Is Golf Good for Your Health?

Even if you have a lot of other priorities for instance, sports, extracurricular activities, etc., still you need to complete a senior project to graduate successfully

Golf is generally a way to relax with friends and have a good time, but can it have added benefits of improved health and fitness? While many people don't think of golf as a calorie-melting workout, there actually are some significant benefits to all that time spent searching for your where your golf ball landed (if you are just a casual golfer like me).

The actually amount of fitness benefits depends on how you are spending your time on the green. Obviously, walking is better than driving a cart around. Walking by itself obviously is good for your health, so adding clubs to that can significantly boost your workout.

What type of health and fitness benefits does golf have exactly, though? Neil Wolkodoff, director of the Center for Health and Sport Science at the Rose Medical Center in Denver, sought to find the exact benefits with an extensive study, according to Bill Pennington of the New York Times. The results were rather impressive.

Even going just nine holes has significant benefits, according to Wolkodoff's study. Walking with your bag of clubs or with a pull cart for nine holes has nearly the same caloric burn (721 calories while carrying the bag and 718 for the pull cart). Meanwhile, "walking with a caddie burned 621 calories for nine holes, and riding in a cart still burned 411 calories on average.", according to the Pennington article.

This information makes golf a very valuable sport for those looking for a casual calorie burn or simply a healthy way to spend time with friends. Clearly, the better option for your health is to walk, either with your bag of clubs or pull cart, rather than hopping in a cart.

There are many potential pitfalls to this argument, though, if you are looking to spend some time on the links. If you are looking to get out on the course before the winter cold picks up and want to receive the benefits of workout, without the negatives, be sure to follow these tips.

Avoid the snacks - It can be easy to have bring different snacks to the course, or to purchase them while there. However, if you choose unhealthy snacks, all the goodness from your exercise can be erased quickly. If you plan to be out there for 18 holes, though, you may want to bring a small, healthy snack option. Choose water - It is very common for a group of friends to get together and spend more time at the beer cart than actually golfing. Even just a few drinks can cancel out the good that the walking is doing for you. Avoid going to a sports bar after - After you are done, your friends may want to go to a sports bar for wings and drinks to catch a game. While it is fine to enjoy time with your friends at these places, realize that it is easy to go well over 1,000 calories consumed or more in just a short time at a sports bar.

Golfing can be a fun way to spend time with friends and burn a few extra calories. If you are looking to make the most of your time on the links, make sure to follow these tips.