Jump to content
IGNORED

World Handicap System Now Out (2020)


iacas

Recommended Posts

2 hours ago, Southern by Choice said:

Gentlemen, I’ve been living with this stupid system of hard caps and soft caps for more than a year now.  And it is exacerbated by the Exceptional Score Reduction, which yanks the Low Handicap Index into ridiculously unsustainable levels…and then cements them in place with the aforementioned caps!  I’m a high-handicapper with some wild swings in my scores.  If my HI was allowed to float in keeping with my 8 best most recent scores (or 10 best, as in the previous system), it would be a more accurate snapshot of my skills.  The WHS attempted to "fix" the problem of sandbagging in competition, and the recreational golfer like me was collateral damage.

If you received an ESR that means you shot 7 strokes or more below your HI. The ESR only reduced your HI by 1 or 2. You demonstrated ability at least 5 strokes better than your HI after the reduction. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Moderator
10 hours ago, iacas said:

The soft cap only slows upward movement. It does not slow downward movement.

I wanted to be sure I am saying this correctly, so I reviewed the USGA report of players who were subjected to the Soft Cap.  In particular, I reviewed a few cases where the player's "capped" Handicap Index went down.  Here's an example:

Low Index:  5.3

Uncapped average of best 8 differentials:  Before:  10.1, after 9.3, Average is reduced by 0.3

Official (soft capped) HI:   Before 9.2, after 9.1.  HI is reduced by 0.1

This is what I mean when I say that downward movement of the official HI is reduced while the Index is within the "soft cap" region.  Any change in the average of your best 8 scores results in HALF that change to your HI, no matter whether its up or down.

10 hours ago, Southern by Choice said:

And it is exacerbated by the Exceptional Score Reduction, which yanks the Low Handicap Index into ridiculously unsustainable levels…and then cements them in place with the aforementioned caps!

Did you prefer the old Tournament Score Reduction?  Under that system, you might have two tournament scores that were good but not unusual in June, but high scores through the poor weather months of the winter could kick in the correction many months later.  And under that system, once you started getting your HI reduced, additional BAD play would only LOWER your handicap, and that could continue for a full year after you shot those scores.  With the WHS, the direct impact of that ESR on your HI diminishes as you post more scores, and is gone once you post 20 scores.  Yes, it does remain in the form of your low HI, but even that never results in your handicap going DOWN, it only limits and eventually caps the upward movement.

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Administrator
19 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

This is what I mean when I say that downward movement of the official HI is reduced while the Index is within the "soft cap" region.  Any change in the average of your best 8 scores results in HALF that change to your HI, no matter whether its up or down.

That's just relying on the math of halving the difference in the 3-5 range above the soft cap, it's not "reducing downward movement." The soft cap reduces UPWARD movement. It doesn't reduce downward movement, by definition. It's still upward over the previous low if you're 3+ above it.

(Hopefully) final example: if you're a 10 that goes to a 14 (soft capped to 13.5), then your next round puts you at a 12.5… you're a 12.5. No slowing of the downward trend there, even though you're still above your 10. And if that round instead puts you at a 9.4, you aren't a 9.7 even though you were "in the soft cap area."

Your way of looking at things is just a math trick, it's not the Rule, and it's confusing to think of it that way. Your way requires a "memory" of the current soft-capped HI, while just reading the rule straight doesn't require any such thing.

The simpler, more literally correct way to look at it is this:

  • Calculate the average of the differentials of the best 8 of the last 20.
  • If it's > 3 and < 5, add the three and take half of the increase over their previous low HI.
  • If it's > 5, cap at 5.

That's it. It has nothing to do with knowing or having a memory of what their "Thursday" index is or was, only their current average and their previous low. That's it. It doesn't have anything to do with "movement" except that it curbs upward movement based on your previous yearly low.

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Moderator
16 hours ago, phan52 said:

I am starting to turn things around with the help of my friendly PGA professional. But while I was struggling and my handicap rose accordingly, I got this notification on my USGA GHIN app.

