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Menu Handicapping

Player Handicapping

The purpose of handicapping is to enable golfers of differing abilities, men and ladies alike, to compete on a fair and equitable basis, giving the sport of golf a unique position in the world of sport. Scottish Golf is the guardian of handicapping in Scotland, part of the Council of National Golfing Unions (CONGU) Unified Handicapping System (UHS).

What is a handicap?

A CONGU (The Council of National Golf Unions) handicap may only be given to someone who is a member of a club that is affiliated to Scottish Golf.

A Handicap is designed to reflect a player’s potential ability meaning every golfer can play on a fair and equal basis.

Once WHS is introduced on November 2nd 2020, handicapping will change. To find out more, visit our WHS page.

How to obtain a handicap?

To obtain a handicap players must submit sufficient cards to provide scores for 54 holes of golf, which must be  9 hole or 18 hole scores. Once you have submitted these scores  your Handicap Committee will allot you a handicap.

Once you have been given a handicap, you will then be eligible to compete in qualifying competitions that will be used to adjust your handicap accordingly.

A qualifying competition is any stroke play/stableford or bogey/par competition played over a measured course enabling a competition standard scratch score to be calculated (CSS).

Amateur Status

The Rules of Amateur Status ensure that the lines between the amateur and professional game are defined.

These rules cover issues such as prizes, expenses, giving instruction and sponsorship.

Read more here.

Amateur status and reinstatement from the professional game:

  • Firstly, an application for reinstatement must be made by the player to the R&A and a reinstatement date will be confirmed.
  • During the period up to the reinstatement date, a club can allocate the player a ‘Club Handicap’ which will allow the player to play in club competitions.
  • The player’s score must not be included in the CSS Calculation while a Club Handicap is held.
  • When the time comes for full reinstatement, all scores recorded during the waiting period will be used to determine the players’ official CONGU handicap reinstatement

Category 1 Handicap Allocation

  • Category 1 CONGU handicaps for both men and ladies are ratified by Scottish Golf.
  • Please complete the Category One Handicap – Application Form  and return along with a scanned copy of the three scorecards to E: handicapping@scottishgolf.org
  • Scottish Golf will provide the Club with an allocated handicap and the necessary software code to administer via club handicapping software.
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