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The Recreational Golfer

Breaking 80 or no DBs -- which is harder?

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Which is Harder?  

95 members have voted

  1. 1. Which is Harder?

    • Breaking 80
    • No double bogeys in a round


87 posts / 7695 viewsLast Reply

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I shot 77 today (+5).  Had two birdies and TWO double bogeys.

I seem to have at least one or two double bogeys even when I break 80.  So I'll say having no double bogey (or worse) is harder for me.

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26 minutes ago, The Recreational Golfer said:

OP. I have broken 80 more times than I have had a DB-free round.

I voted "breaking 80" but am rethinking for this exact same reason.  I don't know for sure but I think I have also broken 80 more times than I've gone completely double free.

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I've had 2 dbl free rounds, best score to date is 80.

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Another vote for "breaking 80."  I've had several rounds of 83, one of 82 (technically match play, but no putts were conceded to me beyond literal tap-ins), and a few other 84 and 85.  I've never broken 80.

I feel like I have had at least one round without a double bogey, but I can't recall the exact date(s).  I suspect if I set out with that as my goal, I could set up a plan to do so at my home course.  By contrast, I have yet to exhibit the sustained good play needed to break 80.

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I voted for breaking 80. It seems to me that storing no doubles would be a matter of playing 18 holes without taking risks. Laying up iso attacking the pin, using an iron or hybrid off the tee, etc. For most golfers, breaking 80 will only happen if you do take these risks. Without DBs you can shoot a 90 on a par 72. Breaking 80 requires you to shoot ten strokes less.

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3 hours ago, DutchLeon said:

It seems to me that storing no doubles would be a matter of playing 18 holes without taking risks.

 Most double bogies, especially from the average golfer don't come from "taking risks", they come from a poor swing that results in OB, water hazard, lost in the woods, whatever.  A decent player can still break 80 with a double or two for exactly that reason, it's only a couple of bad swings.  

The reason that most golfers never break 80 is that they make a lot of those bad swings, that add up.  But even good golfers, who break 80 (or better) consistently, will have the occasional bad swing that will result in a penalty and subsequently a double, or worse.  

Which is "harder" is a matter of skill level. For me, someone who, as the OP asked, is as likely to break 80 as not, if I had to bet on the result of any given round before the first tee, I'd bet that I break 80 over a DB free round of any score.  Higher handicap players will find the opposite.  Scratch or better players will seldom fail to break 80, but will still have their share of individual blowup holes.  They'll just use their superior play on the remaining 16 or 17 holes to offset the couple of bad swings. 

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You can break 80 with a double bogey, but one penalty at the wrong time can introduce a double bogey so I voted a double bogey round is harder. 

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26 minutes ago, newtogolf said:

You can break 80 with a double bogey, but one penalty at the wrong time can introduce a double bogey so I voted a double bogey round is harder. 

Yeah, so I officially switched my vote to "no doubles." :)

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If I were an 80s shooter trying to get better I'd probably say breaking 80, but now as someone who shoots in the 70s, I've made way more doubles than I've failed to break 80 over the last few years. 

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Breaking 80 is tougher, I believe. Although I haven't technically crossed the threshold so maybe my opinion isn't valid.

I'm not tracking my handicap, but I have been shooting mid-eighties lately from the standard men's tees (6,100-6,300 yards), consistently now for a while. The piece of my game that is consistently dragging my score down the most right now (for a while now) are penalties. Those 2 strokes at a time freaking KILL my score.

With that being said, with a penalty and my current playing ability almost assuredly results in a double-bogey or worse. But I can still shoot an ~85 with a couple double's or one of them a triple in there. I'm shooting a lot of pars now. I VERY rarely get a birdie. For some reason I cannot reach par 5's in 2 and they aren't particularly long on my home course. I think I've had 1 birdie in my last 3-4 rounds? But I can tell you, when I have ONE birdie on my scorecard it is usually HUGE to my score, and that's when I'll usually have a < 82-84 day. Something about getting that birdie on the scorecard makes my confidence grow.

 

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I've had 4 rounds with no double bogeys in the past 2 years, and I've broken 80 3 times in that same time. So, equally hard for me, I guess? In 2 of those 4 rounds, I had at least one triple bogey, though. So if the question is it is harder to break 80 or not have anything worse than a bogey on your scorecard, then I'd say the latter.

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1 hour ago, jkelley9 said:

The piece of my game that is consistently dragging my score down the most right now (for a while now) are penalties. Those 2 strokes at a time freaking KILL my score.

With that being said, with a penalty and my current playing ability almost assuredly results in a double-bogey or worse. But I can still shoot an ~85 with a couple double's or one of them a triple in there.

I'm shooting a lot of pars now. 

 

So ask yourself.  What is it that's keeping you from breaking 80?  By your own words, you make a lot of pars, but penalties and the resulting doubles (or worse) keep you from that threshold.

Chicken or the egg...and this time it's the egg.  Breaking 80 is hard, but it's hard due in large part because of the difficulty in keeping those damn doubles off the card.  

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Voted break 80, but they're definitely closely related. I don't think I've ever shot a double-bogey free round in my life, but I have broken 80 a few times. 

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7 minutes ago, anthony said:

Voted break 80, but they're definitely closely related. I don't think I've ever shot a double-bogey free round in my life, but I have broken 80 a few times. 

Then you voted the wrong way.

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4 minutes ago, Natural Patrick said:

Then you voted the wrong way.

You know, I had a long post typed out to defend my position. But, you're right. I do think a double bogey free round is more difficult. If you break 80 most of the time, a double-bogey probably hits your score card more than a score in the 80's.

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Good topic.

I voted breaking 80 is harder. Obviously the two are connected but if push came to shove I think more golfers could learn how to avoid making doubles than be taught or acquire the skills to break 80. Breaking 80 for many golfers would mean significantly raising the level of their games, while not making a double is more about avoiding the big miss and game planning/course management. More specific to the OP's question relating to a golfers that shoots in the low 80's and is trying to break through, it could be one or other, most likely a combo of both.

For myself, like @The Recreational Golfer I've had more rounds in the 70's than double bogey free rounds so could you say it's "easier" for me to shoot in the 70's than avoid making a double? Yes and no, depends on how you look at it. Even though I messed up on one or two individual holes I had to play fairly solid golf the other 16/17 holes to break 80, IMO that's more difficult than avoiding making a double. Even on a round where I didn't make a double I had to perform at a consistent level for 18 holes to break 80.

If you told me I had to play 10 rounds where I had to break 80 and 10 rounds where I couldn't make a double, I think the latter would be easier for me. 

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Like many here, I think it depends quite a bit on the level of the player.  Personally, I think its probably easier for me to break 80, harder to avoid doubles.  At very least, rounds in the 70s are more common than rounds with no doubles.  I can see the other side of the coin, especially for golfers whose scoring is just a little higher than mine.

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Note: This thread is 1137 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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