"A soft cap has been applied to this Handicap Index, which suppresses upward movement by 50% after a a 3.0 stroke increase over the Low Handicap Index has been reached." So, even if I continued to struggle to break 90, my handicap could not reflect that.

Do you think they will suppress any of my downward movement? That's a joke. I know they won't. I believe that this is just another indication of the USGA protecting low handicapped players in net competitions.

 

15 hours ago, Southern by Choice said:

Huh-uh.  The soft cap suppresses only UPWARD movement of your Handicap Index…at least as far as I can determine.  The WHS is happy to see our handicaps go DOWN.

 

7 minutes ago, iacas said:

That's it. It has nothing to do with knowing or having a memory of what their "Thursday" index is or was, only their current average and their previous low. That's it. It doesn't have anything to do with "movement" except that it curbs upward movement based on your previous yearly low.

You and I understand the math the same way, this is a direct calculation with no "memory", outside of the Low Index.  However, both of the other quotes seem to be saying something different, and that's why I chose to reply to them.  The soft cap system suppresses movement in either direction, as long as the index is within the soft cap range.  Once the index improves below that level, it goes down (or up) as it normally would.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Administrator
Just now, DaveP043 said:

The soft cap system suppresses movement in either direction

No, it doesn't.

And yes, it's a bit of semantics, but you're the one that needs to add qualifiers and the semantics.

A 10 that goes to a 14 and whose next score would drop him to a 12 doesn't see his downward movement minimized even though he was "in" the soft cap. His first stroke down isn't counted at half, so he doesn't end up at 12.5.

Your way of looking at it is needlessly confusing, needlessly qualified, needlessly complicated.

It does not suppress downward movement. If the soft cap is being applied, it's by definition OVER the year-long low index.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Sort of related: Our handicap committee just turned down a member request to raise his cap. We declined the request because analysis showed he is currently playing to his capped index. I.e. the cap is working correctly. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites


The only thing I dislike about the new handicap system is that it no longer discards scores that are multiple years old.

I re-joined a club for handicap purposes last August (2020), and hadn't had any posted rounds since 2017. After more than 2 years I was supposed to receive a fresh number and start, at least according to how things previously worked, but instead I was immediately given a handicap index of +1.2 which has remained as my "Low HI" until sometime next September when it finally cycles out of the system.

It's not an issue of the soft cap for me, because I'm currently playing just better than that soft cap. It's primarily an issue because the statewide inter-club match play competition uses your low HI instead of your current HI, so I'm effectively boned there because my low HI is from four years ago. Won my first (and only) match I played in it by sheer luck (my opponent caught a case of the shanks on the back 9), but I'm having to sit out the rest of the season because it has me playing off a +3 course handicap for most of the inter-club venues.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

6 hours ago, reidsou said:

If you received an ESR that means you shot 7 strokes or more below your HI. The ESR only reduced your HI by 1 or 2. You demonstrated ability at least 5 strokes better than your HI after the reduction. 

I won't squawk much about the IMMEDIATE effect of the ESR; it’s the LONGTERM impact it has by creating a false "Low Handicap Index" that sticks around for a whole year…and becomes the anchor for the soft and hard caps.

In March 2020, my HI was 37.2.  ONE MONTH LATER, IT WAS 25.0: DOWN 12.2 strokes after posting 16 scores.

I had posted a flurry of very good scores, and I was ecstatic!  Then the ESR kicked in—and is CUMULATIVE, BTW.  ALL of the 20 most recent scores are reduced by 1 or 2 strokes (depending on how far below the differential) EACH TIME an exceptional score was posted.  Ultimately, my HI dropped to 23.7 before my overall game tanked and scores began to climb.

