Reduce your Handicap – 10hcp Law of Averages

Reduce your Handicap – 10hcp Law of Averages

2 February 2024

For the next edition in our Law of Averages series, we look at some top level statistics and averages for a 10hcp golfer.

Previously we have looked at the stats of 15hcp, 20hcp, and 25hcp golfers and seen how the top level stats change from one handicap to the next.

Here we have the stats of a 10 handicapper:

Avg. Par 3 ScoreAvg. Par 4 ScoreAvg. Par 5 ScoreFIR%GIR%Up and Down %Three Putt %Make % from 0-6ft
10hcp Stats

Scoring Averages

Average scoring on Par 3, 4, and 5s drops as we would expect with the biggest difference on Par 5 layouts where the 10hcp player is typically 0.39 strokes better than a 15 handicapper.

Why might this be? A degree of personal interpretation comes into play here but we would suggest it is partly down to the importance placed on length in golf, in particular, in this instance the first two shots on Par 5s.

On a Par 5, players are not only required to hit a good tee shot, the longer the better, they must then follow this up with another good shot, the longer the better, to get to the green or if they layup, etc. a third short on.

15hcp golfers are typically shorter than the 10hcp player throughout the bag, with driver usually 22yds, the 10 handicapper gains strokes purely because of their added length. This difference equates to a much easier second shot, potentially the difference between hitting 3 wood or 4 hybrid. 

For a 10 handicapper, when hitting a 4 hybrid compared to a 3 wood, they see an increase of 5% in the likelihood of hitting the green and a 0.4 stroke reduction in shots to finish. 

If you are not familiar with stats then this may not seem like a massive amount. However, imagine this happens two or three times in a round, then we are looking at a full stroke saved and we begin to see where the handicap difference is partly made up.

Less club into greens will always increase the likelihood of hitting the green which in turn positively impacts scoring.

12% more GIR per round

The additional length we have just discussed translates directly to a 12% increase in Greens in Regulation when compared to a 15 handicapper. 

Even if the difference is one club, a 10 hcp player with 7 iron in hand has a 30% chance of hitting the green compared to the 15hcp golfer with 6 iron in hand who has a 15% chance of finding the dance floor – one club, twice as likely!

Continuing with this example, the 10hcp player with their 7 iron takes 0.45 fewer shots to finish the hole compared to the 15hcp player with 6 iron. Let’s imagine this situation appears six times in a round of golf, that would equate to a 2.7 stroke gain! Over the course of a season can lead to a very different handicap when the season finishes. 

As we mentioned in a previous blog, swing speed training aids are a great gift at any time of the year for the golfer in your life, or as a treat to yourself – lower scores will follow!

Swing Speed Training Aid
SuperSpeed Golf Training System

Small improvements = big differences

When we look at the other baseline benchmarking stats the theme of small improvements continues to appear.

In terms of Fairways in Regulation, the 10hcp player hits 3% more – not exactly a massive increase. Likewise, successful up and down attempts are 5% higher with the 10 handicapper and their likelihood of three-putting is 2% less than the 15hcp golfer. 

Lastly, make percentage from 0-6ft improves by 4% with the 10hcp compared to that of the 15hcp.

A series of small differences, however, when it comes to reducing your handicap it is these marginal gains that can transform your game.

Do you want data like this for your game?

The only way is to performance track! If you watch golf on the television then undoubtedly at some point you will have heard mention of Strokes Gained. If this term is unfamiliar to you, check out this blog.

Up until recently, Strokes Gained has been available to the game’s elite 0.01% like Rory McIlroy and the data behind golf was a large part of Team Europe’s triumph at Marco Simone where Edoardo Molinari used player data to inform course layout decisions.

Ryder Cup Rome
The Ryder Cup in Rome

Undeniable skill and talent propelled McIlroy to the top of professional golf but data will have played a role in keeping him there.

At Shot Scope, we want everyone to be able to access performance tracking and get the most out of their game both in terms of performance and enjoyment.

This is why we have several methods of performance tracking to suit every golfer and better yet, we do not charge a fee for any of our statistics!

Check out our shot tracking products here and start your journey to lower scores – our users typically see a 4.1 shot improvement after 30 rounds! 

The future of golf is powered by Shot Scope.


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