Teacher’s Comments: I found it difficult to keep the ball on the top.
The next frontier in golf game improvement products may be in the tees. The simple wooden stick with a tiny cup at the top seems on its way out, to be replaced by a variety of plastics in varying shapes and sizes, all designed to help you get more distance and accuracy.
A-Balance recently sent me a set of their premium plastic tees to review and I’ve played them over the last few rounds. A-Balance says that the tees reduce backspin and sidespin to produce longer, straighter drives. I think they do, but I’m not quite ready to run out and stock up.
The tees consist of three parts: a stiff base that you push into the ground, a flexible stem that is embedded into the base, and a crown that holds the ball. The crown (for that’s exactly what it looks like) slides over the stem and is held in place with a tab . That allows the crown to slide up and easily bend at impact, offering minimal resistance and preventing it from breaking.
The crown (and that’s exactly what it looks like) contacts the balls only at four points. This is supposed to reduce distance robbing distance and spin. Four shorter pegs offer additional support.
I agree that that the A-Balance Tees are an improvement over the regular wooden versions in terms of distance and accuracy. But then, I have played several new tee designs lately that seem to do the same thing. The key seems to be to reduce the area of contact between the tee and ball.
One advantage that the A-Balance tees have over some others, however, is that they are very soft. This, I think, results in less resistance at contact, and could conceivably result in more distance. The same flexibility also likely is responsible for the A-Balance tees’ indestructibility. I jsut don’t see how you could break one of these. You could wear one out eventually, as the crown no longer supports the ball.
And that brings me to my big complaint with the tees: I sometimes find it difficult to get the ball to stay on the crown. If the base doesn’t go in quite straight, the ball won’t stay on; there just isn’t enough contact.
Another minor quibble is that they only come in one size, so you can’t use them with a three wood—or really—anything less than a modern, 400cc + driver.
So on balance, I can give the A-Balance tees a solid B. They’re better than your average tee, and perform as advertised. But it’s not quite a perfect design.