Health Benefits and Injury Possibilities of Golfing

Warming up to avoid injury

All sports lovers who play golf should be aware of the danger of injuries which can occur while playing golf, especially senior golfers. Because the twisting and turning motion of the game, this places an undue amount of stress on the spine, hips, and shoulders. Since most golfers are inactive during the winter months, injuries such as muscle strains and injuries to the disc are common.

The golf swing includes bending over and then twisting, which is one the worst moves people can make, according to physical therapists. If the knees are bent and the back is straight it will keep pressure off the discs. You can also tighten the stomach muscles to help give the back support during the golf swing. It is a good idea for all golfers, especially senior golfers to do some warm-up exercises before hitting the tee.

First of all, think of your practice session in three parts consisting of:

- the warm-up,

- the fresh stage

- and the fatigued stage

In these three stages, you will carry out different sets of exercises that when done in the right stages will make your practices more effective giving you results you can see on the greens as you play.

Warm-up: Many are deceived into thinking that golf requires no strenuous physical activity as it only involves swinging and walking. Nothing could be further from the truth. The very nature of swinging causes your muscle groups to work in ways not common to everyday routine. Your upper torsos, arms, as well as your lower back muscles are the groups most worked when playing golf which only shows that it is important to warm up with some stretches. Start from the top of your head and work your way down to your feet. Flexibility and getting your muscles’ full range of motion is your goal. If you are unfamiliar with stretches, you may consult a trainer or the instructor in your club for some tips.

Fresh Stage After your warm-up, start working on exercises that build on a skill you haven’t mastered yet, or on parts of your game that’s been causing you higher strokes. This could be anything from putting, chipping or driving.

What do doctors have to say about golf

Believe it or not, golf is actually good for your health. Even the United States Golf Association thinks so; they also advise that you should walk the golf course and try to avoid – as much as possible – riding golf carts. Although riding golf carts is the most convenient way to get yourself from one hole to the next, it will actually be good for your body if you walk your legs along the greens. Doing so pumps your heart, circulates the blood all over your body, and is a good and fun way of exercising.

David Fay from the United States Golf Association also thinks that the most pleasurable way to play golf is by walking. Riding carts, he said, should as much as possible, be stopped . Walking is a good form of exercise. It is the most basic and easy way of getting fit which almost anyone could do. Simply put, walking is good for you. Some believe that walking the golf course is a very unhealthy thing to do because of the nature of the game – the start and stop process of golf playing. In actuality though, there have been scientific studies as well as evidence of people actually telling their personal experiences on the positive effects of walking through a game of golf. In Sweden in particular, there are researchers who discovered that walking through a game of golf equals to about forty to seventy percent of intense workout in an aerobics class. This is assuming that eighteen holes were played.

In another study by a cardiologist named Edward Palank, golfers who walked were found to be in a better state of health because the level of bad cholesterol in their body decreased. Meanwhile, the level of their good cholesterol was steady. Those golfers who settled to ride their way across the golf course on golf carts did not show these same positive health results. Also, according to Golf Science International, four hours of golf playing was found to be comparable to attending a forty five minute fitness class.

Another golf association, specifically the Northern Ohio Golf Association, stated that when a golfer walks across a course, it is roughly equivalent to walking for three to four miles. This included walking around hills, over greens and tees. Not convinced yet? Maybe you should try doing the following activities and see, as well as feel, the difference for yourself. During a round of golf, try to walk along alternating holes so that by the end of your round of golf you should be able to have walked through a total of nine holes.

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Physical fitness can be improved by playing a round of golf, as long as the golfers do not ride around in the golf cart for the entire round. Walking can be beneficial to the overall fitness by improving the aerobic capacity. Walking can increase your heart rate to meet the guidelines for aerobic exercise. Of course these benefits need to be balanced with problems associated with walking long distances such as joint pain and heat related problems among other complications due to the person's general health. Carrying your golf clubs is not recommended. You will be better off using a pull cart instead. As always the golfer should check with his or her doctor to ensure it is safe for them to walk nine or 18 holes.

If you are feeling not up to it yet as fully as you should, that is okay. Maybe you could try walking on a set of nine holes while you can ride the other set of holes. If you have a golf partner and he or she insists that you ride along with him or her, make sure that you only ride on the path of the cart. You can then walk down to the fairway towards your ball and then your partner could bring the golf cart up.

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Lgali profile image

Lgali 7 years ago

good advice

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