Short "Games" to Solidify Your Short Game!

By Jason Rockhold, MBA, PGA
PGA Member with Advanced Certification in Player Development
Director of Instruction
Impact Performance Golf Learning Center

I started playing golf when I was two years old, but I started actually going to the golf course at age 5. Some of the greatest things that I did was playing little games with my friends & family having small competitions to feel the sense of victory.

These games really made me want to win but to do so in an honorable and fair way. I learned early that the more I practiced putting, the more putts that I made in the competitions. This philosophy translated to my short game which is the back bone to all good golf games.

I used these 5 games growing up to not only get better at my short game, but to have fun doing it.

1. 7-up

  • Flip a tee to determine starting order.
  • Leadoff player picks a hole and a starting position.
  • From zero to seven, you can score on sinks and closest to the hole::
    • Score +1 for closest to the hole
    • Score +2 for a sink
    • Score -1 for a three putt
    • You have to get to seven points exactly. If you go over, you start over (from zero).
    • Player who was closest to the hole (or was the last one to sink) has the honors for the next hole.

2. Horse

  • Flip a tee to determine starting order.
  • Lead off putter chooses a hole, a starting point, and calls his putt.
  • Leader can call distance &/or direction:
    • Distance from hole
      • Sink
      • Within the leather (putter grip)
      • Within the steel (shaft minus grip)
      • Within the shaft (length of the putter).
    • Direction from hole:
      • Below the hole (relative to the slope)
      • “Hole high” (even with or beyond the hole, relative to the starting position)Note: Other directions could be chosen, but they don’t translate into skills you can use on the course.)
  • Leadoff putter’s putter is used for all measurements.
  • If the leader doesn’t make the shot he called, he goes to the end of the line.
  • If he does, everyone else has to make it.
  • You get one letter in the name for every shot you miss (unless you’re the leader).

Strategy Notes

  • To win, pick the hardest shot you can make with a reasonable percentage of success.

3. Modified Stableford

This game allows multiple players to play in a way that is similar to match-play competition.

  • Flip a tee to determine starting order.
  • Play 9 or 18 holes with one or more competitors.
  • Par is 2.
  • Count +1 for a par, +3 for a sink, -1 for a bogey or worse.
  • Most points wins the competition.
  • If betting, pay up to players with a higher score.

4. Skins

  • Chip or pitch from off green.
  • For a quicker game, play closest to the hole for a skin.
  • For one that takes longer (mostly because of the time it takes to change clubs), play total strokes into the hole

5. Short 9

This game is a chipping game that you count all of your shots for nine up and down situations. Par is 2. Chip it onto the green and make the put

Posted by admin at Feb 09, 2017 Category: Other
Tags: