Amazing What Par Has Done

Golf Course Owner Guy has decided that par is really stupid. I think I’ve also figured out how golf was invented. Lock a family up for 30 days, and they get really good at inventing new games. This past Saturday, my family didn’t invent golf, but we took a deep dive together into many things that are wrong with the game. Amazing how children can solve problems.

A few clubs, some wiffle balls, and an architect’s mind…as you know I love golf…. I can find a course anywhere. Around trees, over sidewalks, between the yards, over the street, before long we had a really cool 9 hole course laid out. It kept us entertained for a few hours.

Unaware of Par
Unaware of Par

Somewhere in the middle of one of our rounds, my oldest daughter asked, “Dad, what is the par of all these holes?” I told her I don’t know. I suggested we simply try and solve each hole to the best of our ability, and we will add it up at the end. We will each have a number, and the lowest number wins.

Life Without Par

Without par, there was no benchmark. When we were done, no one knew if we shot good or bad, we simply had a score. No one was elated, but no one was mad either. No one felt out of the hole, because they had already eclipsed par. No one expected certain scores based on a hole that seemed to play easy, or play hard. No one pressed, and went for shots they couldn’t pull off, just to attain arbitrary par. No one felt pressure to reach certain targets in a certain number of shots. Heck, many times, we didn’t even play the holes the same way. We each did it our way… it was fascinating.

Those kids have no idea. Soon their minds will be totally distorted by the word par. They won’t be able to break a 230 yard hole into 2 shots, they will always feel pressure to reach it in one. Soon those girls will complain that 420 yard holes can’t be reached in two shots and therefore the game is unfair. Who the hell came up with par, and all the bullshit it makes us do?

Economics of Par

I’m sure it comes as no secret that I’m a little out there. I’ve been thinking about getting rid of par for many years. Lately, I’ve had way too much time to think about it, and that’s why you are starting to hear some of those thoughts. What do you think golf would be like without par?

Consider this…I don’t think I would need to offer 5 sets of tees. Varying tee lengths are just a way to properly hand out par to people who hit it varying lengths. I hit it far and can get there in two, you hit it short and you should also be able to get there in 2, hence we have all those tees. Who decided we have to “get there in two”… par did! Now I have 98 tee boxes on this course that I need to maintain. I don’t want to go down this road again, but you know golf could be cheaper if I only had to maintain 30-40 of them.

In many respects, we have really messed up this game. There are so many ideas to make it simpler, more affordable and MORE FUN, but I would be roasted, so I’m not ready to implement them. The next best thing is debating them. I want you to know that there are a whole bunch of golfers (just like my kids and I) out there; seeing a different game, and having more FUN. You are welcome to join us this summer, or you can continue to let par dictate you at those other places. RSPGL is where you get to decide how to play it, and that creates interest, and interest creates passion.


  1. chip April 23, 2020
    • Nick Stephens, PGA April 23, 2020

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