If you read web articles and blogs on handicap bowling leagues, you are likely to encounter a lot of misinformation. People understand that bowling leagues are often unfair, but they usually propose ineffective or even harmful solutions. Here are some common myths we've heard.
MYTH: Negative handicaps hurt good bowlers.
FACT: This is a false and mathematically bogus claim.
MYTH: Imposing an upper limit on handicaps enhances league fairness.
FACT: An upper handicap limit prevents poorer teams from ever having a chance at success in the league.
MYTH: Allowing the handicap formula base number to get too high gives a disproportionate advantage to poorer teams.
FACT: Only the handicap percentage affects league competitiveness; the base number has zero effect on league outcomes. (Unless it's set too low...see the next myth.)
MYTH: Setting the handicap formula base number lower than some bowlers' averages is an appropriate reward for high-average "scratch" bowlers.
FACT: When negative handicaps are not used, this practice gives an overwhelming advantage to high-average bowlers and their teams, undoing the fairness a handicap league is intended to create.