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List of Golf Games to Play

written by: lrohner • edited by: Leigh A. Zaykoski • updated: 8/31/2010

Whether you are playing a casual game or planning a tournament, there are many golf games to play that lend a little twist to the standard game. Some of these formats require more skill, and others require a bit of luck. But they are sure to add a little variety to your next friendly golf game.

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    Many people do not look at golf as an athletic support, as it does not involve strenuous physical activity and usually happens at a leisurely pace. What they do not know is that golf can be good for your health and your heart. Golfers who choose to walk a typical 18-hole course may cover roughly four miles during the game.

    The Harvard Medical School states that golfers who play 18 holes three to five times per week and walk the course rather than use a cart receive the "optimal amount of endurance exercise" for their heart.

    Frequent players may get tired of the standard game. There are many golf games to play that add a little twist and a bit of variety to the typical golf game that are fun and healthy.

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    These variations on a standard game of golf are best played in groups of four, hence the names Foursome and Four Ball. In the game of Foursome, two golfers play the course together using standard golf rules, except that they only play one ball between the two of them. One golfer tees off on the odd-numbered tees and the other on the even-numbered tees. Play alternates between the group as normal, except that the two matched players hit the same ball during their turn. Since only two balls are played instead of four, this game goes quickly and is well suited for a late afternoon round of golf.

    There are several variations on Foursome, the most popular being Canadian Foursome. In this game, both players on a team tee off at each tee box. They then decide which ball they want to play for the remainder of the hole, and take the other ball out of play.

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    Bingo Bango Bongo

    GolfClubandBall Bingo bango bongo is popular golf game, well suited for competitions and friendly play. Twosomes can play this game, but it is best with threesomes and foursomes. Instead of match or stroke play scoring, each hole is worth three points. One point each is awarded to:

    • The player who reaches the green first.
    • The player whose ball is closest to the hole when everyone has made it onto the green.
    • The winner of the hole.

    The player with the most points at the end of the course wins the games. To add a little fun to a friendly game, have everyone toss some money into the pot and award a set amount to be awarded for each point at the end of the game, or play for winner-takes-all if the players are fairly evenly matched.

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    Scramble is one of the most common tournament games played, and it is also a fun format for casual games among friends. Each foursome divides into two-player teams. Each player tees off in their normal rotation. The players then find their balls, hopefully on the fairway, and decide which shot was the best between the two. The other player retrieves his ball and, once his teammate has taken his next shot, plays his ball from the same spot. This process is repeated until play on the hole is complete. The best shot of the team is always played, regardless of who shot the ball.

    Team scores, rather than individual scores, are calculated, with the best score being awarded to the team. If each member of a team took three strokes to complete the hole, they would be awarded a score of three rather than six. A popular variation involves each player on the team playing their own ball, but the team receives the best score between the two players at the end of the hole.

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    Information Sources Types of Golf Competitions - Bingo Bango Bongo -

    Golflink: How to Play a Golf Scramble -

    Harvard Medical School: Golf Can Be Good for You if Done Correctly -