6 health benefits of playing golf
May is National Golf Month and golf clubs across the UK are promoting the game and offering unique golfing experiences in their communities, catering to people at all levels of play. It’s a fine time for beginners to get to grips with the sport. If that’s you, then what are you waiting for? If the grand outfits aren’t swinging it for you, perhaps these proven health benefits of hitting the links will encourage you to pick up a club this summer (it’s also a great reason to give your partner when you’re out golfing for the third time this week!).
1. Golfing burns calories
According to a report published by the Rose Center for Health and Sports Sciences in 2010, playing an 18-hole round of golf while carrying your clubs or using a pushcart burns a whopping 1440 calories. Playing with a motor cart only burns about 822 calories, but regardless of your preferences here, you’re sure to lose weight and body fat if your golfing goes hand in hand with a balanced and nutritious diet.
2. It keeps you fit and improves muscle tone
Golfing typically involves a lot of walking, which helps oxygenate and tone the muscles and gives your heart and lungs a good workout. In fact, if you’re walking the distance in a round of golf, you can easily clock over 5 miles. That’s over 10,000 steps and bang on target with the guideline for recommended daily exercise. But walking’s not the only exercise to be gained on the golf course. Swinging heavy clubs around all day in controlled motions is a great workout for your chest, back and forearms. This takes your potential burned calorie count to over 2,000!
3. Golfing helps reduce stress
It’s no secret that stress is a killer, and it’s particularly harmful to those you are getting on in years. Golf has been proven to reduce stress levels through exercise which releases endorphins (the happiness chemicals) into your body, as well as through the simple act of being outdoors in natural, beautiful and peaceful surroundings. Golfing with good friends is also a well-known upper and will eradicate stress in no times.
4. Golfing is good for your brain
As your heart rate increases, so does blood flow to the brain which stimulates connections between nerve cells and can delay mental illnesses such as dementia. In addition, the game of golf often requires some strategic thinking when planning a tricky shot, and the simple act of striking the ball fosters hand-eye coordination, keeping the neurons firing and the brain working.
5. It helps you sleep better
As we already mentioned, a round of golf allows you to get quite a bit of exercise, and as we all know, exercise can tire you out. Your weary but happy body will welcome the well-deserved rest it gets at bedtime and you’ll fall asleep quicker and sleep more soundly thanks to the energy you expended on the golf course. A deep sleep is necessary for your body to regenerate cell and repair any muscles and tissues.
6. Golfing strengthens friendships
We know what you’re thinking: “how is this a health benefit?”, but trust us, it is. Golf is a social sport and provides a great platform for catching up with friends and making new ones. It’s been documented that spending time with good friends makes us happy, and happiness is good for one’s overall health.
Golf helps us develop a sense of community connectedness, comradery and healthy competition.