Long and Short-Game Handicaps

There’s an interesting article in the May 2006 issue of Golf Digest that discusses a method of determining a long-game and a short-game handicap.

Essentially, it will pinpoint the area of your game that needs the most work.

It’s pretty easy to calculate. The necessary information to keep track of is:

  • Greens in Regulation
  • Long game strokes (ie: shots from 50 yards away or more)
  • Your total score

You also need to know your course rating and slope.

I’d go into detail about how everything is determined but it’s pretty boring unless you’re a stat guy (like me). I kind of laughed at my results but based on my stats so far I guess I can’t be too surprised…

Basically, through two rounds I have a long-game handicap of 5 but a short game handicap of +1!!!

I have a better than scratch short-game!!!

Well, not so fast bucko!

The system is definitely flawed, as it doesn’t take into account the fact that I missed about three or four greens by a yard or so – that obviously affects my putting and GIR stats and makes me look like a ball-striking sieve and a short game superstar.

I’m neither of those things and likely fall somewhere in-between.

I’ll keep monitoring these stats though as I build up more rounds. It’s definitely an interesting little tool.

If anyone out there is interested in me posting the formula, let me know and I’ll throw it up in a future post.

I was able to somehow get around in a 75 on Sunday this past weekend after struggling most of the day with my ball striking. I shot a 41 on the front and came in with a phenomenal 2 under 34 on the back to save the round, making three birdies on the inward half.

That’s two subpar nines already this year!

My putting stats are crazy-good right now but I’m not really making anything of consequence; again, this is likely a product of just missing greens in regulation and having the shots from the fringe not count as official putts.

I’m just happy that I’m finding a way to score so well without my ‘A-game’. It’s a good confidence builder, that’s for sure.

Matt Bosela

Proud Canadian | Golf Architecture and Travel Aficionado


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