In golf, the most common way to measure your performance against other players is through handicaps. If there is your friend that plays golf then his first question to you will most probably be about handicap.
It is a dead easy giveaway of the performance of a person. So, it is really important to know about handicap and how you can lower it.
This means of measuring a person’s performance based upon their handicap has been going on for quite a lot of years. The handicap system is also monitored by the United States Golf Association so that this system is fair for every type of player.
If you’ve ever wondered that is your handicap level good or not, then you are at the right place. So, what is a good golf handicap?
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Good Golf Handicap:
If we keep it short, then a good golf handicap is basically ten or less. A player that has a handicap of about 10 will shoot around 82 and that is pretty solid. You should know that it is better than the average golfer but not good enough for the professional level. You won’t be considered a scratch player if you have a handicap of less than 10. But it definitely means that you are able to play on any type of course without any problems.
All of the players that have a handicap of less than 10, shoot around the 70s. Basically, they are good enough for tournaments as well and will do good enough. Most of the people with a handicap of less than 10 play very consistently with only a few mishits. The performance level of a golfer also depends upon the people he is up against. If you are only playing with beginners and you are shooting in the 80s, then you will be considered really good.
Handicap is basically classified into three categories:
A player with a high handicap means that he is a beginner but sometimes this might not be true. There aren’t any official specifications on the basis of which you will be granted a certain handicap. But over the years, golfers have managed to come up with different ranges. You should keep in mind that according to the USGA, there is no rule or documentation that defines the different handicap levels.
High Handicap: (18 & Above)
There is a very common termed used in golf known as bogey golfers. You must’ve heard it somewhere. A bogey player is a type who can bogey on all of the 18 holes and they usually end up with a number that is somewhere in the 90s. These are what we call as the average golfers. If you are right on this line then you will be considered a mid-handicapper or just average. But if you are hitting more bogeys then you will definitely fall into the realm of high-handicappers.
Beginners are the most common type of players that are present in the high handicap range. This is due to their lack of experience in the game. Golf is a game that requires a lot of time and practice. Beginners don’t have their scores low enough as they have less experience. A lot of people in this range don’t play golf that much. They might play golf only three times a year. This is because golf is not that important to them and they just play for fun.
There are a lot of people that have been playing for their entire lives but only dream of shooting par. Some people just aren’t good at a game. A lot of high-handicappers need a lot of work if they are looking to improve their game. Focusing on short games and accuracy is the key to success. If they are accurate in their shots then they will shoot much fewer bogeys. For every golfer, the most basic thing is to hit the golf ball in the fairway.
Like any other game, you can lower your score through constant practice and determination. If you start hitting the fairway more often then it means that you are on the right track. A lot of high-handicappers see a lot of improvement in their handicap when they start to improve their short game. Also, you can read the review of what are the best irons for high handicappers.
Mid Handicap: (8 – 17)
An average golfer generally falls into the mid handicap range. These are the type of players that practice their game and have the right equipment as well but just aren’t on that level. One thing about the mid handicappers is that they are much more consistent in shooting par than the high handicappers. The common type of struggle for mid handicappers is making up for their bogeys. You need enough birdies but the average golfer is just unable to do it.
A person who is a mid-handicapper will always have some sort of weakness in their game. There are a lot of people that fear that they might hit a chip shot. Some struggle when playing with long irons and there are others who are constantly hitting slices for no reason. Regardless of the mistakes being made in the game, their scores always rack above 80 which makes them a mid-handicapper.
Low Handicap: (7 & Below)
If you have your golf game figured out then you will probably fall into the category of low handicappers. You should keep in mind that even these players might not it make to the PGA tour. But they have a really good know-how of the game and play really well in every course. The most obvious thing in a game played by a low handicap player is that they play very clean. They don’t make the obvious mistakes of a high handicapped player.
Even if they make a mistake, then they will easily recover it within the next 2 holes. A low handicap player is the one who will hit a bogey and then follow it up with a birdie to recover it. The best quality in them is that they know how to recover a shot. This quality drastically impacts their scores. Most of the low handicap players play from afar tee which helps them in scoring better.
While most of the average players tend to play on easier courses, a low handicap player will more than not choose a hard course. By playing on a harder course, they can finetune their shots much better and get better at the game. It is in the little things that set apart a low handicap player from a high handicap one.
The thing that you will notice a lot is that most of the low handicap players had spent a lot of time in the average handicap range. This is because they have played for years and then improved themselves to be able to play in the low handicap range. Practice and patience is the only thing that will keep you among the low handicappers.
Lowering the Handicap:
So, how do you lower your handicap? The most common advice given is to work on the short game if you want to lower your handicap. Most of the high-handicappers struggle with getting the ball to the green. This is the thing that you need to work on. And when you are able to consistently hit the green, you will see an improvement in your handicap.
The other thing that you should do is to practice with a lot of different courses and clubs. Don’t limit yourself to only choose a single type of club. In golf, there are clubs for different situations. You should make yourself comfortable with every golf club so that you can easily tackle a tricky situation. Having confidence in yourself is extremely important in a game like golf. You should be confident in your game and that you will do good no matter the situation.
Average Golf Handicap:
Based upon research, the average golf handicap is around about 15. But you should know that the actual handicap score might be higher than 15 as there are a lot of people that don’t properly follow the handicap system. In order to get the actual average golf handicap, it would require every golfer, to be honest about their performance. That is just not possible.
A player with a good handicap doesn’t necessarily make him a good golfer. There are a lot of men/women that aren’t able to hit the ball at extreme distances. They struggle a lot with keeping the strokes as low as possible but yet you will be fascinated by their game. As a golfer, what is a good handicap should be a thing that you constantly think of. You should try to challenge yourself and play on hard courses and experiment with different clubs.
In the end, you should only use the handicap system as a way to make sure that you are hitting the right number of strokes. The worst thing would be to define yourself as a golfer through the handicap system. Just focus on your game, give it time and you’ll do good.