Friday, 25 February 2011

Stableford Scoring System - How it works

The Stableford Scoring System – What is it?

Stableford Scoring, works in combination with your handicap (whether it is a club handicap or an assumed handicap amongst a group of friends) awards golfers points for their score on each hole providing the NETT outcome is one over par or better. If not it is considered a BLOB (i.e. no points can be awarded and normally to speed up play a player will pick their ball up as they can’t score on that particular hole).

Stableford has the advantage of ensuring one bad hole does not ruin an entire round of golf. Try this the next time you play it will move you away from the negativity that Stroke-Play can create in your mind and encourage your playing partners to adopt this type of scoring and you will take on a different more positive approach to golf!

How The Stableford Scoring system Works

The Stableford Scoring System works against the par of each hole and points are awarded for any score one over par or better – once handicap deductions have been made.
It connects to the Stroke Index, or SI, of a hole being played. For example the SI indicates how hard a hole is considered to be – so an 18 hole course will have each hole rated from SI 1 to 18, with SI 1 being the hardest hole to play and SI 18 being the easiest. Look for this next on your scorecard, it WILL BE clearly labeled. 

Whereas in a medal or stroke-play competition you need to complete every hole, in Stableford you can knock a poor hole off the card and move onto the next one – particularly if you are two over par or more. This is already mentioned as a BLOB and you can’t score any points.

The Points Table

The scoring system is simple with the following NETT scores resulting in the following points:

Two over par or more 0 points – the dreaded BLOB – pick up your ball please
One over par = 1 point
Level par = 2 points
One under par = 3 points
Two under par = 4 points
Three under par = 5 points

Use the Garmin Approach G8 Golf Course GPS to record your round and Stableford scoring

The handicap of a player will determine how many shots he/she receives on each hole, with the shots received starting with the hardest hole on the course (SI 1) and working upwards from there. For example, an 18-handicap golfer would get a shot off his/her score on every hole whilst a 10-handicap golfer will get a shot off every hole starting from Stroke Index 1 to Stroke Index 10. Your scorecard given to you at the start of a round of golf will indicate the SI for each and every hole.

For an 18-handicap golfer, shooting a five on a par four hole would result in a nett four with the allocated shot deducted. Therefore, that would earn him or her two points under the Stableford Rules for a nett par. Similarly, a par four would result in a birdie three with the one shot deduction and therefore a Stableford points score of three.


Do not get confused with GROSS and NET.

A Gross score is your score BEFORE your handicap is applied. Once your handicap has been applied it will then be NETT and you can then take Stableford Points..

My example and my handicap

I play off of an 18-handicap, I shoot 5 on a par 4 hole (5 is my GROSS score BUT my handicap awards me 1 stroke which gives me a NETT of 4)  therefore I am awarded 2 Stableford Points.


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  2. I've never played a round using this system, but recently joined a British golfing face book site.

    They talk about having a round with "23 points and a lot of blobs" so I had to do my research. Doesn't seem like 23 points would be too difficult.

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