Groovy, man:: This drawing shows the new style of golf ball using grooves rather than dimples. Grooves set into triangle shapes can improve putting accuracy without sacrificing long-hitting distance state the developers of the new ball.
Groovy, man:: This drawing shows the new style of golf ball using grooves rather than dimples. Grooves set into triangle shapes can improve putting accuracy without sacrificing long-hitting distance state the developers of the new ball.Courtesy WIPO
Not that Tiger Woods needs any extra help, but there's a new golf ball on the drawing boards that could help improve putting accuracy without sacrificing long-club hitting distance. Read this to see how re-engineering a golf ball is as simple as changing its dimples into grooves.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Roosevelt81's picture
Roosevelt81 says:

Is golf the most analyzed sport by physicists? You don’t hear much about optimizing design for footballs, soccer balls, baseball balls or hockey pucks. Just imagine how a hockey puck with grooves would perform…

posted on Tue, 12/16/2008 - 5:51pm
Thor's picture
Thor says:

Well, I think people buy a lot more golf balls per year than footballs, soccer balls or hockey pucks. So there's probably a strong business factor driving innovations in golf equipment, in my opinion.

posted on Wed, 12/17/2008 - 8:51am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

how do you a anylyze baseball

posted on Wed, 12/17/2008 - 12:09pm
Roosevelt81's picture
Roosevelt81 says:

Same as a golf ball. Analyze how the changes to the ball surface (i.e., remove stitches) would effect throwing and hitting and in general, flying through the air.

Thor may be onto something, I suspect it also has to do with tradition and whether or not there is an interest in having science 'improve the game' for a given sport. Science could easily replace umpires from judging balls and strikes, but who wants that?

Golf seems to embrace science more, maybe so people don't throw their clubs in disgust as often.

posted on Thu, 12/18/2008 - 4:05pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Oh, I don't know... I don't spend a lot of time following advances in sports tech, but it seems to me that golf isn't that unique in its embracing of science and technology. I mean, think about the fuss over Olympic swimmers' new high-tech outfits, or fancy protective gear in football, or the designer drugs in baseball.

Grooved and dimpled balls seem pretty minor in comparison to all that, except that they might be easier for your casual athlete to come by.

posted on Thu, 12/18/2008 - 4:36pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

The NBA came out with a synthetic ball in 2006.

Slalom skiiers at the most recent winter Olympics wore high-tech body armor.

posted on Thu, 12/18/2008 - 5:03pm

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