Inside of A Golf Ball: A Comprehensive Guide to Exploring the Inner World of Golf Balls

inside of golf ball

What's inside a golf ball? That is an interesting question.

We think we are grown up, but we all have a childhood instinct and want to know about things hidden from us and what we can't see with our naked eyes "we wish we would have x-rays eyes vision to see an inside thing," but we don't.

The same curiosity takes us to this question: What’s inside a golf ball that makes this small ball travel farther? What is so special inside it?

Let's first answer this question.

What's inside a golf ball? The simple answer is rubber, but if you are a technical person who wants to know more about then, it's synthetic rubber.

Some of you like me and want to know what's a synthetic rubber. It's the same rubber you used to erase pencil writing and used in rubber bands to hold your money together.

One thing I want to clarify here about the myth of poison inside the golf ball.

This myth has been around for quite some time. But as we know now, it is only a myth, and there is only the rubber inside a golf ball that is not toxic to humans.

The myth would have been started after the introduction of the balata ball, whose core was made with a liquid-filled core wrapped in rubber bands and covered in a balata rubber cover.

While balata is not toxic, it is important to note that some people may be allergic to latex, a similar substance.

If you are allergic to latex, you may experience an allergic reaction if you come into contact with balata or other latex-containing products.

But as we know now, the modern golf ball is made of rubber, which is not inherently allergenic.

Now you know what’s inside a golf ball

But if you still have an empty stomach of curiosity and want to know in depth about the dimples cover, size, and weight. Then this article is especially for you.

Parts of Golf Ball:

parts of golf ball

Let's first learn about the different parts of a golf ball.

A golf ball has primarily three parts. The core, Layers and dimples cover what we all saw and felt.


Core of golf ball

The golf ball's core is made of synthetic rubber; sometimes, the rubbers are mixed with metal in small quantities and sometimes with plastic like acrylate material. Different companies use their mixing, but in simple terms, the core is simply rubber. 

Some of you want to know why a golf ball's core is made of rubbers.

Well, it was not always like this.

The first golf ball was made of wood and as technology evolved, so did the golf ball. Modern golf balls are made of synthetic rubber.

The reason to use rubber material in a golf ball is that rubber is an elastic material with the property to store and transfer energy. When you hit the ball with a club, it compresses the golf rubber core and once the compressed phase is completed, the rubber in the core quickly bounces back to its original shape.

This causes the ball to expand rapidly and return to its original round shape. As the rubber bounces back, it releases the energy stored during the compression phase. 

This sudden release of energy propels the ball forward with greater speed and force than it would have had without the rubber core.

That's why modern golf balls travel farther than the old-aged golf ball and the golf ball manufacturer is trying hard to make the core of the golf ball best for energy transfer to help the golfer achieve longer and straighter shots.

Core stiffness and softness:

The core of the ball is also made stiff and softer, the core softness and stiffness depend upon the player's preferences, but usually, most beginner players use a stiff core ball as it travels farther. Most beginner player swing is usually slow and not the best, so stiff balls help them increase speed ball and distance. 

The softer core golf ball is usually used by a pro golfer who wants to control their distance and swing, and the softer core ball helps them achieve their desired objective.


Some manufacturers offer dual-core balls, which offer both distance and control. A dual-core ball is an excellent option for the golfer looking 2 in 1 option and some of the major brands offering these balls are Titleist, Bridgestone, and Callaway. 

If someone asks about the golf ball core, you know everything about it now and you can teach them too.


Cover of golf ball


The outside of a golf ball made is its cover, which usually has dimples. We all want to know what these dimples are for and why the upper cover, which we can touch is made like this.

What if the golf ball is made without dimples? Does that make any difference? This an interesting question you may have in your mind too. 

So, let's find out the answer.

In simple science, 

Dimples are small, shallow depressions on the ball's surface that help it fly through the air more efficiently by reducing air resistance.

Let's look at what will happen when you hit a golf ball with or without dimples.

When the golf ball is hit, it travels through the air. It encounters air resistance around the golf ball. Which slows the golf ball and if the ball surface is smooth, the air particle tends to stick to it and create more resistance. 

When the golf ball is made with dimples, fewer air particles stick to it and as a result, the ball covered with dimples travels a larger distance than the smooth cover golf ball.

You will be surprised to know that the golf ball has 300-500 dimples on it. Well, I am not too bored to count it on the golf ball. I just found the information on Wikipedia.

One important thing about the golf ball's cover is that It's not made with the same material as we see in the core made with rubber.

Every company uses its material, but in general, companies use two types: Ionomer Cover and Urethane Cover.

Ionomer Cover:

Ionomer covers are made from thermoplastic material, simply plastic we use daily, for example, bottled water.

