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Handicap, or "average strokes over par"?


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Thanks. Again these are newbie questions so I apologize in advance:

 

Is a higher slope more or less difficult? Also how do using different tee boxes impact the handicap on the same course. As an example if I played the same course two days in a row - once from tee=6000 yds and the second day tee=5300 yds. Both days the score is 90. How does that impact the handicap.

 

 

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Higher slope is more difficult (in theory). Also, different sets of tees have a different slope/rating combination.

 

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Thanks. Again these are newbie questions so I apologize in advance:

 

Is a higher slope more or less difficult? Also how do using different tee boxes impact the handicap on the same course. As an example if I played the same course two days in a row - once from tee=6000 yds and the second day tee=5300 yds. Both days the score is 90. How does that impact the handicap.

 

 

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Higher slope is more difficult.  Each tee has a separate course rating and slope.  So when calculating the handicap differential for each score of 90, the 90 from the 6000y tee will have a lower differential than the 90 from the 5300y tee.  Depending on your last 10 lowest differentials, it's possible that the 90 from the 6000y tee could be used to determine your index, but the 90 from the 5300y tee might not be.

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Maybe someone can clear this up for me. So I use swing x swing app it says I am a 17.3 handicap, 17+72 = 89.  I've never broken 90 on a full 18 (had low 40's on 9 holes) but usually shoot around 90-93. So is the 17 my true handicap

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A couple of clarifications.  First, Course Rating is primarily determined by the distance of the holes, and is an indication of what an idealized "scratch" golfer should be expected to shoot.  The rating crew also determines the score an idealized "bogey" golfer should shoot, and so considers a lot of additional factors.  For a course with a lot of hazards, OB, trees, slopes, that "bogey rating" might me more or less than 18 strokes above the "scratch rating".  That difference between scratch and bogey ratings determines the slope.  

 

Maybe someone can clear this up for me. So I use swing x swing app it says I am a 17.3 handicap, 17+72 = 89.  I've never broken 90 on a full 18 (had low 40's on 9 holes) but usually shoot around 90-93. So is the 17 my true handicap

The 17.3 is the number you carry with you wherever you play, so its one reasonable number for comparison to other players.  To find your handicap on any particular course, multiply your Handicap Index by the Slope Rating divided by 113.  

I don't know about SxS, but the USGA pairs 9-hole scores to make full 18 scores in the handicap calculation.  You could have 42-43 on consecutive 9-hole days, resulting in 85 for handicap calculation.

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Interesting topic. I recently started tracking my raw scores and currently usually shoot around 100 or 50 for 9 .. sometimes a few shots better, sometimes a few shots worse .. regardless of course or tees (which can be any of Men's, Seniors or Ladies depending).

 

I don't maintain a handicap, nor do I plan to play in any competition (other than a casual charity outing) -- my goal now is to shoot mid-90s consistently .. on any course (from White tees or shorter) .. and counting *everything*.

 

If anyone happens to ask, I'll just say "I'm a hacker/duffer :)"

 

But just so I understand the handicap process better:

 

Let's say I've posted 20 or more rounds so then "the system" gives me a Player's Handicap...

And then..

1. Each time I play a new course or a new set of tees I get a new Course Handicap (for that course/set of tees)?

And..

2. Based on that current Course Handicap, and the scorecard rank per hole, I can - or cannot - subtract 1 stroke from my gross score on each hole?

Followed by..

4. Also based on that current Course Handicap I may be able to apply ESC to blow-up holes?

 

But one key thing I'm not clear on - shouldn't a player submit, either to his pro shop or into his app, just all the raw numbers per hole and have "the system" figure out which holes get a stroke deducted or which holes get the ESC limit?

 

PS:

I don't really "get" ESC... I think I get everything up to this point, but I mean say I always have a 10 (or, egads, worse) on some hole (or... holes...) every time I play -- I'm not clear why that should get marked down to a 7 or an 8......

(I mean I'm just not that good .. yet? .. I hope! .. but I'm flattered the USGA still says I have "potential".)

 

PPS:

Cheating aside. There will ALWAYS be some A**holes who purposely game the system.

