‘Having a handicap isn’t just about competitions.’ – Emma Ballard

Date Published: 19/06/2023

Women & Golf Editor, Emma Ballard, has been involved with golf throughout her entire life, but until joining iGolf Emma had never had a handicap.

Having started golf as a young girl, Emma had lessons at the age of 10 but dipped in and out of golf throughout her teenage years, Emma never played competitively, and a handicap was never part of her golf ambitions.

However, after organising golf lessons for herself and a group of mums from school, Emma and her friends found themselves regularly playing social rounds of nine holes, which is when Emma discovered iGolf.

In June 2022, Emma discovered iGolf and put forward the idea to four of her friends that they all journey to getting a handicap together with iGolf, having been with iGolf for over a year Emma has been kind enough to speak to us about her experience using iGolf.

“My overall experience has been really positive. As someone who has played golf for a long time, on and off for 30 years, I really should have had one (Handicap Index®). However, due to not playing in competitions and playing sporadically, I couldn’t see why I really needed one.

Also, another reason for not getting one was the need to have your card marked by someone who did have a handicap. When you only play nine holes every week or so with your friends who also don’t have handicaps, it was another reason not to bother.

iGolf has changed all that and very easily enabled me and my friends to continue with our regular golf whilst obtaining a handicap.

What I have discovered with iGolf is that having a handicap isn’t just about competitions. It’s a great marker to use against your own success and improvement. By submitting every round, you get a clearer picture of where your game is at that moment in time.” Emma explained.

Emma Ballard at Bromsgrove.
Emma (far left) at her Monday night golf lesson at Bromsgrove. (Photo Credit – Women & Golf)

Having joined iGolf, Emma found herself motivated to play more golf, but for the first time felt extra pressure on the first few rounds until she achieved her Handicap Index®, Emma said;

“iGolf definitely motivated me initially to play more golf because once I had committed to it, I was really interested to see what my handicap index would be.

In those first few 9-hole rounds, I definitely felt extra pressure as I really wanted to have what I believed to be a decent handicap index. Once I achieved an official index, I then felt I relaxed a bit more.

Using iGolf has given me a better perspective on my final result after a round. When you look back at the score card and realise that it wasn’t all bad holes. Also remembering that you shouldn’t focus on playing every hole to par, although I would like to be, I am not a scratch golfer, and my handicap is there to help me play the course to my ability.”

Having gained her Handicap Index®, Emma has continued to use iGolf and would recommend it to any non-club golfers, even those just getting started, Emma explained;

“I’d highly recommend iGolf to anyone, even if you’ve just started playing. I wish this option had been around sooner as I definitely would have used it. As I said before, you don’t need to think of it as a vehicle to play competitions, it’s a great tool to see your progress. Then if you want to get involved with competitions in the future then you’re all set up and ready to go.

Again, I will reiterate the fact that you can join with friends who may also not have handicaps, so providing a less intimidating environment when trying to gain your first handicap index.”

Having completed her five week journey to a Handicap Index® in 2022, Emma has set herself another challenge for 2023, 40 by 40, a new series which will see Emma play 40 rounds of golf by the December 2023. You can follow Emma’s journey here.

Also be sure to check out Part One of Emma’s iGolf series here.