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clearwaterms

I think golf is more fun when I don't keep score.

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I play golf to relax.  I have ambitions of getting better, but never to play competitively.  I don't like to play for money, and find that if I am not keeping score, I don't have to justify taking the 3' gimmie for bogey, or moving the ball away from the tree to prevent the possability of damaging a club, etc.  That being said, I find golf to be much more fun when I don't keep score.  At the end of the round, I might reflect back on how many holes I shot par or better, or a certain fantastic shot.  I just think it is way easier to forget the blow up holes when you don't have a written record of them.

Somebody once told me, how do you know if you are getting better if you don't keep score.  To which I respond.  Sure, I want to get better, but if I am having fun, and leave with a smile on my face, whats the difference.  I know if I am getting better because of the confidence I have when I step up over a specific shot.  I know I am getting better because at the end of the round, I have more memories of good shots, more memories of the sound you hear when the ball drops to the bottom of the cup on a 6' putt to get par / birdie, the comment your playing partner makes when you hit a nice golf shot, etc.

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I do it because i can remember each shot for a couple days afterwards, so i can always go back and find out. But, i like to not keep score sometimes because i just enjoy the game rather than trying to meet an expectation. It really lets you get down to enjoying each shot for what its worth, instead of thinking of each shot as a cummulative of what your trying to achieve.

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I agree with you on some levels. I don't base my enjoyment of the day on what the scorecard says. I too like to reflect on the good shots and good holes. If I am playing alone or not in competition, I will definitely move off the rocks or away from the tree to not injure myself or damage a club. I just won't count that hole or use the double bogie rule. I also play mostly for enjoyment and some socializing, but occasionally competively. I still keep score, and have found that since i started playing it down and by the rules and keeping a handicap (although I did not post scores the latter part of the year and plan to pick back up this year) I am better. Oh the number on the card hasn't gotten that much better, but it means more because it is the real number. Golf is a head game, the goal of which is to use your abilities to move the ball around the course in the fewest strokes possible. But if you don't keep score, or play by the rules, you are not playing golf. You are hitting balls with golf clubs on a course. There is nothing wrong with that, and sometimes I do just that. But to know how good a GOLFER you are, you must play golf by the rules and keep score by the rules. Doesn't mean you have to enjoy it less, though and if hitting the ball and creating shots is all you want, then that is fine too.

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You have found what works for you. You are the one paying your hard earned money for your green fees, cart fees, food costs, beer girl costs. If that is how you prefer to play your round of golf then awesome.

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Once I can back to the game after years away I did keep score every round but was starting to ruin the fun and the expectations were stressing me out.

If I have to I will when i play with certain people,  I know I am getting better just from the pars or great shots i make in a round.

I have not played in a tournament since I took it up again I don't look for them, but even when I did never was that good. I could hold my own  always about the middle of the pack when I finished.But was never happy with that just glad I was not the last place guy. Not good to think like that it ruins the whole fun of it and the friendships I made when I did play in them.

But agree it is much more fun for me now when I don't keep a score card. It is about that one shot off the tee or that great one putt. I wont hit my clubs in rocky dirt or a place that would damage them but will hit from any other place good or bad.

Just enjoying the game with my son or friends and like you clearwaterms I leave with a smile on my face.

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Keeping score and the challenge of improving is what draws me deeper into the sport.  My time wouldn't be ruined if I didn't keep score but I like to do things I enjoy while working at getting better.  I enjoy running for the health benefits, the runners high, the time it provides me inside my own head without interruption, combined with the fact that every run helps me become a better runner.

Same goes for golf, I enjoy the fresh air, beautiful scenery, sharing conversation and jokes with friends, but ultimately I'm at the course and not a restaurant or park because I want to be a better golfer.

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I agree w/ newtogolf.  Part of the fun for me is trying to get better.  Golf really is a hobby for me now and I have a little more fun getting into it.  I like having a handicap and thinking of ways to score better.  I might even envy you for your ability to not care about the score - but I certainly don't do it that way.

It might just be a personalitly trait - but I wouldn't do it with hardly any activity.  newtogolf mentioned running.  I am not an avid runner, but I go in cycles where I'll stick to it for a few months at a time. And I would never run a step without timing it.  Once again, because I want to give myself something to work toward next time.

