Re: whats a good handicap?
Originally Posted by jerrywilkin
As others have stated, that's not true, but I suspect your statements stem from a simple misunderstanding of the definition of a handicap. You seem to think it's what you might shoot in the worst possible conditions (e.g., under tournament pressure, on a championship course, etc...), but it's actually the opposite: It's the best score that you are capable of shooting if you play to your full potential on any given day. Addressing each of your items:
until they play in at least one tournament where you are required to play golf according to all the usga rules...
You don't have to be in a tournament to play by the USGA rules. Anyone who keeps a handicap is already doing that. (If they're not, then of course their HC won't be accurate, but if you play by the rules then you *can* know your true handicap.)
play from the correct tees...
Tees have different slopes and ratings that will theoretically produce the same differential regardless of which ones you play from.
Obviously. But again, anyone can do that, they don't have to be in a tournament or on a championship course.
No, again there's nothing special about being in a tournament or in any competition that makes you more likely to shoot your handicap, by the definition of handicap.
on a championship caliber course...
The championship courses are rated by the same governing body that rates your home course, so your handicap wouldn't be any more accurate on the former.
What you score when you are out with your buddies on your home course should not be even considered to set your "real" handicap.
Again, that's incorrect. As long as you are playing by the USGA rules, it doesn't matter where you play or who you're playing with - the scores you post will be your "real" handicap, by its very definition.