What Is a "birdie" in Golf?

A birdie in golf occurs when a player hits the ball into the hole with one fewer stroke than par. Par is the number of strokes it typically takes an expert golfer to play a hole.

Golf holes are usually rated par 3, par 4 or par 5, meaning it takes an expert golfer three, four or five strokes respectively to complete the holes. For example, on a par-5 hole, an expert golfer typically takes two shots to move the ball down the fairway, one shot to get it to the green and then two putts to sink it in the hole. When a recreational golfer achieves a birdie, it is a significant accomplishment.