The 65% Solution

December 4, 2010

The 65% Solution was developed at Province Lake Golf Club, the course that my wife and I owned for ten years. We based it on our experience at other courses we played and observations of players at our course. The forward tees at Province Lake play at 4,169 yards. Golf Digest Women rates Province Lake as No. 25 on their list of America’s Top 50 Courses for Women and No. 1 in New England.

The 65% Solution

There is a simple method for determining the total length of the course that players with driver swing speeds of 60MPH or less should be playing: Multiply the yardage of the course that most men would play by 65 percent. For instance, if that yardage is 6,300 yards, then the 60MPH swinger should play a course of approximately 4,095 yards (6,300 x .65 = 4,095).

The 65% Solution is based on the fact that the men, on average, hit their tee shots 207 yards. The “average” woman hits her tee shots 135 yards. 135 divided by 207 equals 65 percent. This methodology should also be applied to individual holes. The chart below offers examples:

*Note: If a hole plays significantly up hill, it is better to use 60 percent.

You’ll find that carrying a small calculator makes calculating the 65 percent much easier. It is also helpful to carry a laser measuring device. It is much easier to use one of these devices to locate your own teeing ground than having to count the yardage as you step it off.

You may find that a slightly different percentage works better for you. The basic principal is that players with slower swing speeds should play a course that allows them to reach most, if not all, of the greens in regulation with well struck shots. As a result, if you find that the 65% Solution results in a course on which you are unable to reach the greens in regulation, make an adjustment to a lower percentage.

–Arthur Little

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