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How to Calculate Your Golf Handicap

You can't really know how good a golfer you are unless you know your handicap. Follow these steps to figure out how you measure up to the pros.


  • Step 1: Figure adjusted gross score Figure your adjusted gross score from your last 5 to 20 rounds of 18-hole golf. Your adjusted gross score is your gross score adjusted for unfinished holes, conceded strokes, and holes not played.
  • TIP: The United States Golf Association requires a minimum of 12 scores to be submitted in order to calculate a golfer's handicap.
  • Step 2: Subtract the course rating Subtract the course rating from your adjusted gross score from each round to find the differentials. The course rating can be found on the scorecard and is given in decimal form. For example, Pebble Beach Golf Links in California has a course rating of 75.5.
  • Step 3: Divide the differentials by the slope Divide the differentials by the course's slope, also typically found on the scorecard, and multiply the quotients by 113. These products are called the adjusted differentials.
  • TIP: If the course rating and slope are not printed on the scorecard, you can call the course to get the numbers.
  • Step 4: Multiply adjusted differential Multiply your lowest adjusted differential by 96 percent, or 0.96. This final product is your handicap.
  • FACT: Tiger Woods won his first U.S. Open title at Pebble Beach in June 2000.

You Will Need

  • Golf scores
  • Course rating
  • Course slope
  • Calculator

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