What Percentage of Golfers Break 80? Fact-Based Analysis

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Many golfers ask the question what percentage of golfers break 80? You will be astonished that only a small percentage of golfers achieve this feat. There are roughly 70 million golfers worldwide. Out of which only 2.8 million ~ 4% of golfers manage to break 80.

What percentage of golfers break 80
What Percentage of Golfers Break 80 (https://canyougolf.com)

How Many Golfers Break 80 in the USA?

In 2022, the National Golf Foundation released the stats that there are 25.6 million active golfers in the USA (six years and above). Of which, 1.8 million ~ 7.03% male golfers and 378k ~ 1.47% female golfers break 80.

Percentage of golfers who break 80 in USA
Percentage of Golfers Who Break 80 in USA (https://canyougolf.com)

What Does It Mean to Break 80 in Golf Game?

While playing golf, if a golfer’s gross score (actual strokes) is 79 or below, it is considered as breaking 80. It is a significant milestone and a good golf score that only a handful of golfers achieve

Handicap is excluded afterward to obtain the Net Score (Gross Score-Handicap= Net Score).

Learn more about Golf Handicap.

If a golfer’s handicap is 18 and he shot 90, he would not fall into the elite club of breaking 80 in golf. For a golfer to break 80, his gross score has to be 79 or lower.

Breaking 80 in golf makes you feel like a gladiator standing in the middle of the Colosseum. Most golfers never get to feel this significant accomplishment.

What Are the Odds of Breaking 80 in Golf?

The odds of breaking 80 are 1:25. This means that out of 1000 golfers, there are chances that only 40 of them would be able to break 80 on the golf course.

For professional golfers, playing 30 rounds and breaking 80 in all of them is common. Their consistent golf performance is mainly based on mental game and golf ball striking.

For example, Rory McIlroy‘s average score for the season 2022-23 is 68.8. Honestly, he is not playing his best game lately. Brandon Matthews holds the highest score average of a PGA Pro for the same season which is 72.24.

What is an Ideal Handicap to Break 80?

For a golfer to consistently break 80, his handicap should be 3-8. For a one-time wonder or occasional lower scores, there is no ideal handicap. On a good day, an 18-handicapper might as well break 80.

A golfer has to be good at course management, strategic thinking, and mental resilience along with a consistent performance to break 80 in golf.

What’s Stopping You to Break 80?

Thousands of golfers strive to break 80. Their efforts to shoot low scores go in vain across various golf courses. However, there is no rocket science in breaking 80 in golf.

If you are aiming to break 80, there are a couple of basic issues that you should be aware of.

Firstly, you need to identify what’s stopping you from breaking 80 aka mistakes and problems. Then you must find solutions to those problems to get closer to breaking 80 in golf.

Common Mistakes and Their Solutions

Let’s discuss these problems and their possible solutions to get you up and going for the all-iconic and good score of under 80. We will talk about six main problems and their possible solutions. If you want to be among the chosen percentage of golfers, you should consider the following solutions.

These will make a significant difference in your game.

The Mighty Brain Bloopers

Data about Golfers Who Make Mental Mistakes
Data about Golfers Who Make Mental Mistakes (https://canyougolf.com)

These Brain Boo-Boos are the closest segment of golfers that can break 80 on any golf course. They have almost the perfect golf swing. Their putting and short game is fine. However, their mental game often takes a hit and they start to feel tournament play pressure.

Pain Points

They struggle the most with their iron golf clubs. Their ball striking for long irons causes them extra strokes. These brain bloopers significantly impact the final score. They either hit the ball short or make errors.


They need to have more practice sessions for long-iron approach shots. This will save strokes for them. Above all, confidence is the key. Stay calm and ensure your course management for challenging holes is on point.

Remember, mental toughness is the key to becoming a golfer who breaks 80. If you can start to perform in the clutch, that’s when you become a better golfer.

Let the lie guide your shots, steer clear of imaginary no-go zones (water hazard and bunker), and always aim for a target. Occasionally, the good choice is lying up. Remember, recovering from bogeys is feasible, but double and triple bogeys are a formidable challenge. Smart golf prevails, leave heroics to the legends.

The Tee-to-Green Time Travelers

Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Tee Shot and Irons
Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Tee Shot and Irons (https://canyougolf.com)

These time travelers own the largest segment of golfers on golf courses. As the data suggests, it takes them 6 strokes on average to land on the greens. This would have been perfect only if they were playing par 8s. It takes them an eternity to reach the greens.

They are 180-degree golfers. These have the PERFECT PUTTING skills combined with pitiful drives and approach shots. Pros on the greens and blues on the fairways as if they never played golf.

Pain Point

Their tee shots are tops, shanks, hooks, slices, sky-high, or down-to-earth. Their approach shots have the same issue. They lack consistent ball-striking.


To start with, get some good golf lessons about the foundations and basics of it. Hit the driving range and practice regularly. Use a foot spray on the club heads to understand your most common hitting spot.

Revisit the basics and create a log book about every shot you hit. Establish a pre-shot routine. Ensure that you are using the right equipment for your skill level. You will see a gradual improvement while playing rounds.

