5 simple ways to determine teams for a round of golf
Golf Culture

5 simple ways to determine teams for a round of golf

Our group on No. 13.

You've made it to the first tee for your round of golf, and you're standing around with your playing partners -- maybe buddies, maybe strangers. You want to play a game with teams, but you're not really sure how to determine the teams.

There are a bunch of ways to decide which players team up in a round of golf.

How to determine teams for a game during a round of golf

When playing a match with friends, there's no real set way to decide on teams. Obviously fairness is key in determining teams, but that's not always easy to find, and it's also not always the point. I've found a variety of ways to determine teams, and all of them have worked at different times.

Throwing tees: This one is a personal favorite. One golfer holds a tee, and all the golfers stand in a circle around each other. The tee is thrown up in the air, and whoever the pointy end points to once it hits the ground is on a team. Then the throw is done again, and whoever the tee points to next joins the first player as teammates. The other two golfers are a team.

Throwing balls in the air: Each golfer provides a ball to one of the players, who groups them together in their hands and tosses them blindly backwards. The two balls that are closest together represent the two players that will be teammates. The other two players team together by default.

Playing high-low: Sometimes it's just easier to put the best player with the worst player in terms of handicap index. That way the combined strokes between the teams is more likely to be about the same with the best and worst player on the same team against the two players in the middle of the spread.

Playing by carts: If all four golfers are playing in carts, some golfers will simply team up based on who's in which carts. This way there's some camraderie among the people in the cart and can ramp up the banter and trash talk. Or you can use the opposite system and have Driver 1 and Passenger 2 vs. Driver 2 and Passenger 1. If there are two golfers riding and two walking, maybe it's riders against walkers.

Drawing numbers: When it's not easy to use any of the above methods, players can draw numbers from a hat by writing down four numbers on a scorecard or receipt, then folding them up and drawing them from a hat or someone else's hand.

Deciding who goes first in golf off the No. 1 tee doesn't have to be a burden or a process. It can be fun, quick and easy!

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