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Equitable Stroke Control (Limiting Strokes per Hole)

Equitable Stroke Control, or "ESC" is the practice of limiting how many strokes a player can take on a hole for handicapping purposes only. Golf League Tracker supports entering limits for players so that an unusually high score doesn't skew a player's handicap. The term for this, coined by the USGA, is Equitable Stroke Control.

You have the option of setting different maximums for different handicap ranges, although I suggest switching over to the World Handicap System Maximum of Net Double Bogey, which applies to all players.

World Handicap System

With the new 2020 World Handicap System coming into effect, the USGA is simplifying their Equitable Stroke Control Settings to be the same for all handicap ranges.  The new maximum is:

Net Double-Bogey

Golf League Tracker handles this calculation automatically when you choose Net Double Bogey and apply it to the full range of handicaps when you're using Golf League Tracker in the Full League Mode (the "default" mode of Golf League Tracker). If you're using Golf League Tracker in the handicapping only mode, you enter the total score, which has to be adjustment manually by the player before entering.

USGA Pre-2020 Handicap System

The USGA ESC system prior to the World Handicap System has range of maximum values which they've defined that are based on a player's current handicap. In generally, the lower the handicap for a player, the fewer strokes they can take on a hole. The logic for this is that for a lower handicapped player, it's more unusual to make a high score on a hole vs. a higher handicapped player.

The following is the USGA maximum stroke count for an 18-hole handicap:

Handicap Maximum Number
Up to 10 double bogey
10 up to 20 7
20 up to 30 8
30 up to 40 9
40 and above 10

Table Converted to a 9 Hole Handicap

9 Hole Handicap Maximum Number
Less than 5 double bogey
5 up to 10 7
10 up to 15 8
15 up to 20 9
20 and above 10

Setting ESC in Golf League Tracker

To set ESC in Golf League Tracker, you will go into the League Settings in the League Setup tab, choose Equitable Stroke Control from the settings category list, and edit one of the values. You can have up to 6 different ranges of handicaps if you want to apply different limits to each range.

Example 1

Set all players to a maximum score of Net Double Bogey per hole:

  • Create a Handicap Range, by default it's set from -99 to 99
  • Choose Net Double Bogey from the drop down list for maximum score

Example 2

Set players below a 10 handicap to a maximum of a 7, and players 10 handicap or more to a maximum of 8:

  • Create a handicap range and set the range from -99 to 8
  • Set the maximum score to 7
  • Create a 2nd handicap range and set the range from 8 to 99
  • Set the maximum score to 8

More Help - Online Demo

For more help see the Golf League Tracker YouTube Help Video on setting up Equitable Stroke Control.