The Chunk-and-Thunk Crew

Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Iron Shots
Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Iron Shots (https://canyougolf.com)

These golfers often struggle with the impact point. They are long-hitters. Their ball direction and distance control are next to the pros on the tee box. At times on the golf course, they either hit well behind the golf ball or hit over the golf ball.

They face a similar problem with the golf wedges around the greens and their putting is just fine. With one impure contact, these golfers turn a good hole into a bad hole.

Pain Points

Their impact position often gets distorted, especially around the greens. They struggle with clean and pure contact. This causes them to gain extra strokes on the short game.


They can improve their approach and short game by adjusting swing curvature, stance, or ball position. One or more of these factors result in the thick and thin shots. This challenging feat could be minimized by practicing regularly.

The Green Graffiti Gang

Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Putting
Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Putting (https://canyougolf.com)

These golfers are a Picasso with a putter and a vandal with a victory dance. Their swings are symphonies, and their drives are poetry, but when it comes to putting, they have traded their golf balls for spray cans. Who needs a birdie when you can have a birdie painted in fluorescent green on the green?

Pain Points

They are perfect in every aspect of the game. However, when it comes to putting, there is a smooth transition from a good golfer to a clueless double-bogey golfer.


You don’t have to do much with your golf game. Basic training and putting drills will sort out this problem and get you in the percentage of golfers who break 80. Our guide ‘Putt like Pros‘ will help you to sink in more birdies and long eagles.

Driver and Putter Fumblers but Iron Magicians

Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Tee Shots and Putting
Data about Golfers Who Struggle with Tee Shots and Putting (https://canyougolf.com)

Meet the golfing maestros who turn tee boxes into comedy stages and greens into abstract art canvases. Their drives are detours, and their putts, well, they are more like gentle nudges toward the hole. But hand them an iron, and suddenly they are Michelangelo sculpting birdies out of rough terrain. Their bunker play is exceptional.

Pain Points

They struggle with tee shots and putting. They have inconsistent tee shots and clueless green-reading. Everything in between is down to the perfect details.


These golfers should work on hitting consistent drives off the tee box. You need mental resilience and confidence to hit pure tee shots.

Because Yards are Overrated

Data about Golfers Who are Short Hitters
Data about Golfers Who are Short Hitters (https://canyogolf.com)

These golfers have the physical fitness of Sylvester Stallone. They will hit their golf balls but their yardages are small. They can easily break 80 in golf if they commit their power to the golf ball. They have the full ability to shoot a great score.

Pain Points

They are short hitters. They reach the greens on par shots. This causes them to gain extra strokes.


They should spend practice time in speed-hitting drills. Extra yards will always be a fair trade even for a few misdirected shots. These golfers should improve their mental game and believe they can hit long shots without distorting the direction.

Tips for Breaking 80 in Golf

Precision Iron ShotsFocus on hitting consistent and accurate iron shots from various distances. Practice targeting specific landing zones on the green to enhance your approach game.
Smart Course ManagementWork on making strategic decisions based on your strengths and weaknesses. Practice choosing the right clubs and shot types to navigate the course effectively, minimizing potential pitfalls.
Reliable PuttingDedicate time to refining your putting skills. Work on distance control, green reading, and a consistent putting stroke. Success on the greens is often the key to breaking 80.
Driving AccuracyPractice hitting fairways consistently off the tee. Develop a reliable and controlled driver swing to set up favorable approach shots, avoiding unnecessary trouble that can lead to higher scores.
Bunker PlayImprove your ability to escape bunkers with precision. Practice a variety of bunker shots, mastering both short and long distances, to minimize the impact of hazards on your overall score.
Tips for Breaking 80 in Golf

People Also Ask

What Percentage of Golfers Break 80?

Around 4% of golfers out of 70 million break 80 in golf. This is a challenging feat that only a few achieve.

What Percentage of Golfers Break 80 in the USA?

8.5% of the total golfers break 80 in the USA. 7.03% account for male golfers and 1.47% for female golfers. The total number of American golfers is 25.6 million as per National Golf Foundation.

How Hard Is It to Break 80?

Breaking 80 in golf is a challenging feat. Only 4% of the total golfers achieve this significant milestone.

How Many Golfers Break 70?

Less than 1% of the total golfers break 70. It is the most difficult score in golf. One has to be a scratch or a pro golfer to break 70. Even lower handicaps find it hard to break 70.

How Can I Break 80 in Golf?

You can break 80 by mastering precision iron shots and smart course management. Furthermore, enhancing putting skills, prioritizing driving accuracy, and refining bunker play will lead to breaking 80 consistently.

Final Words

Breaking 80 is the elusive summit many golfers aspire to conquer. While the journey is tough and filled with challenges, the dedication to precision, strategy, and relentless practice can tilt the odds in your favor. We hope our blog about “What Percentage of Golfers Break 80.” helps you understand the significance of this score.

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Hasnain Ali Tarar is a passionate golfer with a journey in the sport that began in 2016. With a golf handicap of 15, he brings a unique perspective to the world of golf blogging. His deep love for the game has driven him to explore every facet of it, from perfecting his swing on the course to evaluating the latest golf products. As the Content Manager at CanYouGolf, Hasnain combines his writing skills with his golfing expertise to provide readers with valuable insights, tips, and reviews that enhance their golfing experience.

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