technique when attempting to compensate for this difference.

Don’t let this happen and do take the time to vary how you are practicing.

Benefits Of A Regular Golf Ball

1. Used In Real-Game Situations

When it comes to a practice golf ball vs a regular golf ball, you need to consider which one is going to be used in a real game.

You are only going to get to see regular golf balls in those situations.

As a result, you do have to use regular golf balls more often than not. It is fine to practice with softer golf balls but that is just one part of the process. You also get to enjoy a consistent feel when you are using regular golf balls.

It allows you to get appropriate feedback when it comes to your golf swing.

2. Travels A Greater Distance

When it comes to practice golf balls vs regular distance, it’s important to consider which type of golf ball is going to travel the furthest.

Just like choosing the right golf club, you also have to think about selecting the right golf ball based on the situation in front of you.

For the most part, the regular golf ball is going to go higher and further.

Cons Of A Regular Golf Ball

1. Not Ideal For Homes

Using practice golf balls in the backyard is smart.

The same cannot happen with regular golf balls.

The main issue has to do with how hard the outer shell is. This is fine on the fairway but not as ideal when you have homes and/or other features nearby such as the backyard or indoors.

A regular golf ball can do serious damage in a situation such as this and it is not ideal when you are in a tight space.

You will want to take the time to buy practice golf balls for the backyard or when you are indoors.

2. Costly

When comparing range balls to regular golf balls, you have to think about the pricing.

There is an investment that has to be considered.

For the most part, you will want to practice and not worry about losing golf balls during the process.

If that is the case, practice golf balls are more durable and tend to be more affordable. This is good for those who don’t want to keep spending money on new golf balls.

Regular golf balls can be costly and those are best reserved for when you are heading to the golf course.

What Is the Difference Between Practice and Normal Golf Balls?

The difference between practice and normal balls includes distance travelled, spin rate, and the shell’s hardness. A practice golf ball is going to be softer, travel shorter distances in the air, and have a lower spin rate.

This is useful for those who are looking to go through a few golf drills in a tight space.

It is not always easy to do this when using regular golf balls.

This is why professional golfers will also take the time to invest in practice golf balls from time to time.

It can be beneficial to have practice golf balls on standby.

How To Choose Golf Ball Based On Situations

To choose the right golf ball, it’s important to understand the situation in front of you.

Will you be practicing in the backyard or indoors?

If so, it makes sense to invest in a foam practice golf ball or perhaps a plastic golf ball. These are going to do a lot better in those tighter spaces without damaging anything.

You can also get more reps in without ruining the golf ball.

On the other hand, if you are heading to the golf course, you will want to replicate real-game situations and that is only going to happen with a regular golf ball.

Types of Practice Golf Balls

1. Foam Golf Balls

These are the most common type of practice golf balls available to golfers. It is made out of a foam-based material that allows the outer shell to remain soft.

The reason this is an appreciated type of practice golf ball comes down to its outer shell. It is also affordable, which makes it easier to invest in a few and know they are going to last a long time.

2. Plastic Golf Balls

This type of practice golf ball is also effective as it does well when it makes an impact with a harder surface (i.e. wall. It will not break apart. It is also affordable but can travel longer distances compared to a foam golf ball.

Plastic golf balls are resilient but they are still not as durable as foam practice golf balls. This is why it’s common for most people to still stick to foam golf balls.

3. Rubber Golf Balls

The last type of practice golf ball would be a rubber golf ball. The rubber golf ball is made out of rubber, which ensures it is also a durable option that is ideal for practice.

This is a heavier material that does have a harder shell.

It is not going to be as durable as a plastic or foam golf ball but it does offer good results.

Can You Play With Practice Golf Balls?

No, you cannot play with practice golf balls in most competitions. It is possible some amateur competitions do allow the use of a practice golf ball as long as it is the right shape and size.

However, if you are going to be heading out to the golf course, the average professional golfer is going to want the distance and control of a regular golf ball.

How Far Can You Hit A Practice Golf Ball?

Based on studies done on this, the average practice golf ball cannot go past 40-45 yards. This can vary depending on the type of practice ball being used. For example, a foam golf ball will travel shorter distances compared to a rubber golf ball.

How Much Further Do Normal Balls Go Than Range Balls?

Normal balls will go approximately 10-15% further than the average range ball. This is due to the added flight and harder shell allowing it to go through the air at a faster rate. This makes it easier for the golf ball to travel longer distances compared to range golf balls.

Final Thoughts

When comparing practice golf balls vs regular golf balls, the details in this guide will go a long way in knowing the difference.

Practice golf balls are made of lighter materials such as rubber, foam, or plastic. This means they travel shorter distances, work well indoors, and do not break anything upon impact. In comparison, regular golf balls are ideal for real-game situations, offer an increased spin rate, and also travel further.

It is common for golfers to use both depending on the situation.

Just like selecting the right golf club, it is also important to get the right golf ball.