WHS Changes 2024

WHS is brilliant yet flawed. We can all find a reason to criticise WHS. All the detractors who say CONGU was better, I ask you to show me the calculations by category that were used to calculate Competition Standard Scratch! Yes I know Course rating minus Par has always been part of WHS and the Home Golf Unions decided not to adopt this in 2020. Huge mistake. It has given the detractors a 2nd chance. Those that say we are getting less shots in the latest changes need to realise 2 things. 1. We have been kidding ourselves for 3.5 years by playing against Par rather than Course Rating. This calculation has always been used to calculate score differential and therefore our HI. Reality hurts. 2. Members of courses like Hollinwell know that courses that are significantly harder with both a high course rating and Slope rating will be playing off the back tees with approx 6 more shots than their HI. Let’s embrace change and make it better. The change to unrounded Course Handicaps and betterball scores potentially counting is a significant step forward. I applaud the endeavour. No system is perfect and there will always be handicap manipulation both up and down. Enjoy your golf.


I agree the system is certainly flawed. I’m recently returned to golf after a 3 year layoff through health issue’s. My original handicap was 5.5 the new system generated me a new hc of 2.6 how does that workout crazy, then the course rating knocks me down again talk about kick a man while he’s down.:grinning:

I am still seeing winning scores well under par every week. When did 36 pts not become a good score. I play a lot of open competitions BB and Am Am most
of the winning scores are unbelievably well under par.

In my opinion the system penalises the consistent better players the golfers who are trying to get their hc down, whilst the bandits who play every medal poorly until it comes to something they want to win are manipulating the system. All clubs know who the bandits are this system neglects to allow clubs to address the issue.

I’m still seeing at most clubs nothing in golf for the truly best player or team on the day.

Enjoy your golf it’s a great game.
Best Regards

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Definitely some positives in this and now a more standardised system internationally but never going to please everyone immediately.

I have been playing golf for a long time but struggling to improve; I have been self taught in the main with only a few pointers and a few lessons as I have been focusing on trying to enjoy the game and didn’t want to rebuild my game in every way. to this end at 54 (just over two years ago) I joined a club at a course I had played a couple of times and found to be interesting and challenging; my handicap was set after submitting an appropriate number of cards but is higher than I would like and higher than I have managed to attain on previous rounds.
The constant debate in the clubhouse is always around how certain people allegedly ‘manipulate’ the system; as a high handicapper (23.2) who wants to get below 18 (which has been my goal since joining) the WHS system is a relatively clear system and does appear (on average, and that is the important piece) to level the playing field. However I have always contended that a high handicapper will always be more inconsistent than a lower handicapper and that is the only reason that the debate keeps on raging on. This fact is recognised as most competitions are played off 75% handicap; that means that a 4 handicapper loses 1 shot, where-as a 20 handicapper would lose 5 shots. The WHS merely resets the starting point.

I’m Handicap Secretary at my club and I’m not replying because I’m a supporter of WHS but more because there is so much disinformation written about it.

The OP returns to golf after a break and “has no idea how he has been allocated his new handicap index”.
Had the OP gone on to explain what scores he’d submitted since his return to golf to get that index I might have been able to explain. Even better, had he asked his handicap secretary or committee they could have done so.

The WHS like Congu handicap system, doesn’t just allocate a random handicap index. Until there are 20 scores on your handicap record it can fluctuate wildly.
Post three scores and it will be your lowest adjusted score differential minus 2.

If you ended up with a low handicap you obviously weren’t too far off.

WHS is like any other handicap system, not perfect. It can’t stop sandbaggers or in another word, cheats. What it can do however, is to provide a huge range of readily available reports / data to allow handicap committees to make informed decisions when reviewing handicaps.

My experience thus far is that the majority of people manipulating WHS are golfers keen to reduce their handicaps who download their scores on the app after a good round and without pre registering the intent beforehand as required. They cheat only themselves but “vanity handicaps” are more common than people might think.

Whether these are the folk that later complain about WHS because they can’t win anything or even get close to playing to their new handicaps, I don’t know.

What I do know is that millions of General Play Scores have been submitted since WHS was introduced. Players’ handicaps are coming down much quicker than they did under Congu because there are more opportunities for improving golfers to submit scores.

The downside of WHS is that the maximum handicap was set so high (54). An improving golfer off 54 is going to return some ridiculous scores until he has 20 scores on his WHS record.

The upside? A friend with Parkinson’s can still play and compete off his 39 handicap. His physical health is deteriorating but his mental health is nurtured by our great sport and the comradery he enjoys by still being able to compete.

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no issues with WHS, new rules for 2024 should catch the people we know cheat the system. pairs cheats.

20 rounds best 8 works, dead simple not sure how it doesn’t. play more play better you come down faster which is HOPEFULLY what we want.

2023 2.4 to 6.3 sucks but it’s real

Follow on from DC

I think that overall the WHS does work in the way that it calculates the handicap changes. However the issue with it is the Course rating system that sits behind it. At my club virtually every member has seen their handicaps go up significantly over the last 2 years. I recently followed 3 Course raters as they re-rated the Course. When they were rating the Course for Bogey golfers, the starting point was that they would drive 200 metres. Hazards which were less than this distance off the tee, say at 150 metres or less, were ignored. This applied all the way around the Course. We are a Club where most golfers are probably between 55 and 75 and a lot of us do not hit 200 meters off the tee. As a result we find ourselves in a variety of “hazards” that the Course rating system says do not come in to play.The Course therefore has a Slope rating saying it is easier than it is and our handicaps go up!!

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A fundamental flaw in the WHS is taking the 8 best scores from 20 cards. Also I think individual hole scores are limited to 2 over par. This looks designed to give an artificially low handicap which a golfer cannot play to. Imagine the outrage if WHS took the 8 worst scores from 20 cards, and threw out some par and below scores, thereby giving an artificially high handicap.
I feel that low handicap players are usually more consistent than high handicap players. The effect of talking best 8 scores from 20 could penalise high handicap players more than low handicap players. I have noted posts where single figure players have been hit by WHS.
An alternative: don’t bother with a handicap, play only social golf for fun, use illegal clubs if you wish. Measure success in enjoyment and value for money terms. More hits means lower cost per shot plus more exercise both in swishing and walking. Don’t let the miseries at PGA and R&A ruin your enjoyment of golf.

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Most of the fun is the competition, gaining the handicap and getting lower. Fun works in different ways for different people :heart_hands:

I just hate golf 2.4 to 6.2 :poop: