Golf Stats vs Golf Stats

On and off over the years, I have tracked every kind of golf stat. I have found stats can be both valuable and a waste of time. It really depends on what I want to do with the data. Collecting stats without a plan to use them is just collecting stats. Knowing what to do with them is extremely important because the stat may not actually be the root problem.

Recently, I asked which golf stat was the most important. This is what people said:

As you can see, GIR and # of putts are the stats that the respondents felt were the most important. However, there were four stats and I am not sure we can discount the other two so quickly!

# of fairways – This statistic refers to the number of times during the round your drive landed in the fairway. Not if you can find it or the first cut, but the short grass. The total percentage is calculated as follows: (#of fairways hit) / (18-#of Par 3s) X 100 = driving percentage. Example: 10(18-4) X 100 = 71%. The current PGA Tour leader is Thomas Aiken at 75.93%

Greens in Regulation – This statistic refers to the number of times during your round you are on the game putting for a birdie or eagle. The total percentage is calculated as follows: # of greens hit / 18 x 100 = GIR percentage. For example 12 / 18 / X 100 = 66.66%. The current PGA Tour GIR leader is Russell Knox at 77.57%

# of putts per round – This is the total number of putts you have in a round. This stat can be displayed as total number of putts per round or as the number of putts per hole. Putts per hole is calculated as follows: # of putts / 18. For example 27 / 18 = 1.5. The PGA Tour uses a different metric called strokes gained ( I will talk about this in another post), however, Steve Stricker is the PGA Tour leader at 1.22.

Up and Down Percentage – also know as scramble percentage. This is the number of times you miss the green on your approach shot and chip the ball on the green and one putt for par or birdie. To calculate this stat use the following: # of up and down / number of opportunities X 100. For example: 3 / 8 X 100 = 37.5%. The current PGA Tour leader is David Toms at 74%.

What do all these stats mean. Each stat might have a root problem or cause that may not be a obvious as keeping track of the actual number. Now that I have laid out the foundation to these stats, my next post will explain the value and potential pitfalls of each.

In the meantime, do you keep stats? If so, where do you stack up against the pros?

I am a grateful golfer! See you one the links.

9 thoughts on “Golf Stats vs Golf Stats

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  4. GIR is my favour or stat. I know putts are critical to scoring but if it’s taking me 6 shots to get to the green, a 1 putt really doesn’t help. I may be mistaken in viewing things this way. In fact this point of view has caused to me focus primarily on my full swing.

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  5. Jim, I focus on GIR and putts per round. They have provided the right amount of feedback over the years. Boy I’d love to hit that 10 GIR average but have been stuck between 8-9 the last five seasons. But I may have a breakthrough I’m working on!




  6. Jim,

    As you’ve read, keeping my stats is one of my goals this season. I haven’t done this diligently enough in the past to speak to whether it will definitely help me or not, but I plan to use my stats to optimize my practice time on areas I need to improve.

    I’m excited about the app I’ll be using to do this as it has some nice, intuitive graphics to break everything down. For example, not only will you have a greens in regulation %, but it also tracks how you miss a green — what % are short, long, left, or right. I think this could be valuable insight as to typical tendencies.

    I’ll be reviewing the app soon, you’ll have to let me know what you think!



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