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.
Find your GHIN number and updated handicap index here
SONC is an affiliate club of the Carolina Golf Association (CGA). Golfers competing in golf at level 4 and level 5 are required to enter all of their scorecards into the CGA GHIN system. On this webpage you will find resources to learn more about the CGA, the new World Handicapping System and how to utilize GHIN.
About the Carolinas Golf Association (CGA)
The CGA is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit educational organization founded in 1909 whose mission is to promote and to protect the game of golf in the Carolinas by providing competitions, education, support and benefits to clubs and golfers.
The CGA is the second largest golf association in the country over 700 member clubs represented by nearly 150,000 individuals. With its rich legacy, championship traditions and commitment to the future of the game, the CGA has been a steward of golf in the Carolinas for over one hundred years.
What is the GHIN system?
GHIN is the system used by the United States Golf Association and subsequently the Carolinas Golf Association (CGA) to capture and maintain a golfers handicap index. It is simply the tool to collect, calculate and store the handicap index for a particular person.
Login to your GHIN account here: GHIN Desktop Dashboard
- Must have GHIN number and athletes last name to login
- Don’t have your GHIN number? Submit a request for your GHIN number here
Post a Score
- Check out this video on how to post scores into GHIN using the desktop dashboard
- Check out this how-to document to post scores into GHIN
- Check out this video on how to use the GHIN Mobile App (for both Apple and Android)
World Handicapping System (WHS)
As of January 1, 2020, the WHS has been adopted by the USGA to govern all players handicaps
- Learn more about the change to the World Handicapping System here.
- World Handicapping System 5 Things to Know
- If you would like to learn more about the new rules of handicapping check out this informational guide.
- Frequently asked questions about the WHS
Have a question? Submit your question using this online form and the SONC sports staff and golf sport development team will make sure to answer your question
Always communicate with your local coordinator if you are interested in submitting registration for an event.
Fall Tournament/Invitational Registration Forms
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.
For coaches’ use only – do NOT submit with registration.
2020 SONC Fall Tournament
SONC Fall Tournament will be held in fall 2020 in Charlotte.
Athletes and Unified 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
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 email@example.com.