I don't want to ride a bike, or bowl (even with beer and deep fried cheese), or shoot hoops or shoot pool or play foosball or whatever without keeping score/time.  The ex and I went to play tennis with another couple once. And I thought we were going to play tennis. Instead they brought out some ancient tennis balls and just wanted to sort of hit it back and forth.  I was miserable.  And I don't even play tennis.

I'm not super competitive or anything.  But keeping score is sort of the point of the excercise for me.

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Hitting the ball a bunch of times, without any score. Sounds a lot like the practice range to me. No thank you. To each his own though.

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A lot of really good replies to this post.

For me, I tend to split my rounds between "competitive" and "pure  fun".

When I am playing by myself or with the guy's I tend to play a more competitive game not only keeping total score but I also keep record of total strokes/hole, GIR and putts while trying to work on my handicap.

However, I really enjoy the other half of the rounds playing with my wife and on occasion with her girl friend. I would play from the forward (ladies) tees with them but I only use my irons (5-SW) and a putter, and do not keep score. It is a lot of fun and has helped my short game a great deal.

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Slight bump to save from starting a new thread . . . I've tried to 'not keep score' but I always keep a running total in my head of how many over par I am. I can always remember every single shot as well. I do play better when I'm keeping score in my head tho. Not staring at a scorecard takes a lot of pressure off for some reason.

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I've been playing for about six years.

Can't imagine playing with no score.  Would not make any sense to me.

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For me it depends on whether I'm "playing" or "playing a practice round".

"Playing" I count every shot, I don't take gimmes and I walk away pondering how many shots I dropped through bad shots versus bad luck.

"Playing a practice round" I'm normally working on a specific part of my swing so I don't score it at all. I then think back afterward about whether I achieved what I set out to practice.

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I play golf to relax.  I have ambitions of getting better, but never to play competitively.  I don't like to play for money, and find that if I am not keeping score, I don't have to justify taking the 3' gimmie for bogey, or moving the ball away from the tree to prevent the possability of damaging a club, etc.  That being said, I find golf to be much more fun when I don't keep score.  At the end of the round, I might reflect back on how many holes I shot par or better, or a certain fantastic shot.  I just think it is way easier to forget the blow up holes when you don't have a written record of them.

Somebody once told me, how do you know if you are getting better if you don't keep score.  To which I respond.  Sure, I want to get better, but if I am having fun, and leave with a smile on my face, whats the difference.  I know if I am getting better because of the confidence I have when I step up over a specific shot.  I know I am getting better because at the end of the round, I have more memories of good shots, more memories of the sound you hear when the ball drops to the bottom of the cup on a 6' putt to get par / birdie, the comment your playing partner makes when you hit a nice golf shot, etc.

To be honest clearwaterms...if you aren't keeping score ,why not putt the 3' gimme for bogey ?

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I agree with David in FL, range time on the course.  I couldn't play golf without keeping score even if I tried. Mentally I'd know the I'm "2 over after 5 and need to par out on the side to keep this round going". Funny, I like the " why don't you just putt the gimmes if your not really keeping score?"

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I always keep score, I may not write it down, but I can generally walk off the course and I was 4 over or 7 over with that nasty double bogie I had on 14 etc.sometimes if I am play alone very early in the morning I will play with 2 balls in after the drive. One ball I'll play they way I would normally ( center of the green or laying up on a tough hole to ensure par) and the second ball much more aggressively. Aiming dead on to the stick no matter what the situation is. Surprisingly it usually only 2 strokes differently and a lot of time that is just missed putts. That is my practice.

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My dad does this.  He does not generally keep score.  Golf for him is just a social thing completely.  He does not want to care about his shots or his score.  It is just four hours of quality time that he can hang out with his sons, friends or business associates.  I can appreciate it, but it is not for me as well.

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Only time I don't keep score is during playing lessons and for that we usually don't finish every hole or even play every hole. On an open course we may roll up and go through certain situations a few times and before moving to the next tee or whatever. Since we can use the practice green for putting work we never putt during playing lessons.

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