The reason to use this material in a golf ball is that it is hard and durable, which resists cuts and scuff during play.

This material is also highly resilient, meaning it can quickly regain its shape after being compressed, which allows it to produce high ball speeds and long distances when struck.

This type of ball is best for beginner golfers because it helps them achieve more distance.

Some famous companies that used these covers are Titleist Callaway and TaylorMade.

TaylorMade Distance Golf Balls

Urethane Cover:

Urethane covers are made of Thermoset materials which is a type of polymer. An example of polymer in daily life is the plastic bags we use to carry things around.

The reason to use this material in a golf ball is that it's softer and more elastic than an ionomer cover golf ball. Urethane covers provide a better feel and control than ionomer covers. Because of these qualities, pro players love this ball.

Urethane cover golf balls provide high performance and are usually more expensive than the ionomer cover golf ball because of their complex manufacturing process.

Now you know which cover to use, but what about the layers you saw pro players talking about? How it will help you and how you’ll know which one to choose.

Let's dive into this:

Titleist Pro V1x Golf Balls


Layers of golf ball

The middle part between the outer layer cover and the ball's core is called the layer. Which is made of different materials, and the number of layers inside the golf ball also depends on the player's preference.

 I know you want to know which one is best for you. Hang on, I am going there. 

There are 6 types of golf balls in terms of layer difference in the market and the difference between these balls is the number of layers used in a golf ball. 

Usually, most pro players use the above 2-piece layer golf ball while the beginner uses a one- or two-piece golf ball. 

1-Piece Golf Ball:

As it is clear from its name, this type of ball is made of one type of material: plastic and in more formal terms, Surlyn material and lastly, the dimples are molded on it.

This type of ball is suitable for beginner golfers who want to practice and don't want to spend lots of money on it.

One-piece golf is less expensive than other types of golf balls. That's why you will find these balls in driving ranges and for beginner's practice purposes. 

However, these balls are durable, but you will not find these balls in competition or used by the pro player because these balls lack the performance feature of advanced golf balls like multi-layer construction.

2-Piece Golf Ball:

2 piece golf ball

The 2-pieces golf ball is made of a single solid rubber core and an ionomer cover on which dimples are molded.

Beginner golfer mostly uses this type of ball because this ball allows beginner golfer to attain more distance and increases ball speed when stuck with the club face.

These balls are also available in a range of compression levels, from soft to hard, allowing golfers to choose the one that best fits their swing speed and playing style.

TaylorMade Distance Golf Balls

3-Piece Golf Ball:

3-pieces golf ball

3-pieces golf balls are commonly used golf balls in PGA tours. This ball is made of 3 layers. The outermost layer is made of urethane, a softer and more durable material that provides control in spin and approach shots. 

The middle layer of this ball is made of more resilient material, such as rubber which provides distance and reduces spin on longer shots.

The innermost layer is made of high-density synthetic rubber, providing additional distance and ball speed.

The pro player mainly uses the 3-piece ball to control distance in their shot.

BRIDGESTONE e12 Contact Golf Balls

4-Piece Golf Ball:

4 pieces golf ball

One thing is clear now for you. Now you know 4 pieces mean there will be 4 different layers in the ball because of the previous piece-ball track record and you are right.

This ball has the same 3 features of 3 pieces golf balls, like the core, which is made of rubber, and the same innermost layer, which is made of synthetic rubber and the dimples we discuss in detail above.

But one extra layer of plastic is added above the innermost layer to make it a soft feeling, reducing spin, and more appealing to pro players, although some pro golfers would argue that. We all have different experiences based on which we draw our conclusion. You can also see if you feel anything and let us know.

Titleist Pro V1x Golf Balls

5-Piece Golf Ball:

5 pieces golf ball

As we know, less layer is for beginners to achieve long distance and more layers are for the pro golfer to control the ball on the green and fairway.

The first 5 pieces golf ball was made by TaylorMade and had all the same layers and material as a 4-piece golf ball but had one extra layer of plastic to give golf an edge to control the golf ball and have a consistent launch angle.


6-Piece Golf Ball:

If you read from the above, you might get a Ph.D. in golf ball layers. The 6-piece layer golf ball has simply 6 layers in it, but one extra layer from its above neighbor 5 pieces golf ball with the same added material and features but added some extra control in the golf ball for a pro player.

I know you also have a question about whether there will be any 7-piece golf balls.

As technology rapidly advances, we never know, but it might arrive soon, although the 6 pieces of the golf ball are rare and you might have difficulty finding them in the market.

Enough of layers talking as it officially ends there for now.

Let's look at the golf ball's Weight and Size.

Will the size and weight make any difference in performance? 

Let's find out.

