Golf is a sport that requires a high level of consistency. Regardless of what you are doing on the course, repeating the same positive motion is a must to achieve low golf scores. This is an understood premise of all low handicappers, yet there is one thing that most amateurs are doing that sabotages their game: they use old, found golf balls when they play.
This one habit causes challenges with their consistency of play and as a result negatively affects their golf score. If you take a moment to think about it, playing any found ball (as my friend does) does cause challenges to in many areas of your game. Unfortunately, it does not stop some players:
I like the majority of players use new golf balls 95% of the time. I would be lying to say that I never use found golf balls, but normally they are new. I find that that a great or miss hit reacts the same way with new golf balls instead of the unknown caused by hitting a ball that has sat in the woods or water for any period of time. This allows me to better analyze my swing to ensure I am working towards my lowest score possible.
It seems others have varying opinion:
The other side of the discussion about old versus new is cost. The golf course is treasure trove for golf balls. My friend, mentioned above, says why by when all the golf balls I need are right here on the course. He cuts costs buy playing the balls he or I find. I cannot fight his logic and to be fair, he does use new balls from time to time, but usually in a tournament.
Other discussions regarding this topic resulted in the conclusion that really does not matter. Unless a player carries a low handicap, using different golf balls (found or not) makes very little difference to their score. Additionally, a higher handicap player will rarely notice any significant difference between golf balls, so using found balls affects little on their score. I can see the logic to this discussion, but I am not convinced.
Consistency of play is rooted in all actions on the golf course. I think that the golf ball plays an important role in this and as such, using found balls will affect our golf score. Found golf balls are hit and miss and as such too much is left to chance for me to use them regularly. I use new balls and will likely continue to do so for quite some time.
How about you, do you consistently use new or found golf balls?
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!