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A couple of clarifications. First, Course Rating is primarily determined by the distance of the holes, and is an indication of what an idealized "scratch" golfer should be expected to shoot. The rating crew also determines the score an idealized "bogey" golfer should shoot, and so considers a lot of additional factors. For a course with a lot of hazards, OB, trees, slopes, that "bogey rating" might me more or less than 18 strokes above the "scratch rating". That difference between scratch and bogey ratings determines the slope.

 

The 17.3 is the number you carry with you wherever you play, so its one reasonable number for comparison to other players. To find your handicap on any particular course, multiply your Handicap Index by the Slope Rating divided by 113.

I don't know about SxS, but the USGA pairs 9-hole scores to make full 18 scores in the handicap calculation. You could have 42-43 on consecutive 9-hole days, resulting in 85 for handicap calculation.

Oh - I thought they doubled a single 9 hole score to make 18...
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..Callaway Epic Speed 4W and Epic Max 7W (both Project X Cypher)
..Callaway Big Bertha 4H and 5H (both Recoil ZTR)
..PXG 0211 6i-GW (Mitsubishi MMT) 
..Cleveland CBX-2 54 and CBX 60 (both Rotex graphite)
..MLA Tour XDream (33", +2up, 400g, P2 Reflex Tour)
.. .. see MLA Offical Forum Member Reviews (..on the bench: Evnroll ER5)
..all in a Datrek bag on a Bag Boy Quad XL push an MGI Zip Navigator electric cart.

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4. Also based on that current Course Handicap I may be able to apply ESC to blow-up holes?

But one key thing I'm not clear on - shouldn't a player submit, either to his pro shop or into his app, just all the raw numbers per hole and have "the system" figure out which holes get a stroke deducted or which holes get the ESC limit?
 

 

 

Generally speaking, its up to the player to adjust his score for ESC before putting it into the system.  Both the GHIN phone App and the Ghin.com website allow only the entry of 9 or 18 hole scores.  Occasionally a course will want hole-by-hole scores, and those have to be entered at the course's computer.  I don't know why they haven't set up the app and website to take hole-by-hole scores, but that's the way it is now.  

 

I believe the reason for ESC is that golf was originally a match-play game.  In that kind of situation, a 7 is just about as likely to lose a hole as a 12 is.  The powers-that-be have decided that they don't want one or two truly horrible holes to cause an excessive influence on a player's handicap, so they've limited things.

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Oh - I thought they doubled a single 9 hole score to make 18...

I feel good, today I helped someone learn something.   :D

 

I believe there is substantially less understanding of the Handicap system, and many more misconceptions, even among avid players, than there is about the actual Rules of Golf.  Even some of the best players at my home club, guys who have been playing for many decades, have very have misconceptions about what scores to post, what to do with holes they don't finish, how the handicap is calculated, all that stuff.  I'm really happy to see that some players truly are interested in understanding the system and doing things the right way.

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Perhaps, someone can verify another understanding that I have regarding the handicap system.   Specifically, if the score is the result of tournament play, it must be reflected as such.   Tournament rounds may or may not be treated the same as casual rounds.  I know when I post a score, I am asked if this was a tournament round.  

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I feel good, today I helped someone learn something. :D

 

Ha! But, yes, and thanks for all that add'l info!

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.. .. see MLA Offical Forum Member Reviews (..on the bench: Evnroll ER5)
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Generally speaking, its up to the player to adjust his score for ESC before putting it into the system. Both the GHIN phone App and the Ghin.com website allow only the entry of 9 or 18 hole scores. Occasionally a course will want hole-by-hole scores, and those have to be entered at the course's computer. I don't know why they haven't set up the app and website to take hole-by-hole scores, but that's the way it is now.

 

Ah, ha .. now I see why the concerns about cheating are so widespread......

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..Callaway Epic Speed 4W and Epic Max 7W (both Project X Cypher)
..Callaway Big Bertha 4H and 5H (both Recoil ZTR)
..PXG 0211 6i-GW (Mitsubishi MMT) 
..Cleveland CBX-2 54 and CBX 60 (both Rotex graphite)
..MLA Tour XDream (33", +2up, 400g, P2 Reflex Tour)
.. .. see MLA Offical Forum Member Reviews (..on the bench: Evnroll ER5)
..all in a Datrek bag on a Bag Boy Quad XL push an MGI Zip Navigator electric cart.

