NCG's Golf Glossary: What is a gross score?

Don’t know your dormies from your doglegs? NCG’s Golf Glossary is here to help

Here at NCG we pride ourselves on being the publication for the everyday player, so we’ve taken it upon ourselves to delve into the wonderful world of the golfing lexicon.

Sometimes the most obvious terms have the most interesting story, so you might find yourself an interesting conversation starter…

What is a gross score?

A gross score in golf is your total of number strokes taken throughout a round before your handicap is subtracted from it.

How would I use it in a sentence?

“He shot a gross score of 79 but his nett score was 73 with his handicap of 6 taken away from it”

What are the origins?

The term gross can mean one of thick, massive and bulky. It would probably make sense for one of the last two to have been thought of when it was decided to name it ‘gross score’ with it being the bigger score of the two.

Handicaps have been around since around 1850 so the term gross score could possibly have been invented some time around that year.

Any other business?

The term gross score is only used with competitions with handicaps so the term is used a lot in club golf. The term isn’t used when referring to professional golf as they obviously don’t play their golf with handicaps…

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