/ by Mike Poe
Feeling Above Par Mental and physical benefits of golf
Golfing isn’t usually associated with improved health and longevity, but it’s one of the best fitness activities out there in both respects. Playing a game of golf is equivalent to a week’s worth of exercise, when you consider that the average round of golf takes about 240 minutes of moderate activity. This goes far beyond the 150 minutes of exercise recommended per week by health officials. According to the British Journal of Sports Medicine, players walk 4 to 8 miles during a typical single round of golf and take roughly 11,000 to 16,000 steps. Those steps translate to an average of 1,500 calories burned if you’re carrying your own golf clubs and not using a golf cart. For golfers who walk enough of the course to gather 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week, some added benefits include a reduced risk for chronic diseases such as breast or colon cancers, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and stroke. Golf is mentally stimulating and physically challenging with far greater health benefits than most of us may know. Following are ways the sport improves mental health and overall well-being.
With more than 20 years of experience in the golf industry, Mike Poe is head of the golf program at Quintero Golf Club. Located near Lake Pleasant in Peoria, Quintero Golf Club has been ranked the Best Public Golf Course by Golf Digest and Golf Weekly Magazine. For more information, visit www.quinterogolf.com.
Longevity Regular exercise, 30 minutes, five times per week, is critical in terms of prolonging your lifespan. Walking can increase your lifespan up to five years. Golf is a low-impact sport that does not wear on joints and muscles if your form is correct. Heart Health Any form of physical activity such as walking, carrying your bag or swinging the club increases your heart rate and blood flow. These help reduce your risk of stroke and diabetes. Walking 2 1/2 hours per week can reduce your risk of having a heart attack by 30 to 40 percent. Mental Stimulation Playing golf requires a certain level of focus that keeps the mind engaged for