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Another Handicap question


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This is just curiosity really. I know that golfers want to get their handicap as low as possible and I have met quite a few that do not turn in their bad scores because it will make their handicap go up and they like telling people that they have a low hc. I also have known some who don't turn in their low scores for the opposite reason. My question is how do you play the course generally? Do you play from the tips, improve your lie in fairway only, improve your lie everywhere, play the ball down everywhere. I'm thinking about starting to play from the tips and ball down everywhere and I know my hc will go up but it will make me a better ball striker and a better course manager. Opinions?
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This is just curiosity really. I know that golfers want to get their handicap as low as possible and I have met quite a few that do not turn in their bad scores because it will make their handicap go up and they like telling people that they have a low hc. I also have known some who don't turn in their low scores for the opposite reason. My question is how do you play the course generally? Do you play from the tips, improve your lie in fairway only, improve your lie everywhere, play the ball down everywhere. I'm thinking about starting to play from the tips and ball down everywhere and I know my hc will go up but it will make me a better ball striker and a better course manager. Opinions?

You should turn in every score no matter what. A bad score won't count anyway, so I've never understood why someone wouldn't want to post it. I always play the ball down unless the course is extremely wet (I lift, clean, and place). As for playing from the tips, the increased CR/slope from those tees "should" negate any increase in your handicap you'd expect to see. The way the ratings are set up, you should have similar handicap differentials from each set of tees. This isn't always the case though because different tees hurt/help different players depending on what their strengths/weaknesses are. For me, distance isn't a problem and I'm comfortable hitting long irons/hybrid; because of this I usually have lower differentials when I play form the tips as opposed to shorter tees.
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HC may go down playing the tips, it depends on how you play. The course will be rated higher from the tips, so shooting the same score will net a lower handicap.

I play from the tips, play the ball as it lies but if it gets mud on it or plugs I'll clean it off. I don't roll the ball on the fairway or anything, but again if it gets mud on it I'll clean it off. I also won't hit the ball off a root or something that might hurt me or the club, but I don't improve my position. That's really about it. I try to play exactly by the rules but in some cases I make exceptions when practicing (but not to lower my score). Also, I post all scores regardless of how I played.
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I'm thinking about starting to play from the tips and ball down everywhere and I know my hc will go up but it will make me a better ball striker and a better course manager. Opinions?

One should always play the ball down – that’s how golf is played. Unless, of course, one is justified by a ruling to declare that the ball is situated in an unplayable lie.

On a side note; and don’t go nuts when I write this, but by admitting to improving your lie you’re also admitting that you are not really playing to a six… right.
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On a side note; and don’t go nuts when I write this, but by admitting to improving your lie you’re also admitting that you are not really playing to a six… right.

Yeah, Tempo, you're not a 6 if you've been cheating. I don't care if you play the tips or not, but how are you not playing the ball down while shooting in the 70s?

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One should always play the ball down – that’s how golf is played. Unless, of course, one is justified by a ruling to declare that the ball is situated in an unplayable lie.

I see your point, I play in mainly scrambles and a few local tournaments and I play the ball down if the situation calls for it. But most of the time, it does not. Some of the courses that I play are not quite "high quality" courses and a person would have lies in the middle of the fairway that would be considered ground under repair at a tournament setting but it won't be marked as such. I think what I'll start doing in those situations is use common sense and take a drop if I find myself in a "pot hole" in the middle of the fairway.

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One should always play the ball down – that’s how golf is played. Unless, of course, one is justified by a ruling to declare that the ball is situated in an unplayable lie.

This topic always brings out the Rules of Golf Talons of Justice around here. 1) I have not turned in scores before, but it was a decision I made before the round and stuck to, for better or for worse. 2) I want to punch people in the face who improve their lie for no reason. Just learn to play deep rough, hardpan, etc. 3) I'm not entirely sure why some courses have 29 sets of tees. Except for some nuances, playing different tees should yield the same net score. I don't play the tips usually , mostly because my friends who play don't want to play from more than 6200 yards & don't have any clue what their handicaps are or how it works. Completely fine by me.
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we play too many gambling games to turn in actual cards so if we are out of a hole, we just pick up. Since we gamble, we play it down and by the rules. We are a little lax with rocky areas since we don't want to tear up a club for a couple of bucks. The guys I play with don't want a real handicap so they have a chance to win in the second flight is money two-man tournaments. If they were on their own, playing their ball all the way out, they can't score worth a flip, but they can make 5 or 6 birdies.
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3) I'm not entirely sure why some courses have 29 sets of tees. Except for some nuances, playing different tees should yield the same net score. I don't play the tips

I like it when courses provide a lot of tee options. We need to get away from the notion that men play from one set, women, seniors from another, and finally the pro tees or tips. That's the way it was when I started playing as a kid and that way envokes the golfer's ego into the equation rather than focusing on skill level. Which is what choosing a tee should be about

: each golfer's individual skill level. It's pretty sad when you watch someone struggling when there are tees forward of where they are playing that would help them and make their round a bit more enjoyable. But good luck trying to convince them that they should be playing from the red "women's" tees while the rest of their group plays back.
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I play from the tips, play the ball as it lies but if it gets mud on it or plugs I'll clean it off. I don't roll the ball on the fairway or anything, but again if it gets mud on it I'll clean it off. I also won't hit the ball off a root or something that might hurt me or the club, but I don't improve my position. That's really about it. I try to play exactly by the rules but in some cases I make exceptions when practicing (but not to lower my score). Also, I post all scores regardless of how I played.

