Are Golf Balls Hollow? Know What’s Inside The Golf Ball

Usually, we are more familiar with air-puffed balls that get hollowed out after a few uses. Similarly, in the case of golf, the question remains: are golf balls hollow?

Golf balls are a significant component of the golf sport. It’s a specialized ball with a solid core. So these balls don’t get hollow.

However, there is so much science used for golf balls that it might not be necessary to know for an amateur golfer. However, you should know if you want to improve your game like a pro.

Are Golf Balls Hollow?

Are Golf Balls Hollow

In the early stages of golf, the balls were made of a solid or liquid core covering rubber thread. But modern balls have come a long way and various types of balls have been invented.

Typically, golf balls have a solid core and don’t hollow. It is a stout rubber core and enclosed within a shell. The outer layer is made of Surlyn with little dimples. The shell is durable and hard enough so that the ball can pop off quickly after hitting the clubface.

Surlyn is a brand name who invented the material. DuPont developed it in the 1960s. Surlyn is a very tough material that easily handles the impact of golf clubs. This coating on the ball allows it to spin less and go further in distance.

Though there are different types of golf balls, all of them have a solid core within them. Different manufacturers use different solid cores. The golf balls can be one, two, three, four, and even five pieces. 

There is no use for hollow balls in golf because they are too light and don’t cover a long distance. On the other hand, solid balls offer a level of control that have a good weight and cover a long distance.

History Of Golf Balls

There were many types of golf balls used throughout golf history. Until the seventeenth century, wooden golf balls were used that were typically made of hardwood like Beech or Boxroot.

Then came the feathery balls which were made of leather and goose feathers. These balls were made through a special process creating a hard and compact ball. Golfers used the balls for three centuries as they had better flight capabilities.

Next, the gutty golf balls which were the most popular at that time. They are crafted from dried sap from the Sapodilla tree. The sap had a rubbery feel that was affordable and reliable for golfers. The gutty balls were hammered to give the perfect shape which led to a certain pattern that we now know as dimples.

In 1899, the actual rubber ball replaced the gutty balls when Walter Travis won a golf tournament with one. Since then, there have been many upgrades to these rubber balls with more creative designs.

Different Types Of Golf Balls

Technology in golf balls has improved over the years. There are many types of pattern and component variation in them. For example,

1. One Piece Golf Ball

As the name suggests, the one-piece golf ball is crafted from a single type of material – typically surlyn. They are also known as range balls and are much cheaper than other types. Due to their one type of material, they are very durable and have a heavy feel.

While they generate minimal spin, their limited versatility makes them unsuitable for traditional golf. Today, these relics find their place in the realm of recreational putting rather than in the serious golfer’s bag.

2. Two Piece Golf Ball

The two-piece golf balls are favorites among golfers of all levels. Boasting a solid rubber core and a surlyn or urethane shell, these balls balance durability with distance.

Urethane variants offer a soft touch and heightened control often attracting professional players seeking optimal performance. Ideal for beginners to professionals due to their durability and distance potential.

3. Three Piece Golf Ball

The three-piece golf ball strikes a balance between distance and feel. It features an additional layer that offers a softer feel and more spin than two-piece balls.

It is a go-to choice for players seeking both distance off the tee and finesse around the green. These balls are typically used on the PGA tour and Titleist pro v1 is the great one.

4. Four Piece Golf Ball

Four-piece golf ball s are the improved version of three-piece balls. These balls add an extra thin layer of solid rubber to transform the energy into a hot core that offers more spin separation.

Yet, it activates at higher swing speeds. Through the science is a little bit complicated here but they are useful to minimize driver shots’ spin.

5. Five Piece Golf Ball

The five-piece golf ball takes complexity to a new level by offering unparalleled spin separation. With a super-soft urethane cover, these balls maintain spin even on short shots.

It is a great choice of those who prioritize spin control across a wide range of shots. These balls cater to the demands of advanced players seeking the pinnacle of performance.

Do Golf Balls Matter?

As golfers, we’re always seeking ways to improve our game – from perfecting our swing to selecting the right clubs. But what about the golf ball? Does it truly make a difference?

It’s natural to wonder, especially when considering the range of prices for different models. After all, no one wants to spend money on something that doesn’t enhance their game.

The simple truth is that the golf ball does matter. It’s not just about the price tag; it’s about optimizing your performance on the course. Just like a perfectly fitted club, the right golf ball can significantly affect your overall distance and results.

If the ball is too hard for you to compress, your distance will suffer. On the flip side, if it’s too easy to compress due to high swing speeds, you’ll miss out on potential distance.

Finding the right golf ball isn’t just about matching your game. A well-chosen ball should suit both your playing style and your wallet.

When a golf ball aligns with your needs, you’ll notice improvements in your shots’ performance – shots that finally do what you want them to do.

The choice of golf ball becomes significant for skilled players who aim for spin control around the green.

A two-piece golf ball, with its distinct characteristics, can present a challenge that propels your performance to new heights. The combination of ball and club can truly shape your scoring outcome.

Why Do Golf balls Have Different Dimple Patterns?

You might notice that different golf balls have different patterns. These dimples might seem small, but do they really matter?

If you compare different golf balls, you’ll notice that the dimple patterns vary from one manufacturer to another. Take Callaway, for example.

They’ve been using a hexagonal shape dimple pattern for years. This pattern, with its interlocking hexagons, is designed to optimize distance and deliver an impressive ball flight.

Interestingly, Callaway utilizes a similar dimple pattern for both their budget-friendly and premium golf balls. This underscores the significance of the pattern in enhancing performance across their range.

Some golf balls have lots of dimples, while others feature larger ones in smaller quantities. But the number of dimples isn’t the key factor here. It’s not about counting dimples; it’s about how they work together.

The consistency and shape of the dimples have a more substantial impact on how the ball interacts with the air.

However, beginner golfers should not look for a certain number of dimples. Instead, they should find a ball that has proper compression that provides overall a good feel for your game.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Do You Cut Open a Golf Ball?

Cutting open a golf ball is like a tempting curiosity, but it’s not as simple as it sounds. Golf balls are incredibly durable and their inner layers are tightly compressed. To cut one open, you’d need specialized tools like a strong utility knife, a vise to hold the ball securely, and lots of patience.

Are There Golf Balls That Go Straight?

While there’s no golf ball that guarantees a perfectly straight shot every time, certain golf balls are designed to minimize slices or hooks. These balls often have features that reduce side spin and promote a straighter ball flight.

Why Do People Put Sharpie on Golf Balls?

Using a Sharpie to mark golf balls serves several purposes. Many golfers personalize their balls by marking them with unique designs, initials, or alignments. Also, a sharpie helps align the putter.

What Do More Dimples on a Golf Ball Mean?

A golf ball’s dimple count can influence its flight characteristics, but more dimples do not necessarily mean better performance. Dimple patterns are more important to optimize lift, reduce drag, and promote stability in flight.


None of the golf balls are hollow. Also, it doesn’t impact the game. More important is the ball type you choose.

Typically, a high-quality ball offers greater spin control and feel to improve your game. So you should buy a reliable ball that gives you a good feel while hitting with your club.