Best Golf Balls For Mid Handicappers (2021 Updated)

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If you’re someone who normally shoots in the 80s you’re considered a mid handicap golfer. There are a number of things a mid handicap player should be looking for in a golf ball, and in this post, we’ll be covering just that.

These are the best golf balls for mid-handicap golfers:

  1. Titleist Velocity (best firm golf ball)
  2. Srixon Soft Feel (best soft golf ball)
  3. Bridgestone e6
  4. Wilson Duo Professional
  5. Taylormade Tour Response
  6. Callaway Supersoft

Each of these balls is slightly different and a lot of it will depend on your swing speed, what you like your golf ball to feel like, and what you want it to do. You can’t go wrong with any of them, but continue reading, because we’ll dive into each and talk about which is right for you.

What Exactly Is A Mid Handicap Golfer?

A mid-handicap golfer is anyone who shoots between 80 and 89 on a par 72 course. Mid handicaps are better than the average player and tend to get a lot of bogeys, a number of pars, and the odd birdie.

If you prefer to think about your handicap, a mid handicap is somewhere above 10 but below 18. I know this might not be the technical definition of a mid handicapper, but it’s the way I look at it. Here’s how I view things:

  • If you shoot in the 70s = low handicap.
  • If you shoot in the 80s = mid handicap.
  • If you shoot above 90 = high handicap.

All three of these groups should be playing a different golf ball but it actually doesn’t happen often. I’ve seen so many beginners or high handicaps playing the ball they see on TV. Sorry, but that’s not going to work for you.

So, hopefully, you know where you stand in terms of where your skill level is at. If you aren’t able to shoot in the 80s yet then you should check out our guide for high handicaps and beginners.

Think you’re in the right place? Then let’s continue.

What Does The Perfect Mid Handicap Ball Look Like?

I’m a mid handicap golfer myself and there are a few key things I look for in a golf ball. Everyone will be slightly different, but if you want to take your game to the next level, you’ll need a bit of help.

These are the main things I look for in a golf ball:

  1. Good distance
  2. Respectable forgiveness
  3. A touch of greenside spin

If I can find a ball that’ll check all those boxes, it’s a winner. You’ll also have the choice between a softer or firmer ball but that’s not something that impacts performance.

Price also comes into play but the good thing about the balls on my list is that they’re pretty affordable.

Let’s talk about distance. It’s obviously an important factor and is the main thing people look for. Everyone wants to bomb it 300 yards down the fairway and nobody wants to be 20 yards short of Uncle Jimmy.

So, what we want to look for is a ball that is as long as possible but still offers the other two features. There are a lot of balls that explode off the club but they don’t have an ounce of spin on the green.

That’s really not going to help us much because we’ll have no control over our short game.

Next, we need some forgiveness. Even though we’re getting better, forgiveness is still a big factor for us and is going to be key in getting us to that next level. What good is hitting the ball 300 yards if it’s 3 fairways over?

The best 9 holes I ever played was when I benched my driver and hit 7 wood off the tee. The ball would only go 200 yards but I was in the fairway 90% of the time. After 9 holes, I was only 4 over par.

That clearly shows how important forgiveness is.

The final factor is a little touch of greenside spin. Don’t get this confused with driver spin though. That’s probably not something we want a whole lot of. What we want is a ball that has a lower driver spin but a higher wedge spin.

The lower driver spin will help us hit more fairways and the higher wedge spin will help us stick the ball on the green. I don’t know about you, but I still can’t spin the ball back 10 yards as you see on TV.

That’s fine, but we do want something that’ll have some bite and not jump off the green.

Should A Mid Handicap Use A 2, 3, or 4 Layer Ball?

If you’re a mid handicap golfer, you should be using a 2 or 3 piece golf ball. It’ll really depend on whether you prefer distance or control over the ball.

Both have their pros and cons but the main benefit to a 2 piece ball is distance and straightness. The main benefit to a 3 piece ball is increased control.

I’m a mid handicap player myself and most of the time I’m using a 2 piece ball. They perform just fine and are also cheaper. Balls also come in 1, 4, and 5 pieces but I don’t think those types of balls will perform as well for you.

You’ll most likely hit more hooks and slices with 4/5 piece balls and your distance will probably be less. All things I’m assuming you don’t want.

If you want pure distance and straightness then you’ll probably benefit the most from a 2 piece ball. Those two things are the main benefits but they also are cheaper to buy and should last longer as well (if you don’t lose them first).

The downside to these balls is that they don’t offer as much control as 3-5 piece balls. It won’t be as easy to control the height and shape of the ball. Most people shouldn’t bother with that anyway.

If you want a bit more control over the ball and want something that will bite the greens then you’ll probably want a 3 piece ball. These balls are normally more expensive and you probably won’t get as much distance out of them.

