First of all, I tend to approach topics hoping to discuss them in relation to senior health and fitness.
However, a lot of facts about exercise and health tend to be true at any age, so, there is a lot of overlap.
Overlap or not, many seniors like golf as an activity. Many of these assume they are getting some of the health benefits of exercise by playing a round of golf now and then.
I guess the question we want to answer is this, “Is golf a good senior exercise choice, pleasant recreation, or simply a waste of time… at least as exercise, fitness, and health are concerned?”
Years ago, if you had asked me that question, I would have replied that it was a waste of time. I might have relented enough to say that if you walked, rather than riding a cart, I might allow that it was at least a form of light exercise. But, I probably would not have recommended it as an activity which promoted health and fitness.
I’m older, and, hopefully, wiser now.
First of all, when it comes to health benefits of one thing versus another, these days I believe that getting out of your chair and playing a round of golf, is far superior to just sitting in front of the TV.
Also, in these later years of life, I believe, based on personal experience, as well as a certain amount of research, that even the relatively mild activity of golf, can indeed produce health benefits, if not at the same level as a full cardio workout, or regular resistance training sessions.
While the actual amount of physical activity in a round of golf may be small, it’s better than nothing… especially in older citizens.
Other benefits of regular rounds of golf include the mental stimulation which comes with not only the game, but, getting there. Research has shown that just getting out and doing something, such as driving a car, or a golf ball, can help keep the mind more active and promote brain health.
The sort of social activity, and interaction, which often is a part of the game of golf, has also been shown to encourage brain function.
Interestingly enough, other studies have shown that keeping the mind active can contribute to physical health at any age.
So, in spite of the tendency of many to view the game of golf as mainly a good way to spoil a walk, as an activity, especially for seniors, it can be a little bit of physical and mental exercise… a recreation for both body and mind.