Archive for the ‘Golf Statistics’ Category

Junior Golf: Interpreting Stats

In this Friday Flop Shot we will continue looking at your daughter’s stats and what they mean. How can the 2 of you understand what’s going on with her golf game and how can you help her lower her scores?image

Statistics are everywhere. They are commonly misstated or manipulated to show a desired outcome rather than the genuine results. Keeping that in mind, know that the stats on your daughter’s scorecard are very matter-of-fact and Mom and Dad, even for you it would be hard to misrepresent what they show.

Yes, the most important number in stroke/metal play is the score and in match play, it’s the number of holes won. The other data on the card reflect her strengths and weaknesses during a round and when you look at several scorecards together, you may very well identify a trend. (

Let’s say your daughter has averaged hitting 7 out of 14 fairways for 3 consecutive rounds. This needs improvement and the number needs to be at least in double digits, maybe 10 minimum. The question is, why does she miss fairways? Does she miss on 1 side or does she miss both right and left? When you can answer that it’s time to get with her swing coach. (photo

GIR, Greens In Regulation, is a little different in that more clubs are used and distances are varied and sight pictures can be intimidating. On an approach shot if your daughter struck the ball well, why wasn’t the ball on the green? Wrong club, crazy bounce, misalignment, be aware. You would like for her to be hitting at least 50% of the greens.image

Ideally with chips and putts you want to see 1 chip and 0 putts, meaning a chip-in or 1 chip and 1 putt meaning an up-and-down. When either of these is out of a sand trap I put an S next to the 1 in the chip box. If your daughter has more of 1 chip and 2 or even 3 putts, then she needs to work on her chipping. Chips from around the green should be 3 feet or less. Thus improved chipping also improves putting. Golf tournaments are won around the greens and making up-and-downs is seriously important.

In our previous post S3’s scorecard had a little bit of everything in what was frankly a fun round to watch. And he had 31 putts which is a lot particularly when you consider his 18-hole score was 1-over par 73. The pros average number of putts is usually in the mid-20’s. So if your girl averages 27 putts or 1.5 putts per hole for 18 holes, that is very acceptable. Getting up around 30 putts is not good and being less than 27 putts is very good!

What do you see on these scorecards? What part of her game is most in need of extra work? The stats will show you. Get with her swing coach and make a plan.

See you on #1 tee statistically speaking… Sam

Junior Golf: Keeping Stats

In this Wednesday Waggle we will look at keeping stats for your son. Statistics are a big part of golf and the pros keep stats on everything you can imagine and things you would never imagine! (

We’re keeping this simple. Why are these numbers important? After a round of golf it’s common for the details to blur. With some easy statistical help your son’s play and his strengths and weaknesses during the round become apparent. Again, with input from S3’s longtime swing coach, PGA Professional, Tim Harford, we came up with a structure to mark S3’s, and anyone else’s scorecards to give a good snapshot of what happened during the round.

Here is an actual scorecard from 1 of S3’s college tournament rounds at The Tribute at The Colony, a wonderful links course north of Dallas, Texas. Let me explain how to read it. Notice that hole 16 has 2 little teepee marks at the top. I put those there to mark the hole he starts on, so he began this round on #16. We use 7 lines: Name (score for each hole), Fairways (hit), Greens (in regulation), Chips, Putts, 1 line for +- on each hole and 1 line for +- cumulative for each 3-hole group.image

So what do we see here. Line 1 shows us a very good score of 73 with a double-bogey, 3 bogeys combined with 4-birdies and 10 pars. And there were 3 3-putts in this 73 so S3 had a very nice round. He hit 13 of 14 fairways. He hit 12 of 18 greens, the -1 on #13 means he was on the green in 1 stroke less than regulation, in other words, he drove the green. He had 6 chips which included 3-up and downs and 1 chip-in for a birdie. And 31 putts which is a lot.

The scorecard shows us that 93% fairways hit is a tremendous percentage (#1 on the PGA Tour is 74.56%, Thomas Aiken in 29 rounds). So A+ for fairways. 66.67% for greens in regulation (#1 on the PGA Tour is 75.12%, Bubba Watson in 23 rounds), S3’s 66.67% would be about tied for #80, so a C for GIR. Chipping and putting were inconsistent with some great shots, some decent shots and some poor shots. Frankly, perhaps the biggest revelation within this scorecard is that S3 had a couple of stretches where he could have let this round get away from him but he kept his cool and continued to grind out a 1-over par round. And look at that finish, his last 3 holes, #13, #14 and #15! Talk about finishing strong, he was 2-under par for those final 3 holes! That’s how to finish a round of golf!

The last 2 lines, the +- lines help complete the overall snapshot of the round. The 1st +- line makes it easy to see pars, birdies and bogeys. The – sign by itself is really a dash denoting a par, -1 is a birdie and +1 is a bogey. This line is a quick way to see and count up pars, birdies and bogeys. The 2nd line is the cumulative even, under par or over par for that 3-hole stretch. I circle the number on the 3rd hole of each 3-hole stretch so you can easily see where the whole round is heading. By adding up each of the 6 circled numbers and adding them to the course 18-hole par of 72, you come up with a quick way to total the score. So, in order of holes played, beginning on #16, the 3-hole circled totals are -1, +1, +1, –, +2, -2, totalling 73, 1-over par.

This is really more simple than it appears. The challenge is to record consistently, at least every couple of strokes. It’s easier to mark the scorecard as he hits his shots than to try to play catch up after the round is over.

See you on #1 tee ready to see you stats… Sam

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