WHS: Course & Playing Handicaps

Course Handicap

  • Course Handicap is the number of handicap strokes a player receives before Handicap Allowances, on a specific course and from a specific set of tees, as determined by the Slope Rating  [1]

  • There are Conversion Charts on display in the clubhouse where you can look up your Course Handicap  [2]

  • It is Course Handicap that is used to determine Net Par and Net Double Bogey adjustments in calculating Adjusted Gross Scores and in assessing scores for Unplayed Holes.

A player's Course Handicap is determined by multiplying their Handicap Index by the the Slope Rating, dividing by the neutral Slope Rating of 113 and rounding to the nearest whole number.

For example, from the White tees at Mapperley: the Course Handicap of a player with a 20.1 Handicap Index is calculated as:

Course Handicap  =  20.1 x ( 127 / 113 )  =  22.6 (23)

The following Conversion Charts mean that you won't need to do the calculations yourself!

White tees (long)      White tees (short)

Yellow tees (long)      Yellow tees (short)

Red tees (Men)      Red tees (Women)


Handicap Allowance

Playing Handicap

  • Playing Handicap is the Course Handicap adjusted for any Handicap Allowance. It represents the actual number of strokes the player gives or receives for the round being played. The calculation shown in [4] uses the exact Course Handicap (to the nearest 0.1). In England the rounded Course Handicap to the nearest whole number is used.

  • It is Playing Handicap that is used to determine Competition Results.

  • Click Terms of the Competition: Appendix G to view a look-up table of Playing Handicaps for the more commonly used formats of play.


The Process

  • Before starting a round of golf the player must register their intention to enter a Competition or submit a General Play Score and establish their Course Handicap and Playing Handicap for the particular set of tees being used.

  • Scores must be submitted as soon as possible after the round and before midnight on the day of playing, which is when their Handicap index will be re-calculated  [5] [6]

9 Hole Handicaps

When submitting a 9 hole score:

  • 9 hole Course Handicap = [ Handicap Index / 2 ]  x  [ 9 hole Slope Rating / 113 ]  +  [ 9 hole Course Rating - 9 hole Par

  • 9 hole Playing Handicap = [ 9 hole Course Handicap ]  x  [ Handicap Allowance ]
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