The effect of those very good scores began to drop off over time as I unfortunately reverted to my prior game. 🙁 Then the Soft Cap kicked in, slowing the upward movement of my handicap…and then the Hard Cap completely halted the upward movement of my Index when it reached 28.7.  The Hard Cap froze my index at 28.7 for four months, while I continued to struggle, playing regularly and posting my scores.  During that time, my ACTUAL handicap hovered around 32, calculated on my best 8 of the previous 20…but of course I was stuck at 28.7.

It's hard to admit these details in such a public golfers' forum, but I’m frustrated by the lack of understanding about the impact of these WHS rules! I EARNED a handicap of 32, and it’s ludicrous that I should lose 3 or 4 handicap strokes because of a system designed to thwart a few cheaters.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Moderator
20 hours ago, Pretzel said:

I re-joined a club for handicap purposes last August (2020), and hadn't had any posted rounds since 2017. After more than 2 years I was supposed to receive a fresh number and start, at least according to how things previously worked, but instead I was immediately given a handicap index of +1.2 which has remained as my "Low HI" until sometime next September when it finally cycles out of the system.

I can understand this frustration, and generally agree that scores that old shouldn't really be counted.  I think that was allowed in deference to some of our friends around the world, who for years only posted stroke-play competition scores, and who would have to go back in their records quite a ways to find enough scores posted.  For you, that old HI will be completely gone in just a few months, but I'm sure its been a PITA for the past year.  

As with any change to existing systems, there are a few individuals who experience unintended consequences.  An option is always to appeal to the Handicap Committee, who do have the authority to set your HI at a more appropriate level.  The same would apply to @Southern by Choice, although her HI was based on relatively recent scores rather than years-old data.  

  • Informative 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

On 6/29/2021 at 5:34 AM, DaveP043 said:

The soft cap system suppresses movement in either direction, as long as the index is within the soft cap range.  Once the index improves below that level, it goes down (or up) as it normally would.

I agree with iacas. Maybe the way to look at it is the soft cap does not "suppress movement" at all. It is just applied to the 8 score average. 

The halving of differences in the 3-5 stroke above LHI range is a feature of the formula. I.e. when the average A is > LHI + 3 and < LHI + 5. 

HI = A - 1/2 * (A - (LHI + 3))

Same for a new average A + x if LHI + 5 > (A + x) > LHI + 3 (where x can be positive or negative). The new HI (HI'):

HI' = A +x - 1/2 * (A + x - (LHI + 3))

Or:

HI' = A - 1/2 * (A - (LHI + 3)) + x - 1/2 * x
HI' = HI + x - 1/2 * x
HI' = HI + 1/2 * x

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Moderator
6 minutes ago, reidsou said:

Maybe the way to look at it is the soft cap does not "suppress movement" at all. It is just applied to the 8 score average. 

True, any Handicap Index, whether any of the cap calculations are considered, is a "point in time", and is based on the appropriate 20 scores.  What we've gone back and forth over is the semantics involved in the idea of suppressing movement.  I won't reiterate my reasoning, as long as we can all agree on how the calculations are done, I'm good with it.  :beer:

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

(edited)
On 6/30/2021 at 5:52 AM, DaveP043 said:

As with any change to existing systems, there are a few individuals who experience unintended consequences.  An option is always to appeal to the Handicap Committee, who do have the authority to set your HI at a more appropriate level.  The same would apply to @Southern by Choice, although her HI was based on relatively recent scores rather than years-old data.  

It was appealed by my course's handicap chairman to the CGA, and the CGA said, "Sucks to be you, don't care, get stuffed." About what I expected given previous interactions I've had with that group in the past, they tend to have quite the overinflated opinion of themselves without actually doing anything. They don't even organize their own CGA tournaments in the majority of cases, just slap their name on them.

An unfortunate side-effect, but at the very least there are going to be relatively few folks in my situation. It also won't affect you if you just don't play badly, so I just need to get better is all!

