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What Is A Hole-In-One In Golf? – Explained!

what is a hole in one in golf
what is a hole in one in golf

Golf is known to be a technical sport full of technical terms that you may not know the meaning of. One of those golf terms sometimes thrown out in conversation and television broadcasts is the word “hole-in-one”.

If you are reading this article, you may wonder: What exactly does “hole-in-one” mean in golf?

In this article, we will explain to you exactly what a hole-in-one is in golf, along with some examples to solidify your comprehension.

What Is A Hole-In-One In Golf?

In golf, a hole-in-one designates the act of completing a golf hole with a single golf shot. The term hole-in-one’s origin comes from the fact it means to complete a golf hole in one stroke. For example, if a golf hole is a par 3 hole, completing that hole in 1 single golf stroke results in a hole-in-one.

In the great game of golf, the term “hole-in-one” is a word that is extremely rare to hear. However, when you hear the word “hole-in-one”, it is usually on one of the golf holes with a lower par number, such as par 3.

Scoring a hole-in-one means that you completed a golf hole while only requiring a single stroke.

A golfer is more likely to score a hole-in-one on a shorter golf hole, which usually correlates with a smaller par number. This is why hole-in-ones are more common on par 3 holes rather than on par 4 or par 5 holes. However, hole-in-ones are incredibly rare regardless of the par number of a hole.

In fact, scoring a hole-in-one requires extreme luck, but a high level of skill definitely increases the likelihood of a hole-in-one. To score a hole-in-one, you need to hit a golf ball into a 4.25” wide hole whilst standing roughly 200-700 yards away from it. That is an incredible achievement.

You can read a real-world example of a hole-in-one being scored, down below.


Tiger is a professional golfer. He gets ready to tee off in front of a par 3 golf hole.

Tiger hits the ball into the hole in only 1 stroke!

Therefore, as he completed the hole in a single shot, Tiger scored a hole-in-one.

To make things as simple as possible for you to know if you scored a hole-in-one, refer yourself to the following chart:

Par Number for the HoleExact Shots Taken to Get a Hole-In-One
Exact Shots Taken To Score A Hole-In-One VS Par Number Of The Hole

Scoring a hole-in-one is an exceedingly rare achievement to accomplish in golf. It will usually raise lots of applause, shock, as well as cheer from the spectators in the crowd, as it is extraordinarily impressive to accomplish.

Scoring a hole-in-one on a given golf hole means you required only one stroke to complete the hole. Given that par 1 golf holes are essentially inexistent, scoring a hole-in-one is always a better score than a scratch golfer is expected to score on a given golf hole; scratch golfers are defined as excellent golf players.

Hole-in-ones are known to be mythically rare on a golf course, as opposed to bogeys, because they require an insane amount of luck to score.

On the other hand, the higher the skill level of a golfer, the more opportunities to score a hole-in-one they will have, as they can consistently land the golf ball closer to the flag than a beginner could. The only way to score a hole-in-one is to land the ball very close to the flag within a single golf stroke.

If you do not have the required power to reach the flag after a single golf stroke, you will never score a hole-in-one. To increase your power, you can read our golf-specific dumbbell workout here: Golf-Specific Dumbbell Workout.

Even amongst professional golfers, scoring a hole-in-one is incredibly rare. Like most people will never win the lottery, most people will never score a hole-in-one within their lifetime.

If you want to stand a chance at scoring a hole-in-one, you need a very good long game and you need to be powerful and precise when driving a ball off the tee.

It is linguistically obvious where the term “hole-in-one” comes from, as it literally means to complete a golf hole in one single shot. Partially thanks to how catchy it sounds, “hole-in-one” is a term loved by golfers around the world.

If you dream of one day scoring a hole-in-one, it will take a lot of luck, and potentially hard work & dedication. If you would like to get better at golf in order to improve your chances at scoring a hole-in-one, you can read our guide: How To Improve Your Golf Score? – 9 Pro Tips.


There you go! After reading this article, you have learned exactly what the word hole-in-one means in golf. You also got to read some real-world examples to further improve your understanding of the meaning of a hole-in-one.

Do you have any other words you wish to know more about? Have you ever scored a hole-in-one? Do you dream of scoring a hole-in-one? Let us know in the comments down below!

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