Most things in golf are based on eighteen holes. Most golf courses have eighteen holes, professional golf rounds are eighteen holes, and an official handicap is established based on eighteen hole rounds.
Golfing eighteen holes presents many challenges.
Finding the time is probably the biggest challenge for many of us. A round of eighteen holes typically takes four or even five hours to play. Slow play is a real problem in golf. Many new golfers lack proper etiquette and simply take to long to play. Searching too long for lost balls and not playing “ready” golf are two of the biggest problems. It only takes one slow group on the course to really slow down play. Committing four plus hours with our busy lives is at many times difficult.
It is much easier to find the two to two and a half hours for nine holes. This is especially true if you work during the day and want to squeeze in a round after work. Courses are less crowded on weekdays than they are on the weekends and summer evenings are a great time for golf.
Endurance to golf eighteen holes effectively is another challenge for many golfers. Many beginner golfers will get physically and mentally tired before the end of eighteen holes. This leads to miss hits and frustration. Walking, stretching, and core strengthening will all help you build up the stamina for 18 holes. Until you get there, it’s many times just easier to golf nine holes.
You may want to establish a handicap. Unless you’re planning to play in official tournaments, and if you’re a beginner you’re probably not, there’s no need for an official USGA or R&A handicap. Most courses will help you establish a local course handicap and this can easily be done by using nine hole rounds.
You can even establish a compliant course handicap by yourself by using one of several apps. Here at Shooting 90 we recommend using TheGrint to create your handicap and track your stats.
Even if you still want an official handicap, you can still combine nine hole rounds to establish one.
Golfing is a game that is meant to be fun and there’s nothing wrong with golfing nine hole rounds when you can’t do eighteen.