2 piece balls can still have some greenside bite but they’ll never be able to spin back (for most golfers).

Better players are willing to sacrifice distance for versatility, but I don’t think it’s worth it for average golfers. If you hook or slice the ball often then you should stick with a 2 piece ball.

How about the other types of golf balls?

1 piece golf balls are used at driving ranges and shouldn’t be brought to the course.

They’re extremely cheap balls and aren’t going to perform nearly as well as the rest. They might work well for hitting into a net at home but other than that, I don’t see a use for them.

4 piece golf balls are for professional or scratch golfers.

They offer a lot of control and will spin a lot. Two really useful things if you can actually take advantage of them. Most mid handicaps can’t though and that’s why I wouldn’t recommend them.

A 5 piece takes those benefits and adds a bit to them. If you try to use these balls you’ll get less distance and way more curve in your shots.

Do Mid Handicap Golfers Need Spin?

If you’re a mid handicap golfer, you’d benefit the most from a ball with low driver spin and medium wedge spin. The reason is that you’ll get more distance out of your shots, you’ll hit the fairway and green more often, and you’ll lower scores.

I’ve tried all types of balls and I’ve got the best results with these types.

If you tend to have a good amount of curve in your shots you’ll definitely want a ball with low driver spin. It’s not going to fix your game overnight but it should straighten things out a bit.

You’re probably losing quite a bit of distance with the curve in your shot and this is something simple that could help. Focus on hitting greens and fairways first and then focus on more advanced things like spin and shaping the ball.

If you’re a mid handicap golfer and you want to get to that next level, you’ll need to learn how to spin the ball with your wedges. This is a key step in really lowering your scores.

That’s why we want to play a ball that has some spin with the wedge.

Again, we aren’t going to spin the ball back 10 yards but we do want something that’ll bounce a couple of times and stick on the green. You don’t need a ball that has Pro V1 spin but everything we’ll talk about here is pretty decent.

What’s The Ideal Compression For A Mid Handicap?

If you’re a mid handicap golfer you’ll want to use a low to a mid compression golf ball. This is what’ll give you the best overall performance and will help you hit the ball farther, straighter, and higher.

A low compression golf ball takes less force to compress the ball. The opposite on a high compression ball.

If you use a high compression ball and you don’t have a fast swing speed or you don’t make solid contact, your game will not be so good. You’ll hit the ball 30 yards shorter and you’ll hit the fairway (but it’ll be 3 holes over).

High compression balls should only be used by scratch and pro golfers.

If you just want to hit the ball long and straight then you’ll want to use a low compression ball. Anything under about 60 should do the job. It’s not going to be as easy to control the ball but you’ll spend more time hitting from the fairway.

If you want a bit more control over the ball then you should try a mid compression ball. Anything between 60 and about 85 is considered mid compression in my mind.

These balls will spin a bit more and will help you draw/fade the ball or keep things low in the wind.

When Should You Upgrade Your Ball?

You’ve been practicing, working on your control around the green, and shooting some lower scores. You’re about to finally break 80, but you might be wondering, should I be playing the same ball as before?

As I said before, high handicap players should be playing a different ball than mid-handicap players. The exact same goes for low handicap golfers.

The short answer is that yes, you should probably change your golf ball.

The one key difference is that you’ll want a ball that has a lot of wedge spin. This is so you can land the ball on the green and have it stop quickly.

Being able to do this consistently from within 100 yards is essential to lowering scores. The balls we’re talking about here do have some wedge spin but the higher end tour balls will have more.

You’ll probably want to start shaping the ball around as well. Maybe you need to draw the ball around a tree or pull off a low cut. Balls with more spin should help you do that.

Why not use one of these balls from the start?

The biggest reason is that more spin will cause the ball to curve more. You really want to make sure you consistently hit the ball straight before you upgrade to a ball like this.

The second reason is because of the price. These balls normally cost quite a bit more and there’s really no need to spend that much.

Best Golf Balls For Mid Handicappers

Below, I’m going to list my favorite golf balls for mid-handicap golfers. My two favorites are Velocity and Soft Feel but I’ve also included my favorite options from the more popular companies on the market.

Titleist Velocity

  • Layers: 2 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Low
  • Short Game Spin: Mid
  • Compression: Medium
  • Feel: Firm
  • Swing Speed: Slow/Mid

If you’re someone who likes a bit of a firmer golf ball, the Velocity will be perfect for you. It’s been the ball I’ve played the most over the past year and absolutely love it.

The main reasons I like it is because of distance and straightness. You’ll find that this ball really explodes off the face and it’s definitely a fairway and green finder.

The distance comes from the 2 layer design and medium compression. This will generally generate the most distance for someone with a low to mid swing speed.

