This stat proves you should manage your own expectations on the golf course

Even pros temper their expectations on the course.

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Editor’s note: This tip was featured in GOLF’s Play Smart package from the September/October 2022 issue of GOLF Magazine. Look for more tips on GOLF.com, and click here to subscribe to the magazine.

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One of the keys to happier golf is to be realistic with your own expectations. It’ll help you improve, too, because you get a clearer sense of both the strengths and weaknesses of your own game. 

Unfortunately, too many golfers have expectations that are wildly out of whack with the reality of their game. A great way to work on this is to keep track of the basic stats from your own game as you play. And, in the meantime, allow a handful of stats from pro and scratch golfers, gathered by statistician Lou Stagner of Arccos Golf, to provide some hard truths. 

Do you know that from 150 yards, a scratch golfer hits the green only about 60 percent of the time? It’s essentially a coin flip. Check out the data below. — Luke Kerr-Dineen

150-yard shots from the fairway

Average proximity on all shots
Tour pro: 25′ 3″
Scratch player: 36′ 8″

GIR Percentage
Tour pro: 76.1%
Scratch player: 61.0%

Average proximity when hitting green
Tour pro: 20′ 11″
Scratch player: 23′ 9″

Average proximity when missing green
Tour pro: 38′ 9″
Scratch player: 60′ 1″

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