Two sand pits in the shade on a golf course.

Course Rating™

The United States Golf Association® Course Rating System™ is one of the cornerstones of the World Handicap System™, allowing players of all abilities to compete on an equal ground during a round of golf. Course are rated every 10 years by Maine Golf staff to ensure their accuracy.

With the work of staff and trained volunteers, Maine Golf conducts approximately 10 to 20 Course Ratings every golf season. A Course Rating team is comprised of Maine Golf staff member and a group of volunteers. During a rating, the team evaluates each hole using the Course Rating System guidelines. The team measures holes and assesses various obstacles surrounding landing zones based on specific shot parameters. Obstacles near the landing zones are assessed for their proximity or severity, which can add to the difficulty of the hole.

After evaluating the course, the rating data information is entered in Course Rating software, which computes ratings based on the effective playing length and the cumulative severity of obstacles on the course. A Course Rating ties in directly with the World Handicap System, and accurate ratings ensure that players competing from any set of rated tees can compete equitably.

Have any questions about the rating process or when your club may be due for its next rating? Send an email to Joe Piwowarski at