Ever asked yourself why a lot of old people seem to enjoy playing golf? Well, it’s simply because of the benefits of golf for seniors in terms of both physical and mental health. Aside from the sport being a fun hobby and pastime, it’s a very therapeutic activity for the elderly Just to give you an idea, here are a few benefits seniors can get from playing this sport:
Let’s start off with the physical benefits since these are the most obvious. Here’s a list of the health benefits you can get from golf:
- Cardio Health Benefits
Because of all the walking and jogging that you may do when you play golf, you’ll get to strengthen your cardio. Just to give you an idea, a golfer would walk around 4 miles at an average when playing 18 holes. This would enable them to lose around 1,400 calories by just walking. If you would use a cart, you’d lose up to 800 calories.
- Muscle Building
With all the walking that you do, you’d also build a lot of muscle strength in the leg area. Senior citizens, in particular, need all the muscle strength that they can get if they want to be able to continue walking on a normal day. With better muscles built into their legs, they should have no problem walking like they would usually do on an average day.
- Core Muscle Building
Did you know that swinging your golf club isn’t just about arm strength? It’s also about core muscle strength. In order to have a very strong swing, you need to have a strong core that can control the momentum that comes from your arms and shoulders. If you swing properly, you can really work out your abdominal muscles.
- Chest and Arm Building
Obviously, you get to really work out your chest, shoulder, and arm muscles when you play golf. While the core, the legs, and the buttocks would all work together to give you a powerful swing, it’s really your upper body that does all of the work since the upper body is the part that moves dynamically. By constantly moving your upper body, you’ll be building the muscles there to establish complete strength.
Those are some of benefits of golf with regard to their physical health. Aside from that, there are also a lot of mental health benefits of this sport for older people. Check out some of them below:
- Makes You Think Strategically
First of all, playing golf keeps your brain sharp. How? Well, golf isn’t just all about swinging the ball into a hole. It’s about strategically knowing how drive the ball into which hole. This means that you have to plan out your game strategy before you even begin. You need to see the big picture of the game before you start. That in itself already takes a lot of thinking.
- Involves a Lot of Math
Aside from looking at the macro picture, you must also take the time to look at the micro picture. The micro picture involves the calculations that you need to make in order to get your ball into the right hole. You need to calculate distance of the ball to the hall, the depth of the grass keeping your ball from getting to the hole, the wind direction that could blow your ball off course, and the slope of the greenery, so you’ll know how hard to hit your ball.
All of these small things entail a lot of brain power. That said, golf requires you to think in both a macro and a micro scale. That takes a lot of thinking.
Lastly, we have the emotional benefits of golf. Check them out below:
- Releases Stress
Just like any other sport, golf can be a stress reliever. Because of the physical activity, your body would naturally release endorphins making you feel more relaxed and happier. In fact, a lot of seniors who still work use golf as a means to de-stress. They usually go golfing on the weekends with friends.
- Encourages you to Socialize
Lastly, golf encourages you to socialize. Even if you go play a round of golf by yourself, you still need to be escorted by a caddy. That alone gives you a chance to socialize. Other than that, there are usually a lot of other players in the golf course. If you want more human interaction, you can challenge them to a game or simply say hello. Golf is a great way to make new friends.
As you can see, the benefits of golf for senior golfers can really cover all aspects of their health. Golf can improve their physical health, mental health, and emotional health all at the same time. The only thing that they need to do is book off a weekend just to play a round of golf. They’ll surely feel way better after a few rounds.