At first this felt weird to consider, but over the years I can see why people have been talking about this more and more.
At the same time, this is like the equivalent of making an NBA game 3 quarters instead of 4, or an MLB game 6 innings instead of 9 (although if I was stuck watching a baseball game I wouldn’t mind this at all). The thing is there are basketball games that are 3 quarters, and baseball games that do only go to 6 innings, mind you this really only applies to more amateur leagues.
The same needs to be said for golf, and that courses should offer 6 & 12 hole rates for many of reasons.
Now I know what many will say, and that is to go later in the day also known as twilight golf and play as much as you can at a cheaper rate. Very true, but not everyone can play during those hours as work, school, family may get in the way. Not only that, people are just unable to commit to a round of golf after working all day then commuting.
There just isn’t enough time in a day.
To be honest, 4 – 4.5 hours to play a round of golf sounds like a long time, and to many it’s a turn off to even consider taking up the sport. Now, there are of course 9 hole rates which will cut the time to play in half which is more appealing to many, so why not include 6 & 12 hole rates as the standard as well?
I understand courses are built on front and back 9’s with the idea of playing either or both, so adding in 6 & 12 hole options only to leave midway through does sound strange, however in a world where time is everything it may not sound as bad of an idea.
This will give golfers many more options, they could possibly spend an hour or a couple at the course which could free up time for the rest of their day.
This will also introduce many more golfers into the sport, trying a 6 hole round first then possibly playing more frequently if they are into it.
People will also be able to play at a more affordable rate as 12 hole rates will be cheaper than 18 holes. There’s no hiding that golf is an expensive sport to take up, so by allowing newcomers to play at cheaper rates this will introduce many more people to the game without having to sell an arm or leg to do so.
If anything, this may actually help golfers have a better time, who wants to be stuck behind a group of four who are terrible for a whole round? This will give them the option to exit early without wasting their money.
Someone like myself who is a fast-paced golfer wouldn’t benefit from 6 hole rounds, I can usually play 18 holes alone within 3 – 3.5 hours, but I would definitely be more interested in the 12-hole round if I wanted to play more than 9.
The 12-hole option is very intriguing to me as sometimes 9 holes just doesn’t seem enough, while there have been times in the past where 18 holes seems too many, and I end up tired and just out of it towards the last few holes.
I’m sure many golfers can relate to this as well, and its even worse if your playing partners or the group ahead of you are slow.
Although there are only a handful of courses that offer 12 hole rates in Canada, Some offer them and are even designed as a 12-hole course.
Crumlin Creek located in London, Ontario has been converted from a 9-hole layout into now a 12-hole course!
Bunker Hill Golf Course located in Pickering, Ontario is another one that is relatively close to where I live and they as well are a 12-hole course.
I look forward to checking both of them out very soon, so stay tuned in the future for a review of what a 12-hole course is like to play!
Do I expect this to ever transition to the PGA Tour or professional tournaments/events? Likely not, just like how NBA games are still 4 quarters and MLB games are 9 innings.
However, if you need more convincing that 6 & 12 hole rates should be considered, Mr. Jack Nicklaus has mentioned in the past that, “we should consider the possibility of making 12 holes the standard round. Eventually it would be accepted because it makes sense in people’s lives.”
Nicklaus even designed a 12-hole course to back up what he says, and has hosted 12 hole tournaments at his Muirfield Village Golf Club in the past.
For amateur and “weekend golfers” this would give them more options without having to commit a good amount of their day to a round of golf.
Could you imagine living near a golf course and squeezing in a 6-hole round of golf before work or even during lunch hour?
Let’s discuss! What are your thoughts on 6 & 12 hole rounds? Is it something you can get behind?