You get mud on the ball, play it unless there is something in the rules that allows you to clean it like being in casual water or if the ball is embedded or if preferred lies are in place due to extreme wetness. Your ball is on a root and you don't want to play it then you take an unplayable lie and a 1 stroke penalty.

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You get mud on the ball, play it unless there is something in the rules that allows you to clean it like being in casual water or if the ball is embedded or if preferred lies are in place due to extreme wetness. Your ball is on a root and you don't want to play it then you take an unplayable lie and a 1 stroke penalty.

If possible, I will just give it an easy tap to get the ball somewhere more playable, and of course count that as a stroke. Sometimes you can get a little closer to the hole. I am also not familiar enough with the rules to know what to do in that situation or how many strokes to count that as, so giving the ball a tap is a no brainer for me.

So, just for clarification for future use for myself, in this situation, ball is sitting between a couple tree roots and it's impossible to get a club to it, you can pull it out and place it anywhere no closer to the hole? Or does the ball have to be dropped within X club lengths of that lie? Or what?
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If possible, I will just give it an easy tap to get the ball somewhere more playable, and of course count that as a stroke. Sometimes you can get a little closer to the hole. I am also not familiar enough with the rules to know what to do in that situation or how many strokes to count that as, so giving the ball a tap is a no brainer for me.

I don't know the rule number (and am too lazy to look it up), but with an Unplayable Lie you draw a line from the hole to where you ball is and then drop anywhere along that line no closer to the hole. If you wanted to, you could go back a couple hundred yards to take your drop, and it is legal as long as you stay on the line. If I remember correctly someone did this during the British Open and when all the way back into the adjacent hole's fairway. Edit: I looked up Unplayable Lie (Rule 28):
The player may deem his ball unplayable at any place on the course, except when the ball is in a water hazard. The player is the sole judge as to whether his ball is unplayable. If the player deems his ball to be unplayable, he must, under penalty of one stroke: a. Play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5); or b. Drop a ball behind the point where the ball lay, keeping that point directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind that point the ball may be dropped; or c. Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole. If the unplayable ball is in a bunker, the player may proceed under Clause a, b or c. If he elects to proceed under Clause b or c, a ball must be dropped in the bunker. When proceeding under this Rule, the player may lift and clean his ball or substitute a ball.

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So, just for clarification for future use for myself, in this situation, ball is sitting between a couple tree roots and it's impossible to get a club to it, you can pull it out and place it anywhere no closer to the hole? Or does the ball have to be dropped within X club lengths of that lie? Or what?

http://www.usga.org/Rule-Books/Rules-of-Golf/Rule-28/ Rule 28. Ball Unplayable Definitions All defined terms are in italics and are listed alphabetically in the Definitions section. The player may deem his ball unplayable at any place on the course, except when the ball is in a water hazard. The player is the sole judge as to whether his ball is unplayable. If the player deems his ball to be unplayable, he must, under penalty of one stroke: a. Play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5); or b. Drop a ball behind the point where the ball lay, keeping that point directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind that point the ball may be dropped; or c. Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole. If the unplayable ball is in a bunker, the player may proceed under Clause a, b or c. If he elects to proceed under Clause b or c, a ball must be dropped in the bunker. When proceeding under this Rule, the player may lift and clean his ball or substitute a ball. Penalty for Breach of Rule: Match play - Loss of hole; Stroke play - Two strokes.
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well... when playing to turn in my score i play it as it lies everywhere. if im going out with friends i usually have a few beers in me and just have fun because most of em are gonna shoot a way higher score than me even with gimmes
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... I play in mainly scrambles and a few local tournaments and I play the ball down if the situation calls for it. But most of the time, it does not.

What game are you playing where "most of the time" the situation does not call for playing the ball down?

Learn to accept the course as you find it and play the ball as it lies. It will make you a better golfer.
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This is just curiosity really. I know that golfers want to get their handicap as low as possible and I have met quite a few that do not turn in their bad scores because it will make their handicap go up and they like telling people that they have a low hc. I also have known some who don't turn in their low scores for the opposite reason. My question is how do you play the course generally? Do you play from the tips, improve your lie in fairway only, improve your lie everywhere, play the ball down everywhere. I'm thinking about starting to play from the tips and ball down everywhere and I know my hc will go up but it will make me a better ball striker and a better course manager. Opinions?

I suggest always playing the ball down, unless preferred lies are in effect. Note that it isn't you, or the guys you find at the first tee, that decide whether or not they're in effect. As for the choice of tees, do whatever you like. Theoretically, the choice of tees should affect your score, but not your handicap.
You should turn in every score no matter what. A bad score won't count anyway, so I've never understood why someone wouldn't want to post it.

I can't wait to turn in a good score, but a bad score I'm not as eager. I still turn them all in, though. The issue is if someone knows that 20 rounds ago was a score being used in his differential, and then he makes a bad round (or just a worse differential).

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.....

ChiefBroom , on the other hand, likes lots of tee options. -------- I got a coffeetable book on sale for $5, called Nicklaus by Design . In it, Jack talks about building golf courses, and his changed view on how many sets of tee boxes to have. He says if you have six sets of tees, men always feel obligated to play one or two sets too far back for their ability. This, he says, leads to frustration and slow play. He now goes with three sets for the most part. Example: He built The Bear's Club with 7,200 yds. from the pro tees, 6,500 yds. from the member tees (--didn't mention women's distance).
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