Posting Scores

Screen Shot 2013-04-23 at 2.31.13 PMTo earn a USGA Handicap Index, a player must report all scores for all 18-hole rounds during the official season when at least 13 holes of an 18-hole round are completed (or 7 holes for nine-hole rounds) and for nine-hole rounds, both home and away, played in either match or stroke play. Accurate and faithful score reporting are the most important parts of a sound handicap system.

Equitable Stroke Control

All scores for handicap purposes, including tournament scores, are subject to the application of Equitable Stroke Control (ESC). This mandatory procedure reduces high hole scores for handicap purposes in order to make handicaps more representative of a player’s potential ability.

A handicap determined from scores to which ESC has not been applied may not be termed a Handicap Index.

ESC is used when a player’s actual or most likely score exceeds a maximum number, based on the table below, for the player’s Course Handicap from the tees played.

Equitable Stroke Control

Course HandicapMaximum Number on Any Hole
9 or lessDouble Bogey
10 to 197
20 to 298
30 to 399
40 or more10
Example: A player with a Course Handicap of 6 has a maximum number of par plus two strokes (double bogey) for any hole. A player with a Course Handicap of 13 has a maximum number of 7 for any hole regardless of par. A player with a Course Handicap of 42 has a maximum number of 10 for any hole.

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