Size of Golf Ball:

Size of a golf ball

After the agreement in 1990 between USGA and R&A, the size of a golf ball was set to at least 1.68 inches in diameter, for those of you who have measuring tape in your house, the size should be at least 2.21 inches.

And for those who don't have measuring tape but have eaten strawberry and orange fruit.

This measuring is especially for you. The strawberry size is 0.98 inches, less than the state rules. You can’t make a ball the size of a strawberry.

And for those of you wondering can I make an apple or orange size ball? Sure, you can build it, but in simple physics, it will not travel as farther as heavy objects require more force to throw or push, especially more than 200 yards, you might need a small rocket for that.

Weight of Golf Ball:

weight of a golf ball

Same as size, the weight of a golf ball also has restriction. According to USGA and R&A, the size of a golf ball should be at most 45.93 grams or 1.62 ounces.

The majority of golf balls are designed to be close to the maximum weight limit, as this allows them to achieve the maximum distance when struck by a golf club.

If you read the above, you know more than 80% of golfers about golf balls. 


History is always an exciting part of humanity because it teaches us about past mistakes and helps us to improve. As we improve, so does the tool and the games we play.

Below is the story and history of a golf ball, its journey from wooden to rubber, and the answer to the question of what was inside an old golf ball.

Wooden Golf Balls (14th century):

wooden golf ball

As you are used to watching the golf ball with dimples, the wooden golf didn't have any dimples, and its surface was smooth.

The earliest golf ball was made from wood in the 14 to mid of 15 centuries, but the exact year of a wooden golf ball is always in the discussion because there is no written record of when it was first made, but one thing is sure it was made from wood. 

At that time, the golf ball was handcrafted, and the wooden ball had a major drawback. It was not durable and reliable because it was often cracked or split after repeated use.

Leather Golf Balls (15th century:

After the failure of the wooden ball, the leather golf balls were successful at that time. The leather golf ball was made from cow leather, but as time passed, its drawback appeared. 

The 100% real leather was porous, so it cannot be 100% waterproof. It was not waterproof and inefficiencies were the major reasons for the golfer to move towards better golf balls.

Featherie Golf Balls (17th century):

Featherie Golf Balls

Around the 17th century, the ball expert was looking for a batter ball rather than only a leather ball. They began stuffing leather pouches with feathers to create the first "featherie" golf balls. 

Although the featuerie ball was more durable than the previous only leather and wooden ball and could travel much farther, but it was still not waterproof.

Another major drawback of this ball was that only a few expert people could make this ball. Because of that, they were expensive to produce and were not affordable for most golfers.

Gutta-Percha Golf Balls (19th century):

Gutta-Percha Golf Balls

Gutta Percha material is chemically the same as natural rubber. If you have ever gone to the dental doctor and filled your tooth after a root canal, you will be surprised to know that it's the same material used to fill your tooth.

In 1848 Gutta Percha was invented by a Scottish physician named Dr. Robert Adams Paterson as he found this material to be ideal for making golf balls.

Gutta Percha golf balls were the first mass-manufactured golf balls as they were cheaper and more durable than featheries, and their smooth surface allowed them to travel further.

Haskell Golf Balls (20th century):


In 1898, an American named Coburn Haskell invented the first rubber-cored golf ball. 

The ball Haskell's name is after its inverted Coburn Haskell.

The Haskell ball consisted of a small, solid rubber core surrounded by a layer of rubber thread.

The story goes like this Haskell was waiting for his friend on a golf course as he was bored and had some rubber bands in his hand. While playing with his rubber band, he randomly put rubber around the ball and started bouncing the ball. He suddenly noticed that the ball was bouncing height than without rubber around it.

This design produced a softer ball with greater distance and accuracy than previous models.

In 1905 the first dimple patterns were added to golf balls, and from there on, the journey of modern golf balls started.

Two-Piece Golf Balls (1960s):

2 piece golf ball

Haskell provided the baseline for modern golf balls; Spalding introduced the first Two-piece golf ball in 1972. The Spalding golf ball consists of two pieces. The first layer was a rubber core to which the second layer of the molded cover was added.

These two pieces of golf balls were more durable and offered improved distance and accuracy from previous balls.

Multi-Layer Golf Balls (1990s):

Layers of golf ball

After the invention of the two-piece golf ball in the 1990s, multi-layer golf ball manufacturing started to provide the golfer with more control, feel and distance, which consisted of a solid or liquid-filled core surrounded by layers of different materials such as rubber, plastic and urethane.


The evolution of golf balls from wooden spheres to modern-day high-tech balls has been a long and fascinating journey. As technology is improving daily, we can expect golf balls to continue evolving to meet the needs of golfers.

Please share your experience with us and tell us which golf ball you use and why?

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