Looking for a Par definition is completely normal, especially if you are new to the sport of golf. The term is basically everywhere in the golf circle, so having complete knowledge about it allows you to approach the game better. So, what does par mean in golf? Let’s define par.
By definition, “Par” is the number of strokes needed to complete a hole in a golf course. Each hole in a course is given its own par rating. In our golf course in Doral, for instance, par varies across 18 holes.
Par may also indirectly hint hole length. Typically, longer holes require more strokes to complete, thus par in these holes is higher compared to shorter holes.
How does par work in golf?
Par is a standard to which golfers aim for. These numbers are not randomly given to each hole, but are mainly based on the number of strokes a golf expert would require to complete them.
Is a par good in golf?
Par sets the line between good golfers and great golfers. Simply put, if you maintain a par score in each hole, then you can consider yourself having a competitive golf score and an expert at that.
How many strokes in a par?
This varies between holes. As mentioned, length may come into consideration in knowing how many strokes you would need to complete a hole. For example, a par-3 hole is considered a short hole and would only require an expert golfer one (1) stroke to reach the green and then two (2) extra strokes to complete it. If a hole is long enough, it could be given a par-4 or par-5 rating.
What is the deal with par-70, par-71 and par-72?
No, it doesn’t mean a very long hole. As mentioned, each hole has its own par. A typical golf course has 18 holes. So, if you add up all 18 par numbers, you could get around par 69 to 74 total. A regulation golf course has a par of 72 which is equivalent to four (4) par-3, ten (10) par-4 and four (4) par-5.
Par and scoring relationship
Par can also be a golfer’s performance indicator. Basically, you have “parred the hole” if you completed it with the number strokes equal to its par (i.e. four (4) strokes in a par-4 hole). This is also known as “level-par” or “even-par.”
And then, there’s an array of scoring terms related to scoring below and above par which we’ve already covered here:
What does “par for the course” mean?
You probably heard of the term “par for the course.” It’s basically an idiomatic expression derived from golf which usage is equal to that of “normal”, “expected” or “common.” Like in golf, par is the expected/normal number of strokes. So you could use the phrase to describe a similar situation, event or behavior.