The straightness comes from the low driver spin. I’ve done a number of tests off the tee and the Velocity has hit more fairways than any other ball for me (the distance is there too).

It’s also a ball that has a high ball flight. Some people might want something that flies lower but the height and straightness are what generates the distance.

Since the ball does have good height, it’s able to get a bit of spin going into the green. It’s not anything crazy but it’s not going to bounce and run off the green.

Srixon Soft Feel

  • Layers: 2 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Mid
  • Short Game Spin: Mid
  • Compression: Low
  • Feel: Soft
  • Swing Speed: Slower

If you’re someone who likes a softer golf ball, the Soft Feel will be perfect for you. It’s probably the ball I recommend the most since the majority of people like a ball on the softer side.

It’s also suited well for golfers with swing speeds under 90 MPH but it’s still fine if you’re a bit above that. I did get a bit more sidespin than the Velocity but the distance was still really impressive.

It’s a 2 piece ball with a compression of around 60. That’s where the distance comes from for golfers with slower swing speeds.

Since it is a 2 piece ball, it’s not going to spin as much as a Pro V1 but it actually wasn’t that bad. Compared to all other 2 piece balls, the Soft Feel was near the top of the list in terms of wedge spin.

Bridgestone e6

  • Layers: 2 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Low
  • Short Game Spin: Low
  • Compression: Low
  • Feel: Soft
  • Swing Speed: Mid

If you’re someone who doesn’t care a whole lot about spin and prefers hitting the most fairways in regulation, the e6 could be right for you.

It’s another 2 piece ball that has low driver spin. I wouldn’t say it’s as long as the Velocity but it was a fairway finder for sure. It’s also not quite as soft as the Soft Feel but it’s much softer than the Velocity.

The compression is on the lower side (somewhere around 45) and that’ll suit someone with a slow to mid swing speed.

The one downside to this ball is that it doesn’t have a whole lot of greenside spin. It’s better than some of the other 2 piece balls but it’s not going to bounce twice and stop.

I actually shot my lowest round ever with a ball that had essentially zero wedge spin. This clearly shows that the most important factor (for average players) is hitting the ball long and straight.

Wilson Duo Professional

  • Layers: 3 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Mid
  • Short Game Spin: High
  • Compression: Low
  • Feel: Mid
  • Swing Speed: Mid

If you’re someone who already hits the ball fairly straight and want more greenside spin, the Duo Professional could be perfect for you.

A lot of people overlook Wilson products but I actually really like them. One of the previous Duo balls was actually the ball I shot my lowest round to date (12 over par).

The main reason you’d want to consider this ball over one of the others is that it has more greenside spin. It also has more sidespin so that’s one thing to keep in mind.

For me, the distance wasn’t quite as good as the Velocity and I didn’t hit as many fairways. Your game might not be the same as mine though and this ball could suit you better.

The compression rating is around 60, which will suit players with mid to low swing speeds. It’s not as soft as the Soft Feel but it’s much softer than the Velocity.

Taylormade Tour Response

  • Layers: 3 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Low
  • Short Game Spin: High
  • Compression: Medium
  • Feel: Soft
  • Swing Speed: Mid

This ball is fairly similar to the Duo Professional but could be right for you if you want more wedge spin but prefer Taylormade balls.

I’m actually not the biggest fan myself but the Tour Response is their best overall ball for mid handicappers. It’s reasonably straight, has a good amount of distance, and spins well.

If you’re familiar with Taylormade, this ball actually replaced the Project (a) ball from a few seasons ago. A lot of people were big fans of that ball.

One thing I noticed with this ball was that it’s not the best for slower swing speed players. The ball flight isn’t as high as the Soft Feel or Velocity so you’ll need to have some speed to get the distance.

Callaway Supersoft

  • Layers: 2 piece
  • Long Game Spin: Low
  • Short Game Spin: Mid
  • Compression: Low
  • Feel: Soft
  • Swing Speed: Slower

If you’re a mid handicapper and like Callaway balls, the Supersoft will be perfect for you. I’ve compared it to other balls from Callaway and it’s been the best in terms of distance and forgiveness.

It’s a 2 piece ball and the compression is really low (around 40). It’s best suited for low swing speed players but mine is a little faster and it was still fine.

It’s a high launching and fairly straight golf ball. It had a bit more curve than the Velocity but the distance was pretty close.

It doesn’t have as much greenside spin as the Wilson or Taylormade but it’s pretty reasonable. The high ball flight will help it stop quicker on the green.

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Jon Webber

I'm just an average golfer trying to take my game to the next level. Was shooting somewhere around 100 not that long ago but have been able to break 90 consistently. Best round to date was 12 over. Best 9 holes were 4 over.

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