Golfstat, Tracking Your Game – Part I

It’s unfortunate but here in southern Manitoba our golf season is nearing the end.

I’m thinking perhaps another ten games or so before the courses close.

There is however one thing I’m looking forward to.

As mentioned in a previous post it was my intention to record some basic stats relative to my game using the Golf Canada Game Tracker.

This past season I entered every game I played using the hole by hole input screen and enhanced the data input slightly by using the ‘stats’ feature.  I did not record all the statistical categories available, just some of the basics like putts and fairways hit.

Entering such basic information provides you with a wealth of data as calculated by the statistical program.  It provides your average putts per round, putts per hole, average putts on a given hole, average score on a given hole, fairways in regulation, greens in regulation, scrambling and bounce backs.

Once the season is officially over I intend to review the data and write one or more posts that provide a breakdown of how the year went, and hopefully how the data generated can be used to identify potential areas for improvement.

Golfstat – Using Data to Improve Your Golf Game

Using statistics to reduce crime

During my years as the Deputy Chief of Police in Winnipeg I conducted extensive research on the statistical analysis of crime with a view to using statistical analysis as a basis for deployment of police resources and reducing crime.  The research process involved not only a review of the academic literature on the topic but also meeting with Rudy Giuliani’s consulting group and members of the  Manhattan Institute for Policy Research  in New York City.   Giuliani was the mayor of New York when Compstat was implemented there and the Manhattan Institute was the home of George Kelling who had become well  known in policing circles when he proposed the “Broken Windows’ theory in 1982.  I also visited  Newark New Jersey, one of the many cities in the United States that had implemented programs based on the statistical analysis of crime and met with police officers there.  Upon completion of the research I submitted a  proposal ( click on ‘proposal’ and scroll down the agenda and click on item 85 for a copy of the report)to the City of Winnipeg and subsequently  Crimestat was implemented in Winnipeg.

Using statistics to improve your golf game

During that same period of time I was a very active golfer and started thinking about applying some of the same principles used to reduce crime  towards improving my golf  game.

In my mind I called it Golfstat.   As opposed to tracking where break-ins, car thefts and robberies were taking place and how to reduce them, Golfstat looked at where (on which holes) birdies, pars, bogies and double bogies were being scored with a view to coming up with a means to replicate the good holes and eliminate the bogies and double bogies.

The first step in the process was to gather data.  For those interested in this approach an easy first step is to change the way you enter your handicap scores.  As opposed to simply entering your gross adjusted score you start by entering your scores on a ‘hole by hole’ basis.  The RCGA software allows for not only this but also facilitates the inclusion of other statistical information such as fairways hit, greens in regulation, number of putts and the like and then provides useful information  based on the date entered.

The following shows the Golf Canada hole by hole entry screen:

2015-10-29

(click on image to enlarge)

Once you have entered sufficient data (ten games or so) you can start to do an analysis of the data and draw conclusions and formulate an action plan to improve your scoring.

A future post will examine some of the things the data tells you and how to use it to your advantage and improve your scoring.

Fore!