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Perhaps, someone can verify another understanding that I have regarding the handicap system.   Specifically, if the score is the result of tournament play, it must be reflected as such.   Tournament rounds may or may not be treated the same as casual rounds.  I know when I post a score, I am asked if this was a tournament round.  

Tournament scores ARE required to be identified as such.  The system essentially compares your best tournament scores over the last year to your current HI.  If the difference is too large, your HI is adjusted downward.  The actual system involves a few more steps, but that's the essence.  The goal is to identify people who consistently post better scores in tournament than they post for other rounds. 

 

Ah, ha .. now I see why the concerns about cheating are so widespread......

There are concerns about cheating because some players actually do sandbag.  But I think more of these "concerns" are sour grapes.  Lots of guys don't like to shoot a good score and still not win, but it happens that way an awful lot of the time.

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Interesting topic. I recently started tracking my raw scores and currently usually shoot around 100 or 50 for 9 .. sometimes a few shots better, sometimes a few shots worse .. regardless of course or tees (which can be any of Men's, Seniors or Ladies depending).

 

I don't maintain a handicap, nor do I plan to play in any competition (other than a casual charity outing) -- my goal now is to shoot mid-90s consistently .. on any course (from White tees or shorter) .. and counting *everything*.

 

If anyone happens to ask, I'll just say "I'm a hacker/duffer :)"

 

But just so I understand the handicap process better:

 

Let's say I've posted 20 or more rounds so then "the system" gives me a Player's Handicap...

And then..

1. Each time I play a new course or a new set of tees I get a new Course Handicap (for that course/set of tees)?

And..

2. Based on that current Course Handicap, and the scorecard rank per hole, I can - or cannot - subtract 1 stroke from my gross score on each hole?

Followed by..

4. Also based on that current Course Handicap I may be able to apply ESC to blow-up holes?

 

But one key thing I'm not clear on - shouldn't a player submit, either to his pro shop or into his app, just all the raw numbers per hole and have "the system" figure out which holes get a stroke deducted or which holes get the ESC limit?

 

PS:

I don't really "get" ESC... I think I get everything up to this point, but I mean say I always have a 10 (or, egads, worse) on some hole (or... holes...) every time I play -- I'm not clear why that should get marked down to a 7 or an 8......

(I mean I'm just not that good .. yet? .. I hope! .. but I'm flattered the USGA still says I have "potential".)

 

PPS:

Cheating aside. There will ALWAYS be some A**holes who purposely game the system.

1.  Based on your index, each course will have a Course handicap for you depending on what tees you play.  It should be posted by their GHIN computer or ask the pro.  That's the handicap you would use for comps.

2.  For net score comps and playing against others with different handicaps, you get a stroke on all holes listed as equal or harder than your handicap.  If your course handicap is 18, then you get a stroke per hole.  More than 18 HCP?  Then you get another stroke starting with the hardest holes again up to the number for your handicap.  So, for 20 HCP you get 2 strokes on the two hardest holes, and one stroke on all the others.

4.  @Kieldog posted the ESC table above and it should be posted next to the course GHIN computer.  It's not "may be able to to apply ESC", it's required by the USGA if you use GHIN.

 

PS:  Yes, you have potential!!  I am willing to bet that you don't have a 10 or worse on one particular hole all the time.  You probably have had a bogey, maybe a par or even a birdie!   The ESC is a way to eliminate those blowup holes from overly inflating a person's index because they are capable of playing those holes much better.

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I would agree that most people equate Handicap to average score. I am about a 16 handicap, I say that since I'm no longer in a league I do not keep a Ghin as I have never needed one other than in league.. the last 4 rounds I have played were 88, 103, 87, 93.. At my lowest It was a 15.2. but I do think MOST people think their handicap is the average strokes over par they shoot, and that is subjective in my opinion.. Just like driving distance I think people exaggerate for the sake of bragging rights..

 

I played league with a guy who was a 5 handicap (GHIN) yet never broke 85 in league. come to find out he only recorded his best rounds, anything over 85 was never recorded.. he admitted he wanted to show his handicap as a status symbol... WTF... LOL

Vanity Index, yikes!

 

I used to think HC was in relation to par but learned the error of my ways when first playing with a couple of guys another board about 15 yrs ago.

 

No game on the line but prior to the round when discussing HC's, they announced theirs, I said I was about a 12.

 

Well, I shot lights out and they looked at me funny asking what my HC was again.

 

"What?" I asked, "I average about 84 so 12, right?"

 

The unintentional sandbagger, I was!

 

Now I'm at 3.8 and use The Grint to track it. Average score over the last 20 rounds is an even 77. Would assume that the average would equate to a slightly lower HC as I played reasonably tough courses but I'll sure take it as-is.

 

Said "played" because a herniated disc on 6/30 has sidelined me ever since, maybe the rest of the year.

 

Phooey to Father Time! [emoji6]

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Maybe someone can clear this up for me. So I use swing x swing app it says I am a 17.3 handicap, 17+72 = 89. I've never broken 90 on a full 18 (had low 40's on 9 holes) but usually shoot around 90-93. So is the 17 my true handicap

So 17.3 is your index, not handicap. The index number is the averaged difference between the the best 10 of your last 20 scores and the course rating x 0.96. Since course ratings are quite commonly above par, and since the multiplier used is less than 1, it makes sense for your index to often be a couple of strokes below your actual handicap. At most courses a 17.3 index is a 20 or 21 course handicap. It's as your index approaches 0 that you see that index/hdcp ratio shrink down to the same number. A 0 index x 0.96 is still 0.

The reason the USGA does all this is to reflect current potential. So if you and I play a match and you're a 19 for example and I'm a 1 then you're going to get a stroke a hole from me. If we are both on form that day we should have a very tight match. The reason many course ratings are over par these days (and therefore your index and handicap being different numbers) is quite frankly because most courses built in the last 30 years are longer and more difficult than the courses that were around when the system was created.

 

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OK so I took a break from this thread when I thought I had it all figured out and understood. Now I come back to see all this index vs handicap talk with them not the same thing and I'm like:

 

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OK so I took a break from this thread when I thought I had it all figured out and understood. Now I come back to see all this index vs handicap talk with them not the same thing and I'm like:

 

giphy.gif

tim-and-eric-mind-blown.gif

 

 

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Totally me right now. I thought I had the whole handicap thing down. This handicap/index thing is disturbing...

 

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Totally me right now. I thought I had the whole handicap thing down. This handicap/index thing is disturbing...

 

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Lol it is a bit odd. But keep in mind that while course ratings have been around in some form or another for well over 100 years the system that we recognize today has only been around since about 79 or so. And the entire reason for the index and handicap differential is to account for the relative difficulty of golf courses to each other. Augusta National is a great example of a course that has gotten much longer and therefore much more difficult for the scratch amateur in the last 30 years. Its course rating (if they even allow such things) would have been going up as it got longer and longer.

 

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Augusta National is a great example of a course that has gotten much longer and therefore much more difficult for the scratch amateur in the last 30 years. Its course rating (if they even allow such things) would have been going up as it got longer and longer.

 

I'm sure they have Course and Slope ratings, the members almost certainly establish USGA handicaps.  And yes, I'm sure that the Course Rating has gone up with the increased length.  On the other hand, the "bogey golfer" rating may not have changed any more than the "scratch" rating, and if the difference is still the same, the Slope Rating may not have changed at all.  I don't know that this is true, just postulating.

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I'm sure they have Course and Slope ratings, the members almost certainly establish USGA handicaps. And yes, I'm sure that the Course Rating has gone up with the increased length. On the other hand, the "bogey golfer" rating may not have changed any more than the "scratch" rating, and if the difference is still the same, the Slope Rating may not have changed at all. I don't know that this is true, just postulating.

According to this link https://www.thoughtco.com/course-rating-and-slope-rating-of-augusta-national-1564589 Augusta truly has no official slope or rating because they've never asked for one. That's hardly surprising. What is surprising is that in the unofficial ones created some 30 years apart the rating has gone up drastically but the slope has dropped a bit.

 

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