Source: Building a Better Golf Ball That’s Incredibly Illegal | Playbook
One problem: It’s completely illegal.Polara’s balls, because of their dimple variations, are not allowed for on-course use in any events sanctioned by the U.S. Golf Association. The company, which manufactures two different ball models, claims that independent research shows the balls cut down on slices and hooks by some 75 percent.The New York Times does an excellent job of breaking down the relatively simple science of how the ball is different:The performance of the Polara ball differs from that of a conventional ball largely because it has two distinct regions of dimples. Along the ball’s equator, shallow, truncated dimples lower its lift and create a more horizontal spin axis. Lower lift means less force is directed toward keeping a mis-hit ball moving left or right of the target. More horizontal spin axis, meanwhile, lessens side spin, a root cause of a hook or a slice.On the two poles of the ball, the dimples are deeper and more concentrated and reinforce the horizontal spin axis. They work in tandem with the shallow dimples to generate lower drag, which combined with the lower lift creates a straighter and slightly lower trajectory.The Polara ball controversy actually dates back to the 1970s, culminating in the original ball design being banned by the USGA in 1981. That ultimately resulted in a $1.4 million settlement for Polara four years later, although the ball was still removed from the market. The Polara tech was acquired by Aero-X Golf back in 2005, and the company has worked extensively to not only reintroduce the ball but improve upon the original designs.Now, the Polara is back on golf courses once again. Pro tip: Before you head on out with your buddy for a friendly round, check his bag for any contraband balls — or make him share with everyone else.