Handicap Information

Handicap Information

The purpose of the Handicap System is to make the game of golf more enjoyable by enabling players of differing abilities to compete on an equitable basis.  Each golfer who wishes to maintain a handicap is expected to make the best score on every hole in every round, regardless of where the round is played, and the golfer is expected to post every acceptable round for peer review.  The players and the Handicap Committee have a joint responsibility for adhering to these principles.

According to Golf Canada, all scores played where an active season is in effect and where a course rating exists are to be entered.  Our active season at the Okanagan Golf Club is from March 1 to November 15; scores played at the OGC should only be posted during this active timeframe.  If you play in a warmer climate during the winter, during their active season, you are expected to post those scores.

Scores to post:

  • 9 holes, if you have played at least 7 holes
  • 18 holes, if you have played at least 13 holes
  • Scores from both stroke play and match play
  • All games that are played according to the Rules of Golf

Scores not to post:

  • Fewer than 7 holes played
  • Games played on a course that does not have a course rating
  • Competition where the number of clubs is limited
  • Games not played according to the Rules of Golf (e.g., changing the lie of the ball, playing two balls, taking do-overs without taking the appropriate penalty strokes, etc.)

Some guidelines for posting:

  • If you do not play a hole (because the hole has been conceded, or it got dark, or whatever) your score for that hole would be par plus the number of strokes you would get according to stroke allocation on the scorecard).
  • If you begin to play a hole and your score is getting ridiculous, you may pick up and take a maximum score (Equitable Stroke Control or ESC):
    • Handicaps 0 to 9 – maximum score is a double bogey
    • Handicaps 10 through 19 – maximum score is 7
    • Handicaps 20 through 29 – maximum score is 8
    • Handicaps 30 through 39 – maximum score is 9
    • Handicaps 40 or more – maximum score is 10
  • If you begin to play a hole and don’t finish it (maybe a long putt has been conceded, or the weather has caused you to quite early, or whatever), you would take your most likely score on the hole. This would be the score you think you would get most of the time from that same position.

Where to post scores:

  • You can either post your scores on your own personal computer or by using the Club’s computer. If you are using the Club’s computer, log on to the internet by going to Golf Canada Network.  If you don’t know your user name and password, ask at the Golf Shop.
  • VisitPosting Scores page for additional information.

Handicap Factor

A Handicap Factor, issued by a Golf Canada Member golf club or authorized provincial golf association (through its member clubs), indicates a player’s skill and is a number taken to one decimal place e.g., 10.4.  A Handicap Factor is issued only to individuals who are members of a Golf Canada Member golf club.

A Handicap Factor is computed from no more than 20 scores plus any eligible tournament scores.  It reflects the player’s potential because it is based upon the best handicap differentials posted for a given number of rounds, ideally the best 10 of the last 20 rounds.  

The Handicap Committee has the responsibility to monitor player’s posting of scores.  A player must earn a Handicap Factor.  No player has an inherent right to a Handicap Factor without providing full evidence of their ability to the golf club’s Handicap Committee. You are expected to post as soon as it is practicable after you have played you game, and definitely before your next round of golf.  The Handicap Committee has the responsibility to adjust handicaps of players who are not posting correct scores and to give penalties to players who fail to return scores.

All the information is taken from the Golf Canada Handicap Manual.  If you wish to look up any part of it, go to Golf Canada Handicap Manual to download the entire Handicap Manual.  You may find it to be interesting and informative reading.


Golf Canada requires that when golfers are playing from different tees in the same competition then handicaps need to be adjusted to reflect the difference in the rating for the different tees.

At Okanagan Golf Club, for ladies’ competition events, the person playing from the tee box with the higher course rating must add strokes to their handicap.

The course adjustments on the Bear and the Quail are as follows:


  • Between Silver and Combo — 2 strokes
  • Between Combo and Red — 2 strokes
  • Between Silver and Red — 3 strokes (a change as of May 30, 2018)


  • Between Silver and Combo — 2 strokes
  • Between Combo and Red — 2 strokes
  • Between Silver and Red — 4 strokes

EXAMPLE 1. QUAIL COURSE:  Player One is off the Silver tees and has a handicap of 17.  Player Two is off the Red tees and has a handicap of 24.  Player one is required to add 3 strokes and play with a handicap of 20 — FOR THIS COMPETITION.

EXAMPLE 2.  BEAR COURSE:  Player One is off the Combo tees and has a handicap of 22.  Player Two is playing off the Red tees and has a handicap of 15.  Player One is required to take add 2 strokes and play with a handicap of 24 — FOR THIS COMPETITION.

Each player is responsible for entering all scores up to date, using the Equitable Stroke Control (ESC).  You must know your current factor and handicap prior to starting a competition using handicaps.