‘Playing golf at least once per month lowers the risk of premature death’

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir April 18, 2022 11:21

The American Heart Association (AHA), one of the world’s leading sources of information on cardiovascular disease in the world, has promoted the health benefits of golf.

The AHA has showcased research presented at its International Stroke Conference, which found that playing golf at least once per month lowers the risk of a premature death, especially among older adults, and recommended playing golf as a way to overcome unhealthy lifestyle behaviours people might have picked up in the pandemic.

In the quoted study, researchers from the University of Missouri in Columbia analysed data from the Cardiovascular Health Study, a population-based observational study of risk factors for heart disease and stroke in adults 65 and older. Out of nearly 5,900 participants, average age 72, researchers identified nearly 400 regular golfers. During the 10-year follow-up period, death rates for golfers were significantly lower than for non-golfers.

In addition, a comprehensive review of research published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine analysed more than 300 scientific studies, leading a panel of 25 public health experts to issue an international consensus statement, from several sporting and golf organisations, noting the health and social benefits of golf.

Golf can provide benefits such as stress reduction and regular exercise, states the AHA. Due to its social nature and typically slower, controlled pace, people of most ages and physical fitness levels can play the sport.

“The regular exercise, time spent outside enjoying nature, social interaction and even the friendly competition of a round of golf are all elements that can foster mental and physical wellbeing,” said Donald M. Lloyd-Jones, M.D., Sc.M., FAHA, president of the AHA.

“The past couple of years have been hard and many of us have picked up some unhealthy lifestyle behaviours such as more eating and less physical activity, and we’ve missed the company of friends and family. I think golfing can offer a great opportunity to start venturing back out into an enjoyable activity that can feed our hearts and our souls.

“The American Heart Association recommends most people get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise a week. Golfing qualifies as a moderate-intensity exercise, specifically if you are walking an 18-hole course, carrying your golf clubs. While golfing, you’re increasing your heart rate and blood flow, enhancing brain stimulation, improving your balance and socialising. Even if you are riding in a cart and playing a short course of only nine holes, you’re still being physically active, and we know any movement is better than none.”

The AHA adds that golfers should warm up before a round with a few stretching exercises and be sure to wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days. It says golfers should also stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and ensure they don’t get overheated.


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir April 18, 2022 11:21
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1 Comment

  1. YRosario April 18, 21:01

    Your all awesome ! May all course be with you all.
    Good Morning.

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