What is par in a round of golf?

Par for 18 holes varies by course. However, most courses are between par 70 and 74. For an 18-hole course, the most common par is 72.

What is Par in Golf?

Each hole on the golf course is given a score that is considered “par.” The number designated as each hole’s par is the number of strokes it should take an average golfer to complete the hole. There are usually holes rated as par 3s, 4s, and 5s on every golf course. To reach the overall par score of the golf course, the 9 or 18 holes are added up to make par. Each side of the course is scored separately in order for both 9-hole and 18-hole rounds to be played. The vast majority of courses have one of the three par scores: 70, 71, or 72, with a few having 73 or 74 as well. These scoring totals are based on the basic layouts of most courses around the globe.

Golf Course Par Types

There are three typical golf course types found in the world. Beyond the average 18 hole golf course, there are also par 3 golf courses and executive golf courses, which each have different averages for par.

Average 18 Hole Golf Course Par

The average layout of a typical golf course includes mostly par 4s, a few par 3s, and a few par 5s. The prototypical par 72 18-hole golf course has 4 par 3s, 4 par 5s, and 10 par 4s adding up to create the most common 72.

Courses with par 70 or 71 that include fewer par 5s are becoming more common, as well as some courses adding par 3s instead of par 4s to lower the total par score. In short, the par for a golf course is based on the individual course’s layout. Whatever number each hole’s par score adds up to across the 18 holes creates the total course’s par score.

Par 3 Golf Course Par

Par on a par 3 golf course is typically 54, as there are 18 holes that are all par 3. However, many par 3 golf courses do not have a full 18 holes, which affects the par for the entire course. Still, you can easily calculate the par of any par 3 golf course quite easily, all you need to do is multiply the number of holes by three, since every hole is a par 3.

Executive Golf Course Par

Executive golf courses are smaller versions of the average-length 18 hole golf course. They feature more par 3s and very few par 5s. Executive golf courses typically have a par in the low to mid-60s. These courses are also usually shorter in length, which is a factor in the course determining the total par.