You have probably heard – and believed, countless times of how intense physical activities such as brisk walking, jogging or climbing a staircase is beneficial to cardiovascular health. But like many, you may have wondered if playing golf qualifies to be ‘an intense physical activity because of how cool it looks.
Some people often tag golf as a “rich man’s sport” and the only reason they follow it is because of some fancy sports betting stats.
What many don’t know is that they could burn more calories playing golf than they would’ve when engaged in other common sweat entrenched physical activity i.e. jogging.
Physical activities are beneficial because they help increase heart rate and therefore improved blood circulation which is of immense benefit to cardiovascular health but some physical activities might be more strenuous to your heart than you think.
However, playing golf offers moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity, strength and balance likely for older adults and not just for young adults.
The 2018 International Consensus Statement on Golf and health reports in its study agreed to the fact that golfers have being associated with increased longevity and reduced risk factors for cardiovascular diseases. Golf is associated with overall mental wellbeing benefits and can positively influence health both physically and socially.
While golf might look ‘cool’ and less strenuous to the eye of many people in every part of the world – it actually is a good physical activity to engage in as it involves a lot of standing and walking around. An average golfer walks a distance of 4miles in the course of a game.
According to the Norwegian Golf Federation (NGF) a player will have an average heart rate of 100 beats per minute, over a two to the five-hour period during an 18-hole round. At the end of a game, the players would have achieved their goal on a daily step.
The constant pacing helps improve stamina, build muscular strength and improve the cardiovascular health of the player. Furthermore, golf improves blood circulation, making the heart work more efficiently, while the players constantly build their heart muscles.
In fact, playing golf keeps your heart rate up! This has been proven to lower the risk of having heart disease and other underlying cardiovascular and cardiopulmonary diseases as well as potentially lowering the levels of having low-density lipoprotein popularly called ‘bad cholesterol.
Regularly playing golf may even lead to an increase in life expectancy.
Since golf is an outdoor sport, it requires a considerable amount of time in the sun which boosts vitamin-D production. This leads to a better immune system as vitamin D is required for the body’s natural defense mechanism.
Regular exposure to the sun and fresh air have been proven to decrease depression, reduce anxiety, be more creative and sleep better according to a study conducted by the Johns Hopkins Center for Sleep at Howard County General Hospital.
Playing golf is a social sports which requires participants to interact with each other before during and after a game. This improves social interactions and improves a golfer’s self-confidence, social skills and overall mental wellbeing.
The level of concentration, accuracy and focus require to play golf encourages the player’s creativity requiring the player to think critically in order to be able to visualize and focus on how far a shot will go.
Playing golf requires some high level of thinking and skills and this makes golf players to be considered as smart. More so, engaging in moderate physical activities like playing golf doesn’t just exercise the arm and heart muscles, as it improves concentration and focuses it also stimulates the brain.
Exercises such as this strengthen the brain’s memory circuits which can potentially reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s.
Clive Ballard, director of research at the Alzheimer’s Society, suggests: ‘Whether it is going for a jog or walking the golf course, keeping physically active is a great way to keep your heart and your brain healthy.
By being active with golf – even, if it’s not professional level, ensure that the brain of the player has a good, strong blood supply, which is essential to help it function better now and in future.”
In research done by the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference in Los Angeles, researchers discovered that playing golf regularly, at least once a month, was associated with a lower risk of death.
Although, you might enjoy the spotlight among friends and fans cheering you on sometimes but playing golf is also a sport you can practice alone. This offers you the opportunity to play more calmly and focus more on your shooting skill.
A continuous practice without praying public eyes can make your shot more perfect therefore building your character and self-confidence. So get your gears ready and visit the golf field for better performance
However, golf may have seemed to cool to be rank among the top sport. In fact, too many, the gentility involves in golf build might not add up to the acclaimed importance of the sport in health.
However, the game of gold helps the brain, the heart, the circulation, and the immune system to a better standard – which in turn helps the overall health of the player from mental, to physical and social wellbeing. Thus golf is a great game to enjoy while trying to improve one’s health.