Which Golf Stroke Counter Should I Use? — (Ways to Keep Score)

which golf stroke counter should i use with electronic scorecards on your phone

Golf is a game filled with fun and enjoyment, but it’s also one of the most challenging sports in the world. There are many reasons why golf is so tough, like that you have to be able to hit multiple clubs, chip, putt, keep the golf ball in play, etc. But perhaps the most difficult part is your opponent – yourself. 

In golf, you’re really only playing against yourself, and the entire point of the game is to get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible. To track your progress and compete with others, you track the total amount of strokes for the round. 

There are multiple ways to do this, some more popular than others, which is why we’ve made this article to discuss the alternatives available and find out which one suits you the best.

which golf stroke counter should i use with electronic scorecards on your phone

The Ways to Keep Score in Golf

the ways to keep score in golf with excellent scorekeeping and stroke counters

Keeping score in golf is crucial for tracking your progress and playing the game properly. It also makes sure that you try your best for every shot, as every stroke is counted equally. Knowing that all shots are essential also pushes you to your limits, and makes sure that you keep score for each and every golf shot.

Golfers keep score very differently, depending on their personal preferences and gear.

Some of the most popular ways to keep score are electronic scorecards on your phone, golf score clicker counters, golf watch stroke counters, and the old-fashioned pen and paper. Now, we’ll go over each of these options and cover their strengths and weaknesses.


Electronic scorecards are apps on your mobile phone and have many benefits. These types of apps usually also come with other features that can improve your game immensely. Here are three reasons why you should consider using a golf app to keep track of your score.

Excellent Scorekeeping

This article is about scorekeeping, and the golf apps do a great job at that. With their built-in electronic scorecards, you can quickly fill in your number of strokes per hole, and the app will add them all together at the end of the round and present you with your score.

What’s great about electronic scorecards, is that they’re adjusted for the slope rating of the golf course and your handicap. This means that the app automatically calculates the number of extra strokes given to you on a specific hole, which makes the golfing experience more enjoyable and straightforward. 

GPS Functions

Golf apps aren’t only great for scorekeeping. The featured GPS functionality makes finding the yardage left to the hole and choosing which golf club to pick much more effortless.

This is usually done through a satellite connection, where you can see the exact distances on the hole you’re on.

Not only is this very advantageous to have, but it can – and most likely will – improve your golf game tremendously. The GPS allows you to check the distance to specific targets and potential dangers, such as a bunker or river, which means that you’ll make more well-informed and intelligent decisions on the course. 

Always With You and Easy to Use

You always carry your phone with you, so there’s virtually no chance of you forgetting it. Golf apps are also very easy to use, and as a bonus, they’re almost always free. Depending on your preferences, there are many different apps to choose from, but some of the most popular ones are GolfShot, 18 Birdies, and Golf GPS and Scorecard.


Golf Score Clicker Counters

Golf score clicker counters are another way to keep track of your score, and although they are simple, they have some benefits.

How Do Clicker Counters Work?

A golf score clicker counter is a simple yet effective gadget used only to track your number of strokes. This is almost always done by pressing a button, typically on the side of the device, and the clicker counter registers one stroke.

Then you do this for every stroke you take during the entire round and see your result.

Some clicker counters only offer counting for one player, while some offer for two. So that can be a great way for you to keep track of your buddy who always seems to shoot par with multiple OB balls 🙂 

Do Clicker Counters Have Any Drawbacks?

Although golf score clicker counters are very simple and effective, they do have some drawbacks that might make you want to consider some other options.

All they do is show the number of strokes you’ve hit, and if you have a bad round, that might throw you off your game. When you’re on the last couple of holes and clearly see that you’re shooting well above your handicap, it might get frustrating and hard to keep focus. 

Golfing apps on the other hand usually don’t share your entire score until after the round, allowing you to keep constant focus. Clicker counters also don’t give you any insight into how many extra strokes you have on each hole. 

Golf Watch Stroke Counters

Another trendy option available is golf watch score counters. There are many options available out there, and covering them all is not easy, but it’s safe to say that there is something that suits everybody’s preferences and budget.

