Stroke Play Scoring

Stroke play is the most common way for keeping score in golf.  Every shot that a player takes counts as a stroke, and all strokes (including penalties) are added up over the 18 holes to calculate a score.  In stroke play, it is very common to apply a golfer’s Handicap Index when calculating a score when money is on the line.

 

# of players Single or Team play Uses Handicap?
players teams hcp
1+ Both Yes or No

 

THE RULES

  • Every stroke a player takes counts towards the overall score.
  • Any penalty strokes are added to the score and the number of strokes are added up over the 18 holes.
  • “Net scores” take the player’s Handicap Index into account, whereas “Gross scores” do not.

EXAMPLE

SCORES
Hole 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Out
Handicap 11 5 17 9 1 15 13 7 3
Phil (Gross Score) 4 5 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 40
Phil (Net Score) 3 4* 3 3 3* 5 4 4 4* 37
  • Phil has a Handicap Index of 5.0 and is playing a round of golf.
  • Phil will receive 1 for each hole on the 1-5 handicap holes.
  • In the example above, Phil would receive a stroke on holes 2, 5, and 9.  He would also receive 2 strokes on the back 9, on the #2 and #4 handicap holes.
  • Phil shoots a 40 (including penalty stokes) for the front 9.
  • Phil’s gross score for the front 9 is 40, and his net score for the front 9 is 37.