Is Golf Good For Your Health?

Florida has over 1400 golf courses.

August is National Golf Month, which is a great way to get more people involved in golf.

The Sunshine State offers over 1400 golf courses, more than any other state. Orlando alone has roughly 65 courses. Living in Central Florida guarantees you know someone who loves golf and for good reason. Not only is it a great way to spend a beautiful Florida sunshiny day, but it also allows you numerous health benefits.

Mental health – the game of golf keeps your mind alert and provides human contact with others which can boost your psyche. Being surrounded by nature is good for the mind and soul. The game can be a good source of healthy competition and be as fierce as you want it to be. Keeping score, weighing the next shot and figuring out which club to use based on your skill level all help to keep your mind sharp.

Stress-reduction – For years, we’ve known that walking can reduce stress, increasing endorphins and serotonin levels. When you escape the hassles of your day-to-day routine, you are increasing the likelihood of relaxation.

Exercise – apart from the walking 5-6 miles for a full 18-hole game, the swing itself is great for providing a full-body workout. A full swing works the arms, legs, back, and core. If you’re looking for a shorter workout, hit the driving range and see how many swings you get in out of a bucket of balls. One round of walking 18 holes of golf can work off 1500 calories!

If you’re looking for a low-impact sport, this is it! The kinds of stresses and strains that sports like tennis, running, and basketball can put on joints don’t happen in golf.

Better sleep – Using your body and brain in the fresh air will make for a better sleep. You’ll fall asleep faster, sleep deeper and stay asleep longer.

Make friends – Playing golf with friends and family, or meeting other players at the course, are a great way to up your social circle.

Of course, there are downsides to golf as well.

Over-indulging in food and drink – Most golf clubs offer food and a beverage cart, which is great for an occasional treat, but if you’re playing every day and eating and drinking from the cart you’re likely to over-indulge. Hot dogs and beer every day should not be a steady diet. Try to bring your own heart-healthy snacks and drink more water.

Sunburns – Remember to wear your sunblock to be sun-safe. Skin cancer is a real threat to golfers.

Injuries – Injuries are a real threat to golfers.  The most common golf injuries are

  • Back pain is caused by being hunched over your club and rotating through your swing.
  • Rotator cuff injury which occurs from swinging the club over and over. This can occur from muscles and tendons tearing.
  • Tendinitis is commonly referred to as “tennis elbow” or “golf elbow”. It is irritation and inflammation of the outer tendon.
  • Knee pain and damage can occur from the stress and strain put on your knee through the power of your swing.
  • Tendinitis in the wrist happens when the wrist tendons become overly fatigued and inflamed.

Some ways to prevent these injuries from happening are to make sure you are using the proper form, practice strength training, and wear the proper shoes. If you’re feeling any pain, contact your physician and get a referral to Sand Lake Imaging to have your imaging exams.

We recommend you get out there as often as you can! During the month of August, several courses may have deals for golfers to enjoy National Golf Month. Check your favorite course to see what they offer.