How Do Golf Watch Stroke Counters Work?

A golf watch is typically either a regular sports watch with golfing functions or an all-out golfing watch. The way these watches work when it comes to score counting is that after every hole, you simply register the number of strokes you’ve taken. At the end of the round, the watch automatically calculates your total score.

But golf watches aren’t only great at keeping your score, just like the golf apps on your phone, they often have terrific GPS functions. On those GPS golf watches, you can see the total distance of the hole and specific targets, which allows you to make smarter decisions, which will definitely improve your golf.

Old-Fashioned Pen and Paper

One way to keep track of your golf score is using the traditional pen and paper route. This might seem old-fashioned to some, but interestingly enough, there are still some reasons to use them even today. 

What Are the Pros of Using Pen and Paper?

Since there’s no technology involved, you focus on the golf course and stay in the moment, and you won’t be tempted to check your emails. Combined with a rangefinder, you can get away with using no technology whatsoever, which can be a well-deserved break from your otherwise tech-filled life. 

Calculating your extra strokes is also relatively straightforward by using the golf club’s slope guide and stroke cards. And because you’ll have to do quite a bit of math in your head to see your final score, you most likely won’t know if you’re playing good or bad, letting you focus on the next shot rather than the entire round.  

FAQ Section

How do you count strokes in golf?

There are plenty of ways to count strokes in golf, each with its different strengths and weaknesses, and in this article we’ve covered electronic scorecards, score clickers, golf watches, and pen and paper. 

  • Electronic Scorecards

Electronic scorecards are golf apps on your mobile phone and are excellent at keeping track of your score and calculating your slope handicap. Another great thing about them is that they have fantastic GPS functions which make club decisions easier, and to top it off, there are plenty of free options. 

  • Score Clickers

Score clickers are another way to keep track of your score, and they are used by simply pressing a button on the side of the gadget. They are effortless to use, but seeing the total amount of strokes you’ve taken can be stressful.

  • Golf Watches

Golf watches are very popular, and that’s for a reason. Not only are they great for registering the number of shots taken after every hole, but they also have great GPS functions to calculate yardages and more. 

  • Pen and Paper

Using pen and paper is undoubtedly old-fashioned, but it removes the need for potentially distracting tech, and lets you stay in the moment and enjoy the game.

How do you use a bead stroke counter?

A bead golf stroke counter is an excellent way to keep track of the number of shots you’ve taken during the hole. It’s attached to the golf bag next to your golf accessories or belt loop with a clip, and after every shot, you simply drag a bead down. Pull the beads back up after the hole is done and register your score.

What are the strokes in golf?

Strokes in golf are a way to calculate your score, since the entire point of the game is to get the golf ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible. If you take one stroke under par you make a birdie, two strokes eagle, and three strokes albatross. On the other hand, if you take one stroke over par you make a bogey, two strokes double bogey, and so on.

Conclusion: Research by Tellmemoregolf.com

black tell me more golf compressed logo with mottled background information for golfers

Golf is a challenging game, but what makes it so enjoyable is the ability to constantly compete with no one but yourself. Your score is calculated by the number of strokes you’ve taken, and is a way to see what skill level you’re at and if you’re improving.

There are plenty of golf score counters to keep track of your score, including electronic scorecards, score clickers, golf watches, and pen and paper. They all are good at different things, and we hope that you now have a better idea of which one suits you the best.

Thank you for reading this article from TellMeMoreGolf.com – your favorite golf comparison site.


Patrick Corley Tell Me More Golf Instructor and Coach
Patrick Corley
From a golf scholarship to a Southern California University, to a private golf coaching career and an instructor position at a nonprofit organization, I’m here to help you get better at golf! With my 50+ years of golf experience; I bring you Tell Me More Golf. A golf coaching website that helps your game with instructional golfing content that’s ultimately geared toward making you a better golfer and having more fun!
Our golf instructor team brings it all to you, so enjoy!
Tell Me More Golf Browser Icon Theme for Website


Tell Me More Golf Instructor Free Golf Tips Coaching Advice and Expert Instructional Courses for Free