Game On: Learn about the divisioning process that differentiates Special Olympics from other sport organizations.

Level 1:  Individual Skills Competition
This competition allows Special Olympics athletes to develop sports skills in a competitive format designed to serve as a stepping stone towards course play. The individual skills offered for golf are short and long putt, chip shot, pitch shot, iron shot and wood shot.

Level 2:  Alternate Shot Team Play (9 hole)
This competition allows Special Olympics athletes to compete in course play with a Unified partner that acts as a coach to the athlete. The partner teaches strategy along with golf etiquette while playing alternate shot to prepare the athlete for individual course play.

Level 3:  Alternate Shot Unified Sports Team Play (18 hole)
This competition allows Special Olympics athletes with a strong concept of golf rules and etiquette to play with a Unified Partner of similar ability on an alternate shot team for 18 holes.

Level 4:  Individual Stroke Play Competition (9 hole)
This competition allows those athletes who have improved golf skills from level 2 to compete as an individual for 9-holes. Athletes are allowed caddies to help advise on strategy.

Level 5:  Individual Stroke Play Competition (18 hole)
This is the highest individual level of golf offered by Special Olympics, and is for athletes with a good understanding of the game and golf knowledge. Athletes must have an average score under 120 in order to be eligible for this level of play.

Click here to find your coach certification status.

SONC is an affiliate club of the Carolina Golf Association (CGA) named the Special Olympics North Carolina Golf Club. Golfers competing at Level 4 and Level 5 only are required to have their coach enter all of their scores into the CGA GHIN system. Below you will find resources to make posting scores, and reviewing scores easier.

Post a Score to into the CGA GHIN System
“How to” for Posting Scores
Special Olympics NC Golf Club September Scores Posted Report

Always communicate with your local coordinator if you are interested in submitting registration for an event.

Fall Tournament/Invitational Registration Forms 

  • Golf ISC Registration Form
  • Golf Registration Form

Local program coordinators should submit entries along with the remainder of the Fall Tournament registration.  Click here for a full list of Fall Tournament registration forms. These forms will be available closer to the event date.

Assessment Forms

For coaches’ use only – do NOT submit with registration.

  • Golf ISC Worksheet

SONC Fall Tournament will be held November 1-3, 2019 in Charlotte.

Special Olympics National Golf Invitational Tournament

Hosted by Special Olympics North America and is traditionally held in September.


Athletes and partners also have the opportunity and are encouraged to participate in various local invitationals. Check the golf sport calendar for upcoming invitationals being hosted by local programs.

Local programs are also encouraged to host and invite neighboring counties to participate in invitationals, scrimmages, or leagues.  Click here for some basic steps on how to get started.  If you are interested in hosting an invitational you can also contact the sports department at

About Golf:  Golf is a precision club and ball sport, in which competing golfers use many types of clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a golf course using the fewest number of strokes. The game is played on golf “courses”, each of which features a unique design, although courses typically consist of either nine or 18 holes.  After a clinic at the 1993 Summer Games in Greensboro, SONC offered golf as an official sport for the first time at the Fall Games in Charlotte. 

Differences of Special Olympics Golf: Special Olympics offers varying events for competition, but in individual stroke play competitions, there are a couple of variations from the rules of golf. First, if a 10th stroke is played without holing the shot, the player shall record a score of “10x” and proceed to the next hole. In the place of a tie for first place, the winner can be decided by the number of “10x” scores on an athlete’s scorecard. The player with the fewest number of “10x” scores shall be declared the winner.  

History: Golf became an official sport at Special Olympics North Carolina at the 1993 Fall Games following a clinic at Summer Games in Greensboro. 

By the Numbers:   

  • In 1991, golf made its exhibition debut at the International Games in Minneapolis, MN. 

Sport Development Teams (SDT) are responsible for assisting with local and state-level programs and competition, educating coaches and officials, and promoting active engagement among athletes throughout the year.  Click here for more information.

Alana Brahler

Peter Cowick

Vince Powierski

Certified Clinicians receive additional training in presentational skills to conduct training schools in their community.  In order to become a Certified Clinician one must have a Special Olympics North Carolina level 2 sport certification in this sport.

For more information on becoming an SDT member or a Certified Clinician, contact

Find out if this sport is offered in your community

Become an Athlete or Unified partner

Special Olympics North Carolina offers sports training and competition in 19 Olympic-type sports to children and adults with intellectual disabilities.  Learn more on how to become an athlete.

Become a Unified partner and play on a team alongside athletes with intellectual disabilities.

become a coach

Combine knowledge and passion for a sport by becoming a Special Olympics North Carolina coach to lead athletes in preparing for local and state-level competition.

become a volunteer

Serve a crucial role at Special Olympics North Carolina by volunteering at our office or one of our many events throughout the year. Check out our home page for these volunteer opportunities.

Share Your Sport Knowledge

Officiate for Special Olympics North Carolina by donating your time as a sports official.  Contact for more information.

Sport Development Team members (SDT) are active volunteers who channel their passion and knowledge for a sport into effective leadership for local and state programs.  

Certified clinicians supplement the SDT by providing coaches training in their community.  Click here for trainers.

For more information on getting involved, contact