What is a Handicap in Golf?

If you are new to golf, you may have heard the term “handicap” and wondered what it means. A handicap is a numerical representation of a golfer’s average performance compared to the course they are playing on. It is used to ensure that every golfer has an equal chance of winning regardless of their level of experience or skill. Let’s explore what a handicap is and how it works in more detail. Learn What is a Handicap in Golf?


What is a Handicap in Golf?

What Is A Golf Handicap?

A golf handicap is an index that measures a golfer’s potential ability based on their previous scores. This number is then used to adjust the scores of each player during the game to make it fair for all participants – regardless of their level of experience or skill. Basically, if two players have different handicaps, the lower-handicapped player will receive strokes from the higher-handicapped player as part of the game. This helps even out the playing field so that everyone has an equal chance at winning.

How Is Your Handicap Calculated?

Your golf handicap is calculated by taking your average score over a set period, usually between 10 and 20 rounds, and then subtracting from it your course rating (the number representing how difficult or easy a certain course is). The resulting number will be your handicap index – this is essentially your “average” score compared to par on any given course. This number can vary depending on which courses you play, as each one has its own difficulty rating.

Using Your Handicap During Play

When playing with a group of people with different handicaps, all players should look up their Course Handicap before beginning play – this is simply your personal handicap adjusted for the specific course being played. The Course Handicaps are used to determine how many strokes each player should get per hole; typically the lower-handicapped players will get fewer strokes than those with higher-handicaps. Once all players have received their strokes, each can then compete against one another using equalized scores and everyone has an equal opportunity for success!


Golfing can be an intimidating sport for newcomers due to its complex rules and regulations – but understanding the basics behind golf handicaps doesn’t have to be complicated! A golf handicap is essentially a system designed to give all participants an equal chance at victory regardless of skill level or experience – making golf enjoyable for everyone involved! With some practice calculating your own personal Course Handicaps before games begin, you’ll soon find yourself competing alongside more experienced players with ease!

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