The sport of golf is one of the world's oldest and greatest games. There are countless golf champions going back decades who have helped shape the sport into what it is today. Golf is a fantastic sport that combines patience, thought, and instinct along with athletic ability. Golf is one of the most challenging sports to learn yet is also a sport that can be played into old age. For this reason, golf is one of the most popular sports among people of all ages and backgrounds. Those who are looking to pick up the sport of golf will need to become familiar with some of the terms used on the course.
Common Terms Used in Golf Scoring
Below are some of the most common terms used in golf scoring. Some of the most common terms employed include:
Par: Par is considered the average number of strokes it should take to put the ball in the hole. There are three common "pars" in golf. They are par 3 holes, par 4 holes, and par 5 holes. As the "par" increases, the length of the hole increases as well. Par 3 holes might be less than 200 yards from the pin whereas par 5 holes might be 500 yards or more from the pin.
Under Par: This term can be employed either for a single hole or across an entire round. If someone is "under par," they have taken fewer strokes than average to complete either the hole or the round. This is a good score.
Over Par: In contrast, if someone is over par, they have taken more strokes than average to complete either the hole or the round.
Birdie: If someone scores a "birdie" on a hole, they have taken one stroke less than average to complete the hole. For example, a birdie on a par 3 hole would be completing the hole in two strokes. A birdie on a par 5 hole would entail completing the hole in 4 strokes.
Bogey: In contrast, a bogey means the individual has taken one stroke more than average to complete the hole. A bogey on a par 4 hole would mean a score of 5. Furthermore, there are also double bogeys (two strokes over par), triple bogeys (three strokes over par), and quadruple bogeys (4 strokes over par). In some scoring systems, 7 strokes is the maximum score on a given hole.
Eagle: An eagle means putting the ball in the hole in two fewer strokes than par. For example, an eagle on a par 5 hole would be a score of 3. There is also a double eagle, which means taking three fewer strokes than par to finish the hole. This would be a score of 2 on a par 5.
Hole in One: This means putting the ball in the cup from the tee. This is almost solely seen on par 3 holes, where someone can easily reach the green from the pin.
Greens in Regulation: This is an advanced scoring term used to define someone's skill at reaching the green. A "green in regulation" means putting the ball on the green with two puts to complete the hole and still make par. For example, a "green in regulation" on a par 4 means reaching the green in two shots.
Fairways Made: Making the fairway means placing the ball in the fairway off the tee. This means avoiding the rough or out of bounds areas.
Scrambling: Scrambling refers to making par even when missing a regulation green. For example, "scrambling" on a par 4 might mean reaching the green with the third shot, then making par on the ensuing putt.
Three-Putt: This means taking three putts to put the ball in the cup after reaching the green. In general, players look to complete the hole with only one or two putts.
Chip-In: A chip-in means putting the ball in the cup using a wedge. This might happen from chipping from the fairway or from the sand bunker.
Penalty Stroke: A penalty stroke is a stroke applied to someone's score for a rule violation. This might mean taking a practice swing in a sand bunker (not allowed) or misplacing the ball when using a ball marker.