Edited by Pretzel
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Moderator
5 minutes ago, Pretzel said:

It was appealed by my course's handicap chairman to the CGA, and the CGA said, "Sucks to be you, don't care, get stuffed." An unfortunate side-effect, but at the very least there are going to be relatively few folks in my situation. It also won't affect you if you just don't play badly, so I just need to get better is all!

Or survive until the end September, your soft cap will end.  Of course, playing better certainly IS the preferred option!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • 4 weeks later...
On 7/1/2021 at 10:44 AM, DaveP043 said:

Or survive until the end September, your soft cap will end.  Of course, playing better certainly IS the preferred option!

Yup. I have started to play better recently and the soft cap was removed. I am now closer to my low index than I am to the high index that triggered the soft cap. Frankly, I have no problem when my cap is going downward. It means I am playing and scoring better. I usually play for some money and I notice I win more when my index is close to the low index. I was getting hammered as my cap went up. The extra strokes meant nothing. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • iacas unpinned this topic

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Want to join this community?

    We'd love to have you!

    Sign Up
  • Support TST Affiliates

    TourStriker PlaneMate
    Golfer's Journal
    Whoop
    SuperSpeed
    FlightScope Mevo
    Use the code "iacas" for 10% off Mevo and the code "iacasjun21" for 10% off SuperSpeed.
  • Posts

    • I don't like BDC's hat hat because: 1) My personal fashion sense tells me that to pull off wearing a driver cap, one needs to have a certain "it" factor. I don't think Bryson has it. 2) The hat, which is also the log for BDC's "brand", reminds me of all of the times he has put his foot in his mouth. Like yelling at a camera operator about damaging his brand, arguing with a rules official about fire ants and OB line, slow play, the whole Brooks feud thing, making stupid comments about the vaccine, etc. 3) Even without reasons #1 and #2, I think driver caps aren't a good look. Seeing him in a regular hat, he just looked like a golfer representing the US, without all the negative things associated with his image/brand. I won't comment on his manliness, but I am a huge fan of BDC the golfer. I don't care for his non-golf persona/brand, but I think what he has done with his game is remarkable, and he's backed up his approach with a US Open win, multiple tour wins, and a good performance at the Ryder Cup. I look forward to watching him play every week.
    • Hmmmm, that doesn't really track: SG:OTT 2021: 0.660 (4th) 2014: 1.367 (1st) SG:App 2021: 0.403 (35th) 2014: 0.602 (4th) SG:ATG 2021: 0.118 (71st) 2014: 0.022 (93rd) SG:P 2021: 0.187 (66th) 2014: 0.274 (41st) Scoring/SG:Total: 2021: 70.043 (16th)/1.368 (7th) 2014: 68.827 (1st)/2.266 (1st) He's 0.898 strokes worse per round than he was in 2014, and 0.707 of that comes from driving, with another 0.199 coming from his approach shots. What's 0.707 + 0.199? 0.906, which is > 0.898. He's actually gaining 0.305 shots around the green and putting now, when he gained 0.296 in 2014. So, nah, I think his driving and approach play have tailed off. He can't hit wedges very well, either.
    • Already addressed, but to point out again… all of the rules are pretty "arbitrary."
    • Extensions in graphite are a bit tricky because it's difficult to remove them without damaging the shaft. That being said, the simple way to do it is just cut off the extension at the end of the shaft. You will still have the 2 inch piece of extension base down in the shaft but it only weighs a few grams so you won't likely even notice it's there once it's been cut and gripped again.
    • Ahh, the voice of reason speaks up.  Good job.   Zippo, put some clothes on.
  • Today's Birthdays

    1. Donald Sutherland
      Donald Sutherland
      (75 years old)
    2. LBlack14
      LBlack14
      (56 years old)
    3. wadekilpatrick76
      wadekilpatrick76
      (45 years old)

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Welcome to TST! Signing up is free, and you'll see fewer ads and can talk with fellow golf enthusiasts! By using TST, you agree to our Terms of Use, our Privacy Policy, and our Guidelines.

The popup will be closed in 10 seconds...